On the eve of legalization of recreational cannabis in Canada, The Wellness Duo answers questions about potential health impacts of different methods of personal cannabis consumption for entertainment purposes.
Q: What’s the best way to consume cannabis recreationally that will have the minimum impact on my health?
Wellness Duo: Many people choose to bypass smoking cannabis by a joint, pipe, or bong because it can be harsh on the lungs. Vaporizing is the new smoking for cannabis. Vaporizing involves heating your cannabis via a device that contains a heating coil to a level (usually over 200 degrees) that will not burn the flower, but rather vaporize the cannabinoids and terpene that are contained within the cannabis flower.
People are also using cannabis oils and tinctures to dose cannabis sublingually (under the tongue) or to ingest orally by consuming these oils and tinctures directly or infusing foods with these products to make edibles.
Q: If I just want to use cannabis as a wellness aid and not get high (I’ve heard this is possible), what are my best options?
Wellness Duo: Many people are turning to cannabidiol (CBD) for its health properties and ability to bring the body to a state of homeostasis and balance. CBD works with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is a regulator of health and all the body’s systems. The body already contains and produces cannabinoids, called endocannabinoids; the cannabis plant also contains cannabinoids in the form of phytocannabinoids.
Adding cannabinoids like CBD provides the body with more of what it already produces in order to bring overall balance, health and well-being. CBD can be consumed through smoking, vaping, oils, tinctures, edibles, and just about every method of consumption that you can use for cannabis. You can find CBD only products through the ACMPR program, and after October 17, through the public and private stores operating under The Cannabis Act.
Cannabis topicals are also a great way to use cannabis without getting the psychoactive or “high” effects. Earth Kisses Sky makes 2 cannabis topicals; one for pain and inflammation, and another for skin, healing and beauty. We recommend trying different topicals so that you can find the best one that is for you. If you’re using a cannabis topical with THC, you may feel a bit “tingly” in the area you applied it, but you certainly won’t feel any mental effects of a cannabis topical.
Q: Are there any health risks with consuming cannabis?
It’s important for everyone to know that it’s literally impossible to die from a cannabis overdose. The only way you could die from cannabis is if you sat and smoked eight hundred joints consecutively and the fatality would be from carbon monoxide poisoning and not the cannabis itself. That being said, there is always too much of a good thing and often with cannabis, “less is more”.
The most effective way to use cannabis is to know your product, understand your strain and terpene profile, use a specific dosage that works for you, and be prepared for the psychoactive effects according to the potency of your cannabis.
The long-term effects of cannabis use on the lungs is still under-research, and it hasn’t yet been proven to be a carcinogen (cancer causing); in fact, the scientific community is encouraged by cannabis’ cancer-fighting properties over concerns about its potential dangers for cancer.
If you are concerned about smoking cannabis and the potential damage it could have on your lungs, explore different methods of consumption like vaping, edibles, topicals, and pay attention to the legal market as it develops to provide more innovative products and methods to consume that promote health and well-being.
The team at Earth Kisses Sky combines holistic medicine, nutrition, and medicinal cannabis to provide relief from pain, and help regulate the body through its endocannabinoid systems. Through their work, they contribute to the health and well-being of the whole person through their integrated clinical practice that includes acupuncture, massage, holistic nutrition, holistic medicine. Their array of infused medical cannabis products is designed to reduce pain and inflammation and promote healing. Earth Kisses Sky offers medical cannabis salve for Pain & Inflammation and Healing & Beauty.