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Edibles: Do They Work for Everyone?

Is it True Some People Can’t get High From Edibles?

            When most people describe their experiences with edibles, they often report that the effects are stronger and longer lasting than when they consume cannabis using other methods. However, some people report quite the opposite. A cursory internet search shows that thousands of people are registering the same complaint – that edibles do not get them high. Often, these statements are dismissed by others one of two ways. Either 1) you are eating bad edibles or 2) you haven’t consumed enough THC to feel the desired effects. Is the answer so simple? Are there people who can’t get high no matter how many edibles they consume?

When you consume edibles, your body processes THC quite differently than it does when you smoke. When cannabis is ingested, THC is converted into 11-hydroxy-THC by your liver. The process of consuming then metabolizing takes longer than inhaling/smoking. This is why you have to wait a bit for your edibles to “kick in.” This process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. We’ve all heard stories of people not waiting long enough and consuming more edibles only to end up “greening out.” But what about the people who are on the other end of the spectrum and feel nothing at all?

There are two scientific theories that are relevant to this topic. Dr. Ethan Russo theorizes that people who do not get high from cannabis may have an endocannabinoid deficiency. When you consume THC, it interacts with the endocannabinoid system causing you to feel high. However, Russo believes that people with certain medical conditions like migraines, fibromyalgia, and IBS may have a deficiency that prevents them from feeling the effects of THC. In addition, French researchers in 2014 discovered that the hormone pregnenolone may block the effects of cannabis intoxication. So if your body is producing a lot of this particular hormone you may not feel the effects of THC. However, the above examples would be an issue regardless of your method of consumption. Thus, this likely wouldn’t apply to people who can get high from smoking/vaping but not from edibles.

So what if you only have a problem with edibles? The short answer is we don’t know… yet. With edibles, there is always unpredictability related to their effects. There are many reasons for that. Also, as the rise of edibles has been fairly recent there isn’t a lot of great research into how edibles work and affect certain individuals compared to others. It seems that users have different dosage thresholds for edibles regardless of experience smoking, weight, height, etc. Is it possible those who have never gotten high from this method of cannabis consumption just haven’t eaten enough to feel the effects? Sure. Are there certain people who can get high from every other method but will not feel edibles no matter how much they consume? Perhaps.

Unfortunately, we have no definitive answers to this question. Perhaps as more studies are being done related to cannabis intoxication we will understand this phenomenon more. Until then – toke (and munch) on dreamers

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