In recent times, CBD has gained more popularity. From lip balm, lube, toothpicks to shampoo, CBD is used in almost everything. And according to the market hype, the non-psychoactive component of various cannabis strains can cure different medical conditions such as insomnia, depression, and chronic pain.
But is it safe or legal to use CBD? Is it the new panacea? Will it show when you are tested for drugs? In this article, we will discuss recent facts on CBD products, so you can know exactly what you are using.
What is CBD?
Cannabis sativa produces about 100 chemicals which are known as cannabinoids. The largest and most popular chemical in this group is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). It has psychoactive properties that make people “high” when they smoke marijuana.
The second-largest chemical in the cannabis plant is CBD (Cannabidiol). Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol, it does not cause any psychoactive intoxication. A lot of people do not feel altered when they ingest cannabidiol. However, about 5 percent of cannabis users could feel otherwise; these are people who ordinarily react to Tylenol or Advil.
Naturally, the human body produces cannabinoids. They are involved in appetite, sleep, mood, pain sensation, and other body functions. So, when you ingest cannabidiol, it will interact with the body’s cannabinoids and amplify their effects, too. Users ingest cannabidiol products by applying creams and patches, sipping from tinctures, taking pills, eating gummies, vaping, and smoking.
What Does Hemp Have to Do with CBD?
You may have heard terms like hemp, cannabis, and marijuana tossed around discussions related to CBD. Cannabis sativa has 2 primary species: marijuana and hemp. They both contain cannabidiol, but hemp has a higher percentage. Unlike marijuana, it has a low percentage of THC (less than .3 percent).
When you see a label bearing hemp oil, it simply means that the seeds of hemp plants were processed to extract the oil. Also, it does not contain THC or cannabidiol, or any other cannabinoid. The product contains healthy fats which are used in skincare products because of their moisturizing properties. You may want to read this article to know the difference between CBD oil and hemp oil.
How to Use CBD Products
CBD products come in various forms, which determine how to use them.
These are the most discreet methods of trying CBD. There are several cannabidiol edibles such as mints, gummies, and truffles. They are good at masking the taste of “weed”. However, the caveat to this method is that it may take about 2 hours for the product to become effective.
This is regarded as a “first pass” because the cannabidiol needs to be broken down in the digestive tract and liver for the effects to take place. Also, you must absorb about twenty to thirty percent of the product.
2. Sublingual Products
Most edibles contain preservatives and sugar. So, if you prefer products without additives, you may want to choose sublingual products. They are produced for absorption under the tongue.
You can find them as tinctures (solutions that were produced by soaking the flowers of cannabis in alcohol or oil), lozenges, sprays, and oils. With sublingual products, you will feel the results faster. This is because more cannabidiol is preserved since it does not need to pass through the digestive tract.
These products are made for direct application to your skin. You will typically find them as CBD-infused salves, lotions, transdermal patches, creams, and balms. When you want to discreetly treat a skin condition such as eczema or localized pain, topicals are your best bet.
Research shows that CBD gel reduces joint swelling. This is good news for people suffering from arthritis. Also, this method of using cannabidiol does not pass through the digestive system, so the effects are faster, bringing quick relief to the site of application.
Furthermore, the skin’s permeability is quite poor compared to mucous membranes such as sublingual tissues. The implication of this is you need to choose a product that contains a high cannabidiol concentration, and it should be applied generously on the skin.
Products containing extra analgesics like capsaicin, menthol, and camphor offer more therapeutic effects. You may want to visit https://health.usnews.com/wellness/articles/do-topical-cbd-products-work to know more about topicals.
4. Smoking and Vaping
You can roll a joint to smoke cannabis flower, use vaporizers with cartridges containing cannabidiol oil, or use a vaping pen with chambers for concentrates to inhale cannabidiol concentrates like sugar waxes. Smoking and vaping allow the cannabidiol to travel straight to the bloodstream. This means you will feel the effects faster than other methods.
With this method, you can absorb about thirty-four to fifty-six percent of CBD within ten minutes. However, you need to remember that smokers are exposed to carcinogens. Although vaping prevents this by keeping the cannabis below combustion point, its safety is still not certain.
If you still want to vape, try to avoid vaping cartridges that have carriers or thinning agents like vegetable glycerin, MCT (fractionated coconut oil), or propylene glycol. These components can damage the tissues of the lungs.
There are several methods of using CBD; there is no best or right method. But it is important to use different methods to know what works best for you. Ensure you speak with your doctor before you decide to take CBD, especially if you are on medication. It can interact negatively with certain prescription medications like blood thinners, antidepressants, and antibiotics.