Did you know that when you ingest orally, the amount of CBD that will reach your bloodstream is only around 15 percent? But when you are vaping or smoking CBD nearly 50 to 60 percent of the compound will enter your blood circulation. When vaporized, CBD enters your lungs and circulates directly thru your entire bloodstream. When ingested orally, CBD must pass through the gut and liver. Liver enzymes break down the concentration of bioactive compounds during an occurrence called the “first-pass effect”.
When smoked or vaporized, CBD bypasses the first-pass effect, delivering the desired result much faster and more efficiently. Cannabidiol (CBD) is effective no matter which type of carrier liquid one uses. Each type of carrier liquid, however, has its own profile.
The most common carrier liquids for CBD products are MCT oils, vegetable glycerine, and propylene glycol. Each of these liquids can impact your CBD experience, because they have different effects on the body. Alongside the quality of the CBD itself, the vape liquid matters when it comes to health, safety, and enjoyment. No matter which liquid you choose, consider the risks, benefits, and alternative options. Also Read on to learn more about the most common vape liquids. Here is how to choose the highest quality CBD products for vaping.
The MCT in MCT oil stands for medium chain triglycerides. MCTs are partially man-made fats, such as coconut oil or palm kernel oil. Even milk from mammals contains MCTs! For vaping, these are all food grade oils. They have no flavor. Because of this, they are a favorite for many CBD users! It is perhaps important to note that cannabinoids are fat soluble. They are stored in fat, and break down in fat.
If you consume cannabinoids like CBD with fat, they may become more bioavailable. This increases the effect of the CBD in your body. You get more effect, but with the same amount of product as you’d need otherwise. Saturated fats appear to be an important part of cannabinoid absorption. A high saturated fat content helps cannabinoids bind with the oil and enter the body. Consider coconut oil, for example. With its many MCTs, it has a high saturated fat level. It can help the body process CBD. The liver will metabolize any MCT oil, which generally increases bioavailability.
MCT oils often have benefits in their own right. Taking coconut oil as an example again, users benefit from the antioxidant properties that come with vitamin E. They may find that the antimicrobial aspects of coconut oil are helpful. Where there are MCTs, therefore, there are oftenbodily benefits!
Polyethylene Glycol and Propylene Glycol
Propylene glycol and polyethylene glycol are likely the most controversial CBD carrier liquids.
Polyethlyene glycol (PEG 400) is seldom used as a carrier liquid these days. It is chemically similar to propylene glycol. The FDA has approved propylene glycol oil as a food additive. While it is safe for ingestion, the FDA did not approve it for heating and inhalation. It’s flavorless and used in many vape oils, but some users have experienced negative effects using this ingredient.
As a expectant, propylene glycol can absorb moisture and leave users with a dried out mouth or throat. An allergic reaction to propylene glycol is also possible. Allergic users could experience persistent muscle pain, a sore throat, a rash, night sweats, or diarrhea.
Vegetable glycerin typically comes from plant oils, such as soy, coconut oil, and palm oil. It is odorless and has a very minimal sweet taste.
It is thicker than other carrier liquid options, which can cause issues with vaping. For this reason, some users find that it wears out the vaporizer faster than other liquids. The thicker liquid may lead to a faster build-up of residue in your vaporizer. It can take longer to heat. And it may require a higher temperature, to vape effectively. It is also a humectant, and can introduce the same drying issue as propylene glycol.
Vegetable glycerine is a popular choice for CBD consumers who have experienced an allergic reaction to propylene glycol. Some CBD consumers prefer a mix of propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine.
This allows them to get the best of both liquids. A mixed liquid balances flavor, vapor density, and ease of use.
Studying The Carrier Liquids for Safety
On heating, propylene glycol and polyethylene glycol can produce carbonyls. These, including acetaldehyde, formaldehyde, and acrolein, may be toxic to the user. In a 2017 study by the Medical Marijuana Research Institute, researchers heated and tested these carrier liquids, along with MCTs and vegetable glycerine, for carbonyls. The study found propylene glycol produced high levels of acetaldehyde and formaldehyde when researchers heated them, compared to MCT and vegetable glycerin. Acrolein production was similar for all substances.
The study also found that MCTs produced a small amount of acetaldehyde; about 33 times less than polyethylene glycol. “Because PG (propylene glycol) and PEG 400 (polyethylene glycol) are often mixed with cannabis oil, individuals who vaporize cannabis oil products may risk exposure to harmful formaldehyde levels. Although more research is needed, consumers and policy makers should consider these potential health effects before use and when drafting cannabis-related legislation.”
Choosing the Right Carrier
For many consumers of CBD, health is vital. People focus on CBD over other cannabinoids. This is because of its potential for healing and wellness. Be it for pain relief, anxiety management, better sleep, or another issue, research suggests that CBD may help.
A carrier liquid that hurts your body may defeat the purpose of your CBD use. An allergic reaction, or long-term health concerns, are serious matters. While choosing a CBD product is a personal choice, it is worth exploring the options. If you prefer a product with a carrier like propylene glycol, remember that the heat level matters.
In the earlier study, scientists heated carriers to a higher degree than most vape pens offer. It is possible that lower temperatures can help reduce potential side effects. The subject is of great interest in the industry.
Odds are good that we’ll be seeing more research. As marijuana is legalized or approved for medical use in more places, there will be more opportunities for studies. Until then, choosing the right carrier comes down to what works for your body, your budget, and your needs.
You can always try different CBD products until you find the right fit. Choosing the right CBD product has a lot to do with quality. Whether you prefer propylene glycol, vegetable glycerine, a mix, or MCTs, you need a superior product.
How can you find the best CBD product?
The source of the CBD is important. Cultivated Hemp should be high quality. It should be free from the use of or exposure to any chemicals or pollutants. The extraction method of CBD matters, too. Some companies use toxic solvents to extract CBD. Others use pharmacy grade ethanol, or supercritical CO2 extraction, which are preferable to solvents like butane or propane. Check out the creation of your CBD oil product before you buy it. Looking at third party lab test results for a CBD product can be an excellent way to ensure that the product is all it says it will be. Find this information on the package, on a company website, or through talking to a representative. You should be able to access it easily and be happy with the results.
Quality CBD is as important as the quality of the carrier liquid. When you find quality CBD oil, and the best carrier for your needs, you have a product that is more likely to help your body as needed.
Disclaimer: The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requires this disclaimer. We collected this information from various sources for the convenience of our customers. The statements made regarding these products were not evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products is not confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information presented here is not meant as a substitute for information from health care practitioners. It is also not meant as an alternative to information from health care practitioners. Before using any product, you should consult your doctor and ask about the risk of interactions or complications.