There are a variety of different ways to take cannabidiol (CBD). These all depend on what you need and what kind of relief you are seeking. Each of these different methods of administration will work at a slightly different rate. They all have different rates of absorption by your body. So, what is the best way to take CBD in order for maximum absorption? More importantly which method best suits you?
CBD & Bioavailability
There are a number of factors that determine how rapidly the CBD will treat your symptoms and how quickly it breaks down in the system. These include the method of administration and the dosage. Other factors are your particular metabolism and how quickly your body generally breaks substances down.
When you take CBD, you should consider the concept of bioavailability (BA). This is a term they use in pharmacology and nutrition. Bioavailability refers to the rate and degree by which some drug breaks down and absorbs into the body’s circulatory system.
With most applications, the CBD must enter the bloodstream in order to interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Topicals, however, interact with cannabinoid receptors (part of the ECS) located in the skin, rather than through the bloodstream.
As the CBD is transported throughout the circulatory system, it must then enter our central nervous system (CNS) by being allowed to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Once it has crossed this threshold, then the CBD will begin to take effect on our CNS and brain.
The 5 Main Ways To Take CBD
The following are the 5 main ways people administer CBD. We put them in ranking order of what we believe are the best to worst methods. Remember, this is just a general list. Some people may value a different order regarding the effectiveness and convenience of CBD applications.
This is when you take the CBD oil in a dropper and squirt it under your tongue. This product is a tincture, which is one of the fastest methods.
In order to achieve maximum efficiency in using the CBD tincture, drop the desired amount under your tongue and keep it there from 30 to 60 seconds. You have lots of mucous membranes under your tongue, all of which have a permeable layer covering tiny blood vessels. These vessels allow the tincture to quickly absorb into your bloodstream.
Sublingual administration absorbs into your bloodstream very quickly and you can feel the positive effects in under 5 minutes. Effects typically last 4-6 hours from sublingual application.
Many people agree sublingual is the best way to take CBD oil due to its bioavailability, absorption rate, and how long it lasts.
This method of administration means you ingest CBD capsules or edibles so that it can be metabolized by your gastrointestinal system.
Ingesting CBD orally takes longer to feel than other methods, particularly sublingual or vaporizing. In general, you can typically feel the positive effects within an hour after oral ingestion. Similar to the effective length of sublingual application, the effects of ingesting CBD orally usually last 4-6 hours.
Various other factors can affect this rate of absorption, including your weight, metabolism, and the contents in your stomach; any of these can decrease or increase this amount of time.
Vaporizing (Commonly Known as Vaping)
This method gives effects almost instantaneously. Vaping CBD is certainly quicker than sublingual application, but the effects have a shorter lifespan than all the other applications.
You use a device that is referred to as a vape pen that consists of four different parts: the battery, the atomizer (which is a heating component), the chamber to house the oil, and the mouthpiece. The atomizer will vaporize the actual CBD oil, which is usually bought in a cartridge, and you inhale the vapors that come out.
Much like the mucous membranes in under your tongue, there are also permeable membranes in your lungs. These allow the vaporized CBD to become absorbed directly into your bloodstream in 60 seconds or less. Typically you can begin to feel the effects within 30-90 seconds from vaping.
Vaping offers the user almost instant effects but, the effects are brief. Effects of vaping CBD usually last around 2-3 hours. The time of effectiveness is why we rank vaping lower. Another reason for a lower ranking is the waste of CBD when the user exhales vapors from the lungs.
This method is different in that the CBD is directly applied to the affected area and the skin covering it. Products for topical application include lotions, salves, or balms. These topical applications are most effective when treating localized soreness.
When using CBD topicals the rate of bioavailability does not apply because the CBD only reacts with the cannabinoid receptors just below the dermal layer. The CBD never actually reaches the bloodstream by topical application. Having no bioavailability rate limits the uses for this method of CBD application.
It is important to apply the topical CBD liberally to the affected areas. Doing so will produce results within a matter of minutes The effects of a topical CBD usually lasts about 6 hours.
There are CBD suppositories that are also available. People must insert these suppositories rectally. After insertion, the body absorbs the CBD into the bloodstream very rapidly.
Much like sublingually and in the lungs, the anus has various permeable membranes that result in the CBD quickly entering the bloodstream. When taking a CBD suppository it generally kicks in within 10-20 minutes and should typically last around 5 hours.
CBD suppositories have a limit to their use. Simply because most people do not necessarily need to undergo the potential discomfort of this method of administration. Most prefer to seek relief from their condition and/or symptoms using other less invasive applications.
However, there are some people who are left unable to swallow anything due to medical issues such as a stroke or a disease like ALS, MS, or Parkinson’s. For these unfortunate sufferers, CBD suppositories prove as a great method to administer CBD effectively.
CBD rectal suppositories are different than CBD vaginal suppositories, meaning they usually are not interchangeable. Always read and follow the specific directions of each product. It is always best to confer with your physician to determine which form of CBD oil will best suit your particular needs.
What Are the Best CBD Product Options Available?
Sublingual and oral ingestion are the most common methods, meaning that most CBD products available are capsules, tinctures, or edibles.
This is basically just straight CBD oil and it is available in bottles of various sizes (usually 300mg/600mg/1200mg/3000mg). You administer the CBD via a dropper directly into your mouth and under your tongue.
These are also available in bottles of various sizes (300mg/750mg/1500mg/3000mg). You can take these just like any other CBD ingestible, either on an empty or full stomach.
These come in a variety of flavors and various dosage sizes (300mg/750mg/1500mg/3000mg). They are usually find a product, much like capsules, on an empty or full stomach.
All of these are viable, safe, and entirely natural CBD products that can help with your treatment plan.
What Are the Benefits of Taking CBD?
CBD interacts with your endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS, which is found in all mammals, helps to regulate sleep, appetite, mood, anxiety, stress, inflammation, soreness, digestion, and much more. CBD promotes the overall functionality of the ECS and helps it to reach homeostasis, which is a perfect balance of operation.
Conclusion: What is the Best Way to Take CBD and the Best Product Option?
This depends entirely on what your particular needs are. Most research has shown, however, that CBD tinctures, capsules, or edibles are the most viable product options.
CBD is natural, safe, and virtually free of any side effects while still being an effective and efficient therapeutic supplement.
Remember it’s always important that you work with your clinician to establish the right dosage and find a product that bests suits your life and your needs.