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Since 2015, Herbal Dispatch has been leading the charge for craft cannabis in Canada. Our mission is simple: to provide our members with access to the best quality, small-batch cannabis in Canada.

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The Sweet Side of Cannabis:

A Guide to Edibles in Canada

Brownies, gummies, chocolates, oh my! With the legalization of cannabis in Canada, a whole new world of edibles has opened up for consumers. These tasty treats not only offer a discreet and convenient way to consume cannabis, but the benefits they provide go beyond just getting high.

Although dried flower, pre-rolls and vapes may be the more popular options, edibles have their own unique advantages that are worth exploring. Some may argue that edibles are the future of cannabis consumption and with good reason. From potential medical benefits to being a safer alternative to smoking, here's why you should consider adding edibles to your cannabis repertoire.

 

Legalizing edibles: The Canadian experience

Before we dive into the benefits of edibles, let's take a quick look at how they came to be legalized in Canada. When recreational cannabis was legalized in 2018, edibles were not included in the initial legislation. It wasn't until October 17, 2019, that Health Canada approved the sale of edibles, extracts and topicals.

But with this approval came strict regulations to ensure the safety and quality of edible products. These regulations include a maximum limit of 10 mg of THC per package, child-resistant packaging, and proper labelling with health warnings and ingredient lists.

Many consumers, disappointed with the low THC limit, have turned to the black market for higher-potency edibles. And until the THC limit for edibles is increased, this underbelly of the industry will continue to thrive. However, for those who prioritize safety and quality, purchasing legal edibles is the way to go.

Keep in mind that minor cannabinoids, such as CBD and CBN, are not subject to the 10 mg limit and can be found in higher concentrations in edibles. This is a major advantage for those seeking a therapeutic and non-intoxicating experience.

As the legal market continues to grow and develop, it's expected that more diverse options for edibles will become available, making it more appealing for consumers to purchase from legal sources.

 

Why edibles? A look at their health benefits

While smoking cannabis has its own set of benefits, such as quick onset of effects, edibles offer unique advantages for cannabis users. Here are some of the benefits of incorporating edibles into your cannabis routine:

Longer-lasting effects: When ingested, the body processes THC differently than when inhaled. This results in a slower onset, but also longer-lasting effects that can provide extended relief for chronic conditions.

Discreet consumption: Not everyone feels comfortable smoking or vaping cannabis in public. Edibles offer a discreet alternative that allows patients to medicate without drawing attention to themselves.

Easy to dose: With carefully measured doses, edibles make it easier for patients to control their intake and find the dosage that works best for them.

No respiratory damage: Unlike smoking, consuming edibles does not expose the lungs to harmful smoke and potential damage. If respiratory health is a concern, edibles can be a safer option for consuming cannabis.

Variety of options: Edibles come in a wide variety of forms, from traditional baked goods and gummies to more gourmet options like chocolates and beverages. This allows patients to find an option that suits their preferences and dietary restrictions.

Potential for targeted effects: With different types of cannabinoids and terpenes being used in edibles, the potential for targeted effects is greater. For example, a patient seeking pain relief may opt for an edible high in CBD, while another looking to relax may choose one with a higher THC content. Think CBD-infused edibles for pain relief or THC-dominant options for nausea and appetite stimulation.

 

Cannabis edibles for every palate

You'll find no shortage of creative and delicious cannabis-infused edibles on the market. Here are some of the most popular forms that patients can choose from:

Candies: From classic gummies to hard candies, these sweet treats are a popular option for discreet consumption.

Chocolates: For those with a sweet tooth, chocolate bars, truffles, and other chocolate-based edibles are a tasty choice.

Cookies: Traditional baked goods like cookies and brownies are a staple in the world of cannabis edibles and for good reason - they're easy to dose and taste great!

Beverages: Enjoy your morning cup of joe with a kick of cannabis or try out other infused beverages like iced tea, hot chocolate and elixirs.

Culinary oils: Foodies will like this option! Infuse your favourite dishes with cannabis using oils specially designed for cooking.

Expect to see more innovative and delicious forms of cannabis edibles hit the market as the industry matures. Poutine sauce, anyone?

 

Tips for accurate dosing

Due to their slow onset time and longer-lasting effects, edibles can make it easier for patients to accurately dose their cannabis intake. However, it's important to start with a low dose and wait at least an hour before consuming more. This is especially crucial for novice users, as the effects of edibles can be stronger and last longer than when smoked or vaped.

The effects of edibles last much longer than smoking or vaping, often up to 12 hours, with some residual effects lasting up to 24 hours. If you accidentally consume too much, the best course of action is to stay calm and wait for the effects to subside. Drinking water, eating a snack, or taking CBD can also help alleviate some of the symptoms.

Consuming too much can lead to adverse effects such as nausea, vomiting, paranoia, anxiety, and even cannabis-induced psychosis. Children and older adults are particularly at risk. Children can accidentally ingest edibles that look like regular candy, and older adults may experience increased cognitive impairment and risk of falls so it's important to keep edibles safely stored and labeled.

Combining edibles with alcohol can increase the intoxicating effects and the risk of over-intoxication. It's best to avoid mixing the two and consume edibles in a safe and controlled environment.

 

Parting thoughts: Edibles and you

The world of edibles is constantly evolving and expanding, with new flavours, forms, and products being introduced all the time. These tasty treats not only offer a discrete and convenient way to consume cannabis but also provide longer-lasting therapeutic effects. Just remember to start low, go slow, and always consume responsibly. Have a safe and enjoyable edible experience!

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