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Why Don’t Edibles Work for Me: 6 Reasons for a Poor High

By Last updated on May 9, 2024Last updated on May 9, 2024No Comments

Everyone describes edibles as one of the best ways to consume cannabis. You’ve given them a go, but they can’t seem to make you high. What gives? 

Everyone experiences cannabis differently, so it’s nothing deep-rooted or worrisome. There could be many reasons you can’t feel the effects of edibles the way you want. While some are just rookie mistakes, others are solely because of your genetic makeup. 

But you’re reading this article, which means it’s finally time to enjoy the real effects of edibles. Let’s delve into six reasons edibles may not work for you and how you can fix the issue.

How Do Edibles Work?

Before dissecting why edibles may not work for you, we must understand how they work. Gummies, brownies, cookies, and other edibles don’t work the same as other cannabis consumption methods.

For example, smoking or vaping cannabis absorbs it directly into your bloodstream. The same can’t be said about edibles, which your body needs to digest first. Even then, you won’t feel the effects until your intestines absorb it and your liver metabolizes the THC.

Once your liver gets a hold of the THC, it converts it into the 11-Hydroxy-THC variant. This variant has stronger and more psychoactive effects than standard delta-9 THC. That’s exactly why edibles guarantee a much superior high than just smoking weed

But it’s also the reason edibles take so long to set in. You’ll be waiting at least half an hour before the effects kick in, but they’ll last much longer than you’d expect. 

6 Reasons Edibles May Not Be Working For You

Reasons Edibles May Not Be Working For You

While some may be taking too small of a dose, others don’t feel the effects as their body metabolizes THC too quickly. But which explanation describes you best? Let’s find out!

You’re Taking the Edible on an Empty Stomach

In some cases, you may feel the effects of edibles, but they’re just not what you’ve been hoping for. Instead of the relaxing bliss that everyone has been raving about, you feel anxious and restless. That’s probably because you took edibles on an empty stomach. 

You may wonder, is it really an empty stomach if I’m eating weed brownies and cookies? Yes, it’s always better to have some food in your system before you consume cannabis. Otherwise, the THC will hit you quicker and harder than it should. 

You’ll end up feeling the opposite of your desired effects. If you want the complete experience of edibles without all the anxiety and stress, enjoy a full meal with plenty of water beforehand. That’ll help your body slow down the absorption and prevent overwhelming feelings.

There’s Not Enough Cannabis

In other cases, it can be a rookie mistake, like taking too small of a dose. Depending on your tolerance, you may need a higher amount than others to get the full experience. To find your ideal dose, increase it gradually with each session. 

You may not know this, but THC tolerance isn’t just built with experience. Physical factors like body size can also influence your tolerance. So even if you’re not a seasoned canna consumer, you may need a higher dose than most beginners. 

Even then, you may be taking the wrong type of edible. Certain weed strains are more THC-concentrated than others. If you’re not feeling the effects, you may have chosen a low-THC strain like Cannatonic. 

It Hasn’t Kicked In Yet

It’s pretty common to give up within 10 to 15 minutes when trying your first edible. You may have thought edibles don’t work for you, and go to bed before giving them a chance. In that case, they probably just haven’t kicked in yet!  

Unlike other cannabis consumption methods, edibles don’t kick in before 30 minutes. For some, the onset of effects can even take up to two hours! It all depends on how your body processes THC. 

If you’ve eaten a big meal before taking your edible, it may take longer than usual. While waiting for the blissful experience, make sure not to take any more edibles.

Your Body Is Metabolizing the THC Too Quickly

Smoking, vaping, and tinctures have a quicker onset of effects since the cannabis absorbs directly into your blood. But edibles are a whole different story. It goes through a long digestive process before you can feel it.

After digesting, your liver metabolizes the THC. You may not feel the desired effects if your body metabolizes the THC too quickly. It’s also possible that it doesn’t metabolize at all because your CYP enzymes are too low or too high. 

You Have Gastrointestinal Issues

Believe it or not, people with gastrointestinal issues have trouble feeling the effects of edibles. If you have IBS, you’ve found the root of your problem. In fact, endocannabinoid deficiency syndrome is one of the causes of IBS. 

Since your body doesn’t digest food well, it also has trouble digesting THC. Thankfully, there are certain treatments for this condition. Consult your physician to determine how you can better feel the effects of edibles with an upset stomach. 

Edibles Are Not Suitable for You

If you’ve tried everything to no avail, edibles may not be suitable for you. At the end of the day, the goal is to get the desired effects, so there’s no reason to stick with a consumption method that doesn’t work for you. Take your time to explore different approaches to see what gives.

You can also speak with your dispensary about your concerns, and they’ll let you know what consumption method will suit you best.


When taken correctly, edibles can provide a blissful experience. It can be disappointing if you’re not feeling the euphoric high everyone describes. Now that you’ve read our list of reasons, you’ve probably got to the bottom of the issue. 

If nothing helps, edibles may not be for you. The good thing is there are many ways to consume cannabis. Experiment with different methods to find one that gives you the ideal high!


Iftikhar Alam

With more than a decade of experience in writing for the cannabis industry, Alam is a well-established voice educating cannabis enthusiasts and inspiring and advocating responsible cannabis consumption. His expertise spans a range of topics, including cultivation techniques, medicinal benefits, legal developments, and lifestyle cannabis trends. LinkedIn profile