Remember when the only way to ingest CBD was through tinctures and vapes?
Those days are long gone. As the CBD craze continues to roll across the world, there’s a massive selection of options when you’re deciding on your go-to consumption method. Some people stick to traditional choices like oil drops or capsules, whereas others prefer to explore new possibilities, such as CBD edibles. Speaking of which, the abundance of different CBD edibles — in various formats, shapes, sizes, and flavors — is impressive, to say the least. You don’t need to look far to notice this abundance.
Just type “CBD gummies” in your browser and you’ll be flooded with so many flavors and formulas that your next favorite word for the rest of the month will be “confusion.” But what are CBD edibles in the first place? Do they offer some benefits that are unique only to this form of cannabidiol? Why have so many people go crazy about CBD edibles? Continue reading to find your answers.
What Are CBD Edibles?
CBD edibles are one of the most interesting CBD products available. They are infused with cannabidiol — the non-psychoactive cannabinoid naturally produced by cannabis plants. CBD has a plethora of health benefits because it modulates our endocannabinoid system — the most important neurochemical network in our bodies.
This compound is extracted from cannabis plants — both hemp and selective marijuana strains can be used to achieve that — and further infused into different products intended for human consumption. Simply put, CBD edibles are just sweets that have been infused with CBD extracts. You can eat them to deliver cannabinoids to your body through the digestive tract.
You can buy CBD edibles in many different forms, including gummies, candies, protein bars, snacks, honey sticks, and whatever the manufacturer’s creativity allows for. Each piece contains a fixed dose of CBD. Edibles are available in different concentrations, starting at 5 mg up to 30 mg per sweet. This makes them easier to dose because the user doesn’t need to measure out their dosages in a dropper — we’ll get to the benefits of CBD edibles later in the article. But first, let’s discuss the mechanism behind the effects of this form of cannabidiol.
How Do CBD Edibles Work?
CBD edibles are ingested orally. As such, they need to pass through the digestive system before the CBD along with other active ingredients are released into the bloodstream. Once there, CBD engages with cannabinoid receptors in the endocannabinoid system, producing its effects. This route of administration has one obvious advantage over others. CBD from the edibles is released gradually, meaning longer-lasting relief from symptoms. Oral products are popular among people struggling with chronic ailments.
However, because nature abhors a vacuum, there are also some downsides to taking CBD edibles. One of them is the delayed onset of effects. Because edibles have to pass through the digestive system to exert its actions, the effects may need between 30–90 minutes to take hold. Another potential concern is the lower bioavailability than tinctures and vapes. Bioavailability is measured by the percentage of CBD that actually ends up in the user’s system. The bioavailability of oral CBD is measured at between 5–20%. For a comparison, vaporized CBD shows 56% bioavailability.
What Are the Benefits of CBD Edibles?
The endocannabinoid system controls nearly every homeostatic function in the body, including mood, memory, cognitive function, immune response, body temperature, appetite, reactions to fear and stress, pain perception, blood sugar regulation, and more. Whenever any of the above areas shows signs of dysfunction, the endocannabinoid system releases its own molecules (endocannabinoids) to regulate them and bring back the chemical balance in the body and brain (homeostasis). Unfortunately, the endocannabinoid system also has its limits, and sometimes, it may need modulation — or stimulation — from the outside. CBD has the ability to signal cannabinoid receptors to release more endocannabinoids; it also makes them more available for the body to use because it blocks an enzyme responsible for breaking them down. On top of that, CBD acts on over 60 molecular pathways that aren’t dependant on the endocannabinoid system — hence so many health benefits.
According to current research, CBD is a potential:
- Sleep booster
What Do People Use CBD Edibles For?
CBD edibles offer the convenience of tinctures with the enjoyability of vape products. But, besides the obvious fun, they bring a number of potential therapeutic applications. People commonly use CBD edibles to relieve:
- Chronic pain
- Mood disorders
- Chronic stress
- Difficulty sleeping
Now, let’s explore the world of CBD treats.
Different Types of CBD Edibles
As mentioned earlier, CBD edibles can take many forms, shapes, sizes, and flavors. There are three large categories that we can use to talk about this form of cannabidiol. Below you’ll find more details on different CBD edibles.
This is hands down the most popular form of oral CBD right next to capsules. Simply put, CBD gummies are just regular gummies that have been infused with CBD for extra health benefits. You can buy CBD gummies in many different forms, including classic gummy bears and sour worms — but these sweets come in a myriad of options to choose from. Each gummy carries a fixed dose of cannabidiol to ensure fast and easy dosing. The most universal potency for a CBD gummy is 10 mg — it allows the user to adjust the dosage with small increments to reach the effective dose. What other ingredients do CBD gummies contain? It depends on the formula. Some CBD gummies contain nothing but the hemp extract, sugar (or a sweetener), and gelatin. However, there are products with additional ingredients that have been incorporated to boost or complement the benefits of cannabidiol. Melatonin is the most popular additional ingredient in CBD gummies — this hormone helps our bodies to set the right gear in motion for falling asleep.
