What Happens When You Green Out?

So what's the deal with greening out?

An attractive aspect of cannabis is that you can’t overdose on it, unlike other drugs and pharmaceuticals. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean consuming excessive amounts of weed is not without consequences. Sometimes people can “green out,” and while it may not be the worst situation, it can be an unpleasant experience.


What Does It Mean to Green Out?


The term “green out” refers to when people feel sick after ingesting too much weed. People sometimes describe it as a cannabis overdose, but that isn’t possible because you can’t die from weed. Though novice consumers are more prone to greening out, even experienced smokers can experience it. 

Some of the most common green-out symptoms include:


What Happens to Your Body When You Green Out


Everyone has an endocannabinoid system that includes neurotransmitters. The transmitters or receptors send signals to cells throughout the body to regulate everything from pain to sleep. The body produces a natural cannabinoid called anandamide that interacts with THC in weed and plays a role in memory, pain, appetite, and other bodily functions. 

Weed’s cannabinoids bind themselves to the receptors and alter their effects. Anandamide also binds to the brain’s receptors to moderate bodily functions gone awry. When you green out from consuming too much weed, the receptors overload and cause sickness.


Causes of a Green Out


People often choose cannabis strains with THC potencies at 20% or higher, expecting to have a stronger high, which may not happen. You’ll undoubtedly have higher THC concentrations in your system, but that won’t always translate into an intense high. 

What does affect your high and potentially lead to a green out is your THC tolerance, how much weed you consume, and its type. For instance, if you eat a 100 milligram edible in one sitting and have a low THC tolerance, you’ll probably green out.


How to Handle a Green Out


Though greening out usually isn’t dangerous, it is unpleasant. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to handle the experience until it passes.

  1. Eat: Before you consume weed in any form, you should fill your stomach with food. Eat something before you begin. If you feel like you will green out, hydrate with juice. 

  2. Smoke, Then Drink: If you intend to have weed and alcohol in one session, start with the weed. Cannabis intensifies alcohol, so you can have less of each and still produce the desired effect. Drinking alcohol first makes it easy to unintentionally consume too much of either, prompting a green out.
  3. Stay Calm: Stress, fear, anxiety, paranoia, and panic attacks are common with green outs, but they are usually psychological. No matter what, stay calm, keep breathing, and know that the feelings will pass. If you are new to weed or trying a higher potency, it helps to have a friend nearby for support if you green out.



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