It sounds almost too good to be true.
A certain, lesser-known kind of cannabis can help you lose weight.
It can even help you stay slim, too.
After all, cannabis is known for stimulating the appetite -- commonly known as "getting the munchies"- and encouraging cravings for unhealthy carbohydrates like potato chips or cookies.
But misconceptions about cannabis still abound.
First of all, it won't cause you to frequently over-eat and pack on the pounds. On the contrary. Science is now revealing that it can actually help you shed unwanted flab without even breaking a sweat.
Loose Weight by De-Stressing
Here's a big problem that we all face: Losing weight is hard to do if we're stressed.
How does this happen? Blame it on the stress hormone, cortisol.
Our bodies' production of cortisol is part of our evolutionary reaction to perceived danger, which is commonly known as the "fight or flight response".
When this kicks-in, your body is flooded with cortisol to raise your blood pressure. In turn, this enhances the flow of oxygenate your muscles and brain -- hyper energizing you to react to any real or imagined threat.
The problem is that every-day stressors tend to trigger this physiological reaction all too often. And when stress is unrelenting, your body is likely to respond -- even without you realizing it -- by going into survival mode. This causes your body to hoard fat and burn fewer calories than normal.
Why is this? It's merely a biological defence mechanism against famine -- a seriously stress-inducing threat to humankind that was commonplace until a few decades ago.
Now comes the good part.
You can minimize your body's production of cortisol by simply by learning to relax. And if you need a little help doing this, Cannabis could become your new best friend. Especially if it can shrink your waistline in the process.
However, there's a catch: For many people, cannabis can actually induce stress, temporary paranoia and/or even panic attacks. This is due to the presence of cannabis' most renowned chemical - THC. This is what causes the chilled-out, mildly euphoric feeling that most people experience with marijuana. In other words, it's the psychoactive agent in pot that makes you feel "stoned".
Unfortunately, the recreational cannabis culture has traditionally promoted the notion that the stronger cannabis is, the better it is. That translates into lots of THC.
But that's not what everyone wants.
Instead, plenty of people would rather enjoy the relaxing benefits of cannabis without any cognitive impairment. This helps explain the newly-found popularity of CBD-rich strains of cannabis, which chill you out without getting you high. For more on CBD's medicinal powers and growing popularity, read out article on CBD.
What's particularly remarkable about CBD (aka cannabidiol) is that it significantly reduces the stress-increasing effect of the THC in cannabis. That's really important if you want to trim down because THC can actually raise your cortisol levels, even if it doesn't induce any anxiety.
As proof of CBD's weight loss ability, it has even been shown to reduce obesity in animal studies. Also, laboratory rodents that were administered CBD while on a calorie-restricted diet lost more weight than their counterparts in a control group.
How to Consume CBD?
Strains of cannabis that are high in CBD but very low in THC are a relatively new phenomenon.
They first came to prominence with the cultivation of "Charlotte's Web" -- a unique strain of non-psychoactive cannabis that is highly effective at medicating children with certain seizure disorders. Kids don't smoke it; it's orally administered to them as an oil in a paste.
Alternatively, you can consume CBD-rich cannabis as an oil that you can infuse into foods (or purchase as a pre-packaged CBD-infused food product from a dispensary).
Even though oral consumption of cannabis usually takes 30-60 minutes to take effect, it tends to have a much longer-lasting effect than smoking does.
Whatever your preference, it's a great way to de-stress, however, exercise is the best compliment to de-stressing when working towards getting fit. Coach Within understands the holistic approach to exercise and has a great product called eJ.