Gummies and Oil and Pre-Rolls, Oh My! Plus, A Cannabinoid Cheat Sheet.
What Are Edibles?
The real question is: what aren’t edibles? If we’re being technical, edibles are food products that have been infused with hemp and/or marijuana and can include baked goods, candies, gummies, chocolates, lozenges and beverages. They can be homemade (typically infused with hemp or marijuana butter or oil that is then baked, cooked or spread directly onto food) or commercially prepared by brands or dispensaries. Even though a good toke is still the most popular (and efficient) way to feel all the benefits of the plant, eating edibles like CBD gummies are quickly becoming a popular way to enjoy hemp and/or marijuana. That’s good. The bad news is that edibles have a reputation of being a little… intense. But with any flower product, we recommend thoroughly vetting brands and companies to ensure they’re transparent and testing their products using accredited third part vendors. That way you don’t have to worry about sketchy doses or sneaky THC percentages.
What Are Tinctures?
Technically, Tinctures are edibles (just like any form of ingestible product like cannabis-infused beverages, food or candies). Tinctures have been around for almost as long as humans have and are one of the main pillars of traditional herbal medicine. In a nutshell, tinctures, including hemp and cannabis tinctures, are highly concentrated extracts of the medicinal components of plants. These extracts are usually made by soaking the bark, berries, leaves, roots, or flowers (dried or fresh) of plants in alcohol, vinegar or oil. While the word “tincture” traditionally refers to a formula where alcohol, vinegar or oil is the primary solvent, it can also refer to the larger category of concentrated liquid products derived from cannabis. Dad Grass Classic Formula CBD Tinctures are fully oil based, so we use the word “tincture” in the latter sense.
Tinctures are made all sorts of ways, but at Dad Grass, our Classic Formula CBD Tinctures are made from the same CBD-rich 100% Organic Dad Grass hemp flower you’ll find in our joints. The recipe is pretty simple. Just carefully extracted, full spectrum hemp oil blended with organic MCT oil. When taken daily, there are dozens of CBD and CBG oil benefits that have been known to help people achieve and maintain a state of reliable chill, while keeping their minds sharp and focused for whatever comes their way. And whether they’re used once in a while or as a daily ritual, high quality full spectrum CBD tinctures like ours have proven effective in reducing anxiety, stress, pain and inflammation. There’s also a growing body of scientific research that indicates they can help alleviate certain symptoms associated with chronic illnesses.
Oral v. Sublingual Consumption. Which Is Better?
There are almost endless ways to enjoy cannabis products. Identifying the best way for you to consume CBG, CBD, CBN or THC depends on your specific recreational or medical needs and wants.
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- Smoking (Joints & Pre-Rolls) - Smoking and vaping are still the most popular ways to consume cannabis. If you’re looking for fast effects (and a soothing ritual), taking a puff is the best way to go if you want to feel something in as little as five to ten minutes. But if you don’t want to inhale smoke directly into your lungs, or desire a more discreet option, edibles and tinctures are both great options.
- Oral Consumption (Gummies, Chocolates, etc.) - Listen, we all know how to eat a piece of candy. When you ingest cannabis as an edible, the active compounds in hemp and/or marijuana must travel through the body’s digestive system to then be metabolized and released in the bloodstream. That means that the full effects of the plant take longer to kick-in. When ingested, edibles like gummies can have a bioavailability between 4 to 20% due to the metabolizing process in the digestive tract. A big reason why edibles sometimes get a bad reputation of being too intense has less to do with the dose and more to do with the patience of the user. If you want immediate results, stick to joints and tinctures. But if you’re fine waiting a half hour to feel all those amazing benefits, and have the time to feel those effects for longer, then gummies could be perfect for you
- Sublingual Consumption (Tinctures) - The best way to experience the full benefits of Cannabis tincture is to take it sublingually to ensure you’re getting as much of the good stuff as possible. Sublingual consumption, on the other hand, places the therapeutic compounds directly into the bloodstream without having to go through the digestive tract and the liver. We recommend placing your desired dosage of your favorite tincture under your tongue and waiting about 30 seconds before swallowing (if it helps, sing the chorus of Bye, Bye Miss American Pie in your head while you wait). The arterial blood supply under your tongue needs time to absorb the CBD, CBG, CBN or THC to ensure your endocannabinoid system receives all the benefits of hemp. When taken sublingually, tinctures can have a bioavailability between 40 to 50%.
What Does “Bioavailability” Mean and Why Does It Matter?
