CBD Meals: What are they and what’s to know?


Dante Jordan November 22, 2019

(Nastasic / iStock)

Consumers who want to try CBD have a variety of options, including flowers, vapes, oils, and – one of the most popular ways to consume CBD – infused foods. With so many edible CBD products on the market, it may be difficult for new consumers to navigate this world. Leafly has met your edible educational needs.

What are CBD foods?

Edible is – you guessed it – a consumable form of cannabis that does not require combustion (fire) to activate its chemical compounds. Many people prefer edible products because there is no smoke that inhales or penetrates carpets and furniture.

There are two common types of CBD foods: Balanced THC / CBD and CBD Dominant. Balanced foods contain equal (or nearly equal) levels of THC and CBD. In contrast, CBD-dominant foods usually contain little or no measurable THC – it's all about CBD.

Because they contain some THC, consumers should expect balanced foods that provide part of the classic cannabis pot that THC is primarily responsible for. By contrast, CBD-dominant foods should not cause any poisoning.

Why buy CBD food?

The consumption of CBD foods offers many benefits. The most obvious is that they do not bring smoke into your lungs. In addition to the health benefits, CBD foods are also great for those who are looking for a quick, convenient and discreet kind of medication. After all, one of the biggest advantages of CBD foods is that they are often affordable. CBD flowers and oil can be expensive, especially if purchased as a commodity. As a rule, you will receive groceries at a lower price per item.

How are CBD foods made?

CBD foods come from three different types of CBD: full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD and CBD isolate.

CBD full spectrum products are made using the full chemical profile of the cannabis or hemp plant. Be clear: cannabis and hemp products are not the same and do not produce the same experience.

Full spectrum products derived from cannabis use all cannabinoids, terpenes and molecular compounds in the cannabis plant that contain THC – sometimes in very small, almost trace amounts, but sometimes in significant doses. Hemp full spectrum CBD products use the full chemical profile of the hemp plant, which may not be that different from broadband CBD.

Broadband CBD products contain all the cannabinoids of the cannabis or hemp plant from which they originate, but the THC has been removed.

CBD Isolate products consist only of CBD. No other cannabinoids, no terpenes, nothing but pure CBD. These too are often made from industrial hemp instead of real cannabis.

It is important to note that both cannabis and hemp products can be characterized as full spectrum, but they are not equal. Hemp products characterized in this way capture the complete chemical profile of the hemp plant, which by definition contains only traces of THC (less than 0.3%). Although these products technically cover the full spectrum, they may not offer the complete experience that many consumers associate with full-spectrum products from chemically diverse cannabis plants.

Which CBD food should I consume?

CBD foods come in various forms, including gums, candies, chocolates, biscuits, cakes and even capsules. Amongst these many varieties, gums are the most popular option for most US consumers.

When choosing products, the first question that arises is what type of experience you want. If you are looking for a THC-inclusive experience that will boost you but is a bit lighter than what you may experience by consuming a THC-dominant flower, a balanced product may be best for you. Many products have a 1: 1 ratio, for example 10 mg CBD to 10 mg THC, but others also offer a higher ratio of CBD to THC.

If you just want to enjoy the wellness benefits of CBD, then a CBD-dominated edible product of hemp or cannabis, which depends on consumers' preferences, is the best call for you, since it does not bring you up But allowing you to experience the wellness benefits of CBD.

While CBD-pure foods are widely used on the Internet and at retailers such as grocery stores and pharmacies, the consistency and reliability of these products is not always guaranteed.

To learn more about the current state of CBD products on the market, take a look at Leafly's recent efficacy trial of 47 CBD products.

Where should I buy CBD food?

To buy cannabis-derived CBD foods, you must be in a legal condition with access to pharmacies. While not available to all consumers, they are still the best place to purchase full-spectrum products that have been tested for laboratory conditions in accordance with local laws.

CBD foods derived from hemp can be purchased from pharmacies, grocery stores, online retailers, and even directly from manufacturers' websites, as they contain less than 0.3% THC.

With full-spectrum CBD from hemp, broad-spectrum CBD or CBD isolate products, the review process becomes much more difficult due to lack of FDA regulations. For these products, you need to buy clean, trusted, and tested products in a marketplace. For more information on buying hemp CBD, see this manual.

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Dante Jordan is a Content Associate at Leafly, where he specializes in creating topics related to cannabis products, varieties and pharmacies. He also manages the Leafly master database.