Should You Be Eating Your CBD?

Chief Smoke 'n Brew

CBD is popping up in everything. Water. Candies. Burgers.

It certainly makes it easier to get your daily dosage in when CBD is paired with a delicious snack, but the question remains: are CBD edibles the most effective way of delivering cannabinoids to the body?

The answer is somewhat complicated.

What are CBD Edibles?

CBD edibles are pretty much exactly what they sound like: a food product with added hemp extract containing cannabidiol. Many of these are CBD-only products, while others are full-spectrum hemp extract edibles.

In most cases, these products take a standard recipe and then infuse CBD oil at one step along the way. Baked goods typically have CBD incorporated during the “mix the ingredients in a bowl” phase, while some fancy coffee shops are dropping CBD tinctures into finished drinks as the last step before consumption.

For the most part, CBD-infused edibles don’t have a noticeable hemp flavor.

Is Eating CBD the Best Way to Absorb Cannabinoids?*

Eating or drinking a product infused with CBD has its advantages. For one, they taste good! Eating a gummy is also much less disruptive in a public space than vaping, and much more discrete than taking a tincture bottle and dropper everywhere.

However, ingesting CBD isn’t the most efficient way to take CBD. When you eat a CBD edible it has to go through your digestive system before your body breaks down and absorbs any of the nutrients, including cannabinoids, included in the food product. This means it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to hours before the onset of effects. These effects can last between 6 and 8 hours.

When eating CBD edibles, cannabinoids are absorbed into the bloodstream through the stomach. Your stomach is filled with highly corrosive acids that break down food, but they also break down cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. That means ingested hemp extract has an extremely low bioavailability, with only 8-15% of compounds actually making it to the bloodstream.

This paragraph references CBD: A Patient’s Guide to Medicinal Cannabis by Leonard Leinow & Juliana Birnbaum, available for purchase here.

The Best Ways to Take CBD

On the other hand, sublingual (under the tongue) delivery of tinctures offers a faster onset of effects and slightly higher bioavailability. When a tincture is placed under the tongue and not swallowed, cannabinoids are absorbed through the mucous membranes. The onset of effects is only 15-60 minutes, with a bioavailability of 6-20%.

Vaping is even better, with an immediate onset of effects and a bioavailability of 10-35%. Even better, a transdermal CBD patch placed on the skin has a bioavailability of 100%, though the onset of effects is about 15 minutes.

Finding the Right CBD Product

There really isn’t a “perfect” CBD product, but there is one that’s perfect for you. If you’re looking for instant or near instant effects, CBD edibles probably aren’t for you. If you want a nice snack and longer duration of effects, edibles might be more up your alley.

Whatever you’re looking for, stop in to a Smoke N Brew location in Greenville or Charleston. We have a wide range of CBD products from the most trusted brands at unbeatable prices. We also have plenty of other stuff for sale, ranging from an incredible selection of beer and wine to tobacco products to funny t-shirts. Stop on by and see us!

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