5 healthy habits to stack while high

Published on July 21, 2023 by David Wylie

Healthy habits grow over time like these cannabis clones. Photo: Adobe stock/the oz.

If you’re getting high anyway, why not try stacking healthy habits on top of your buzz.

In his book Atomic Habits, James Clear delves into how to build new habits by taking advantage of old ones.

“Your brain is probably very efficient at remembering to take a shower each morning or to brew your morning cup of coffee or to open the blinds when the sun rises … or thousands of other daily habits. You can take advantage of these strong connections to build new habits,” says Clear.

That’s some fertile ground for potheads looking to plant the seeds of good choices while baked.

Here are five healthy habits to cultivate.

Drink water

Warding off dry-mouth makes drinking water a natural habit to accompany weed.

A lot of people don’t drink enough water in a day. On average, a healthy person should drink between four to six cups depending on how they’re eating, what else they’re drinking, and their activity level, according to Harvard University.

Staying hydrated makes you feel better overall. Water has many jobs in your body, including carrying nutrients and oxygen, helping digestion, normalizing blood pressure, cushioning joints, and regulating body temperature.

Keeping a water bottle with you is a good way to support this habit.

Take a hike

If you’re going to smoke a joint, why not go for a walk too?

Sunshine and fresh air feel good and a little lowkey activity can be energizing. Walk on the street, in a park, on a trail, by a creek, through a city centre, in a mall; wherever is comfortable.

Researchers have found that people who walk 8,000 steps a day are half as likely to die prematurely of heart disease and other ailments than those who don’t. Yet the majority of people in Western societies average only 5,000 steps per day.

Don’t forget your water bottle.

Tidy up

The most mundane chores can become bearable—enjoyable even—with a little weed.

Is your sink full of dishes? Laundry needing folding? Landscaping to be done? Papers to shuffle? Floors to sweep?

Cleanliness is linked to positive mental health and is a key predictor of good physical health.

The act of tidying up creates a sense of order, it’s also a repetitive behaviour that can give a feeling of control.

Household tasks come with their own rewards, like sleeping on clean sheets and enjoying a beautiful yard.

Just breathe

Sometimes we forget to breathe only to suddenly realize we’re suffocating.

Practising breathing correctly while high can ease anxiety and help you enjoy the buzz on a whole other level.

In his book, Breath, science journalist James Nestor says: “The perfect breath is this: Breathe in for about 5.5 seconds, then exhale for 5.5 seconds. That’s 5.5 breaths a minute for a total of about 5.5 litres of air.”

Try it: Take a long breath. Hold it briefly. Let it out slowly, mindfully. Now do it again, and again, and again. Do the same thing but with your eyes closed.

Doesn’t it make you feel better?

Nestor advises breathing only through the nose. “Mouthbreathing, it turns out, changes the physical body and transforms airways, all for the worse,” he writes. “Mouthbreathing begets more mouthbreathing.”

Eat fresh

Healthy eating starts before the munchies set in.

The worst time to think with your stomach is when you want to eat RIGHT NOW. It’s better to plan ahead and have good food choices at hand. That way you can avoid eating like a trash panda and also save money by avoiding fast food and ordering out.

There’s been lots of research done on the healthiest foods to eat, and we all get different cravings. One easy thing to do for your future self is to make sure you have a varied selection of fruits and vegetables. Preparing them ahead of time and keeping them in the fridge makes for an easy crunchy snack.

You can also throw together a charcuterie board with what you have on hand, pickles, preserves, meats, nuts. Having dark chocolate on hand satisfies a sweet tooth.

Embracing healthy habits while high

Connecting those five healthy habits to being baked will help you meet the needs of your mind and body. Water, exercise, order, oxygen, and sustenance are things we all crave.

“It is easy to get bogged down trying to find the optimal plan for change: the fastest way to lose weight, the best program to build muscle, the perfect idea for a side hustle,” says Clear. “We are so focused on figuring out the best approach that we never get around to taking action. As Voltaire once wrote, ‘The best is the enemy of the good.'”