Cannabis hangovers, also referred to as “weed hangovers,” refer to the range of effects that may take place the day after consuming cannabis products. These unpleasant sensations, which range from feeling drowsy and fatigued to headaches and nausea, might ruin the experience or discourage someone from using cannabis.
Research is limited in understanding the consumer complaint of cannabis hangovers. While one report shows that undesirable, residual effects of cannabis consumption can be felt the day after smoking, another reports that any effects are minimal at most. Regardless of the available data, consumers tend to blame the product formulation or overconsumption.
Why is it that some products may leave us feeling sluggish the next day, and how might we avoid it? For further information, we got in touch with Michael Backes, Cofounder and Chief Product Officer of Perfect, and the author of Cannabis Pharmacy: The Practical Guide to Medical Marijuana.
“I believe that old cannabis products, such as old vape cartridges, can lead to hangovers. Fresher cannabis products appear to produce fewer lingering effects,” says Backes.
The combination of freshness and terpenes may contribute to reducing any negative consequences the next day.
Terpenes are compounds found in all known life forms, including fruits, trees, herbs, and a range of other plant species that are responsible for determining their distinct scents. They have an impact on individual and population survival. The compound squalene, for example, belongs to a larger class of terpenes present in both plants and animals. Squalene is secreted by the liver and sebaceous glands in humans. In the human body, squalene serves as a precursor for steroid hormones and cholesterol.
How Terpenes Help Eliminate the “Hangover”
“A rich terpene entourage reduces the likelihood of cannabis hangovers,” continues Backes. “A traditional Moroccan remedy for cannabis hangover includes a glass of cold, fresh lemonade with black pepper sprinkled on top. This works because of its terpene entourage of limonene from the lemons and beta-caryophyllene from the pepper. Both limonene and beta-caryophyllene possess potent anti-inflammatory activities.”
Limonene has also been studied for its anti-nausea, anti-vomiting, and uplifting properties, reported to boost mood and metabolism while decreasing stress and anxiety.
Myrcene, on the other hand, is a terpene known for its sedative effects. Considering that terpenes are so vast they account for nearly one-third of all compounds in the Dictionary of Natural Products, research is still in early stages. However, evidence remains that they work in synergy with other cannabinoids, and there is a consensus among consumers regarding their different properties.
If you want to avoid residual feelings of grogginess the next day, it may be best to pay attention to the terpene content, quality of the product, and how much you are consuming.
“Sip, Don’t Rip”
Backes explains, “Most consumers inhale too rapidly. Reducing the intensity of inhalation also reduces the combustion temperature, which results in a smoother, less harsh experience. I advise taking a gentle inhalation (sipping) rather than hitting hard (ripping).”
Starting low and increasing slowly enables one to find their therapeutic dose at the lowest amount possible. Finding your individual threshold can also help to prevent effects that carry over into the following day. While you may have a good indication as to where to stop with smoking cannabis, it may become more difficult with edibles given the slow rate at which they will metabolize in the body.
When in Doubt, Get Support
Realm of Caring is here to help with lingering questions about finding the most success from your cannabis experience. From quality product selection in your area to dosing guidance along the way, our care team is available. You can call our free hotline at 719-347-5400, email email@example.com, or schedule an appointment.
On October 26th, 2022 at 4pm MST, Michael Backes will participate in a webinar hosted by Realm of Caring. Beforehand, send any questions by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Register using this link!