Similar to gummies, CBD protein bars are simply protein bars infused with CBD. This type of edibles is a good choice for both amateur and pro athletes alike. People eat CBD protein bars to meet their protein requirements and, at the same time, benefit from the regeneration-improving properties of cannabidiol. Aside from CBD, these edibles contain some sort of whey protein concentrate, natural or artificial flavorings, and other ingredients you may find in protein bars, such as nuts, oats, or fruits.
That’s the broadest category because almost every edible that’s not a gummy or protein bar falls into the snack spectrum. Similar to the above examples, snacks, too, come with a fixed dose of CBD per serving. The most popular CBD snacks include:
- Jet setters (gummies packed with a range of vitamins)
- Dried fruit
- Honey sticks
- Chewing gum
- Energy bars
- Chocolate bars
- Soft caramels
- Hard candy
Not a fan of gummies and protein bars? As you can see, you can’t complain about the lack of diversity when it comes to CBD edibles.
What’s the Optimal CBD Edibles Dosage?
After reading all this, you’re probably wondering what’s the best CBD dosage for a person who chooses edibles as their go-to consumption method. Here’s the truth: there’s no optimal or one-size-fits-all CBD dosage. There are simply too many variables you need to take into consideration when deciding on your CBD dosage to make the whole process so simple. Everybody reacts differently to CBD because the effective dose depends on such factors as the individual’s weight, metabolism, age, diet, physical activity, the severity of the condition, and prior experience with cannabidiol. Experts suggest that new users start at low doses such as 1–6 mg of CBD for each pound of the body mass and observe how you react to CBD edibles for a few days. If you don’t feel any difference over, say, a week, increase the dosage — and repeat until you notice the desired effects.
Can You Overdose on CBD Edibles?
CBD is a safe substance that has been shown to produce no toxicity in humans even after applying doses as high as 1500 mg daily. Cannabinoids don’t affect the brain stem area responsible for respiration, so it’s virtually impossible to fatally overdose on CBD. However, eating too many CBD edibles can lead to a range of minor side effects.
What Are the Possible Side Effects of Eating Too Much CBD?
While CBD edibles are safe for human consumption, there are a few unwanted reactions that you may experience if you go overboard. The side effects of eating too much CBD include:
- Dry mouth
- Lowered blood pressure and heart rate
Keep in mind that CBD edibles usually contain simple sugars, so overindulging in them might result in a sudden blood sugar peak and make you feel heavy and a bit lethargic.
Are CBD Edibles Legal?
Hemp-derived CBD edibles are legal in most places across the world because cannabidiol is rarely a controlled substance, even in countries with strict policies toward cannabis. CBD is non-psychoactive and thus can be legally bought in specialty stores, head shops, wellness centers, and cannabis dispensaries. CBD edibles are also widely available online. But, before you go on the hunt for your bag of CBD-infused goodies, keep in mind that they can be sourced both from hemp and marijuana. Unlike hemp, marijuana contains significant levels of THC and marijuana-derived edibles are capable of getting a user super high, especially if they’re inexperienced or don’t know the mechanism behind the way marijuana edibles work. Sweets made from marijuana fall under different regulations than their hemp counterparts. Marijuana is still illegal in most places around the world, although more and more countries decriminalize the possession of weed each year. Currently, marijuana-derived CBD edibles are legal in Canada, eleven US states, and Uruguay.
Other Ways to Use CBD
If you’re not a fan of CBD edibles or you just need faster relief from your symptoms, there are still plenty of alternative methods to choose from. Here are some of the most convenient ways to take CBD other than edibles:
- CBD Oil Drops – also known as CBD oil, this is a liquid cannabidiol product which you can apply under the tongue. Oil drops absorb into your body through sublingual membranes that allow the user to omit the “first-pass” effect in the liver. CBD oil is usually extracted with CO2. Tinctures are similar to oil drops and people often think of these two products as one and the same. However, tinctures are made by soaking the dried and cured flower in high-proof alcohol, resulting in a slightly different solution with a longer shelf-life.
- CBD Vapes – vaporization is one of the hottest trends among CBD users. It’s a great option if you enjoy vaping or want to deliver your CBD dose to your system as fast as possible. Vapable products include dried flowers, concentrates, and E-liquids. CBD E-liquids come in many flavors, suitable to use with 510 thread vape tanks.
- CBD Bath Bombs – If you’re looking for a fun way to incorporate CBD into your skincare routine, then you should definitely try CBD-infused bath bombs. These come in many tantalizing scents and all you need to do is drop them into the water and let the cannabidiol soak into your skin.
CBD edibles are fantastic for anyone looking to take CBD in a convenient and discreet way. With a myriad of different flavors and types of edibles available on the market, exploring the world of CBD edibles is a great adventure. If you don’t have the time for measuring out your doses and don’t mind waiting for a bit more than usual for the effects to appear, you can go ahead and get yourself a bag of your favorite sweets to enjoy the fun part of supplementing yourself with cannabidiol. Remember to always buy your CBD edibles from a trusted source that shares 3rd-party lab reports for each batch of their product online. Certificates of Analysis from independent laboratories are the only way to ensure that what you’re buying is exactly what you’re getting. What’s your relationship status with CBD edibles? Forever in love? Complicated? Let us know in the comments!