Stimulating your appetite with cannabis

Marijuana has a steadfast reputation for causing “the munchies.” That appetite-stimulating effect is a side effect of THC, one of the main compounds found in cannabis. For those suffering from cancer, HIV/AIDS, heart disease, and other conditions that cause a drop in appetite, medical cannabis is often used to stimulate the appetite.


A recent study by Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior examined this, finding that cannabis exposure resulted in a surge of the hormone ghrelin in the stomach. This hormone tells the brain when the stomach is empty and that it’s time to eat. They also discovered that cannabis affects a set of brain cells that respond to ghrelin.

The THC in cannabis also improves your sense of taste. A study published in Nature Neuroscience in 2014 found that when lab mice were injected with THC, their ability to smell food increased significantly. Researchers believe that their sense of taste likely improved as well since smell and taste are intricately related.

Cannabis’s ability to increase both ghrelin and improve the sense of smell and taste packs a powerful 1-2 punch, helping patients who lack an appetite due to illness or side effects of other treatments to feel hungry and enjoy their food again.


Stimulating the appetite can improve nutrition, help patients gain weight or prevent further weight loss, and make eating more enjoyable. Medical cannabis for appetite stimulation is often recommended for patients undergoing chemotherapy, suffering from anorexia or malnutrition, AIDS patients, and other patients who lack an appetite.

Tikun Olam’s Eran Almog and Or strains are high THC medical cannabis products that stimulate the appetite. Both adhere to the highest of standards and are available in flower or vape forms. Learn more at Tikun Olam California.