Updated: Oct 20, 2020
Now, you all know I love to eat… but edibles are a terrible way to try cannabis for the first time.
My preferred way to consume is smoking joints, but I don’t mind an edible here or there. I’m also conscious of the fact that everyone is different and has their preferred way of consuming… so there’s no judgement coming from me. But I think as an advocate, it’s important to educate people that are new to the plant and community.
If you’ve never tried cannabis, you need to know edibles are very potent and most times the effects are stronger and last way longer than vaping or smoking a joint or bowl. Effects of a joint can last 3-4 hours, while the effects of edibles can last 8-16 hours… sometimes longer.
Now I know what you're thinking, “Mike isn’t that the point?!?! Don’t we want to get as high as possible for as long as possible?!?!” The answer is yes and no.
Yes you want a quality buzz, but if its your first time it can be a very intense experience. If you like feeling great, if you don’t, good luck… you’re gonna have a long night.
Even the experience of the “high” is different when eating edibles than smoking. When you smoke weed and inhale/exhale the smoke, that's as “high” as you will be from that one hit. You feel the effects immediately and the “high” doesn’t gradually increase over time.
Experiencing the Opposite
Its the opposite with edibles. The high gradually increases over hours, which again could create a bad experience to a first timer. It also takes time for your body to process the edible and for you to feel the effects of the THC/CBD. And because everyone's metabolism is different there’s no way of knowing how long it takes before the effects will be felt or how strong the effects will be.
Because it takes time for the effects to kick in, it’s very easy for people (even those very experienced with cannabis, including myself) to eat too much and overdose on edibles. Now it won’t harm you, but it could lead to a very unpleasant experience.
A recent Colorado study showed that even though edible sales made up less than 1% of cannabis sales statewide, 11% percent of cannabis related ER visits were triggered by edibles.
Again, this is not a post to demonize edibles. I think they’re a great way for those with respiratory issues to experience the plant. And they’re great to have while traveling long distances where smoking/vaping isn’t possible.
So here are a couple of suggestions I have for those curious about cannabis:
1) People who want to try weed, would be better off smoking or vaping it to begin… periodt!
2) If you do decide to try an edible, start slow...very very slow. Eat a small piece and wait 2-3 hours before eating more.
3) If eating an edible for the first time, make sure its on a full stomach and you haven’t been drinking. It’s not the greatest idea to mix alcohol and edibles.
Knowing Your Limits
Other than that, its all about knowing your body and finding out what works for you. With cannabis becoming more mainstream, I think it's just as important to learn and respect the plant as it is for us to enjoy.
What has been your experience with edibles? Let me know what you think in the comments.