The Best Way to Take CBD
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably heard about CBD and the positive research regarding its wide range of effects on the body. When researching CBD products on the market, you’ve probably asked yourself ‘wtf is a tincture’ and ‘will this vape pen kill me?’. There are a lot of options when it comes to CBD consumption making it sometimes difficult to select the best product for you. We all have our individual preference; which makes the variety thing, though daunting at first, awesome and unique to the cannabis market. CBD is also a big investment, so you want to make sure you select a product that's right for you. To make it a little easier, here’s the beginners guide to selecting your best method of consumption.
There first question you’re probably asking yourself is ‘how much should I take?’. Neuroscientist Nick Jikomes explains that, ‘as our body’s physiology changes, so do the receptors in our endocannabinoid system, which are directly responsible for interactions with CBD. As a result, optimal CBD dosages will shift throughout an individuals lifetime.’ You should always start small with dosage, document any changes, and increase or decrease your dose from there.
An important thing to consider is bioavailability within a product. Bioavailability is simply the rate and amount of a substance that is emitted into the bloodstream. In addition to the amount and strength of a substance, bioavailability determines how much of what you took will actually provide a level of effect on you.
Now, let’s break it down by consumption method.
Oral consumption is one of the more popular ways and definitely one of the most convenient ways to consume CBD. Edibles, beverages, and capsules all fall under this category. When CBD is taken orally, it must travel through the metabolic and digestive system. This process reduces the potency down to 4% to 20%. So on the high end, the most CBD you can consume from a 100 MG edible, beverage, or capsule, is 20 MG. That’s like throwing 80 MGs of CBD down the trash can that is your mouth whole. On the flip side, oral consumption of CBD is extremely convenient and portable. You can also purchase delicious gummies and treat your CBD like a mid-day snack.
Moving on to sublingual consumption aka tinctures, mouth drops & sprays. Sublingual consumption is more effective because the CBD directly enters the blood stream via the sublingual gland under the tongue. This is why you have to hold the (sometimes) nasty tasting oil under your tongue for a 30 - 60 seconds before swallowing. Though this method is more effective than oral consumption, it still yields only a 12%-35% absorption rate due to interaction with enzymes in the mouth. Many brands are now carrying CBD Tinctures with terpene properties for extra benefit.
Many people choose to use CBD topicals because they can quickly and easily apply the wholesome benefits of CBD directly where they need it. And using CBD topically is minimally invasive for CBD newcomers; it doesn’t have to travel throughout the body for it to work.
Because you apply CBD directly to the area of discomfort, the effects are typically immediate and more centralized than other application methods. However, CBD topicals have low bioavailability – no matter how much you apply, your skin isn’t permeable enough for the CBD to reach the bloodstream.
Now we have arrived at the internets favorite muse, the vaping method. Though vaping has been largely victimized in the media, inhalation of CBD is in fact the best method of absorption you can get aside from mainlining a CBD IV to your forearm. Under the right circumstances, with the right all natural - no additives product, vaping and smoking is the easiest way to get the highest dosage of CBD into your body. By bypassing the digestive track and entering straight into the lungs, CBD can immediately enter the bloodstream. Medical studies report bioavailability rates for vaping consumption to be between 34–46%, and some even reporting up to 56%. All of these stats apply to Pre-rolls as well but with more of a loss of bioavailabilty due to the 'burn time' in between hits.
Anyway, do whatever the heck you want with your CBD– eat it, drink it, smoke it. But if you're looking for the best bang for your buck, make sure you account for the bioavailability in your product. And also keep in mind, everyone is different and CBD will effect us all uniquely. Keep track of how you are feeling after you take a dose of whatever you choose and make adjustments to fit your mood accordingly.