An irresistable urge to snack, often brought on by a big fat doobsker or three.

To observe the munchies in action, simply stake out the crisps and/or biscuits area of a 24 hour garage in any university town.

Patronising and Obvious Translation for Colonials:

...stake out the chips and/or cookies aisle of a 7-11 in any college town.

Today the BBC news website is reporting that scientists at the National Institutes of Health in the US, along with colleagues in Japan and Italy, have determined that certain natural endocannabinoids in the brain stimulate appetite much as cannabis does.

The research linked cannabinoid levels to leptin, a hormone that regulates appetite and is produced by fatty tissue. When research mice get fatter, leptin levels rise and cannabinoid levels fall, with a concurrent decrease in appetite.

However, there appears to be more than one pathway to appetite control. Mice bred without cannabinoid receptors developed ways of compensating for their missing receptors and regained their appetites. This implies that therapeutic methods of appetite control will require more than one approach.

I must say, it's refreshing to see a news article on a controversial subject that's reported straight up, with a touch of humor, and even a couple of pictures of doobies being rolled and consumed. Go Beeb.

Milk chocolates with soft caramel and crisp biscuit centre

Munchies - deliciously indulgent chocolate squares with all Nestle's proud chocolate heritage

And that's just how it's described on the packet...

These glorious sweets have been around in the UK ever since I can remember. You get 12 chocolate squares in a red wrappered pack (and I know this because I just so happen to have a packet on me right now!).

Each square weighs appx 4.33g and looks like a square based pyramid with the top chopped off. So it's a sort of a 3D trapezoidal shape. Incidently there's nice geometrical concentric sqaures engraved on the top of the chocolate.

So all in all it's a damn fine tasting chocolate with a crunch to add an element of surprise, and it aesthetically pleasing too!
The Munchies: A Slight Problem

Although Munchies are a part of the fun when blazing, these 'irresistable urges' have been cruelly transformed into what I shall now proceed to call a: Dicksmack nibbler fuck.

I will explain later.

Usually, even after only minutes of puffing the cheebs, people in the Sesh Circle begin to get agitatingly hungered. Is that a problem? Of course not.

The problem lies within.

A Dicksmacker, in ganja terms is basically any newbie-wanna-be smoker who takes a fake puff or pull on the pipe/bong/joint and then proceeds to pretend that he just "ripped a huge one". Now, assuming our aforementioned Dicksmacker is not talking about a sudden bout of flatulance it is safe to come to the conclusion that this feces-enjoying lamer will, within seconds become suddenly imbued with a voracious desire to eat. At this point, no amount of slapping will get the Dicksmacker to discontinue his ranting and raving until someone in the Sesh goes into the kitchen and gets the fool a cookie.

I hate that

After nibbling nervously at the cookie, our Dicksmacker will then fall silent, and in a whiney voice proclaim, "Dude, I'm too baked... I pass". At this point everyone should push the bastard away from the circle and continue the Sesh in relative peace.

"Munchies" or "The Munchies" are a common and well-known effect of marijuana usage, usually treated with a great deal of comic levity, both by marijuana consumers and their detractors. Aside from stimulating the consumption of low-nutrition snack food, stimulation of the appetite is probably the foremost medical use of marijuana.

That being said, "The Munchies" are a complicated medical and social phenomena. Although even my staid Merck Index from 1989, before medical marijuana became an accepted practice, lists "Anti-Emetic" as the therapeutic use for Tetrahydrocannabinoids, there is a big leap from a drug biologically blocking emesis to a drug causing people to wish they had a nutter butter dipped in mint fudge.

Part of the confusion comes from the fact that while THC, in its many varieties, is the key part of marijuana's psychoactive effects, there are many different chemicals present in marijuana, and these vary from strain to strain, and especially within the two major species of the Cannabis genus, sativa and indica. The way these chemicals are metabolized by the body are also different from user to user, so there is a gigantic difference in marijuana's objective and subjective effects, including with things like "the Munchies".

As far as I know (although I am not an expert), the physiological mechanism of marijuana's appetite stimulating effects are not understood as a straight-forward cause and effect type thing. For example, amphetamine and related drugs suppress appetite by activating the fight or flight response, which turns off non-essential systems such as digestion. Marijuana's appetite stimulating effects are not as simple as this.

On top of this, and even more important, is the fact that marijuana is a drug whose use is very informed by the individual and group psychology of those who consume it. One of the best descriptions for this that I have read is that marijuana is an "active placebo". What this means for "the munchies" is that while marijuana might have a purely physiological reason for increasing appetite, it also derives much of its power from the fact that users think it will do so. And users will do so even more when they are surrounded by other like-minded people. This is especially notable when different sub-cultures' descriptions of marijuana are compared. For example, I have heard much hip-hop music extolling the pleasures of cannabis consumption, but getting the munchies is rarely (if ever) mentioned as part of the experience. When Method Man is smoking blunts, does he not get hungry, or does he just not accentuate that fact when he reports it in his music?

Another issue is where the "hunger" of "the munchies" comes from. Is it the hunger of the stomach, that is, the desire to have sustenance, or is the hunger of the mouth, an interest in textures and tastes? Or is it a combination of both?

So, in conclusion, or perhaps in lack of conclusion, although the connection between marijuana consumption and the desire to eat is something that there is rich anecdotal evidence for, and something that medical science has endorsed, the exact connection between the chemical and biological mechanism of this action, and the psychological and sociological context in which it occurs, is something that is unclear.

Why don't they make mint fudge covered nutter butters?

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