Cannabis has become increasingly popular for treating a wide range of health conditions. These including chronic pain, anxiety, depression, and sleep disorders. It works by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system. This system regulates mood, appetite, pain, and other physiological processes. While smoking is the most common way to consume cannabis, vaping and edibles have become popular alternatives. Edibles are particularly appealing to those who prefer not to smoke or vape, and can be found in a variety of forms. However, it’s important to note that edibles can take longer to take effect and may have stronger effects than smoking or vaping. This makes it crucial to be mindful of dosage.
Edible cannabis has a long history of use, both as a medicine and for recreational purposes. The modern edible as we know it was born during the AIDS epidemic, when Mary Jane Rathbun, known as Brownie Mary, delivered THC infused brownies to HIV/AIDS patients. She did this to help stimulate appetites suppressed by the disease and by the medications used to treat it. This well known effect of cannabis to stimulate appetite is one of the major medical uses for cannabis to this day.
Consuming cannabis products through eating or drinking them is generally safe, but it may result in different effects than smoking or vaping. A variety of edible cannabis products are available legally, including gummies, candies, chocolates, capsules, teas, and oils. The choice is so large that it can sometimes feel paralyzing. For purposes of this article we will be talking primarily about food infused with THC.
While consuming cannabis through edibles is safe and enjoyable for most people, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks involved. Negative side effects include paranoia, nausea, and anxiety. Should you experience any of these symptoms, it is best to remember that they are just temporary. CBD has also been found to have a mitigating effect in some situations.
That being said, there are also potential benefits to consuming cannabis through edibles. For example, edibles offer a discreet way to consume without the smell or smoke associated with smoking or vaping. As such, edibles can be helpful for people with respiratory issues or those who prefer not to inhale smoke or vapor. The longer lasting effects are also beneficial for those that need consistent relief, such as chronic pain patients. If you have any concerns about consuming edibles, it’s always a good idea to talk to your healthcare provider.
The Now and Later Rule
Legal edible cannabis products are often labeled with dosing information, making it easier for consumers to control their intake. However, this is not always the case. In situations where edibles are unlabeled it’s difficult to know exactly how much THC is in an edible product, which can lead to accidental over consumption. This is why it is advisable to learn to calculate THC content if you intend to make your own edibles. This topic is covered in Higher Learning: A Gourmet Cannabis Cookbook.
The effects of ingesting cannabis can vary widely depending on a number of factors. These factors including the type of product consumed, the amount consumed, and the individual’s tolerance level. Unlike smoking or vaping, which produce effects within minutes, edibles can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to take effect. This delayed onset can lead some people to consume more than they intended. Doing so results in stronger, longer-lasting effects than desired. It is best to follow the Now and Later Rule. Eat half of the edible now, and see how it affects you. Later, you can finish the edible if you find that the first half wasn’t enough.
Doing It Yourself:
Making your own edibles is a rewarding hobby. However, it can be tricky. Aside from the aforementioned dosing worries, homemade edibles tend to have a stronger cannabis flavor and odor. This means that you must consider what effect those flavors and aromas will have on the finished product. Cannabis should be viewed as an ingredient when cooking, rather than an additive. With these considerations in mind, you are ready to take your first steps into cannabis cuisine. Maybe you’ll kick things off with some Pumpkin Cream Cheese Stuffed French Toast or go the Full Monty with our Beer Braised 420 Tacos.
Raw cannabis, which contains THC-A and CBD-A, needs to be heated to activate THC and CBD. These are the active compounds that produce the well-known effects of cannabis. Some believe that eating raw cannabis may have unique health benefits, as it contains a number of cannabinoids and terpenes that are destroyed by heat. However, research on this topic is still limited.
While raw cannabis may not offer the same effects as heated cannabis products, some research suggests that it may contain unique health-promoting compounds. Raw cannabis is a rich source of cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes. These compounds have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antifungal properties. Additionally, some studies suggest that consuming raw cannabis may help improve digestion, boost the immune system, and reduce inflammation.
However, further research is needed to fully understand the potential health benefits of raw cannabis. It’s important to note that consuming raw cannabis can have some risks. Raw cannabis can be difficult to digest and may cause digestive issues in some people. Additionally, raw cannabis contains significantly less THC and CBD making it unlikely to produce any psychoactive effects.
Overall, while eating raw cannabis may offer some potential health benefits, it’s important to approach it with caution. Always talk to your healthcare provider if you have any concerns. If you’re looking to consume cannabis for recreational or medicinal purposes, raw cannabis may not be for you. Heated cannabis products like edibles, tinctures, and baked goods are likely to be a more effective option.