It’s a good time to be the cannabinoid CBD. Though there are dozens of cannabinoids in the wonderful plant that is cannabis, THC, and now CBD, have got the spotlight. For many people, the thing that draws them to CBD is the very thing that THC is known for—CBD doesn’t get you high like THC.
CBD is being touted as a “superfood.” It can supposedly help users manage a variety of symptoms and conditions from anxiety and seizures to stress and IBD. However, medical data is sparse, and while the FDA is considering regulation, there are none as of yet for hemp-derived CBD. (Cannabis-derived CBD is a different story. Here in Washington, it’s tested and held to specific regulations just like all other cannabis products.)
How to Find the Best CBD for You
If you’re interested in experimenting with CBD, we’ve got good news and bad news. Firstly, with recent legal changes – CBD is everywhere. You can choose from various forms of taking it, there are thousands of places to get it, and there’s a huge variety in other components that CBD is presented with.
And for the bad news: CBD is everywhere! And unless you’re buying from a licensed dispensary like American Mary, you may not be getting what you’ve paid for. How can you find high-quality CBD in Ballard, then? American Mary is here to help. We’ll take you through the whole wide world of CBD so that you’re equipped to make a purchase that does the job.
How Would You Like Your CBD?
Once upon a time, appreciators of cannabinoids were limited to the ol’ pipe and lighter, occasionally switching it up with “special” brownies. Well, those days are long gone. If you’re after the healing powers of cannabinoids, you’ve got options. And this holds true for CBD as well as the long-beloved THC. (And hopefully, the benefits of other cannabinoids like CBN and CBG will be properly studied soon, thereby creating more reason for other cannabinoid products…)
Old Fashioned Flower: This one’s for the OGs. Cured cannabis, the dried plant nugs we’ve loved for ages, is now called “flower.” (Which does make sense as she’s so much more of a precious flower than an unwanted weed…) With flower, you can pop it into a bowl or bong, roll it into a joint, or use it in an herbal vaporizer. At American Mary, we carry an assortment of high-CBD flower. These buds do have some THC, which can actually be beneficial when using CBD.
Vape Cartridges: These are small tubes filled with CBD oil that twist onto the top of a pen-like battery. The battery heats the oil, providing you with medicated vapor when you draw on it like a straw. They are discreet and quite handy. If your main focus is on CBD, look for vape cartridges that have a balanced THC:CBD ratio or that are high CBD/low THC.
Tinctures: The winner of “most discreet” might be this one though. Tinctures are CBD oil that are placed in a dark bottle, which ensures retainment of cannabinoids by blocking light, and feature an eyedropper on the lid that’s great for precise dosing. Drop under your tongue (sublingually) for fast absorption, or swallow if you’d like it to kick in later.
Topicals: CBD lotion? Yup, that’s a thing. Topicals can also come in bath bombs, salves, and even lube. Unless you’re getting a transdermal patch, these will not break the blood barrier and shouldn’t get you high – a great opportunity to see how THC aids symptoms (or not) without undesired psychoactive effects.
Edibles: “Special brownies” haven’t gone anywhere, but my goodness are they now surrounded by friends. In addition to all kinds of other infused foods – chocolates and candies and drinks, oh my! – in the spirit of the film Fast Times at Ridgemont High, you can now buy marijuana tablets. (And mints!) THC is often more prevalent in edible choices than CBD, but combos are generally easy to find.
Whole Plant Medicine, or Isolated CBD?
The takeaway difference between whole plant medicine and isolated CBD products is: whole plant medicine contains multiple cannabinoids and/or other components of cannabis, like terpenes and flavonoids, which may offer their own healing effects. In addition to this, these components also work stronger together – a synergy known as the entourage effect.
Isolated CBD doesn’t offer these powers, however, it is safer for those who are concerned about drug tests. (Though it’s good to know that even hemp contains trace amounts of THC, so it may be present in untested products.) It’s important to consider these factors before choosing which CBD is best for you.
Where to Buy
CBD is currently regulated like it’s a supplement, which basically means not regulated at all. So that tincture of CBD isolate could actually be, well, anything. In many cases, it doesn’t contain as much medicine as it claims. It’s also often actually whole plant medicine, not isolate, as it’s much easier to produce than isolating cannabinoids. (Good for entourage effect, potentially bad for drug tests.) Contaminants and other safety issues are also a concern here.
However, if you buy CBD or high CBD products at a dispensary, it must be tested and regulated like everything else. This means you’ll know for sure which cannabinoids are in the product and how much of them, plus you’ll know it’s safe from mold and other toxins.
Buying your CBD from a compliant dispensary like American Mary is the best option for anyone concerned about regulation and product testing. The CBD that is found in convenience stores and other locations don’t have to undergo the same rigorous testing as CBD derived from cannabis — and you never know what you’re paying for.