“How do I choose between cannabis concentrates and edibles?” That’s a good question, dear reader. It doesn’t have just one simple answer, but can be broken down into multiple factors that will affect your choice depending on what the priorities are for you.
For this article, we’re going to assume that you’re living under some sort of medical cannabis program that allows you to make these types of decisions. It is a pretty big assumption, but makes the writing process easier for both of us.
How to Choose Between Cannabis Concentrates & Edibles
In this article, we’re going to ignore recreational cannabis use because while parts of some concentrates can be used recreationally (like ‘wax’ or ‘budder’), many more parts of concentrates can be used medically (like infusions and extracts).
If you’re looking to introduce a new form of intake to your regimen, using cannabis as medicine, it is important that you first consult with a licensed physician. There are many different medical conditions that affect how the body absorbs and metabolizes cannabinoids or metabolites from cannabis ingestion. A doctor can help you know what your body needs to feel better.
A Note on Marijuana-Derived CBD Consumption
CBD is a very special cannabinoid because it does not get the user high, but still provides many of the medical benefits of cannabis. This has led to an explosion in products that are marketed as ‘CBD’ for anyone to buy and consume. CBD products are frequently sold as ‘tinctures’ or oil you can drop under your tongue, but there are also edibles , topical lotions, creams, gummies that have been infused with hemp-derived CBD.
There is a difference between the two types of marijuana-derived versus hemp-derived CBD consumption. CBD derived from industrial hemp is federally legal in the United States because it contains less than 0.3% THC per dry weight. Industrial hemp is produced by a variety of different plants (hemp). CBD derived from the psychoactive form of cannabis (marijuana), on the other hand, can contain anywhere between 6 to 30% THC and get you high.
If you don’t want to get anything too technical, but still would like to know the difference between the two types of CBD, here’s a simple analogy: If THC is alcohol, then CBD is non-alcoholic beer. You can drink a non-alcoholic beer and still feel good without feeling drunk or having a headache in the morning. You can also drink a Budweiser or Coors and feel just fine (if it doesn’t give you a headache). But if you drink too much alcoholic beer, like get blackout drunk, then there might be some problems with you driving home or making decisions. CBD, on the other hand, has no such trouble attached to it.
What we’re getting at is that there are products out there, like CBD oils and tinctures, that contain hemp-derived CBD extracts . We recommend you consult with your doctor before using any of these products because they could potentially interact with other medications you might be taking or cause an allergic reaction (not everyone can consume cannabis). Some CBD products could contain very little CBD or no CBD at all, which makes them unregulated. All of these factors need to be considered when using any type of product that contains CBD.
Best Way to Get High
For this article, we’re going to focus on getting high and thus discuss only the psychoactive form of cannabis (marijuana-derived).
Concentrates are broken down into two main categories: cannabis concentrates and cannabis edibles . It’s important to know the difference between the two because while their effects are definitely similar, they’re not identical. In fact, it is probably fair to say that if you’ve never tried either one of them before, then their ‘highs’ will be completely different from one another.
Let’s start with edibles…
Edibles are cannabis-infused food products that contain the psychoactive component of marijuana
(THC). Edibles can be candy, brownies, cookies, or just about any other baked good you can imagine. This is a great choice if you’re looking for something delicious to eat and enjoy the idea of having your experience last a long period of time.
In 2013, Colorado opened its first retail weed dispensaries to any adult over 21 years old with a valid ID. Dispensaries quickly realized that there was a high demand for edibles and other products that normally couldn’t be smoked (like salves, tinctures, vaporizer oils, and capsules). Colorado’s marijuana market responded by increasing its focus on edibles. Sales of edibles grew from only 2% in the first quarter of 2014 to more than 30% by the second quarter of 2015. 
The downside about eating cannabis is that THC gets metabolized (broken down) by your liver before it can get to your brain and thus the ‘high’ is never as potent. Edibles also take a lot longer for you to feel their effects (anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours depending on how much food you’ve eaten in the past couple of hours, if you’re eating it on an empty stomach; or anywhere from 10 minutes to 1 hour if you’ve eaten a large meal).
often provide a more ‘body high’ as opposed to the head high from smoking. However, some people do experience profound mental effects from edibles because they put off such an intense high that it can be overwhelming for those who are not used to consuming cannabis. We recommend you start with a small amount of edibles to gauge your reaction.
Cannabis concentrates are derived from the cannabis plant by extracting the essential oils, primarily THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol), but sometimes other cannabinoids as well. Concentrates can come in wax form or oil form, both of which are capable of delivering a potent ‘high’.
The most common types of concentrates are: shatter, wax, budder, and oil. All four products contain THC but they vary in how much CBD is contained within them. Concentrates containing more CBD tend to have a lighter flavor than those with very little or no CBD at all. There are also terpenes that are added to concentrates for a variety of reasons, but most commonly it is because they have a strong flavor. Terpenes can enhance the flavor of a concentrate and thus make them more enjoyable to consume.
Another advantage to using a concentrate is that the high tends to hit you much sooner compared to edibles. This makes them a better choice for those who want to medicate discretely and quickly.
One downside is that you will need more of the concentrate to achieve the desired effect because there is less THC content in each dose compared to eating an edible. Additionally, the lack of fat cells (from not eating it) means that you don’t have as much protection from the THC as you do with edibles.
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In conclusion, it is possible to choose between either Cannabis edibles
or concentrates but go into it knowing that they do have some differences from one another. If you’re a first-time cannabis consumer, we recommend going with an edible because it will make keeping track of your dosage a lot easier and you can feel free to vape or smoke other types of cannabis as well.
If you’re already experienced with consuming Cannabis
, then go for an edible if you want a stronger and more mind-altering high. If you’re looking to be discreet about your use and want something that will give you quick results, then go with a concentrate. You can also mix the two together! If you want to, say, feel a stronger body high while getting quick results then vape or smoke some flower and eat an edible.
Or maybe you’re looking for something that will get you both high & medicated? Try using a vape pen! Vape pens provide quick results with both ingesting cannabis oils (in the form of wax or oil) and/or breaking off pieces of flower to put in the chamber. Vape pens are discrete, simple, easy-to-use, and most offer both options (omit all references to “wax” or “shatter” if mentioning vape pens only).
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