You may be thinking that marijuana is marijuana regardless of how it gets into your system, but you’d be sorely mistaken. Smoking, eating, and drinking medical marijuana creates different strength profiles and each process has hugely varying half-lives. And therefore, the type of ailments that each form of ingestion is best suited to treating differs greatly. The two most common forms of marijuana consumption are smoking and eating. Knowing exactly how each form works in the body allows you to make an informed decision as to which is most appropriate to your needs. This article is going to give you the ability to make that informed decision. The only other thing you need to stock up on MMJ is a medical marijuana, card which can be purchased online. Without further ado, let’s get into the differences between smoking and eating marijuana!
There are two places where THC can be processed: in the brain and in the liver. Where THC is processed is dependant on how it enters the system. Eaten cannabis gets metabolized by the liver. Smoked or vaporized cannabis is instead absorbed by the lungs and moves to the THC receptors in the brain.
Getting from edible cannabis to cannabinoids being released through the blood is a slow process – taking between 60 and 120 minutes. The metabolizing of these cannabinoids in the liver happens below the surface with no effects presenting themselves until the cannabinoids are released into the blood plasma. Once released, the effects can last anywhere from four to six hours.
The delayed onset of edible marijuana can mean that inexperienced users may consume too high of a dosage as they confuse the delayed onset with low potency. This can lead to folk to have extremely poor experiences that take many hours to subside. Due to the difficulty in titration with edibles, we recommend the lowest dose possible to achieve therapeutic effects. And from there you can work toward your sweet spot. Patience is key here.
As well as producing a longer-lasting high, eating marijuana produces a much stronger high. This means consumption rates and dosage amounts can be reduced. Many people become interested in edibles because they don’t enjoy the harsh experience of smoking or are worried about the long-term health effects associated with it – this is particularly true of those with lung conditions. Let’s not forget that every drug that has positive effects on the body, also comes with a slew of negative effects – some of which may seem non-existent because they are undetectable. Medical marijuana is no different. So for those requiring frequent marijuana consumption in order to temporarily reduce the effects of chronic pain, or to help with epilepsy etc, having a method to reduce daily dosage while increasing the length and potency of the drug is hugely helpful: meaning they are able to tap into the benefits with much less risk.
Due to the way cannabinoids are metabolised in the liver, in order to have the release of the psychoactive effects of cannabis when eating it, marijuana needs to be heated in some way with a form of fat. You won’t feel a high if you eat it straight without preparation as the digestive system is unable to process THC directly. THC is fat soluble. So cooking with fat – olive oil, coconut oil, butter – will release the THC from the cannabis and allow it to bind with the fat. Once bound to fat, THC becomes processable by the liver. On top of this, it becomes palatable (don’t try eating raw cannabis unless you are seeking tastebud misery).
Though edible marijuana is often associated with brownies, or a similar assortment of divine, sugary deserts, almost anything you can think of can be infused with cannabis. It has a strong taste, however, so ensure it doesn’t overpower the other ingredients being experimenting with dosage and dishes.
On the other hand, the effects of smoked marijuana can be felt within seconds. Smoking marijuana gets THC into the blood much faster and at higher concentrations, but it dissipates far sooner too. This allows even the greenest of users to stop before the point of no return. For this reason, we prepose starting with smoking and moving onto edibles if it suits your ailment or your preferences.
And there you have it, the difference between smoking and eating medical marijuana! Pick whichever suits you and your ailment or settle for a combination of the two. But whatever you do, make sure you have your medical marijuana card before you attempt to purchase. The easiest and quickest way to get your medical marijuana card is online. Happy smoking/eating!