The endocannabinoid system is a large network that helps the body to function properly and optimally. It not only regulates pain, dictates mood and coordinates motor skills, but also dictates sleep patterns, appetite and the responses of the immune system.
Cannabis connects with the cell receptors in various parts and organs of the body and thus connects with the endocannabinoid system too. Thus the way you ingest the cannabis determines how it affects you.
If you smoke cannabis, you create THC and that's what you inhale. The THC goes into the bloodstream and from there to the brain and other parts of the body. But during smoking, it is the cannabinoid receptors in the mouth and tissue that are the ones that are directly exposed to the smoke. Rather than passing through the stomach and then liver, the THC goes directly to the brain. The effect is felt faster and fades just as quickly- it peaks within the first ten minutes and fades within an hour.
Vaporization also heats cannabis but not enough to burn the plant material. Production of free radicals that cause damage to cells and production of ash that poses health risks is inhibited. THC and cannabinoids do reach the bloodstream faster than with smoking but only a fraction of the THC that you consume is actually used. It creates a different sort of 'high' than that of edible cannabis because it goes from via the lungs to bloodstream and from there to the brain
When cannabis is ingested through edibles, it is metabolized by the liver and that means more of THC is converted into forms that can be used by the body. This can be attributed to the excess production of THC metabolite, which happens to be many times stronger and psychoactive than THC. Because of the way it is metabolized, it takes some time for the kick to set in, but the effects lasts for several hours.
Ingestible cannabis oils and tinctures
If you don't like edibles, then medical cannabis oil or tinctures is the thing for you. It is a highly concentrated form of cannabis and is made by using alcohol as a solvent. That's why the medicine can be absorbed faster. Taken under the tongue produces faster effects as the cannabinoids are absorbed by the blood vessels in the mouth. If taken orally, then it's absorbed by the stomach and then the digestive tract and takes longer to enter the bloodstream. The effects of tincture lasts for 4-8 hours after ingestion. Taken with fat or oils, produces a quicker high.
When taken raw, the cannabinoid acids are preserved. Heat and age have the power to convert these acids into their 'active form'. Taken in the raw form, you ingest more cannabinoids than you do if heated. The raw acids don't engage the receptors in the same way that their heated counterparts do. Juices and smoothies are different ways that cannabis can be consumed raw.
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