Is Marijuana an Aphrodisiac?

How does weed affect you sexually? Is it true that cannabis provides you with the can-do spirit you need to perform your best in bed? Is it possible that pot and sex go hand in hand? Is sex better high? Because marijuana remains illegal at the federal level, it’s challenging to conduct research in a controlled environment, meaning you can’t just present participants with weed, tell them to go for it and measure their habits behind closed doors. Instead, much of our existing research is based on what we currently know of the effects of cannabis combined with information collected from self-reported surveys and anecdotal evidence. From there, researchers have been able to study the link and get us a step closer to answering the long-asked question: Does smoking affect your sex life?

The short answer is yes, but in more ways than just one. Let’s break down the impact of cannabis on the brain and body to allow us to understand whether or not it benefits us in the bedroom.

Cannabis contains mind-altering chemical compounds, or cannabinoids, that affect both the brain and the body. The most prevalent cannabinoid is called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and it’s the one responsible for creating psychoactive or  “high” effects.

THC activates the brain’s “reward system” which is comprised of several different regions of the brain, including those that control the response to healthy pleasurable behaviors like eating and sex. THC stimulates neurons in the reward system to release the chemical called dopamine. Dopamine helps us strive, focus and find things interesting and enjoyable. However, THC stimulates the neurons to release dopamine at much higher levels than usual. It's this flood of dopamine that contributes immensely to the pleasurable and desirable “high” that marijuana users seek. In other words, while dopamine allows us to enjoy food and sex, THC and dopamine combined will enable us to really enjoy food and sex.

According to a CNN Health interview with sex therapist Lawrence Siegel, the prevalent cannabinoid THC found in marijuana targets the part of our brain associated with sexual arousal. Siegel states, “Our body’s natural endocannabinoid system is key in regulating things like pleasure, pain, relaxation, and homeostasis.” This means that when activated by the cannabinoids within cannabis, most users feel more relaxed with increased pleasure and decreased pain - making sex much more enjoyable.

Additionally, cannabis contains cannabidiol (CBD) which is a therapeutic cannabinoid that can be consumed alone or in conjunction with THC. Regardless, it is a popular natural remedy for many common ailments, including chronic pain, inflammation and anxiety, and depression. Many claims state that it also has been known to alleviate cancer-related symptoms, provide neuroprotection, increase heart health, and serves as an effective anti-seizure and substance abuse treatment.. These properties can go miles towards enhancing pleasure in the bedroom. For instance, CBD may provide those suffering from chronic pain or inflammation a moment of relief where they can more comfortably be intimate with their partner. CBD may also offer a sense of confidence or calmness necessary to engage without fear of judgment to those struggling with anxiety or insecurities. 

Sex therapist, Amanda Pasciucco, told CNN Health, “People who use marijuana may have more sex because they put less pressure on themselves when they are high, so they don’t have the same performance anxiety as those who are sober.” She adds that even a small amount of marijuana may also help increase your ability to communicate your preferences to your partner during sexy time.

It’s no secret among avid users that marijuana provides an unmatched euphoria. When combining pot and sex, the bliss is undeniable. Whether you’re looking to sink into the couch, set out on a six-mile run, or hit the sack with your significant other; these various strains serve a wide range of purposes that will vary from person to person. It makes the anti-social mingle around and chills-out the usually high strung. Look no further than THC for ultimate rest and relaxation. As for in the bedroom, well, that’s your business. Enjoy!