Foods That Are Proven to Enhance Your High
To the delight of stoners and sick people everywhere, we are emerging from the dark ages of the Prohibition-like ban on all things cannabis. As laws start to relax, there is an explosion of modern experimentation with weed-infused edibles, smokable strains with predictable and intentional highs, and new scientific magic. As we gain a greater understanding of the science behind marijuana in our bodies, we can tweak (boom!) the surrounding factors to control the effects.
The human brain contains receptors that are specifically designed to link up with cannabinoids, the active chemicals in cannabis. This has led scientists to hypothesize that humans and cannabis evolved alongside one another. In other words, weed is our plant ally, a fact that seems pretty obvious to most people who use it. There are around 400 cannabinoids: some of them make us goofy, others reduce inflammation or counteract pain, give us feelings of euphoria, or make us hungry.
And it turns out, pairing those magical floral compounds with other natural munchies can actually enhance your high. So next time you're locked into a day-long Lord of the Rings marathon, maybe ditch the Cheetos and go for one of these foods that could take you to the next level. Or just have both. Mangos pair surprisingly well with Flamin' Hots.
Topping the charts for enhancing the recreational use of marijuana is mango, thanks to its high content of compounds called mycene tarpenes. This works with the THC cannabinoid, which is responsible for the psychoactive effect of weed (the fun part of being high). The mycene tarpenes bind with the THC brain receptors, allowing your high to come on faster, stronger, and last longer. You can achieve this by eating a mango before or after you smoke... ideally both, because eating a mango when you have the munchies is the Best. Thing. Ever.
Chocolate has a chemical compound that makes us feel blissful, and this same compound is also found in cannabis, and naturally occurring in the brain. Regardless of your religious beliefs, this is pretty good evidence that something, somewhere, loves us very much. When consumed together, the chocolate helps the weed activate the brain receptors that produce feelings of euphoria. This works by eating chocolate prior to smoking, and also for edibles, which is why a lot of people report better effects from weed-infused chocolate bars than from other special treats. Just be sure to stock up on non-infused chocolate treats prior to indulging, to prepare for an inevitable case of the munchies, like these slutty brownies.
If you're going the infusion route, coconut oil creates the most potent extraction and by far the best bulletproof coffee. Cannabinoids bond with saturated fat, and coconut oil has almost double the amount of saturated fat as butter, and considerably more than other common cooking oils. Bonuses include its many health benefits, plus the fact that it's vegan-friendly and is available in neutral and delicious coconut-flavored varieties. If you're switching over from butter, proceed with caution, as the effects can be doubled from the same quantity of weed. It should also be noted that this stuff is also highly potent as a topical ointment, which means if you are handling it without gloves, plan on not leaving your home for the next few hours. If that's the case, we recommend re-evaluating Attack of the Clones. (Kidding, kidding!)
Black & green tea
Tea has a reputation as soothing and relaxing, and this is exactly the effect it can enhance when enjoyed with pot. The antioxidant catechin, which is responsible for many of the health benefits of tea, binds with the brain's receptors for the cannabinoid that promotes feelings of peace and tranquility. So the next time your friend is tweaking out after eating too many brownies, have them try a cup of tea before checking themselves into the local hospital for being too high. That's just embarrassing for everyone.
This is not what we had in mind when our parents told us broccoli was an important part of our diets, and certainly not what you think to eat when you're one toke over the line. Aside from actually being delicious, broccoli contains beta caryophyllene, which works in tandem with the cannabinoid that reduces inflammation and physical pain. Eating a few ounces of broccoli before indulging can enhance the pain-relieving effects of ganga, working especially well with strains that are designed with that medical purpose. When you think about it, broccoli kind of looks like weed... coincidence, or synchronicity?
The spins are not just in your head (get it?), they are a real phenomenon backed by science; studies show that people who drank alcohol had more THC in their blood than those who did not drink, even though all groups vaporized the same amount of grass. That means that in addition to also feeling the effects of alcohol, the booze enhances the weed. This may seem great, and has even spawned a new trend of infusing alcoholic drinks with THC, but it can lead to rapid onsets of reduced inhibitions and a greater risk of making an ass out of yourself, so be careful, and enjoy responsibly.
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Tess Rose Lambert is a Manhattan-based philosopher-turned-drink expert who spends her nights grappling with tough decisions like what to pair with Thai takeout and Netflix binges. It's often mezcal. Follow her to south-of-the-border pilgrimages: @TessRose211.