Would you eat weed? That’s the hottest topic trending the culinary circles this year. While most people are aware of the many uses of marijuana, from recreational to medicinal, cannabis edibles are making a splash in the gourmet world. With top chefs and foodies endorsing the use of cannabis as a food product, the trend is only expected to grow.
But not with standing all the excitement about cannabis as a food, there are still those who may doubt the appropriateness of putting marijuana on the dinner plate. To assuage those doubts, in this article we are going to take a close look at cannabis as a food, it’s history and the many benefits we can garner from including weed in our diet.
And here we go.
History Of Cannabis Foods
Cannabis has been known for its medicinal and food value for centuries. In ancient India and China, cannabis in edible forms was administered as an antidote for multiple health conditions, such as digestive disorders and intense pain.
Cannabis has been used as a food item in India since ancient times. As early as 1000 BCE, people in the subcontinent have been known to consume bhang, which is an edible preparation of cannabis. Even today during Holi (the Hindu festival of colors) sweets, drinks and edibles made of cannabis are consumed as a common practice. Use of cannabis in cooking can also be found mentioned in certain ancient Sanskrit texts.
Cannabis edibles became popular worldwide during the 1960’s counterculture when Alice B. Tokias’ eponymous cookbook brought forth the recipe for hash brownies. Even today, multiple recipe books dedicated to cannabis preparations are available.
Therefore, the use of cannabis in edibles is not exactly a novel concept and has been around for a pretty long time. But with all this talk of cannabis edibles, it’s best to take time and understand exactly what constitutes a cannabis food item.
What Are Cannabis Edibles?
Cannabis edibles are simply food items that have cannabis as an ingredient. These can range from baked goods, cannabis-infused drinks and even salads.
For a quick cannabis salad recipe by Hempearth headman Derek Kesek, watch this video.
Cannabis edibles are usually rich in cannabinoids, commonly THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) (we recently talked about the benefits of THC in a previous post; so you can check that out as well). This is what lends cannabis food its characteristic flavor.
Cannabis as an ingredient can be used in multiple forms, some of which are detailed below:
- As Cooking Oil- Cannabis-infused cooking oils can be prepared by mixing cannabis with the base product i.e. the cooking oil after it has been heated. Using this blend to cook food passes on the benefits of marijuana to the cooked food item.
- As Cannabutter-Cannabutter is simply cannabis-infused butter prepared by heating the cannabis in molten butter. The resultant product is very popular among cannabis food buffs.
- As A Tincture- Tinctures are alcoholic extracts of cannabis that are often used in cooking food.
Now that we know about what cannabis edibles are and how long they’ve been around, it’s time to take a look into the benefits of cannabis as a food item.
Benefits Of Cannabis Foods
Cannabis food was once considered a strict no-no in regular households. But over the course of years, greater awareness about the many benefits of using cannabis as an active ingredient in food has resulted in wider adoption. The following are some important benefits you can reap by including weed in your diet:
- Can Cure Cancer– Yes, you read that right! While it was always known that cannabis can provide relief from the discomforting symptoms of cancer, recent research suggests that THC is actually capable of eradicating cancer cells. However, the required dosage is near impossible to get from recreational uses; cannabis consumption as a food item can deliver the required amounts of cannabinoids. So eating cannabis foods can help fight this emperor of all maladies.
- Rich In Essential Nutrients– Lack of a balanced diet is the cause of a majority of diseases around the world today. Cannabis foods can be a solution to this problem. When you look past the controversy and stigma that used to be attached to the plant, at the end of the day cannabis is a leafy vegetable product that is rich in vitamins and minerals. Further, the leaves are also the source of essential fiber that is required by the digestive system. Including cannabis in your diet can set you up for a healthy and long life.
- Contains Antioxidants– Antioxidants are crucial for the well functioning of our bodies. Presence of antioxidants allows us to fight conditions such as blood vessel disease and stress. They also protect our body from being damaged by free radicals. Thankfully, all forms of cannabis are extremely rich in antioxidants; so consuming cannabis foods provides you with this essential component as well.
- Great For Pain Relief– Consumption of marijuana as a food item has been proven to be more effective than other modes of delivery in controlling intense pain. Further, marijuana foods are also great for reducing nausea and vomiting tendencies. Add to it the fact that they are also good for improving appetite, there’s really no reason why you wouldn’t reach for a cannabis cookie right now.
- Better Than Smoking- Its common knowledge that smoking anything isn’t good for your body. People who smoke marijuana are at a greater risk of respiratory problems as they hold a lot of smoke in their lungs. Eating cannabis as a food, however, gives you access to all the benefits without any of the negatives. What’s not to love?
To answer the question at the beginning: Why Not? With such a rich array of beneficial traits, it can be easily expected that cannabis food items become regular household delicacies. With the wisdom of the ancients, cannabis food is all set to rule the gastronomic stage; today and tomorrow.