‘Munchies’ don’t lead to weight gain in regular pot smokers: study

Mike Montone
April 22, 2019 - 9:38 am
Woman holding a cannabis or marijuana joint in her hand. Joint is dipped in oil or wax and sprinkled with kief

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EAST LANSING, MI (1010 WINS) -- Pot smokers with the munchies devour all sorts of unhealthy foods from sweet to salty to fatty, so you'd think users would be packing on the pounds -- not so.

Michigan State University researchers say just the opposite is true.

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They analyzed Body Mass Index data for 33,000 participants, comparing BMI of marijuana users and non-users over a three-year period and found no significant difference in weight.

Curious about the movement to legalize cannabis in the Tri-State area? Checkout our High State Area series to learn more

"An average two-pound difference doesn't seem like much, but we found it in more than 30,000 people with all different kinds of behaviors and still got this result," said lead study author Omayma Alshaarawy.

They say it's possible that certain compounds in marijuana alter metabolism by modifying how certain cells or receptors respond in the body and can ultimately affect weight gain.

"It could be more behavioral, like someone becoming more conscious of their food intake as they worry about the munchies after cannabis use," said Alshaarawy. "Or it could be the cannabis use itself, which can modify how certain cells, or receptors, respond in the body and can ultimately affect weight gain.”

Researchers caution that marijuana use should not be considered a way to maintain or lose weight.

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