Not getting enough sleep can give you the munchies, just like pot

And the reason why has to do with your endocannabinoid system

By Kieran Delamont

2019-10-22

Ever wonder why your body seems to be in permanent snack mode the day after getting a really bad sleep (or no sleep at all)? Science finally has an answer. And it has to do with your endocannabinoid system.

According to recent research published in eLife, “lack of sleep seems to change food preferences by influencing the levels of molecules that regulate food intake. In particular, it could have an effect on the endocannabinoid system, a complex network of molecules in the nervous system that controls biological processes such as appetite.”

Researchers still don’t have an exact understanding of why the endocannabinoid system can prompt a craving for fatty, snacky foods. But last year they found that cannabis can spark the release of a hunger hormone in the brain.

Since appetite modulation is a desirable outcome for many medical patients (chemo patients, for instance, often want and need cannabis’ appetite stimulation), this research could have many applications – especially as growers and scientists begin to think more about genetically customizing cannabis. 

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