You may have heard the phrase “laughter is the best medicine”. You may have also heard that marijuana has the ability to make almost anything funny. True or not, some comedy clubs in Canada have started hosting marijuana-friendly events catering to this connection. In this post, we will investigate the connection between marijuana and laughter, and which strains are the most likely to help get you in the laughing mood. 

Can Laughter Actually Heal You?

The idea that laughter can be healing is not a new one and can be traced back to the mid 1960’s as far as research is concerned. In 1976, one of the landmark studies regarding laughter was published in The New England Journal of Medicine titled Anatomy of an Illness (as Perceived by the Patient) [1]. The paper was written by a patient diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. The patient then describes a noticeable improvement in his health after checking into a hotel where he was able to eat good food and watch funny movies, the opposite of his life in the hospital. The paper went on to be published as a book in 1979 and became a New York Times bestseller. 

Since that time, people have begun using laughter as a means of releasing stress, healing the body, and improving mental health. Laughter yoga and laughter therapy have both garnered substantial public interest.  Research has also shown many benefits to laughter, including uses in geriatrics, oncology, and psychiatry [2]. Laughing can induce blood flow and decrease stress hormones while releasing endorphins, making you feel good. The American Heart Association even recommends it as part of their healthy habits. 

Why Does Marijuana Make You Laugh?

Marijuana and laughing is a combination that is almost unanimously known, but why? First, we should look into why we laugh in the first place. Whilst the reason, evolutionarily, for the existence of laughter is still debated, we do know what the physical process of laughter entails. In fact, gelotology is the study of laughter, combining both physiological and psychological viewpoints. 

When we see something we think is funny, the brain undergoes many different processes utilizing several different structures. These include the frontal lobe, occipital lobe, temporal lobe, and other parts (nearly every part of the brain is used in some way). This also marks where marijuana starts to influence things. 

Marijuana alters blood flow to certain regions of the brain [3]. Some of these regions have been linked to laughter and humor, which may result in more activity and easier excitability. Marijuana also causes its users to almost dissociate from themselves when used in high quantities. This results in an altered perception, and can change the way we see even mundane tasks. Combine this with another effect or marijuana, improved mood, and almost anybody can find themselves in a laughing fit. 

 

Which Strains are Best for Causing Laughter?

Laughing Buddha: Laughing Buddha is a high-THC sativa with a citrus-y taste and produces a relaxed yet euphoric high. Due to the high THC content, the high produced by this strain can hit hard and fast, producing stronger sensations and elevated mood. This change in mood has helped Laughing Buddha find a use for those with depression and ADD. It may also help those who have general anxiety feel more at home in crowds, very useful for that late-night standup show. 

Blue Diesel: Blue Diesel is another high-THC strain, though a hybrid this time of the famous Blueberry and Diesel strains. Blue Diesel carries the berry scent of its parent and the fast high indicative of its THC content. Users have reported feeling euphoric without the big change in appetite of other strong varieties. Similar to Laughing Buddha, Blue Diesel has been used by those with ADD and ADHD to focus and elevate their mood, but it has also been used to treat migraines and other chronic pains. It also seems to lack the burnout of some other heavy-hitters, resulting in a more pleasant “come down”. 

OG Kush: One of the most famous marijuana strains, OG Kush has a high THC content hovering around twenty to twenty-five percent. It’s yellow-tinted leaves are almost as well-known as its strong, earthy smell. The high produced from OG Kush is generally heady and euphoric. Noted for its lack of headrush, OG Kush can actually relax the user, proving to be a strain used heavily in social settings. Though it lacks any CBD to speak, some users have also found it helps with aches and pains. 

Chemdawg: Another famous strain, Chemdawg has had its fair share of origin stories. A hybrid strain celebrated for its euphoric and energetic high, grinding is recommended due to thick coverage in sticky trichomes, almost indicative of its strength. Although some users feel as though they have stronger senses after use, dosing is strongly recommended when using this strain, as it hits fast and strong. If too much is consumed, paranoia and other side effects are common. 

In Conclusion

There is no doubt that laughter can have a variety of beneficial effects on the body, including reducing stress, releasing endorphins, and even improving mental health. Marijuana can make it easier to laugh due to its ability to increase blood flow to those areas of the brain responsible for laughter. The mood change and shift in perspective due to marijuana may also make a difference. If you are looking for specific strains to make you laugh, consider high-THC varieties, but be careful with dosing and know your personal limits. 

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Cited Works

[1] https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM197612232952605?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori%3Arid%3Acrossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub%3Dpubmed 

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2762283/  

[3] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17115869