Controlling The Munchies: Exploring Alternative Strains And Food Options
No matter your form of consumption, the munchies are almost a guaranteed effect of cannabis. Once you’ve smoked or had an edible, your self-control may be nonexistent when it comes to food. You can either plan for the munchies or the munchies can control you. If you know that you’re the type of person who gets the munchies and wants to eat all of the savory and sweet delicacies within your kitchen, you can plan for that with foods that won’t leave you regretting your binge from the night before. There are a variety of ways to combat the munchies, some of which include experimenting with different strains or stockpiling food you can eat in bulk without remorse.
Know Your Strains
Every strain is unique and can have a wide array of effects. Some strains are slow acting, sneaking up on you while others may have you couch-locked in minutes. Just as strains are unique, so is each individual’s body chemistry. Your experience may be entirely different than someone smoking the same strain as you. If you’re looking to control the munchies, it should be known that indica strains have a strong potential for creating a roaring appetite, although there are some hybrids and sativas that can produce a similar effect. A handful of strains known to induce the munchies include: Hindu Kush, Watermelon, Grape Ape, AK-47 and Girl Scout Cookies, amongst many other strains.
Two categories of cannabis that do not encourage a voracious appetite are high-CBD strains and high-THCV sativa strains. Both CBD and THCV are cannabinoids, much like THC, and influence the effects of every strain. Some strains that are notoriously known for not inducing the munchies include: Remedy, Cannatonic, Durban Poison and Pineapple Purps. If you know that you struggle with the munchies, you should take the opportunity to experiment with strains and learn more about how the different cannabinoids affect your body and mind. A little research can go a long way towards customizing your cannabis experience.
Changing up strains may not be the best solution for everyone. Perhaps you have a favored strain and you’re not inclined to switch teams. If that’s the case, consider altering your available food options. There are numerous options that won’t leave your stomach in turmoil due to the inability to control the amount you consume—and let’s be honest, some of us don’t have the best self-control when high.
Some strains that are notoriously known for not inducing the munchies include: Remedy, Cannatonic, Durban Poison and Pineapple Purps.
Even as an adult, knowing I should eat ‘healthy’ food like fruits, vegetables, proteins and fiber, it’s sometimes easier to swing through a drive-in on my way home. After all, fatty foods are supposed to increase the effects of your high. But there are some mornings when you wake up and feel so miserable from your gorging session the night before, that you can’t help but wonder if maybe you should be making different food choices.
When looking at doctor recommended daily values (DV), healthcare professionals recommend no more than 65 grams of fat, 300 grams of carbohydrates, 2400 milligrams of sodium and 300 milligrams of cholesterol. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 25 grams of added sugar per day. To draw a comparison, one piece of Costco pepperoni pizza is the equivalent of 24 grams of fat (37 percent DV), 68 grams of carbohydrates (23 percent DV), 1290 milligrams of sodium (54 percent DV), 60 milligrams of cholesterol (20 percent DV) and 6 grams of sugar (24 percent DV). One piece of pizza does not a meal make, and yet that one piece of pizza accounts for a minimum of 20 percent of daily nutrient intake and a maximum of 50 percent. Now in no way am I encouraging people to start counting calories., but to merely use pizza, a common favorite among stoners, to encourage people to think about how much is being consumed versus what health professionals would recommend for the average individual.
On a lighter note, there are many delicious food options that people might not have considered as alternatives to store bought goodies. One food group that is extremely underrated is produce. Fruit is sweet, like candy, and is fair game for fruit usually contains no added sugars. Especially during warmer seasons, fruit can be filling and refreshing. Some fruits that are the most easily consumed, requiring little attention, include grapes, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, bananas and apples. If you prefer to have something to keep your hands occupied, oranges are also enjoyable. Fruit is a great option as far as healthy alternatives go, but there’s other sugary sources that can curb your cravings.
A personal favorite of mine is Otter Pops. One Otter Pop contains a mere 15 calories, 4 grams of carbohydrates and 4 grams of sugar. In comparison, a Snickers has 215 calories, 11 grams of fat, 83 grams of cholesterol, 28 grams of carbohydrates and 20 grams of sugar. There’s nothing wrong with eating a Snickers, except for how short-lived it is. With Otter Pops, or whatever form of popsicle you prefer, you often have a variety of flavors to choose from and the treats are not nearly as heavy on the body as a candy bar. If you prefer salty snacks to sweet, there are some simple alternatives for those preferences as well.
For those who prefer something more along the lines of chips, popcorn should be a go-to food. I’m not talking about microwaveable popcorn or pre-popped, bagged kettle corn either. Popcorn can be made at home and fresh tends to be the best. It does take a little work—requiring the bottom of a pan be oiled, kernels to be poured, coating the surface, and a lid placed on top of the pan until it has properly heated and popped most of the kernels. When making your own popcorn, you can also add as much butter or salt as you want, though keeping in mind too that less is more in such a situation.
For many, the munchies are an enjoyed effect of cannabis consumption. There may be occasions though, where you don’t feel as interested in devouring all of the morsels in your kitchen cupboards. So, plan ahead, choose a strain less likely to increase your appetite, or pick snacks that are tasty and won’t leave you feeling gorged or sick once the high is gone.
Also published on Medium.