“Bioavailability” is the name of the game when it comes to hemp. Bioavailability (bi·o·a·vail·a·bil·i·ty /ˌbīōˌəvāləˈbilədē/) is “the proportion of a drug or other substance which enters the circulation when introduced to to body and so is able to have an active effect.” Woof. Let’s break that down.
When it comes to CBD, CBG, CBN (or THC), bioavailability refers to the percentage of these beloved cannabinoids that are actually absorbed by the body. A lot of brands will claim that their products contain tons of cannabinoids. And a lot of people think that the more milligrams they consume, the better they’ll feel. But what really matters is how much actually makes it into your bloodstream. Unless your products are formulated to optimize for bioavailability, your tincture (or gummy, drink, etc) will fall short of delivering you the effects you expect because a good amount of the cannabinoids you’re expecting will end up going down the toilet. Literally.
Are There Side Effects Of Ingesting Hemp Oil or Edibles?
According to Open Access Government, “the general consensus among professionals and even the World Health Organization, is that even in extremely large doses, all three main forms of CBD, CBG and CBN (full-spectrum, broad-spectrum and isolate) are likely to cause extreme drowsiness, lethargy, upset stomach, nausea and diarrhea and other unpleasant, disorienting side effects, not death.” So there you have it, you can’t overdose on CBD oil, tinctures, gummies or joints. What about a hemp + marijuana (THC) overdose? Still no. Even full-spectrum CBD or marijuana with high amounts of THC “will not cause a person to overdose in the traditional sense,” says WebMD.
Dad Grass Classic Formula CBD Tincture
How Will I Know If A Tincture or Edible Is Any Good?
In today’s world of online CBD shopping and boutique smoke shops, we’re all a little spoiled for choice. To keep things simple, we’re laying out a few things to keep in mind as you embark on your journey to find the perfect product (or are a toking veteran looking to audit your routine).
First things first, find a company and brand that you trust. When it comes to buying tinctures or edibles, it’s important to know how a company sources, treats and delivers the flower in your hemp, because once it's distilled down, everything that went into the flower will be concentrated in your oil or gummy (or brownie). Make sure the brand that you’re purchasing from consistently tests their hemp and/or marijuana thoroughly in partnership with accredited third-party labs. The word “transparency” gets thrown around a lot these days, but it really is important. You don’t want any secrets when it comes to the products you're putting into your body. It’s also important to find a company you trust if your goal is to consume only legal, hemp-based or low THC products.
Once you find a company that you can trust, one that is transparent and has proof of third-party testing and also passes tests for pesticides, heavy metals, mold or microbes. Reputable and transparent manufacturers and brands will provide certificates of analysis (COAs) for all of their products. These will include an analysis of any additional cannabinoids, terpenes and additional compounds found in your product. It’s also important to consider CBD potency, price and customer reviews.
We’ve Talked Form. What About Function?
CBD, CBG and CBN are three of over one hundred separate cannabinoids found within hemp and marijuana. Cannabinoids are identified chemicals that have the potential to interact with a series of receptors in your body known as the endocannabinoid system.
This is probably the most popular cannabinoid (besides our beloved THC). In recent years, CBD has exploded in the health and wellness categories and is used in everything from skincare and haircare to ingestibles and smokables.
CBD is so beloved because of its ability to reduce stress and inflammation as well as pain and inflammation when consumed and applied as a balm or solvent.
While not as studied as CBD, CBG is the third most-prevalent cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. In its acid form within the plant, it is the parent molecule of both CBD and THC (which is why scientists refer to it as the “mother of all cannabinoids” and we call it Mom Grass). Within the cannabis plant, CBG can be thought of as a waystation. It’s a building block, or base, of other cannabinoids. Cannabinoids like CBD and THC are derived from CBG. This nature of CBG makes it hard to capture for your toking pleasure without specially growing hemp plants bred to have higher concentrations of it. Helpfully, our growers have figured it out.
Mom Grass CBG by Dad Grass
CBG has been shown to ease anxiety, depression, pain and inflammation. Friends and family tell us that Mom Grass makes them feel grounded, creative and tuned in and are great for starting off the day and unwinding in the evening.
The least studied cannabinoid of our big three, CBN is showing promising results in recent studies. Very small research has suggested that CBN has the potential to reduce pain and act as a sedative, which is why it’s been known to be so great for promoting sleep. CBN actually comes from the breakdown of the psychoactive cannabinoid THC. CBN is mildly psychoactive (as are CBD and CBG), but doesn’t produce a high like THC as it is non-intoxicating.
CBN has been shown to be useful for promoting sleep and for easing pain and inflammation.