Cannabis Edibles FAQ

How do edibles work?

Eating THC is very different from smoking it. After ingesting cannabis, the THC must work its way through your digestive system, which can take one to two hours. Effects will vary in intensity based on whether your stomach is full or empty, so make sure to have a nutritious meal before eating edibles. Your liver converts THC into another chemical known as 11-hydroxy-THC, a much stronger substance that explains the intensity and duration of an edibles high.

How much should I eat?

If you’ve never eaten cannabis before but you like to smoke, start with only 10 milligrams of THC. (If you’ve never even smoked pot before, try that first, and then decide if you want to eat 5 milligrams of THC.) The effects of edible cannabis vary widely among individuals depending on weight, metabolism and fitness levels. Some people can tolerate much larger doses than others; so don’t base your dose on what a friend might be able to eat. The average pot consumer usually feels significant effects from ingesting 15 to 25 milligrams of THC.

If you are eating homemade edibles with no known dosage, start with only a tiny piece and wait two hours for effects to manifest. You can always eat more later or the next day.

What Does It Feel Like?

An appropriate cannabis dose will cause silliness, euphoria, pleasant tingling and muscle relaxation beginning one to two hours after ingestion and lasting for 6 to 8 hours. You may feel very cozy and content, or experience a heightened libido and increased sensuality. Eating cannabis induces deep sleep, so be prepared to devote at least 8 to 10 hours to getting the rest you deserve!

What Should I Do?

Anything but drive a car or operate machinery (even a blender!) Seriously, do not drive while high on edibles. Avoid drinking alcohol before or after eating THC, since booze can magnify the effects and make you feel too high.

Usually people who’ve eaten pot food like to chill out and relax. It’s best to experience edible cannabis for the first time at home, in a hotel or at a friend’s house. I wouldn’t recommend eating edibles in a social setting while out in the world, especially for your maiden voyage. When high on pot food, you may not feel like talking, walking or dancing at a concert or party. Instead, plan on watching a movie or listening to music, exchanging massages or enjoying some awesome snacks before drifting off to a pleasant and rejuvenating sleep.

What type of pot food should I eat?

Cannabis can be infused into almost any type of food you can imagine, including sodas, chewing gum, barbeque sauce or good ol’ brownies. Be aware that sublingual products such as tinctures or sprays can take effect faster than traditional edibles, so you’ll feel high within 15 to 20 minutes versus two hours. Sodas and THC-infused drinks can also take effect faster than baked goods or other foods.

Whatever type of product you pick, make sure that the label clearly states the amount of THC in milligrams and offers concise advice on how much to eat. Seek a satisfying portion size for your dosage level, such as a whole cookie or soda containing only 10 milligrams of THC. Most people want to be able to eat the entire item, rather than slicing a chocolate truffle into four or five pieces. Read reviews of the best edibles to find the right product for your needs.

What If I Eat Too Much THC?

If the room starts spinning, or you feel nauseous, dizzy, paranoid or anxious after eating cannabis foods, remember to relax and retreat to a safe place to lay down. Practice deep breathing if you need to calm yourself, and know that everything is going to be OK.  Drink plenty of water and some orange juice, which can help you feel less high by raising your blood sugar. Sometimes taking a cold shower can help, but avoid baths or hot tubs where you could pass out. Distract yourself by watching a funny movie or listening to your favorite music. Most likely you will drift off to sleep and wake up feeling a little groggy.

Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is another medicinal chemical found in the cannabis plant. It is non-psychoactive, and it also confounds the action of THC, meaning that it can act somewhat like an antidote. If you are too high on THC, try a CBD-rich tincture to take the edge off or vaporize some CBD-rich cannabis for faster-acting relief to curb anxiety. CBD capsules can help as well, but remember that it will take another hour before they kick in.

If you feel your heart pounding or if you are having trouble breathing, go to the emergency room. You might feel silly, but it’s better to seek help than risk your health. You’ll possibly be treated with saline injections, activated charcoal or anti-anxiety drugs and will be observed until your high subsides and your heart rate and breathing have returned to normal.