There are many ways to deliver plant derived cannabinoids into the body:
– Tinctures and oils administered under the tongue (sublingual)
– Smoke/vape (through the lungs)
– Topical (through the skin)
– Edibles or capsules (reaches the blood stream via the stomach, small intestine and liver)
Under the tongue, through the lungs and skin all bypass the liver and enter the blood directly. This is important to consider because:
– Any toxins present in the preparation being consumed will not be filtered out before they enter the blood (this is why Circle Labs goes to great lengths to test for and preserve purity in our ingredients!)
– When cannabinoids make their first pass through the liver, a large portion of what is consumed will be rendered inactive before entering the blood.
– When consuming edibles or capsules, more milligrams of CBD are necessary to achieve the same results.
– When we ingest plant-based cannabinoids, the blood levels of our own internal cannabinoids are increased.
– Cannabinoids have used the lipid (fat) transport system to travel around the body for at least 10,000 years
– Cannabinoids have to pass through a lipid layer on their way into the cell nucleus where they activate the endo-cannabinoid system
We used to think that plant-based cannabinoids prevented our body from deactivating our internal cannabinoids.
What contemporary research shows
Now we are seeing that plant-based cannabinoids prevent internal cannabinoids from getting transported to the liver (where they are deactivated).
Why this matters
As more novel cannabinoid products become available, we are seeing a lot of companies making products that claim “increased bioavailability” due to a technology that makes them water soluble.
It is true, blood is water-based so water solubility may increase some aspect of transportability (although we have not been able to find any research that proves this), but as above, the lipid transport system is how the body has set itself up to move cannabinoids (and many other compounds) around. If in fact the way that plant cannabinoids increase the activity of internal cannabinoids is based around this fatty acid transport system, having a water soluble cannabinoid will change the equation in ways that are very hard to predict and could cause more harm than good.
Hemp Flower Infused Olive Oil
There are detailed accounts of cannabis infused oils dating back to the late 18th century and evidence that it was happening much earlier than that. We believe that ancient technologies used in plant medicine are often much more advanced than contemporary chemical manipulation. We look to our ancestors for insight into how they used cannabis and then we spend countless hours reviewing scientific journals and research papers to verify and inform our processing approach.