10 Things to Know About Edibles
Cannabis is gaining popularity thanks to increased legalization of medicinal and recreational variants. Still, when people think of marijuana, they typically envision the plant, with...
Cannabis is gaining popularity thanks to increased legalization of medicinal and recreational variants. Still, when people think of marijuana, they typically envision the plant, with its spiky leaves and resin-covered buds.
However, cannabis can be consumed in more ways than one, and edibles are a delicious and fun way to enjoy marijuana without the need to fill a room with the smell of smoked bud. Before you try edibles, make sure you understand how they work—and how they’re different from other types of cannabis consumption. Here are ten things to know about edibles before you begin.
One of the most important things to understand about cannabis edibles is that, unlike smoking, vaping, or dabbing, edibles do not take effect immediately. In fact, they can take a few hours to kick in and show their effects.
This can lead to problems for impatient hobbyists, who wait 20 minutes and then decide that the amount they ate wasn’t enough. Be sure to start small, then wait a few hours to see how the dosage affects you.
Edibles contain cannabis but don’t necessarily have to taste like it. It all depends on the type of marijuana used, its potency, and the edible. The best way to mask the flavor of cannabis in an edible is to choose a complimentary snack to put it into.
For instance, the Blue Dream strain tastes like berries, so incorporating it into fruity gummies or hard candies will likely result in a tastier outcome than mixing it with butter for a chicken wing marinade.
Edibles work just like normal food—given enough time, they will expire. This could mean going rancid, as with perishables such as butter, or it could result in a less ideal flavor from a dessert going stale. Be sure to eat your edibles soon after making or buying them to ensure the best experience.
Edibles are often available from dispensaries, but this doesn’t have to be your only source. You can make your edibles too! Don’t just put bud pieces in your food; instead, you’ll need to decarb your weed.
This is short for decarboxylation, requiring you to heat the bud for around 20 or 30 minutes to release the oils and activate the terpenes. From there, you can infuse your cannabis into oils, butters, and anything else you can imagine.
Speaking of making edibles, most people default to desserts when creating new recipes. The influence of Brownie Mary, one of the first cannabis advocates in the United States, is still strong today. However, be creative in your applications! Try infusing cannabis into butter for a savory spread, or add a few drops of oil into mixed drinks for an upgraded experience.
Cannabis edibles are processed through the digestive system, where the terpenes from the marijuana will be transported to the liver for processing. Other medications processed through this same pathway, such as antidepressants and blood thinners, could see reduced function because some of the liver’s effort is taken up with CBD.
The best way to control dosage in an edible is to add cannabis rather than including it in the recipe. For instance, adding butter to a piece of bread permits more control than using cannabutter in a brownie recipe.
Once the brownies are made, the cannabis is incorporated and can’t be altered anymore. However, you can always choose to use more (or less) butter based on your experience. You know exactly how much you’re getting (instead of wondering whether this brownie chunk has more or less cannabis in it).
The potency of an edible comes down to the amount of cannabis used and the strain’s potency. High THC and high CBD variants will produce a stronger effect. It is generally wise to use a mild strain for edibles so you don’t have to worry about only taking a nibble.
Not all edibles will contain THC or CBD; this is determined by the cannabis used in the recipe. Some strains have low CBD and high THC (or vice versa). When you make your edibles, you have control of this. For store-bought, be sure to read the label.
Because edibles are processed through the digestive tract, it takes the body longer to purge and excrete the terpenes. This means that while you’ll need to wait longer for the cannabis to take effect, the resulting high can linger much longer than it would when smoking or vaping.
That’s why many people choose to consume edibles at night, so they can go to bed and sleep well for hours after consumption.
Edibles are a great way to add more flavor—no pun intended—to your cannabis experience. Ensure that you get your edibles or the ingredients you’ll use to make them from a high-quality dispensary.
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