There are more than 100 different cannabinoids that we know if in the cannabis plant. Unfortunately, THC, the compound that gets you high, is the most well-known, but it’s far from the only one people can benefit from.
CBD, otherwise known as cannabidiol, is believed to help with everything from promoting a healthy inflammatory response to reducing feelings of anxiety. And best of all, it won’t get you high!
For many first-time users, knowing where to even start with choosing concentrates can be difficult.
Well, read on because we’re going to cover everything you could possibly need to know about CBD concentrates in this guide!
What is CBD
CBD is the non-psychoactive component of the cannabis plant, meaning it won’t get you high no matter how much you take.
This compound is found in both cannabis and hemp. Concentrates can be derived from both plants, and it’s largely a matter of personal preference which you prefer.
Hemp vs. Marijuana-Derived CBD
Hemp is a non-psychoactive cannabis plant that’s commonly used to create household goods, fabric, rope, and even paper. It also contains CBD compounds that can be extracted and turned into edible treats and concentrates.
Hemp has very little THC content (around 0.3%), so you can’t get high from using any concentrates or products made from it.
Marijuana contains both THC and CBD compounds, but the CBD can be separated. With the legalization of marijuana this year, marijuana-derived CBD products are starting to hit the shelves.
Is one better than the other? Well, that’s ultimately for you to decide. Hemp-based CBD is considered a dietary supplement and may not be subject to the same quality standards as marijuana-derived CBD.
If you’re looking for the best quality possible, it’s best to order from a dispensary. Remember, dispensaries know where their products come from, how they were made, and how high-quality they really are. Your supplements store doesn’t.
How Are Concentrates Made?
The concentrates are made or distilled either cannabis or hemp and processed into the oils and products you find at dispensaries and online health stores.
To create a concentrate from either hemp or marijuana, companies use two main extraction methods.
CO2 extraction uses carbon dioxide to pull CBD oils out of the plant. A container is filled with cannabis selected for its naturally high CBD levels. Then, carbon dioxide is forced into the container until the pressure inside increases and the temperature drops.
The oils from the cannabis then bind to the CO2 which is then transferred to another chamber where the oil is separated from the carbon dioxide. This leaves you with a quality CBD concentrate.
Ethanol extraction involves soaking the cannabis flowers and leaves in high-quality grain alcohol. The plant material breaks down in the alcohol, separating the oils from the leaves.
Once the mixture sits for a few minutes, the plant trimmings are strained out. The liquid is then filtered and heated to remove the alcohol from the CBD concentrate.
Understanding Concentrations and Dosing
Regardless of the extraction method used, all CBD products will have different concentrations. These are displayed as percentages on the label or package.
The percentage refers to the amount of CBD extract in the solution. Products with higher concentrations of CBD will have higher percentages on the label.
Determining the Right Dose
Dosages are largely determined by the strength of the concentrate in the CBD product. Most products will contain suggested dosage information on the label. If not, your dispensary will be able to guide you.
You may need to do a bit of trial and error to find the dosage that works best for you. Since there’s no THC in the concentrate, you won’t have to worry about getting “too high” when experimenting.
Keep in mind that the right dose may depend on the type of condition you’re looking to treat.
Benefits of Using CBD Instead of Whole-Plant Marijuana
Now, you’re probably wondering why you might want CBD concentrates instead of simply using some of that legal marijuana. Here are a few compelling reasons.
1. CBD Doesn’t Show Up on Drug Tests
If you’re working for a drug-free company or worry about surprise drug tests, CBD concentrates won’t be a problem. Drug tests only look for the presence of THC in your blood or urine.
Since CBD concentrates don’t have any THC in it, your drug test will show up clean.
2. CBD Doesn’t Alter Your Mind
If your primary goal is to use cannabis products to help improve your health, you want to still be able to function during the day.
Even low-concentration THC strains leave you feeling high. This can make it difficult, if not dangerous, to perform your daily tasks.
CBD oils and tinctures can be taken anytime during the day. You won’t have to worry about losing your focus at work or risk a DUI charge for driving home under the influence.
3. It Comes in Different Forms
Just as with regular cannabis, CBD products come in almost every type. There are concentrates meant for vaping, edibles, and even topical ointments and salves.
You’re sure to find a product that you love, no matter how you want to use it.
Taking CBD Concentrates with Marijuana
Now that cannabis is legal, more people are starting to use both THC strains and CBD concentrates. Though they come from the same plant, there’s no reason to only use one or the other.
In fact, many studies suggest that it can best be used when combined with THC in marijuana.
This is known as the Entourage Effect. CBD is believed to enhance the beneficial properties of THC, making the cannabis more effective. The THC is thought to even extend the effectiveness of CBD, so you get more relief from each dose.
That said, CBD extracts can be taken as a supplement with or without THC.
Where to Start with CBD Concentrates
The best place to start with CBD concentrates is choosing a product that interests you. If you’re looking for something simple, consider a CBD tincture. If you’re looking for a fun treat, choose an edible.
The only way to know what concentrates work best for you is to try different options.
Check out our online store and find your new favorite concentrate!