If you keep up with hemp and cannabis trends, you may have seen a new type of product rise to prominence recently: CBD buds. Also known as CBD flower and CBD nugs, these buds have the same appearance and aroma as regular weed, but they won’t get you ‘high’, no matter how you use them!
That’s because unlike typical cannabis, CBD buds have hardly any psychoactive delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), but lots of non-intoxicating and non-psychotropic cannabidiol (CBD). It’s a complete role reversal to classic strains, and a product of very clever cultivation techniques.
You may be wondering, “Just what’s the point of a cannabis strain that doesn’t get you high?” Fair question. And perhaps you’re asking whether CBD buds are even legal? Don’t worry – we’ve got the answers! Here’s all you need to know about CBD flower.
Are CBD buds legal?
Let’s start with legality. CBD buds are completely legal, although there are a couple of caveats. CBD flower is not classified as marijuana, but as hemp. This means CBD buds have much more in common with CBD oils and edibles than any of the weed you’ll find at your dispensary.
Hemp-based products are only legal if the total THC concentration is less than 0.3%. There wasn’t a medical reason for setting such a precise THC limit – lawmakers just wanted to prevent hemp products from being used recreationally.
Ultimately, hemp is cannabis, so will invariably have a very low level of THC. But with less than 0.3% THC, and CBD levels often exceeding 15%, this makes for CBD to THC ratios greater than 50:1. You could smoke a whole plant and still not get stoned!
Reputable brands selling CBD flower will prove just what percentages of CBD and THC are in their products through independent, third-party lab testing. This is a necessary step, as hemp products are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Lab testing ensures companies are being truthful about what’s in their products, and confirms that products don’t contain heavy metals, toxins or other harmful ingredients.
What’s the point of non-psychoactive flower?
Not everyone wants to get “high” from taking cannabis. In fact, even the psychoactive properties of medicinal strains are often considered a side effect. THC causes short-term mental and physical impairment, and can have lasting negative health effects, particularly with regular use.
Many people don’t want their medicine to affect their ability to function. Psychoactive cannabis can make it difficult to concentrate, may trigger anxiety and paranoia, or in the case of indica strains, physical sedation or “couchlock”.
Research shows that CBD has wide-ranging therapeutic potential, and offers many of the benefits that cannabis does, and even some unique ones! For example, CBD is an anti-inflammatory, and can help to improve appetite and reduce nausea symptoms and vomiting. In addition, CBD has shown promise as an anxiety remedy, an antipsychotic and pain-killer.
How can I use CBD flower?
As with marijuana, most people consume CBD buds my smoking them – perhaps in a joint, bong or pipe. Inhalation is the fastest acting method of delivery, and smoking flower ensures CBD is swiftly transported around the body in the bloodstream. Smoking CBD flower does pose considerable health risks, although it’s worth noting that unlike tobacco, CBD-rich hemp is non-addictive.
Those who want rapid effects with fewer downsides may choose to vape CBD flower, in a dry herb vaporizer. In this case, the buds are heated but not burned, which greatly reduces the carcinogenic risks. Vaping is not without negative health consequences, but studies from Public Health England show that vaping is 95% safer than smoking.
CBD flower can also be turned into extracts, and used as a base for homemade edibles, tincture oils and creams. Albeit time-consuming, this is a great way of incorporating hemp and CBD with other plant extracts. Maybe you want to make a cream to relieve your arthritis – combining CBD with turmeric will produce more potent anti-inflammatory benefits than if using either separately.
The versatility of CBD buds is perhaps their most underrated quality. With just one CBD product and a little bit of knowhow, it’s possible to enjoy all the main intake methods – inhalation, sublingual absorption, oral consumption and topical application. No other CBD product offers so many options.
Moreover, CBD buds are full-spectrum in the purest sense. As well as the hefty CBD content, flower delivers the benefits of secondary cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids. If you’re looking for ultimate CBD relief and don’t mind the smell, flower is the best way forward!