With edibles being allowed for early recreational sales, it’s important for people to understand the difference between food and flower. When I first got my medical card and went to a dispensary, I had no clue what I was looking at as far as the strength of edibles were concerned. I thought, “I’m a daily smoker, so I should be able to handle a big dose.” I’d like to think I’m a fairly experienced cannabis user. In life however, we tend to be humbled right when we think we have a handle on things.
My first industry edible proved to be one of those moments.
Looking back, I wish I had a sought out more knowledge before consuming edibles. Eating low doses of THC will make your muscles relax and waves of bliss will blanket your body. Giggling and silliness are common. You will feel relaxed and cozy, and get the best ‘super sleep’ of your life.
The high from these edibles can last from four to six hours. Keep in mind that everyone’s metabolism is different, and your weight and fitness will play a role in how your body reacts to cannabis edibles. Pain patients seeking to replace pharmaceuticals can grow to tolerate daily doses of THC in the hundreds of milligrams.
Besides the myriad of food products that are infused with cannabis, from candies to protein bars and orange juice, there are different types of infusions as well.
The two that have the biggest difference in reactions are butane hash oil (BHO) infused edibles, and cannabis butter infusions. BHO is a super concentrated extract that when infused with edibles, will fill my body full of creative energy. BHO edibles are my preferred delivery method by far if I am needing to be alert, creative and social. Do not eat a BHO edible and expect to go to sleep! You’ll be up reorganizing your home wondering why you’re so awake at 3a.m.
Butter-infused edibles tend to give me that sedated body high. I had some espresso cake balls expecting to have a nice caffeinated buzz with my cannabis high. The balls had other plans. I was soon floating in and out of sleep on the couch. Great effect, bad timing! Another afternoon wasted and well spent!
It’s important to note that consuming edibles on a full stomach will ease that person into the high more gradually. If you have a low tolerance and you start feeling paranoid, Willie Nelson is famous for his black pepper trick: He takes a whole black peppercorn and chews on it. The pepper has a synergistic effect of calming when interacting with the cannabinoid receptors in our brains. It works well for me, at least. Thanks, Willie!
With the new year quickly approaching, there are going to be some new rules coming from the OLCC governing board regarding cannabis edibles. Oregon is keeping the 5mg serving size, but the maximum concentration of THC per container is going up to 50mg.
That will bring us closer in step with our neighbors up north in Washington. Unfortunately, while the medical side has had exposure to edibles for quite some time now, the state enacted a law limiting medicinal edibles to just 100mg.
As a cardholder, I believe this will only force patients to purchase more product to properly medicate for their condition. For people on a tight budget, this might be enough to put safe, consistently potent medicines out of reach.
New packaging laws are also going into effect soon. Although they are a bit vague until the state officially releases the approved vendors list, the general principles seem sound. All cannabis packaging that will be used in retail sales must be child-resistant, not attractive to minors, and protect cannabis items from contamination or exposure to toxic and harmful substances.
Before that cannabis cookie kicks in, I’d like to stress the “everyone’s metabolism is different” point mentioned earlier. Both the State of Oregon (and yours truly) feel that 5 to 10 milligrams is a good starting point for new consumers—it is important to give yourself plenty of time for the medication to set in. It can take up to an hour for you to fully feel the effects; if you take too much, it is important to remain calm. So make good choices folks, and remember to start slow and low.