A Look at Cannabis

As post prohibition society approaches it is important to understand that not everyone has had experience with this plant and its effects, and those who have had experience may still be holding onto false conceptions.  Let’s take a brief look into what cannabis is and how its consumed.

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One of the joys of a post prohibition society is that we can now begin to properly research and understand recreational and medicinal cannabis.  Every Toronto dispensary goes about labelling their cannabis products according to their particular strain.  Cannabis strains are essentially the genetics of the plant and include indica, sativa, and hybrid variations.  We won’t get into it in too much detail here, we’ll save this rant for another day, but indica and sativa are two different groups of characteristics that have been systematically selected for breeding.  Generally speaking, indica is more sedative and better suited for encouraging rest and reducing pain.  Sativa on the other hand tends to be more a more energizing, uplifting, and cerebral experience.  It has been said my many that sativa strains are more useful at encouraging creativity.  Here’s a quick video from Leafly that focuses on the difference between indica, sativa, and hybrid strains.

Cannabis?
So what exactly is Cannabis?  Cannabis is a plant that has been enjoyed my society for thousands of years.  Recently an archeological discovery in China revealed a 2,500 year old ‘burial shroud’ in which the deceased was buried with bundles of cannabis.  Clearly this plant isn’t going anywhere.  Cannabis has been used medicinally and recreationally for thousands of years, and now, after a hiatus, Canadians will begin welcoming this plant back into society.

Cannabinoids are the chemical compounds that produce sought after effects.  Most commonly known is THC, the cannabinoid primarily responsibly for producing euphoric and psychoactive effects.  More recently extensive research has been carried out on the medicinal benefits of another cannabinoid known as CBD.  CBD holds a great deal of promise! For you science types that’s cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol.

screen-shot-2016-11-07-at-5-49-36-pmVarious cannabinoids
Source: The Weed Blog

How does all of this work?
It’s probably safe to say that the most common method used by people to consume cannabis is to set fire to the plant and inhale the smoke.  That’s far from the only way to consume cannabis.  Combustion, digestion, and vaporization are three ways in which someone can consume cannabis.  Each one of these options is different, let’s explore.

Smoking, vaping, eating, how does this all work?

Let’s begin with vaporization.  We at Conscious Perspective encourage everyone to vaporize rather than combust their cannabis products.  Why?  Well it’s much healthier, in fact, with vaporization you are not inhaling smoke or any of the byproducts of incomplete combustion.  Vaporization entails heating up the plant matter to a point well below combustion, but high enough to activate and release THC and other cannabinoids.  Check out the below infographic from The Weed Blog to see some of the benefits associated with vaporizing cannabis as opposed to setting it on fire!

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“Special brownies” have been a bit of a joke for many decades.  All things considered, digesting cannabis is the healthiest way to consume cannabis, your not putting anything foreign into your lungs, so it’s an easy win.  When your body digests THC it takes a lot longer for the effects to be felt as opposed to when inhaled.  This experience can also last longer and gives what some people call, “a body buzz”.

CAUTION: Don’t over do it!  Don’t feel anything?  Don’t eat another!  Wait!

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Edibles are a healthier way to consume cannabis

With out doubt, cannabis use is linked with smoke.  For many people it is the quickest, easiest, and most convenient way for the to consume cannabis.  A study in the US National Library of Medicine indicates that cannabis smoke is does not on average contain as many carcinogens as tobacco smoke.  That being said, smoke is still smoke.   As with everything it is important to find a balance and respectful moderation, a joint here and there won’t kill you, but be conscious that you are still smoking.  The most common ways to combust cannabis are by rolling it or by using a pipe or water-pipe AKA a bong.  Beyond being not as healthy as vaporizing, with combustion you miss out on a whole spectrum of flavours that can be tasted through vaporization.

Enjoy responsibly.

 

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