More people will use marijuana this Thanksgiving, study says

Who uses cannabis on Thanksgiving?  Whether it's to fuel hunger or avoid family drama, those who plan to participate share why.  (Photo: Getty; designed by Nathalie Cruz)

Who uses cannabis on Thanksgiving? Whether it’s to fuel hunger or avoid family drama, those who plan to participate share why. (Photo: Getty; designed by Nathalie Cruz)

Cannabis is on the menu for many this Thanksgiving.

Cannabis spending rises before Thanksgiving, according to a new study from Ayr Wellness. In fact, cannabis use on Thanksgiving has become so popular that many call the day before the holiday Green Wednesday, as sales that day are consistently among the highest of the year. And in the cannabis community, Thanksgiving is often referred to as “Thanksgiving” because it is so closely associated with widespread cannabis use.

“Typically, Green Wednesday drives a 50% increase in pharmacy transactions compared to an average day of the year,” said Lizzy Tombler, vice president of business intelligence for Holistic Industries. She adds that the average shopper also spends more than usual on Green Wednesday, even though pharmacies typically run promotions with bigger discounts just two days later on Black Friday. And that’s right: 90% percent of survey respondents said they plan to spend as much or more on cannabis as they did on previous Thanksgivings and 32% of those who plan to shop on Green Wednesday say that they plan to spend $100 or more. Lake.

Why use cannabis on Thanksgiving?

Cannabis use is not illegal in much of the country. Medical cannabis is legal in 39 states and the District of Columbia. Recreational use for adults is legal in 21 states and the District of Columbia.

Cannabis is popular on Thanksgiving for several reasons. , an advanced practice cannabis nurse, says she sees an increase in cannabis use around Thanksgiving because the holiday “brings a lot of stress on people” due to family dynamics.

“Stress can present itself in a variety of ways, such as feeling anxious and overwhelmed,” says Riley Kirk, a cannabis researcher at Real Isolates. Aaron Sternlicht, an addiction specialist, adds that studies show that low doses of marijuana can reduce stress and help with social anxiety, although the American Psychiatric Association thinks more research is needed.

Battel sees this in her practice and thinks cannabis is an effective way to ‘lighten the mood’ for many people. That goes for Dan Wilson, editor of . “The Thanksgiving holiday is stressful, especially when it comes to dealing with crowds or dealing with family discord,” he says. “Getting high can reduce that stress and make socializing more fun.” Among those surveyed by Ayers Wellness, 24% of those who plan to use cannabis on Thanksgiving will do so to help them cope with family stress.

Others use cannabis in part during Thanksgiving because it helps them enjoy their Turkey Day feast. “Getting high for Thanksgiving makes sense since food and cannabis go well together,” says Wilson. “Consuming weed can stimulate appetite, making you hungry and giving you strong food cravings.”

Michael, a New York cannabis user who prefers to leave out his last name for privacy reasons, mainly uses cannabis on Thanksgiving to “calm down”. [his] nerves” and “overwhelm the dysfunction of the family”, but he appreciates another benefit of using cannabis during the holidays: “The food is much tastier,” he says.

For some, marijuana replaces alcohol

Some people like to use cannabis as an alternative to alcohol. According to the Ayers Wellness study, 65% of those who plan to consume cannabis on Thanksgiving will use it to replace booze. Ryan Crandell, chief revenue officer for MariMed, notes that “cannabis doesn’t come with the nasty hangover or, in most cases, the extra calories of alcohol.”

Meghan M. of Pennsylvania, who also prefers to remain anonymous, believes cannabis is more effective than alcohol in helping her stay calm on Thanksgiving. “There is a lot of tension in my family around politics, justice and human rights,” she says. “For me weed is perfect for Thanksgiving – while drinking often makes people more belligerent, [cannabis] usually makes people chill or sleepy.”

Tombler feels the same way. “I’ve personally noticed that I feel better and more present when I inhale a few times from a cartridge instead of going straight to my go-to ‘mom juice’ white wine,” she says. “Cannabis helps me feel calm and present.”

Cannabis can relieve social and physical holiday stressors

Cannabis helps some people have more fun. “Many people smoke cannabis during Thanksgiving simply to help them feel more festive,” says Wilson. “Smoking a little weed can help you feel happier and talkative, which is great in a social situation.”

For others, cannabis use helps cope with the discomfort of travel. “I already have trouble sleeping. Now add an uncomfortable couch or air mattress, four grandfather clocks chiming every hour, and grandparents blowing their air conditioning, and I would never sleep,” says Lisa Sass.

Tracy, an anonymous New Jersey cannabis user, uses marijuana on Thanksgiving to cope with anxiety and relieve pain. “I have an upcoming hip replacement and my sister is in an hour and a half [drive] away,” she shares. “The car ride does a number, so I’ll most likely let my daughter drive and eat an edible.”

The pressure to socialize on Thanksgiving is tough for some. “Getting together with a bunch of loved ones can put a lot of pressure on people to be social,” said Lisa Black, head of education and training at . “Sometimes we just don’t want to talk to Aunt Muriel about her annoying neighbor.”

How people use cannabis on Thanksgiving

How you use cannabis is also important. Battel says the effects of smoking and vaping are “almost instant,” which some prefer. However, the effects of cannabis in edibles, including gummies, tinctures, and infused foods, last longer. About a third of respondents say they plan to eat cannabis-infused foods as part of their Thanksgiving feast.

While some prefer to pop a gummy in their mouth before anyone can see it, others like to partake in cannabis with the family. “There’s a common joke about ‘the cousins ​​going for a walk’ on Thanksgiving,” which many believe means the younger generation is getting high together, says Wilson.

According to the Ayr Wellness study, 70% of those who stock up before Thanksgiving buy in a way that “makes sure they have enough to share with friends, family and chosen family” and more than half of the Thanksgiving cannabis users intend to use cannabis with friends. Battel thinks this could be a great bonding experience if the family is open to trying cannabis together.

That goes for Adrienne Parkes who ends every Thanksgiving with a “perfectly rolled purple joint.” While she won’t be spending Thanksgiving with family this year, she explains, “Everyone, and I mean everyone [her] family uses cannabis.”

“My 70-year-old stepfather and I have shared many a bowl around the campfire or on the porch,” she adds. “My biological father was from Jamaica, so I consider it my birthright.”

With cannabis use becoming more common on Thanksgiving, Wilson says, “cannabis is also a viable option as a gift for a guest.”

“Whereas in the past you might bring a bottle of wine or a dessert, now you might be giving a premium joint, edibles or drinks infused with THC,” he says, adding that “a high-end cannabis joint can cost as much as a tasty bottle of liquor or a fine cigar.”

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