Basically everyone who has smoked weed has also felt that urge to run to the shop for a bag of chips and some powerade. But what exactly is the science behind “the munchies” ? Well it all comes down to something called your POMZ . These are neurons in the Olfactory center of your brain . Simply put , they make your smell and taste more intense and therefore they make food much more appealing. It’s not that you’re actually hungry , it’s your brain tricking you into thinking it’s hungry! So , if you skip out on that chocolate milkshake and french fries you will survive, but now come to think of it, I am actually really hungry!
Ok, so you might be wondering if I’m making this all up, but no, this is an actual study printed in Nature , basically the gold standard in academic research. But I’ll give you a breakdown since I’m stoned and like talking about mice. So, these scientists basically got a bunch of mice, and they started introducing them to smells. For instance, they made a corner of the cage smell like almonds by using an oil. They found that the straight laced sober mice got used to the smell of the almonds and were just like “meh” after a while. Meanwhile the stoned mice kept sniffing and sniffing. They were actually more interested in the smells because of the olfactory part of their brain being activated.
So, now you may be thinking, but why does weed give me the munchies? What is it that’s specific about marijuana that lights up this area of the brain? Well, it all comes down to the endocannabinoid system which is present in all of us. Basically our body makes cannabinoids and they regulate things like emotion, apetite , and our sense of smell and taste . Since our bodies are made to process this stuff, it makes it easy for the cannabinoids in weed to activate them. So, smoking weed activates our endocannabinoid system, which in turn lights up our olfactory senses, which then makes us want a donut!