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How to Control the Munchies With the Whole30 Diet

April 5, 2018
How to Control the Munchies with the Whole30 Diet(KarpenkovDenis/iStock)
We all love to get high and stuff our faces with food, but we all hate the feeling of regret that follows. This is especially true with summer right around the corner. Pretty soon it’s going to be sun’s out, guns out, so if your munchies are declaring war on your body goals, then have a seat so we can talk about a little something called the Whole30.

A Whole30 is a dietary program where you basically don’t eat added sugar, grains, dairy, legumes (including peanuts), processed foods, or alcohol for a whole month. I did one back in January and found that it actually worked—I dropped 15 lbs and 2% body fat while barely doing any cardio during the process. More importantly, while doing the Whole30 and after my month of dieting concluded, I noticed that my cravings for garbage foods were completely gone. Even when I was the stupidest of high, after a couple weeks the desire to hit fast food joints for items made of sawdust and broken dreams (or any other food that work directly against my be-on-the-beach-with-a-16-pack goals) went away.

What this taught me was that my munchies weren’t a function of my high, but instead a function of my body. My cravings for the worst food imaginable weren’t because of the White Rhino I was enjoying, they were due to the way my body was programmed. This may be the case for you as well, and the Whole30 way of eating is a great way to hit the reset button.

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Now, I’m not claiming the Whole30 is some miracle cure for the munchies. The way THC affects your body may still yield the same hunger, but what the Whole30 does is put you on a system where your munchies will be fruits and veggies, not cakes and pies. You get so used to eating what’s essentially the paleo diet of lean proteins, eggs, and fruits and veggies that even when you do have the munchies, it becomes incredibly easy to snatch up a healthy option. Ultimately, this diet trains your body to make your munchies work for you.

If you want to tame your munchies without removing cannabis from your life and you’re ready for a dietary change, here are a few simple suggestions.

Eat the Same Meals, at the Same Time, Every Day

Eating the same thing at the same time every day creates a habit/routine for your brain and body that’ll make the program as simple as possible. It allows your body to slip into autopilot, which removes the stress and mental space of “Man, what the hell should I eat?” when it seems like you aren’t allowed to eat anything. Without that everyday routine, those 30 days are going to feel like hell.

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Replace Your Munchies With Whole30-Approved Snacks

Your body is probably used to ingesting sugary/highly processed snacks when you’re high, so replace them with some Whole30-approved snacks instead. I didn’t have any super creative snack combinations since I hate dieting, so I just kept my snack options as simple as possible:

  • Vegetables (sliced carrots, cucumbers, bell peppers)
  • Almonds, cashews, or other unsalted mixed nuts (minus peanuts)
  • Fresh fruit (my go-to favorites were watermelon and grapes)
  • Guacamole
  • And, of course, my real cheat code: Larabars. The Apple Pie, Banana Bread, and Cherry Pie Larabars are tasty enough to trick your brain into thinking you’re eating true sweets.
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Only Smoke Around Mealtime

During the beginning of this diet, you’re still going to be fighting that munchies war. Only smoking around mealtime will make it easier to stay on track because your munchies will hit when you’re supposed to be eating, anyway. (Do the math and that’s a cool 4-6 sessions per day, so you can still get as high as you want.)

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Have Tasks/Projects to Keep Your Mind Occupied

A downside to the Whole30 is that it gets incredibly boring. With the diet being so restrictive, you’ll find yourself with a lot of free time that was previously filled with activities that revolved around eating and drinking. If you don’t have replacement activities to fill this time, you’re going to be miserable thinking about all the food/drinks you can’t have.

The solution? Plan some some fun distractions to do while stoned. You can make slime, go see Black Panther (again), or do anything that keeps your brain focused on something other than food.

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Enlist a Partner

The program is a lot easier to complete when you know someone else is going through the same feelings as you. Enlist a partner to keep you accountable, but to also be there when you’re irrationally angry at the entire diet come Day 17. Having a partner that you don’t want to let down will be a lifesaver during those times of “Screw this shit, I’m stoned and I need pizza.”

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Don’t Quit

It’s as simple as that. If you want to change your body and completely redefine how it reacts to cannabis and the munchies, stick to the program for the full 30 days. You’ll get to the end and realize that it was never about cannabis, it was about the decisions you make. Good luck, my pals.

