The cannabidiol (CBD) wave is sweeping across the world like wildfire, and understandably so. Considered the most pharmacologically beneficial cannabis extract, CBD might help with a wide range of health problems. The compound is mainly recommended for relieving pain, anxiety, inflammatory conditions, epileptic seizures, and insomnia.
But despite the growing body of research citing cannabidiol for its powerful medicinal properties, many people remain skeptical about the compound and its suggested health benefits. A majority of CBD skeptics believe that substance induces euphoria, just like its parent plant – marijuana.
However, it’s reassuring to know that CBD is non-psychoactive and won’t get you high. The compound also has a considerably higher safety profile compared to other herbal extracts.
What’s more, there are numerous methods to consume cannabidiol. This post examines the five top ways to intake CBD and get the most out of the substance.
1. Oral tinctures
Mostly Available As: Sublingual sprays
Recommended For: New CBD users
Associated Risks: CBD-related
Initially, almost all CBD products came in the form of oral tinctures. To administer these tinctures, all you need to do is spray a few drops underneath your tongue, hold for a few seconds, and then swallow.
CBD oral tinctures are famous for their fast onset time. That’s because the product enters your system directly through the mucous membrane.
You should consider making oral tinctures your preferred CBD delivery method, especially if you’re a new user. That’s because these products come with carefully calibrated bottles and droppers, making it almost impossible to overdose them.
Oral tinctures also have lower health risks. The only risks you can expect are those linked to CBD overdose, such as nausea and dry mouth.
Mostly Available As: Candies, gummies, lozenges, baked goods, chocolate products, and CBD-infused drinks
Recommended For: Stealth users
Associated Risks: CBD-related
Edibles allow you to consume cannabidiol discreetly. For instance, you can pop and chew a CBD-infused gummy in public without drawing any attention to yourself.
Edibles also tend to have a higher safety profile since most of the other ingredients used in these products are food-grade.
And the fact that edibles are available in numerous forms reflects positively in terms of choice and affordability. However, note that the most affordable CBD products tend to be of lower quality when it comes to cannabinoid and terpene profiles. Herbonaut’s price comparison of CBD products found that some products offer 2-times more hemp-derived cannabinoids and terpenes, for the same price.
Mostly Available As: Dried hemp flowers
Recommended For: Regular smokers
Associated Risks: Throat irritation and lung damage
Smoking is the most popular way of consuming marijuana recreationally. It also happens to be one of the most efficient CBD delivery methods.
As a method of CBD administration, smoking mostly appeals to people who already smoke other herbal extracts like hyssop or kratom. This delivery method is particularly recommended for tobacco smokers. That’s because smoking cannabidiol allows you to enjoy the compound’s therapeutic properties while shunning nicotine, the most addictive chemical in tobacco.
Smoking also has a relatively high bioavailability (absorption rate). Therefore, a few puffs would offer the same healing benefits as higher doses if you were consuming CBD by other methods.
However, it’s worth noting that smoking CBD carries inherent risks. While cannabidiol itself is generally safe, the combustion that occurs during smoking may introduce potentially toxic compounds inhaled alongside the smoke. Examples include carbon monoxide and heavy metals.
Mostly Available As: CBD e-juices, dry herbs, and wax concentrates
Recommended For: People trying to quit smoking
Associated Risks: Minimal throat irritation and lung damage
The vaping concept was originally popularized as a safer alternative to traditional nicotine delivery systems. Over time, however, vaping has become especially popular among cannabis users.
What distinguishes vaping from smoking CBD is that there’s no combustion taking place during vaping. So, a vaper inhales vapor instead of smoke, which lowers the risks of throat irritation and lung disease.
Another notable benefit of vaping CBD is that it allows you to savor the flavors in the product.
And just like smoking, vaping CBD comes with a fast onset time and high bioavailability. In both methods, the effects can be felt in as little as 5 minutes. That’s because the absorption of CBD takes place immediately in the lungs.
Mostly Available As: CBD-enriched soaps, shampoos, creams, balms, salves, etc.
Recommended For: Localized conditions
Associated Risks: CBD-related (minimal)
Topicals are arguably the safest way to consume cannabidiol. That’s because CBD administered this way doesn’t enter your entire system. Instead, the compound exerts its therapeutic effects only on the area you apply it on.
So, if you’re skeptical about ingesting or inhaling CBD products but still want to try the substance, topicals might be your best bet.
Topicals are particularly helpful if you’re consuming CBD products that also contain significant levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive compound in cannabis.
Also, CBD-infused topicals come in all shapes and sizes. You can take a bath using CBD-enriched soaps or apply CBD-infused ointments after your shower.
There are numerous ways to administer cannabidiol. Each delivery method comes with its pros and cons. But whichever method you opt for, be sure to moderate your intake of CBD. Note that cannabidiol is generally more effective at low doses and ineffective at very high doses.
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