By: Angela Viesti
CBD is the new kale.
CBD is the new kale because it has so many beneficial properties and we simply can’t get enough.
We put that shit on everything, even our genitalia.
As an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, CBD protects us from the toxins we can’t escape in the environment. Its anti-anxiety effects help us stay grounded, remain present, and build confidence. The pain relief it gives us helps us to move through our lives with more comfort and ease. CBD protects our skin from bacteria while soothing and improving its condition.
As champions of cannabis, it’s important to know that not all CBD products are created equal. Misinformation and reproduction of internet content have led to mass confusion among consumers. As health conscious, savvy shoppers it’s important to know these 7 key factors about CBD products.
WTF Is CBD Oil?
These days “CBD oil” is a used as a catch-all term among novices. I’ve gathered that most people mean CBD tincture when they say this. But if they’re not the same thing, then what is CBD oil? And what is a CBD tincture?
CBD oil is the concentrated plant extract—it’s the active ingredient in CBD infused products. CBD (cannabidiol) can be extracted from hemp and cannabis a number of different ways: via CO2 extraction, solvent extraction (using alcohol), and oil extraction (soaking the plant material in a carrier oil) among others. It can be vaporized or dabbed in concentrated form, but it needs a carrier oil as its vehicle to enter the body and to receive the highest absorption rate of cannabinoids if taken orally.
A CBD tincture is a blend of CBD extract in a carrier oil, along with other ingredients in some products. It’s most commonly ingested sublingually and orally. Tinctures can be added to food, drinks, and used in a DIY topical as the active ingredient (the potency of the tincture will dictate how much you need to use to make an effective topical. Experiment wisely!)
How to Ingest CBD Oil like a Pro
CBD tinctures are popular because they’re versatile, discreet, and easy to take. Tinctures are commonly taken sublingually by placing the oil under your tongue and swishing it for a minute or so before swallowing. This is a fast and effective way to get CBD into your body.
CBD tinctures can also be added to drinks. Kush Queen’s Bare Tincture is the perfect supplement to add to smoothies and protein shakes with high nutrient content from the organic olive oil base and therapeutic effects from the full spectrum CBD oil. Putting tinctures in your coffee and tea is a thing now too, for a synergistic boost of cannabinoids, caffeine, and antioxidants. Pro tip: hold the liquid in your mouth as you would a tincture to get the sublingual effect from your CBD-infused drinks!
Substitute CBD tinctures in recipes to add a healthy boost of cannabinoids to everyday foods. Mix herbs, spices, lemon, and balsamic vinegar into 2 droppers full of Bare for a quick, tasty and super-healthy dressing. Drizzle some over your pasta dishes, make a pesto, or cook with it. You can get festive with recipes like this CBD mocktail and these traditional holiday treats with a CBD twist. Take inspiration from team Kush Queen and try something new!
Why the Carrier Oil Matters
Cannabinoids are fat-soluble, so it’s best to take them orally using a carrier oil: a fatty oil that cannabis and hemp compounds bond to. Carrier oils help to better distribute cannabinoids throughout the body. Commonly used carrier oils are coconut oil, olive oil, sesame oil, avocado oil, and animal fats like butter or bacon fat. Since there is a loss of cannabinoid content in the extraction, decarboxylation, and infusion processes, using an efficient carrier oil is key to getting the most out of your CBD oils.
The difference in effectiveness between carrier oils lies in the structure of their fat compounds, namely long-chain triglycerides (LCTs) and medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). The difference in structure between LCTs and MCTs as carrier oils lies is their bioavailability. Olive oil is a more efficient carrier oil for orally ingested CBD because it’s high fatty-acid content (mainly oleic acid and linoleic acid) allows it to travel through the lymphatic system, distributing CBD more thoroughly throughout the body before metabolizing it.
Coconut oil and it’s fractionated byproduct, MCT oil, are popular in manufactured cannabis products. MCT oil is a nutrient-dense, highly absorbable lipid (yes, I know this sounds good…), but it bypasses the lymphatic system and metabolizes faster than LCT carrier oils do. So, while you may receive the effect of the CBD faster in coconut oil, it also diminishes in a shorter time.
Another interesting and awesome reason to choose olive oil as a carrier oil is that its therapeutic effects are regulated by the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and it enhances the function of CB-1 receptors. Combining this potent carrier oil with CBD amplifies its therapeutic benefit by triggering the entourage effect.
