5 Ways to Take CBD

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5 Ways to Take CBD

Each month, studies show new evidence of the health benefits of Cannabidiol, or CBD.  Both domestic and international universities, companies, and hospitals are focusing more resources in conducting these studies to learn more about how CBD interacts with the human body.  The United States has lagged other countries in CBD research because of limitations created by the Controlled Substances Act.  However, with the passing of the U.S. Farm Bill, and the consequential legalization of hemp, expect a renaissance of CBD research and knowledge.

The consensus is that CBD is both healthy and safe for the human body.  What we don’t know, is what is the appropriate dose for different people to take.  A recent study suggests that CBD has a biphasic effect on the immune system.  This means CBD stimulates the immune system at lower doses, while is suppresses it in higher doses.  Researchers have published papers that studied different doses on CBD on different conditions and there is still no conclusive report of how much to take.  What this means, like most other vitamins, the dosage requirement will be unique to each individual.  Rather than explaining how much CBD to take, this article will focus on the different ways that it can be administered.

Some background info on CBD.

CBD, like other cannabinoids, is a hydrophobic and lipophilic molecule.  This means that it hates water and loves fat.  This doesn’t mean that you can’t mix CBD with water, it just means that it won’t readily mix into an aqueous solution.  It’s like the old cliché oil and water don’t mix.  Keep this fact in mind as we start getting into the best ways to take CBD.  As we discuss the different ways to consume CBD, it’s important to note that there isn’t ‘the best’ way.  Each method has pros and cons that may lend it better to different needs and situations.

The 5 Best Ways to Take CBD.


Consuming CBD orally is probably the easiest and most common way.  Common oral forms of CBD are capsules, infused food edibles, and tinctures.  Taking CBD orally is one of the most efficient ways to get the most out of the CBD.  When the CBD is digested through the liver, the molecule is modified.  This modification allows the CBD to bind with more receptors in the body and ‘do more stuff.’  A drawback of eating CBD is that it takes between 30 minutes and 1.5 hours before your body starts using it.  If you’re in a hurry, you may want to find a faster way to absorb the CBD.

Sublingual and Buccal

Sublingual and Buccal means under your tongue or in your cheek, respectively.  Delivering a drug into the bloodstream via the mouth is very fast.  Lozenges, hard candies, and tinctures utilize this form of CBD delivery. Because of CBD’s hydrophobic nature, there isn’t the best transfer through the mouth skin.  However, since most of the CBD will be swallowing with saliva, it will be digested through the gut and act as an edible.  This is one reason why man people enjoy lozenges and sublingual tinctures.  They get 2 different delivery methods in one product.

Inhalation – Vape

Inhalation via vaping is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways to take CBD.  It’s fun, fast, and cool.  Taking CBD by inhaling it gets it into your system within minutes.  It gets into your bloodstream by binding with red bloods cells in your lungs.  Vaping CBD is a great option because it gets the CBD into you fast and efficiently.  The drawback it that it also gets out of you fast.  Many people opt to use a vape, in conjunction with an edible product.  This way, you can get CBD in your system immediately with the vape while you wait on the edible to digest.

Transdermal Delivery

Transdermal means delivering a compound through the skin.  When applied correctly, transdermal delivery is both fast and targeted.  For instance, applying a transdermal topical for aches and pains directly onto a sore knee will get the drug where it needs to go more quickly and also saturate that area more.

The problem with many CBD topicals is that they ignore the fact that CBD is a hydrophobic molecule and we are mostly made of water.  When CBD topical balm have bases made from coconut oil, MCT, beeswax, vegetable glycerin, etc., this doesn’t deliver the CBD into the body.  It sits on top of the skin, locked up in the oil base.  These products may be effective for surface conditions like rashes, they are a waste of CBD and money for ‘under the skin’ problems like arthritis and muscle aches and pains.

For efficient transdermal delivery of CBD, it’s imperative to put the CBD into something that can penetrate the skin.  We use a liposomal base that is designed for compounding pharmacies to make transdermal drugs.  Liposomes are like little balls or rings that have both hydrophilic and hydrophobic layers.  The way this works with CBD is the CBD attaches to the hydrophobic layer.  Then when the liposome is applied to the skin, the hydrophilic layer takes with whole liposome into the skin, including the CBD molecule that was stuck inside it.

Transdermal delivery is fast and effective when used in the right situations.


CBD can also be administered as a rectal or vaginal suppository.   CBD is absorbed quickly and thoroughly when administered this way.  Due to logistics and societal standards, delivering CBD via suppository is usually reserved for special circumstances.  For instance, people suffering from pancreatitis or other conditions that prevent them from digesting oils, may be good candidates for suppositories.  Also, I’ve seen companies out west that produce vaginal suppositories to combat menstrual cramps.


As mentioned above, there is no ‘best’ way to consume CBD.  It really comes down to personal preference and what you’re trying to achieve.  We recommend that it’s best to try using CBD in different ways to find out what works best for you!


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