Is it time for a tolerance break

Most of us have been there; you puff and puff but you just can't seem to reach that nirvana high that you once had smoking cannabis. You've probably tried changing strains, or different consumption methods, or going for even more top notch quality goods but still it doesn't seem to make a big difference. If this sounds like you, then you may be suffering from a high tolerance. This problem doesn't just affect your high but most likely the size of your wallet as well.

Reset your tolerance

Don't despair, you can actually reset your tolerance. Now, you may not like what I'm about to tell you but it's the only way to do it. You. must. stop. smoking. I know, I know, seems impossible right? The good news is that weed isn't physically addictive (unlike nicotine in cigarettes), so it's purely a mind over matter scenario and I know you've got willpowerrrrr!

Deepak Cyril D'Souza

The other good news is that you only have to stop for a short period of time. There was a study authored by Deepak Cyril D'Souza, a marijuana expert from the Yale School of Medicine, in which he showed how people become highly tolerant to marijuana. He also discovered the time it takes before their tolerance level returns to normal.


In the experiment males between the ages of 18 and 35 that were considered cannabis dependent were tested. A PET scan was used to detect a radiotracer ligand for CB1. This is the receptor in our brains set off by THC to create psychoactive effects. With the PET scan the researchers could see where the CB1 receptors were in the brain and how heavily they were scattered amongst each region.

CB1 receptors

The researchers found that in the brains of cannabis dependant males, the CB1 receptors were reduced in most of the brain sections. However, in as little as two days of abstinence significant CB1 receptors upregulation was taking place. Within four weeks of abstinence the heavy smokers CB1 receptors were back to almost being normal. So basically if you take a hit after two days of not smoking, you'll probably get a bit higher than usual, but if you can manage to stretch your willpower for four weeks you'll get a big high bang for your buck. So take it easy for the first toke after your break or else you might skip the giggles and instead find yourself couch-locked and paranoid.

Wake and bake

Completely abstaining from marijuana, even for just a day or two, might be too much for some people-especially if they are suffering from pain. In cases like this you can still somewhat affect your tolerance by skipping your wake and bake routine. Instead of hitting the bong as soon as you wake up, try to wait until lunchtime or a bit later to hit it.


Don't be surprised if you get some withdrawal symptoms if you were a heavy smoker. Some of the most common symptoms you get if you stop smoking are sleeplessness and loss of appetite. To help with the sleeplessness try doing some physical activity during the day so that at night your body is tired. If you experience a loss of appetite then eating smaller healthy meals as opposed to very heavy meals could help with that. It's also useful to keep yourself busy during the day so that you're not focused on smoking.

Appreciation for the bud

If you've been smoking for a really long time without stopping it may be interesting for you to do a little experimenting and see how your body reacts without it. Then when you do start again you might gain a whole new appreciation for the bud.