Dante Jordan's Bio Image

Dante Jordan

Dante Jordan is a Content Associate for Leafly, where he specializes in creating topics pertaining to cannabis products, strains, and dispensaries. He also manages the Leafly strain database.

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  • Mike Buco

    I actually have the opposite problem; I have no appetite and hate eating. Sativa strains do not inspire eating for me, and indicas do occasionally, but they tend to induce anxiety where sativas typically reduce it. That said, I have (adult) ADD and stimulant medications improve my condition, but I choose not to take them. Any suggestions on appetite-enhancing strains of the sativa end would be appreciated

    • DoomedNY

      I’ve been smoking for a long time but never really got munchies on a regular basis. Edibles make me hungry AF though, like my hunger is never satisfied. Worth trying!

  • mjoinsd

    It seems to me that the mentality people like this are bringing out is what is destroying all opportunity for a viable cannabis culture within the bounds of law.

    You people are just being stoopid, and you know it.

    Dank and Dabby stupid. Are we really like that? Like the idiots on Disjointed? That show harms the cause, hilarious as it is!

    Clean up your act and be respectable well-read people and nobody will even know you are a cannabis user.

    When I was in my youth, pot was just to go get stoopid. I am nearly 60 now and using again for almost five years heavily. I obsess about the weed, think about it all the time, but I don’t go around getting stoopid and acting stoopid. If you saw me you would never know I was a cannabis user.

    Don’t make asses of yourselves, and the feds might actually see the good in cannabis. The only reason they don’t is because you are not showing it to them. You are the testimony for the value of it, but you are presenting the harm in your actions, life, and behaviors.

    Think about it.

  • Sweetie Bird

    this time last year I was doing a whole30. One of the hardest parts for me was that cannabis wasn’t allowed… have they changed the guidelines or did you just bend them a little?

    • Janine Boyer

      I personally never saw anything about cannabis in the guidelines, just tobacco. She was a hard core drug user back in the day so she may have a thing for trying to go completely pure for 30 days but my thought was if it’s from the earth and I’m not taking edibles w non-compliant ingredients into my body it’s ok. Cannabis helped me stay focused and appreciate what I was doing for myself.

      • Sweetie Bird

        It’s in the official forum, Melissa herself said it wouldn’t be helpful but that it didn’t cancel out the benefits of the program. I smoke for my endometriosis related issues and my anxiety. I might stay with my favorite flowers even if i do another whole30.
        https://forum.whole30.com/topic/4517-can-i-have-marijuana/

  • Janine Boyer

    I have to contribute to this because I am a microdosing edibles and flower smoker consumer of mostly Sativa and Sativa dominant hybrids and I completed the Whole30 successfully and I loved it. I’m about to do another one. Firstly, I get the munchies further into my cannabis experience, an hour or two after consuming or after the edible kicks in so the advice above wouldn’t help someone like me. But the thing about how it helps change your cravings is true for me. I found the Whole30 diet LIBERATING, and completely NOT BORING. and this is why. I was able to focus on what I could eat which was wholesome, nutritious, protein rich, FAT rich (great for cannabis since it’s a fat soluble chemical) foods and still lean up. I did not count any calories I just followed the guidelines. I ate a shit ton of fruit and nuts during snacks, I used a lot of Pinterest recipes – but be careful, there’s a lot of “sex with your pants” recipes, they won’t help you. Read the guidelines 4 or 5 times, borrow the recipe book from your local library. (Also cardio doesn’t help to make you lean. Read Thinner, Leaner, Stronger by Michael Matthews. Lift heavy to get lean.) I tore my ACL a week into my Whole30 and couldn’t do any type of working out and I still lost 9 lbs. But also eating the same shit everyday at the same time would make it boring so my advice would be don’t do that. If you do the Whole30, save money to get ready for it because you will have to stock up on things that are a little pricey. Once you have those, your next Whole30 will be a breeze. And enjoy your new relationship to Mother Earth. Eating only what comes from the earth, taking care of yourself in a new way will feel so good. Testing your will power and impressing yourself by not eating crap even when it’s right in your mug feels good. Then you smoke a wonderful natural medicine the earth provides that helps remind you how bountiful the earth is. Jesus I’m such a hippie.