There’s a lot of debate right now about whether we should have candy with cannabis.
What’s the dose? How do people know if their chocolate bar they bought at the dispensary a month ago contains THC or CBD? How much should they take? These are really important questions.
I have a 9-year-old and an 11-year-old, and I also have a huge sweet tooth. When there’s candy in our house we all want to know where it is and how we can eat it. I really don’t subscribe to the idea that you should have a candy edible with cannabis in it. That’s not because I think it shouldn’t be allowed. If people want to grow their own cannabis, make their own oil, and then make a batch of cookies with it – that’s fine for them. I’m focused on medical cannabis.
Sugar is not good for us. Sugar actually increases inflammation on the body. It can also contribute to cancer. Sugar is delicious, but if we are seriously ill, sugar is not helping. A great way to take your cannabis instead is just having cannabis oil or a cannabis tincture. Take your sweets separately.
For example, you can make your own batch of oil. If you take your cannabis flower and dry it out and break it apart, you can cook it right on your stove with some butter, olive oil, coconut oil, whatever you want. After a while, the resin in the plant dissolves into the oil. You can strain it and have an activated cannabis oil. This is an extremely versatile and traditional method that goes back thousands of years to India.
An internal oil goes into your GI tract. It then triggers the receptors for THC and CBD in the belly first. It’s not going directly to the brain like it does when it goes through your lungs. Think of this as a slow-release pill. You’re not going to have this peak psychoactive experience from oil if the dose is moderate. How do you know what the dose is? You just have to try a small amount and wait a full 6 hours before increasing the dose. It takes patients but hitting the dose sweet spot is worth the wait.
With sugar edibles, you can overdose easily. Just like you can smoke too much, you can ingest too much. This is common with sugar edibles. You get a package of gummybears. If each gummy bear is enough for one or two adults, then it’s extremely hard to eat just one gummy bear. I personally have never opened a package of gummy bears and eaten solely one. That’s why I recommend you go get your regular gummy bears, take your oil, and if you get the munchies then you can eat a whole bunch of gummy bears and know that you’re not going to overdose.
Also, when you put cannabis into edibles it gets inconsistent. Think about this oil or butter you’ve made. You then pour that into your batch of cookies. You stir it up and you make 30 cookies. How do you know how much cannabis oil is in each one of those cookies?
Even in dispensaries, it’s extremely difficult to tell. They can send a cookie to the laboratory and test it. It could come back and say this cookie has 17% THC, but is it just one bite of that cookie? Is the 17% of THC evenly distributed around that cookie? It’s very difficult to tell. Luckily, cannabis is a forgiving substance. If you overdose, it won’t shut down organs like an overdose of opioids.
But this is why I like just simple ingestibles; an oil or a tincture where you know one drop does one thing to your body. A very conservative way of taking an ingestible in your body so that you don’t overdose is to take one drop. Wait a full 24 hours and then take a second drop. Repeat. This way, you slowly go up and discover your optimal dose.
I work with a lot of clients who are elderly or have very specific ailments. They’re not really interested in getting high. They want to get to that sweet spot where you have symptom relief without any kind of psychoactivity. Delivering one drop into your system at a time is a great way of arriving there. It’s really important for CBD because CBD is what they call non-linear in its dose response. That means that if you take a little bit of CBD and it helps with pain, anxiety, cramps, etc., that doesn’t mean a higher dose is going to be better. It may mean your symptoms come back when you take a higher dose. We’re not quite sure why CBD does this, but think of CBD as a therapist. One hour a week might be a good amount of therapy. 5 hours a week might not be useful!
Tune into cannabinoids and allow them to do their work as regulators; sometimes that means regulating sugar intake as well.