This is The Best Way to Consume Medical Marijuana (Hint: It’s Not Smoking)
Marijuana has been proven countless times to be an effective remedy against a variety of ailments such as epilepsy, chronic pain and cancer. However, marijuana can produce a lot of unwanted side effects as well such as paranoia, nausea, and the “high” that is very commonly associated with the drug.
But, the creative force that is the human mind has not limited marijuana to a smoking activity. Many weed fans have incorporated marijuana in edibles such as cookies, brownies and candies — a seemingly clever solution to the munchie-cravings promoted by the drug.
Then there are the options to consume marijuana in capsule or pill form. You can even vaporize and inhale the drug if you prefer. With all these options, is one better than the other? Is one more dangerous than the other? Is there a best way to consume this popular drug?
The Many Ways You Can Consume Marijuana
Smoking a Joint/Blunt/Spliff etc.
In this classic consumption of marijuana, marijuana leaves, of whichever dosage you require, are rolled in pieces of paper called rolling paper (shocking!) This is the most expedient method with almost immediate “high” effects.
Although smoking marijuana isn’t as harmful as cigarettes, and despite contradictory clinical trials, many researchers believe that marijuana contains toxins and carcinogens that can damage your lungs long term, and increase your risk of respiratory diseases and cancer.
These harmful effects are not completely worth ruling out. After all, a good inhale of marijuana smoke can send us into a fit of coughing. But, if you insist on smoking this herb, try these tips to safeguard your health:
- Use a more potent, higher THC cannabis so less inhalation is necessary for an effective dose
- Use a pipe for a more consistent and predictable dosage
- Use non-chemical rolling papers
- Exhale immediately after inhaling deeply to avoid tar in marijuana from coating your lungs. Contrary to popular belief, holding the smoke in does not strengthen the dosage or allow for more THC to be absorbed.
Vaporizers are the most recommended method because the device gently heats the cannabis at the lowest temperature required to release the active medicinal components of marijuana with fewer harmful byproducts.
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If you’ve ever spoken to someone who has eaten weed incorporated in baked goods for example, you will know that this method of consumption can be dangerous. This consumption produces a “body high” rather than a “head high”, often described as a “heavier” or “deeper” feeling, making this method beneficial for those with chronic body pain.
However, it is much easier to over-consume marijuana when you can’t see how much you are consuming! To make things worse, edibles are slow to kick in, tricking you into thinking that you should eat more to obtain the desired effects. Marijuana from edibles also takes longer to wear off, so if you’ve over-consumed, you may feel it for a lot longer than planned!
To avoid over consuming, consume a small amount and wait an hour or two before ingesting more.
Also, keep in mind that eating raw cannabis will not give you the desired therapeutic benefits from THC.
Tinctures and Tonics
These are liquid forms of marijuana that can be applied to the skin, consumed orally on it’s own, or added to food. This kind of consumption is useful for nausea and vomiting as a result of chemotherapy. This liquid is made by soaking marijuana leaves in alcohol and finely straining the solids.
Tinctures and tonics can also be over-consumed if the recipient is not careful. The same caution to edibles should also apply to tinctures and tonics.
Topicals include balms, salves, lotions, sprays and ointments made from cannabis oils. These topicals are effective analgesics and anti-inflammatories, making them ideal for arthritis, chapped skin, eczema, minor burns, muscle soreness, sunburns, joint pain, shingles and tendonitis. Topicals are also antibacterial, quickening the healing times for injuries.
Tea and Sodas
Simply steep the cannabis leaves, stems and buds in boiling water for at least half an hour to make marijuana tea. Adding alcohol, oil or butter is necessary to dissolve the THC in marijuana that you are trying to consume.
Marijuana teas can vary in strength. Start with the amount you would smoke and adjust the dosage according to your needs. Some stores sell cannabis infused sodas as well.
Hash and Wax
Resin collected from marijuana flowers can be compressed into small blocks which can be eaten, smoked, or added to tea or edibles. This form of cannabis has a high potency, often offering pain relief in minutes.
Overall, vaporizers seem to be the recommended choice of consumption by doctors and researchers. Vaporizer do not overheat marijuana, you can more accurately predict the dosage, and you avoid a lot of the potentially harmful side effects produced from other forms of marijuana consumption.
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