THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is undoubtedly the best known cannabinoid in cannabis. Despite the fact that there are hundreds of other active components in the plant. Reason behind this popularity is the fact that THC can get you high or stoned – depending on the terpenes it’s mixed with. Though there is much more to this substance than you might think!
1. THC Is A Fat
How surprising this may sound, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a fat – belonging to the group of organic fats known as lipides. The cannabis plant is loaded with these fatty molecules, as the majority of its active components – cannabinoids – are fats that do not mix with water and are stored in your body’s fat after use.
After inhaling THC through a vaporizer, for example, THC finds its way to the bloodstream through the lungs. Then it transports itself to fatty tissue throughout the body and our brain. Because it is stored in the body’s fat, it takes quite a long time to leave the body.
2. THC Is Released When You Burn Fat
Although THC is no longer effective when it is stored, it could come up in a drugtest. As there are stories of top athletes who stop their cannabis use months prior to a game. Though still test positive on THC because of the fat they’ve burned – releasing stored THC – during their intense pre-game training. This phenomenon is also scientifically proven in this Australian research.
Other research suggests that exercising for 25-35 minutes could already increase the THC-levels in your blood. Interesting enough, it appears that the higher the BMI (Body Mass Index), the more THC can be detected after exercise.
3. You Poop THC
Now we know how THC enters the bloodstream, that it is stored in the body’s fat and that burning fat brings it back into the bloodstream. Though we haven’t talked about the way THC leaves the body yet. Again, this fact might surprise you…
In theory, you could detect THC in urine up to 77 days after the last use. Although the majority of the consumed amount of THC and THC-metabolites leave the body through the digestive system. Researches estimate that up to 65 percent of the consumed THC leaves the body through poop – and only 20 percent through urine. Talk about some good shit.
Also interesting: ‘A Life Worth Living: Cannabis’ Benefits To Body And Mind‘
4. Plants, Fungi and THC
Cannabis is not the only THC carrying plant in nature, though. As there are various other plants and fungi with THC-like components. The expensive delicacy truffel, for example, contains enzymes that are needed to create anandamide. This ‘happy molecule’ is a THC-like substance that we humans produce naturally. Cocoa also contains anandamide-resembling compounds. Hence why eating chocolate could lengthen THC’s euphoric effects.
Researchers from California say they’ve developed a genetically modified yeast, that produces THC-producing enzymes. Considering that cannabis is illegal in most parts of the world, yeast might be the key to create legal, natural and affordable medicinal THC. For the use in medicinal cannabis oil and other cannabis based medicine.
5. Vegetal ‘Happy-Molecule’
The reason why THC makes us feel good, is that the compound partially works on our ‘happiness-system’. As described above, THC is the vegetal version of anandamide – the body’s own happy molecule. By consuming the cannabinoid, the cannabis-compound takes the place of anandamide on the body’s CB-receptors.
Although both anandamide and THC bind to the same receptors of our endocannabinoid-system (ECS); the plant-version stays there longer. This probably also explains why the cannabinoid has such a strong effect on your mental and physical well-being.