Medically Reviewed by
Jason Crawford

Article Last Updated on December 27, 2022

If you’ve been a heavy cannabis user for some time, you probably noticed that after a while, you gradually started to need a lot more weed to get you high like before. This only means one thing – you’ve acquired a high tolerance to weed.

High tolerance is nothing new and happens to nearly every regular user, especially if they’re a long-time user. How tolerant you will become depends largely on your metabolism, because not everyone reacts the same way. But, in any case, for recreational users, it can really take the fun out of the experience as you won’t get the expected “high” anymore, while for medical users pain relief will be harder to achieve.

The usual remedy for lowering cannabis tolerance is taking a so-called tolerance break. This is fine if you’ve noticed that your weed habits have really gotten out of hand, but for most users, it would be unnecessary. So, what if you could lower your tolerance to cannabis by not taking a t-break?

In today’s article, we’ll talk about the ways you can bring your tolerance levels back to normal, thus making you feel like a first-timer all over again.

How Does Marijuana Tolerance Even Happen?

THC is the main psychoactive cannabinoid that gets you high. It binds to the CB1 receptors of the endocannabinoid system and increases their activity beyond their normal levels, which results in the mind-altering effects that weed is known for. The effects start to fade and the activity of the CB1 receptors goes back to normal when THC starts leaving the bloodstream.

When you continuously expose the endocannabinoid receptors to a certain amount of THC, the response of the receptors to THC slowly starts to wane and not be as responsive, and after a while, the amount of receptors decreases. You’ll notice this over time when during each smoking session, for example, you’ll need one more puff to get the high you’re used to.

Fortunately, weed tolerance is reversible, which is why taking the traditional t-break works. However, you don’t always need to do that as there are other more creative ways you can lower your tolerance to weed.

Tolerance Break? Who Needs It! Tips to Reduce Your Tolerance Level Without Taking a Break

So, as you may know, taking a t-break isn’t fun and it may come with the most unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Unless your weed tolerance has become really high and nothing else seems to help, there are many other little ways you can spring back and even give your wallet a little break without taking an actual break.

Switch Up Your Consumption Methods

Sometimes, all it takes is to make the tiniest change, like switching your method of consuming weed. Sometimes doing the same old, same old may become tedious for your body, and surprising it with a new way of obtaining THC may give your endocannabinoid system the buzz it needs.

For example, if you’re used to smoking marijuana, maybe you should try vaping marijuana. There is a definite difference between the smoke from a joint and the vapor from a vaporizer. And not only that, but dry herb vaporizers handle the weed differently, which also affects how the cannabinoids are extracted.

If you want to be a little more adventurous, you can try dabbing. Dabs are very powerful concentrates, so you are guaranteed to feel the effects of THC. You’ll need to be careful with this stuff, though, especially if you have high tolerance, as it may increase the side effects. If this sounds like too much for you, you can always try consuming some tasty edibles for a long-lasting high.

Try a New Indica or Sativa

…or a hybrid, your call. Trying something other than your favorite strain can lead you to find another favorite strain, right? Each cannabis strain has its own unique chemical profile, and if you’re constantly rotating the same one or even two strains, the body can get too used to it, and they will stop being as effective. 

So, try something new. Indicas and Sativas both produce very different effects when you get high, so if you’re used to stimulating your brain with a Sativa, try an Indica and just chill on the couch. You can also switch within strain types, but make sure to pay attention to the cannabinoid ratio. Sometimes more balanced strains or even CBD-dominant strains can really help when you’re trying to lower your tolerance.

Extend the Breaks Between Smoking Weed

Taking a full-on tolerance break means abstaining from weed for a prolonged period of time. But when you’re trying to lower your THC tolerance without taking an actual break, you can extend the time between two weed sessions. Basically, it’s mini-abstinence, in a way. 

This would also mean that you will consume less weed overall throughout the day. For example, instead of waiting two hours before your next dose, maybe try extending it to four. It may not be easy at first to adjust to a new routine, especially if you’re a creature of habit, but remember that the end result will be worth it.

Wake, But Don’t Bake Right Away

Wake and bake is great and all, but then later in the day when the effects of weed start to wear off, you’ll want to take more, and then some. This is because the first high of the day feels so good that it can really raise your standards and make you want to maintain it throughout. But this will inevitably lead to an increased tolerance to weed. Putting the bong away in the morning and postponing the “bake” until at least the afternoon will make the first weed session of the day even more enjoyable.

Try Microdosing

Many weed users swear by microdosing, and with good reasons. It not only helps with portion control for those who want to consume less cannabis at a time, but it’s also very convenient for medical marijuana users to take their dose.

Basically, microdosing is taking smaller amounts of weed throughout the day. When you’re trying to lower your weed tolerance, this could be just what you need. A small dose of cannabis probably won’t get you high, but it will be enough to give you a mild buzz and keep you satiated for a while.

Vape pens are perfect for microdosing if you’re into vaping concentrates, but if you like dry herb, one-hitter pipes are a great choice. It will make you smoke less while still benefiting from weed, especially for stress-relief.

Eat Some Mangoes

Before you make a face, you need to know that mangoes are scientifically proven to work synergistically with the cannabinoids to enhance their effects. Science says that myrcene, the terpene that gives mangoes their sweet aroma, helps to intensify the effects of THC because they bind to the same receptors as THC. Therefore, eating some mangoes prior to consuming weed can make your experience a little more intense.

Bottom Line – You Don’t Always Need a T-Break From Smoking Cannabis to Lower Your Tolerance

There are many reasons why someone would want to lower their weed tolerance, but it doesn’t always have to involve taking a break altogether. In general, cutting back on weed with the purpose of getting your tolerance levels back to normal is a great way to do “maintenance” once in a while. Unless you want to pause your weed consumption completely, lowering your tolerance without taking a t-break can be just as effective.

A passionate advocate for the benefits of cannabis. Fraser Horton, who has a background in botany and a strong love of nature, has spent years researching how cannabis affects the body and mind. He established Leaf Nation in 2020, where he has devoted himself to educating people about the legalisation of marijuana and its safe and responsible use. Fraser is committed to highlighting cannabis’ potential for improving wellness and working to dispel the stigma associated with its use.


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