Eating vs Smoking Cannabis: How Each Affects You

You may have heard discussions in cannabis dispensaries in Las Vegas describing how edible cannabis products versus smoked cannabis are like night and day. The truth is that these variances are much more than hearsay. They stem from the drastically different way that smoked cannabis delivers psychoactive compounds compared to ingested ones.

So, make sure that you are getting the dosage type and medicinal effects you need to relieve your symptoms by learning more about the different science and experience between the two products.

Why Smoking Cannabis and Eating Cannabis Are Different

When smoking cannabis — either by fully combusting flowers, vaporizing products or using concentrates — psychoactive compounds like THC and CBD are absorbed directly into the blood through the lungs. THC is delivered more or less in pure form throughout the bloodstream, allowing our brains to rapidly feel the effects of the drug.

This process means that smoked cannabis is absorbed quickly, creates a sharp “peak” of effects and then begins to dissipate within 30 minutes to an hour.

By contrast, ingested cannabis products must first break down the compounds within your liver. Unlike your lungs, your liver transforms the ingested product into a compound known as 11-hydroxy-THC. This form of THC is a more active metabolite than the free THC compounds absorbed by the lungs during smoking, which means that it is more effective at crossing the blood-brain barrier.

That major difference in chemistry accounts for the dramatically enhanced effects of ingested cannabis. Your brain becomes much more “immersed” in the drugs, creating deeper body sensations, more-heightened senses and even visuals akin to hallucinogens like LSD.

These medicinal effects can all be experienced after smoking cannabis, but when going through the edible route, they come on stronger, last longer and have a much more deliberate “amp up” period before culminating in a more intense peak.

The Issue of Dosage with Edibles

Because ingested cannabis must first be digested before getting processed in the liver, the delay between consumption and effects are much longer. They also accelerate slower but to a more intense degree, meaning that you will feel the effects more but only after they are given the time to take hold. Additionally, effects take longer to dissipate, sometimes creating an overwhelming sensation of nausea, paranoia or discomfort for those who were not cautious with their dose.

The solution to this issue is to go slow and experiment with edibles. You can find the right dosage for you by eating a small amount and waiting at least 30 minutes for the effects to begin. Note that the full effects may take an hour to set in. Once they do onset within a satisfactory dose, you can enjoy a full-body experience without any of the overwhelming negative effects.

This type of managed edible cannabis experience is perfect for those with chronic pain, anxiety, insomnia or other similar issues. Such patients can even take small bites throughout the day, delivering moderate amounts of the drug that don’t impede mental or physical functioning.

On the other hand, smoked cannabis can deliver a more energetic high, thanks to the fact that more compounds are delivered to the blood at once. Therefore, both smoked and ingested cannabis are viable options to treat your medical conditions.

Discovering Your Ideal Cannabis Experience with Cannabis Dispensaries in Las Vegas

Cannabis dispensaries in Las Vegas like Euphoria Wellness can answer all your questions regarding the differences between smoked and eaten cannabis, including which one may meet your needs best. Chances are that both can benefit unique situations, so call us for free Las Vegas cannabis delivery or come into our dispensary for an expert consultation on which products could be right for you.