Does CBD Affect a Drug Test?
A major concern is if CBD products can affect a drug test. While most drug tests aren’t testing for CBD, they usually do test for THC. Full spectrum CBD oils contain undetectable amounts of THC (as far as getting high is concerned), however, that may not rule out the possibility of failing a drug test. Although it’s unlikely that the trace amounts of THC in hemp products would cause a failed drug test, it can happen.
Since THC is stored in the fatty tissue, even trace amounts can appear in a drug test, depending on the duration and amount of THC consumed and the type of test. Use discretion when consuming any products containing CBD and other cannabinoids if you’re being drug tested, even if they have less than 0.3% THC, the legal limit for hemp products. CBD Isolates and Broad Spectrum products are a safer bet if you are concerned, and reputable CBD brands will have Lab tests available upon request if you need to be sure that THC is not present. Drug tests vary in what they can detect, so it’s best to do your research and act accordingly.
What’s the Difference Between Full Spectrum oil vs. Isolate oils
There are two main types of CBD used to infuse products: full spectrum CBD and isolate CBD. Full spectrum CBD oils contain a variety of cannabinoids and terpenes that naturally occur in hemp and cannabis. As the name suggests, isolate CBD is the isolated compound with no other cannabinoids, terpenes, or plant matter.
Full spectrum CBD has the benefit of the Entourage Effect–the synergistic relationship that makes naturally occurring compounds so healing when combined. Each element in the plant has a unique makeup and effect, many of which are therapeutic. This is amplified by the presence of other elements, including those in essential oils, herbs, and other plants.
Isolate CBD is the best option if you’re want to consume little to no THC (like if you need to pass a drug test). In some places, only isolate CBD products can be sold legally due to regulations, stigmas, and uninformed public servants. All the more reason to get involved in your local government! In a sense, having the isolated compound is a step in the right direction, but we can’t be satisfied with that. Our efforts can create real change. You can become the champion of cannabis advocacy in your community!
Getting CBD in Your System
CBD is most commonly consumed orally and topically, although smoking hemp joints is becoming more popular, especially in areas where cannabis is still illegal. It’s even being pegged as an alternative to smoking cigarettes—something I wish was a thing when I quit smoking 6 years ago!
Here’s a guideline for the methods of ingestion:
Smoking CBD produces the lowest absorption rate of cannabinoids into the bloodstream, so keep that in mind if you’re looking to maximize intake. Effects are felt almost immediately and last 1-3 hours.
Sublingual doses travel through the sublingual vein under the tongue and enter the bloodstream rapidly. Effects are felt in about 30 minutes and last 2-4 hours.
Oral doses in food and drink take longer to take effect since they travel through the digestive system. This can also affect absorption rates, so dose accordingly. Effects vary but can last up to 12 hours depending on the dose and concentration.
Topicals provide fast, localized relief. CBD can enter the bloodstream topically via the skin. Nanoparticles of CBD penetrate faster than traditional oils, which is why we use them in our Melt Pain Relief lotion. Effects can be felt within minutes and can last 4 hours or longer.
CBD: Elevating You Daily
CBD is most effective when consistently incorporated into your daily routine. The best way to go about starting a CBD regimen is to document your doses and how you feel before, during, and after ingestion.
Start small: Begin with half the recommended dose (usually listed on the packaging of the product) and move up to the full dose slowly, increasing by 10-20% at a time. Keep a journal to track how effective each dose is so you can identify your sweet spot, which may be more than what the product makers recommend. Once you’ve found a dose that works for you, stick with it! Review your journal monthly to see how well CBD is working for you and adjust accordingly. Try new products regularly and add them to your regimen if the results are promising.
I incorporate a variety of cannabis and hemp products into my wellness routine, which include tinctures to manage pain, anxiety, and inflammation; CBD bath bombs and CBD shower gel to relax and ease muscle tension; topicals on my feet to prepare and recover from a long day; and smoking cannabis flower for my creativity, peace of mind, and pure enjoyment–nothing wrong with that!
Move Confidently Toward Healing
I hope this post helps you begin a CBD regimen with confidence. Share this post with your CBD-shy loved ones who need help finding healing. Let us know what Kush Queen products work for you by following and tagging @kushqueenshop and @kushqueenco in your Instagram posts and stories. Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your comments or questions. Much love!
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