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Why Does Cannabis Affect People Differently?


Have you noticed that cannabis may produce different effects for you compared to your friends or family? Whether you’re consuming products containing high amounts of CBD, THC, or any of the other numerous cannabinoids found in all forms of cannabis there’s probably been some disparity from person to person in terms of effectiveness. You may have read success stories online or heard from a friend that taking CBD has helped them overcome their anxiety, drastically reduced pain, or perhaps they felt little to no change, well, there are scientific reasons behind the wide-spread claims.

Going back to 1964, shortly after Raphael Mechoulam, an Israeli chemist, discovered psychoactive THC he decided to test out its effects on his friends. He dosed slices of cake with 10mg THC each and realized that the same dose affected each person differently. Some said they felt strange like they were ‘in a different world’ while another person claimed they felt nothing yet was noticeably chattier compared to another one of Rafael’s friends who also claimed to feel nothing yet burst out into laughter every 15-20 seconds. It was at this time that Rafael realized that cannabis affects everyone differently but it wasn’t until more recently that we’ve discovered why.

Genetics have a significant impact as to how you can be affected when consuming cannabis. If you have never experienced anxiety when consuming cannabis, specifically high THC, you may be part of the 20% of the population who have higher levels of anandamide – otherwise known as a “feel-good endocannabinoid”. Higher levels of anandamide are due to a gene mutation which produces less FAAH – the protein responsible for its metabolization.

Biological sex can also influence how you feel after consuming forms of cannabis. There have been examples of men being more likely to find cannabis to be a stronger appetite stimulate while women may require less cannabis to feel pain relieving effects in comparison. Interestingly, the effects of cannabinoids on women have been documented to be more powerful when estrogen levels are higher than normal – specifically just before ovulation when the levels have peaked.

Biochemistry has shown to have effect as well because no two people have the same biochemical makeup it’s not surprising that there’s such disparity in how cannabinoids can be metabolized when comparing different users. The state of your endocannabinoid system plays a key role in how you will feel and lifestyle influences like diet and stress can have an influence thus impacting your biochemistry.

Essentially the only sure way to know for sure how you will be affected by cannabis is to try it for yourself. When speaking about hemp-derived products such as the ones we offer, you may require higher or lower doses depending on your ailments or lack thereof. Take your time, start slow with low doses, and don’t be afraid to try a new products or methods of consumption of you feel you aren’t getting the effects you’re looking for.