When hemp became legal federally, it opened up the market for consuming CBD, and other hemp-derived cannabinoids. However, even though hemp is federally legal, some common stigmas are still associated with consuming cannabis products. For example, most people identify using cannabis products as smoking something, which is not the only available consumption method. We will go over everything you should know about CBD bioavailability including the different types of ways you can consume hemp-derived products and the science behind the different consumption methods to better your understanding.
Bioavailability is the Proportion in Which Cannabis Enters the Circulation When Introduced to the Body.
Cannabis consumption can be done in a number of ways with different cannabinoids since there are many different routes of consumption. Primarily, bioavailability will vary substantially with each individual’s weight, gender, age, health, and physiological background, likely impacting how cannabinoids absorb into your body. This educational post will inform you about the different methods of consumption and how they differentiate based on bioavailability.
As previously mentioned, most people believe that smoking cannabis is the only way to consume it; however, that is a myth. If you are open to smoking cannabis, you might be happy to know that it is the fastest route of consumption and takes effect almost instantaneously. But wait!
We have smokeable flower in Texas?
In Texas, smokeable hemp flower is offered due to the Federal Hemp Bill that legalized the entire hemp plant. Therefore, you can find pre-rolls, loose flowers, kief, and even extracts that all come from the hemp plant.
Smoking hemp flower is great since it is the best way to get the entire plant profile with the natural terpenes that grow naturally in the bud. The reason why smoking is the fastest route of consumption is due to the fact that when you breathe the smoke into your lungs, it enters your bloodstream. However, there are downsides to consuming hemp flower, so it is essential to make sure you are trustfully sourcing your flower from a place that grows organically, which is the reasoning behind why Restart CBD sources all of their flower from Oregon. Certificate of Analysis, also known by its abbreviation COA, will provide cannabinoid percentages and ensure no pesticides, parasites, or metals are traced in the flower. You can also use other types of smokeable products that are more concentrated, like vapes and concentrates.
Smoking cannabis flower reaches the bloodstream extremely fast and can be detected in blood plasma about 2 minutes after inhalation. As previously mentioned, the percentage of the cannabinoids present in the smokeable will be what differentiates bioavailability. For example, in one controlled experiment, two pre-rolls with different amounts of THC were smoked by two different individuals, one with 1.5% of THC and another with 3.55% of THC. The pre-roll with the higher THC percentage appeared in the blood plasma at a higher amount than the lower percentage. Moreover, about 20-70% of the THC will enter your lungs.
The following form of consumption is sublingual oil. There are many different types of sublingual oils, but to increase bioavailability, it is best to consume orally. There is a mucus membrane and sublingual glands located underneath the tongue. The tissues underneath the tongue can absorb the sublingual oil, which usually takes about thirty to forty-five minutes to take action. The effects of sublingual oil do last longer than smoking flower but not as long as consuming an edible, so you might find yourself using sublingual oil up to three times a day. Sublingual oil can also be swallowed and administered through your liver, which will digest just like an edible. To use the sublingual oil and ensure you are using it the most effectively, administer it under the tongue to get the best relief.
A commonly known form of consumption is using cannabis-infused edibles. Most people gravitate towards them because they are easy to consume. However, it is essential to understand how edibles work in your body. When edibles are consumed, they go into your digestive system and need to bind with fat to process correctly and are usually felt within two hours. If you do not feel the effects of the edible after consumption, you might want to consume something fatty like peanut butter or chocolate. Pro-tip: never assume the edible didn’t work and consume more because both might process through your body and can create an unpleasant experience. The metabolism of edibles occurs in your liver, and this is where it is converted into 11-hydroxy-THC or 11-nor-9-carboxy-THC, and this conversion usually happens within minutes after being digested. Studies on cannabis bioavailability show that the blood plasma level contains a lower amount of cannabinoids present than when smoking. Therefore, you can absorb more cannabinoids by smoking rather than consuming through an edible. Something to remember is that edibles do stay in your system longer than smokeables. Edibles usually only retain about 12-19% bioavailability.
The final form of consumption that we will go over is using cannabis-infused topicals. Cannabis topicals are very beneficial for pain and inflammation. However, they are primarily used as spot treatment due to the fact that most topicals do not contain the active ingredient that will seep deep into the bloodstream. With that said, the cannabinoids are unable to show up on a drug test. DMSO (dimethyl-sulfoxide) is the active ingredient commonly used to penetrate the bloodstream is DMSO (dimethyl-sulfoxide). Usually, when the topical penetrates the bloodstream, it is able to reciprocate the effects of the cannabinoids present as if you consumed them. This is why the effectiveness of the bioavailability in cannabis topicals is low.
Figuring out the best way to consume cannabis can be difficult but use this as your guide to figuring out which route would be the best way for you. It is very important to remember that bioavailability will vary person to person due to the fact that our bodies all metabolize and process cannabis differently. The best way to figure out what will work the best is to try a little bit of everything. Some people claim edibles or smokeables do not work for them, so make sure you try it all before you give up on cannabis!
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