Does Weed Help with Nausea? Relief & Benefits
This post is part of our Best Dispensary in San Diego series, sponsored by The Healing Center San Diego.
You’ve likely landed yourself on this page because you, or a loved one of yours, has suffered the unpleasant feeling of nausea. After typing “does weed help with nausea” into your search engine, you were presumably met with an overflow of information that has left you conflicted about whether to explore weed as a means of freeing yourself from the miserable feelings of nausea, but are willing to try anything at this point. If that is so, you’ve come to the right place.
Believe it or not, weed can suppress nausea. In fact, research alludes to the fact that the effectiveness of cannabis to treat nausea is wildly powerful, and relief is typically palpable within one hour of consumption of cannabis. That being said, how your body responds to which cannabis strains may vary person to person, and not all strains are useful in the case of easing feelings of nausea.
Whether you are experiencing nausea due to side effects of medications, vertigo, food sensitivities, gastrointestinal conditions, dehydration, pregnancy, or motion sickness, there is treatment out there for you and marijuana might be the answer. For the all-natural, prescription-free folks out there, consuming cannabis is one of the most natural, holistic ways to treat nausea.
Let’s dive deeper into cannabis nausea treatment.
Table of Contents
How Does Weed Help with Nausea?
If ginger chews, peppermint tea, saltine crackers, Pepto-Bismol, acupressure on your wrists, and drinking clear or ice-cold liquids isn’t breaking through to your nausea, it’s time to bring out the big guns. That weapon of mass destruction is none other than cannabis. What is it destroying? The enemy–nausea.
To break it down for you, let’s understand how nausea occurs, and in order to do that we must address the endocannabinoid (EBC) system. This system wields significant influence across various domains, including, but not limited to, brain function, the endocrine system, immune tissues, and hormone secretion. Nausea originates within the brain region responsible for regulating autonomic functions like breathing and emetic reflexes–i.e. your vomiting reflexes. When certain stimuli or neurotransmitters get triggered, they can transmit signals to the brain and–to our detriment–activate receptors that lead to nausea.
Nausea is a defense mechanism designed to safeguard your body from harm, and eliminate any toxins that may have entered the body. Nausea can also result from inflammation of nerve endings in your stomach and small intestine–the duodenum, whose main purpose is to help you digest by combining digestive enzymes with the food you eat. That is why you might feel as though you are about to vomit when you feel intense waves of nausea.
So how exactly does weed interact with the brain and body to facilitate nausea relief?
Specific pharmacological molecules found in cannabis–particularly THC–directly engage with CB1 receptors in the EBC system. This binding of THC to CB1 receptors results in the reduced transmission of signals sent to the brain that trigger nausea and vomiting. THC is also recognized for having anti-inflammatory and sedative properties, which can help those who suffer from chronic pain and inflammatory diseases.
Is Smoking the Only Way to Use Weed to Treat Nausea?
So we’ve tackled the question “how does weed help with nausea,” but let’s expand on the different forms of consuming marijuana and understand how they play a role in nausea relief. Considering there are tons of ways to consume marijuana to feel its effects–including edibles, vapes, oils, creams–it can be difficult to determine which is right for you. Depending on what you are experiencing–pain, lack of appetite, nausea, or all three–consuming or smoking weed might alleviate some symptoms.
Duration of relief from nausea also varies, depending on the way it is consumed, as well as the characteristics of the herb. Smoking flower or vapor from a vape cartridge will likely give you immediate relief, lasting anywhere from an hour to several hours. Edibles typically take longer to digest and hit your system, though they can be stronger and provide a prolonged effect as there are neurons in your stomach. Onset effects are delayed in tinctures as well, though the benefits of oral sprays and sublingual drops will come on quicker than edibles.
Edibles will last quite a long time in comparison with inhaling cannabis–about 3-7 hours. For those who experience intense nausea, edibles might be the way to go. However, beware that edibles can sometimes actually cause nausea, so we advise you to avoid edibles if you’ve previously experienced nausea after consumption. If you’ve landed on this article because you want to know how to stop nausea from edibles, we advise you to consult with both a budtender and a doctor, because you may be taking too high a dosage, or ingesting strains with terpenes that aren’t great for your particular needs.
Best Strains for Nausea
When understanding “does weed help with nausea,” it’s important to note that not all strains are created equal. When it comes to nausea, the best strains to treat it boil down to the characteristics of the weed. Another factor is terpenes, which–for the sake of this article–we’ll call anti-nausea agents. Certain terpenes are said to be a more effective nausea remedy due to their aromatic properties. For example, terpenes that possess a peppery scent–such as myrcene and limonene–are known to facilitate relief from nausea. CBD content may also support nausea alleviation due to how it interacts with dopamine receptors.
Indica strains that are good for combatting nausea include: Blueberry Diesel, Bubba Kush, and Granddaddy Purp. Hybrid strains include Blue Dream, OG Kush, and Sour Diesel. Sativa strains known to be an effective aid for nausea relief include Durban Poison and Harlequin.
Note that over an extended period of time with repeated use of cannabis, certain receptors in your brain may stop responding to nausea in the same way.
Is Sativa or Indica Better for Nausea?
Alright, so what’s the word–is sativa or indica better for nausea? Considering that sativa strains tend to be more energizing and enlivening, indica may have a greater chance of curing your nausea. Indica strains are known for their calming and relaxing effects, which one experiencing nausea would likely prefer over feeling wired or excited. Indica can also be a powerful strain for keeping food down, which can be helpful for those undergoing chemotherapy and are experiencing nausea as a result of the associated medication.
Yet still, every person responds differently, so we suggest you consult with your doctor or get expert advice from a budtender to determine what strain and dosage are right for you.
How to Purchase Marijuana
If you are experiencing nausea and seeking new ways to help ease the undesirable sensations, hitting a local dispensary and chatting it up with a budtender about your specific symptoms is your best bet to quick relief!
The Healing Center San Diego is a phenomenal weed shop with knowledgeable staff eager to guide you to the best products suited for your particular needs. Budtenders can understand the potential source of your nausea, and help determine which strains and terpenes will be able to stop the unpleasant sensation dead in its tracks.They carry everything from topicals and tinctures to fresh flower, vape pens, prerolls and dangerously delicious edibles.
Key Takeaways on Weed and Nausea
No more asking yourself, “does weed help with nausea?” We’ve covered the basics, so let’s run through what we’ve discussed.
- Cannabinoids and terpenes can suppress nausea
- Flower and certain concentrates tend to have more effectiveness in treating nausea than edibles, topicals, and tinctures
- Edibles, sublingual drops, oral sprays, and various tinctures tend to have a longer lasting effect than flower
- Smoking weed in the form of fresh flower or via vape cartridge, and applying topicals or transdermal patches, will provide quicker relief than edibles if your nausea needs immediate attention.
- Terpenes that possess a peppery scent–such as myrcene and limonene–are great for nausea relief
- Due to its calming and de-stressing properties, indica might be the fan favorite for curing nausea
- Cannabis for nausea relief is a more holistic approach with very little negative side effects
As with anything, it is best to consult with your doctor to make sure that cannabis is the right treatment for you. Consume responsibly and consult with your budtender about recommended dosage and strains. We encourage you to supplement cannabis with natural, at-home remedies–who knows, you might find a hack to halting nausea forever!
Thank you and best of luck on your journey to treating nausea!