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Is “No Munchies” Cannabis an Innovation or a Gimmick?

January 30, 2015

With retail cannabis creating an exciting new emerging market, plenty of people have been hopping on the bandwagon – Colorado created 16,000 new jobs in the marijuana industry in the last year alone, and plenty of people watching from afar are seeing dollar $ign$.

Bethenny Frankel, an entrepreneur who has a presence on one of those reality shows that you’re embarrassed to admit you binge watch (“The Real Housewives of New York”), seems to be proclaiming herself a “ganja-preneur” now, too. She has seen the success of Skinnygirl, her line of low-calorie cocktails, and now she's decided she wants to make a line of cannabis products that don’t produce the “munchies” effect.

This is a bit difficult to comprehend for a variety of reasons:

  • Many cannabis consumers like the appetite stimulation that comes from cannabis, as they enjoy the experience of eating more thanks the the added jolt of dopamine courtesy of THC. 
  • Medical marijuana patients often use cannabis to help counteract the nausea and lack of appetite that stems from the disease or disorder they're fighting or the side effects from their stronger, more harsh medications. 
  • These Skinnygirl strains would offer little to no medicinal value for patients (and, for this reason, would likely be marketed exclusively as retail products).

Let’s examine this from a chemical overview. If you were to create a strain with no appetite stimulant, you'd end up with the following results:

  • The strain would have to be high in THCV, a compound that produces a strongly psychoactive effect with high energy and diminished appetite. However, the effects wouldn't last long and THCV is usually only found in trace amounts of cannabis.
  • It would also have to be high in humulene, a compound found in hops and coriander, which also diminishes the appetite in addition to having anti-inflammatory properties.
  • The strain would likely need to be low in ∆9 THC, the most prominent intoxicating compound, due to its inherent appetite stimulant.
  • The strain would need to be low in limonene, which is the compound that generally settles the stomach.

In layman’s terms, the Skinnygirl strain (if it were to come to fruition) would be:

  • Super high energy;
  • Super short-lasting;
  • Psychoactive for a short period of time;
  • Might cause some tummy troubles.

Would people buy it? Celebrity status is enough to ensure that. Would it be good? That remains to be seen — what's your take? 

  • Jonathan

    “These Skinnygirl strains would offer little to no medicinal value for patients”

    I beg to differ. Cannabis is used medicinally for several diverse ailments including anxiety, depression, and fatigue, in addition to the nausea and lack of appetite you mention. If lack of appetite is not an issue for the patient, the “munchies” can be a very negative side effect for someone who’s trying to lose weight.

    There’s nothing “difficult to comprehend” about patients wanting to medicate without exacerbating their struggle with a healthy diet. If it’s such a gimmick, why does Leafly have a (very useful) article titled “10 Cannabis Strains That Won’t Make You (As) Hungry”?

    I’m skeptical of the whole “Skinnygirl” marketing, but if it helps to destroy negative stereotypes of cannabis making you lazy and overweight by demonstrating that the countless cannabis strains offer diverse benefits for myriad ailments, so much the better!

    • Jessica Lang

      I totally agree with Jonathan. I clicked on the article because I would like to find a “no munchies” strain of flower!

  • poorandstandard

    update please if someone found a skinny girl strain