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CBD Edibles vs. CBD Oil: What’s the Difference?

Green Shoppers Written by Green Shoppers
Updated on November 14, 2018

You’ve probably heard a lot about CBD lately. The cannabinoid is hitting the UK market and making a huge splash, with many people jumping on the bandwagon. Many people are buying it as a way to promote their health and general wellbeing.

The market for these products is expanding rapidly. You can get them in health food stores, apothecaries, and even online, and a growing number of manufacturers are springing up to cater to an expanding audience.

With all this, you might find yourself spoilt for choice when you look into buying a CBD-infused products. There are oils, vapes, edibles, concentrates, and more. It can be tricky to know where to start. Fortunately, we have put together this handy, all-you-need-to-know guide about CBD oil and CBD edibles, so that you know which is the best choice out of these two common options.

First, though, let’s just clarify what CBD is.

So, What Exactly is CBD?

Cannabidiol, more commonly referred to as CBD, is one of the hundreds of compounds found in the cannabis plant, collectively referred to as cannabinoids. The most famous (or infamous) cannabinoid is probably THC. It is well-known for being a psychoactive substance, meaning that it has intoxicating effects commonly called a ‘high.’

However, CBD does not behave in the same way as THC, and it does not have the same effects on the body. CBD is non-intoxicating, meaning that it is safe to consume without experiencing a high. Furthermore, people are starting to use CBD as a health supplement, as it is thought to help the body maintain homeostasis, thus promoting general wellbeing.

CBD is legal in the UK, which is why so many products are popping up all over the place. Actually, it can be a bit misleading to just state that all CBD oil is legal here, as that is not exactly the case. CBD oil is legal as long as it is sourced from industrial hemp (not marijuana) and it contains less than 0.2% THC. These laws are in place to keep consumers safe, so stick to buying oil from shops or UK-based companies rather than trying to get THC-rich oils shipped in from the US – it will probably be confiscated at the border.

As well as CBD oils, there are also many other products available on the market nowadays. And another popular choice is edibles!

Without further ado, let’s talk about the pros and cons of each.

And Now – CBD Oil: What is it?

As the oldest and most popular form of CBD supplement, oils are essentially extracted CBD suspended in an oil, usually hemp or coconut oil. Often, manufacturers extract a range of cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant (all legal, of course) to suspend in the oil, as this is supposedly more beneficial for your health than CBD alone.

CBD oils come in a range of different strengths, allowing consumers to choose whichever potency they desire. The amount of CBD per bottle will be stated on the label, and this also usually states either how many drops are contained per bottle (allowing you to calculate how many milligrams of CBD are in each drop), or how many milligrams are in each drop. Most bottles also come with a dropper already built in for ease of use.

It is really easy to take CBD oils. All you need to do is place the required number of drops beneath your tongue and hold it there for up to 90 seconds before swallowing. Apparently, CBD is absorbed very quickly when taken sublingually, making this a very effective method. That being said, a lot of consumers are quick to complain about the taste of CBD oil, saying that it has a very earthy, strong flavour.

While CBD oil may be an acquired taste, you don’t necessarily have to take it sublingually. Instead, you can drop it into your morning tea or coffee or stir it into your porridge. Of course, this is straying into ‘edible’ territory, so we will ignore this for now.

CBD Oil Pros:

  • CBD oil is extremely easy to take, meaning it is simple and quick to add it to a daily routine.
  • The CBD is absorbed quickly through this method, and you’re likely to get more of the benefits by absorbing more CBD sublingually.
  • A whole range of different strengths available means that you can find what works for you and what you prefer; there’s a lot of consumer choice!
  • It’s very easy to dose them, since you know exactly how much CBD is contained within each drop.

CBD Oil Cons:

  • It is often said that CBD oil doesn’t taste great, making it a rather unenjoyable thing to add to your lifestyle. That said, the taste washes away easily after a glass of water.
  • If the oil is suspended in coconut oil, it means you will be consuming saturated fats every day – experts are not sure whether the high saturated fat content in coconut oil is actually harmful for our health.

Pros and Cons of CBD Edibles

In the marijuana world, ‘edibles’ refer to any product containing cannabis that you eat. This lingo has crossed over into the CBD field, and basically it encompasses any foods that are infused with CBD.

The thing about edibles is that there is such an enormous variety of them. Online, edible sweets are very popular with the consumer base. You can get your hands on all sorts, including CBD infused marshmallows and CBD chocolate, but by far the most commonly sold edible is gummy bears.

You can make CBD edibles at home, and really you can cook CBD into anything you like. Infusing drinks with CBD oil is easy, and once you know how to make CBD butter, you can bake cakes or even cook with it! Drops of CBD oil can be added to any meal, but there’s a reason that these edible sweets are so popular: They are so easy to dose.

When you buy edibles online, the company usually tells you how much CBD is contained in each individual sweet. For example, you can buy a tub of 50 gummy bears that contain 10mg of CBD per bear, so you know exactly how much CBD you’re getting. Or, in the case of chocolate, they will detail how much CBD is contained in each square.

The problem here is that, even though you know how much CBD is contained in each sweet, it can be hard to stop when they taste so good!

Another drawback is that CBD is not absorbed in the same way when it is digested. This means that, not only will it take longer to enter your bloodstream, but it also might not all be absorbed. In other words, it’s not really as effective as taking a sublingual dose.

It can be quite hard to make a definitive list of pros and cons for edibles, because there are so many out there that they really each deserve their own list of pros and cons! But nonetheless, we will try to summarise it generally.

Pros of CBD Edibles:

  • CBD edibles taste amazing! Since you can make an edible of any kind, you’re sure to enjoy something out there.
  • It is a fun way to get CBD, especially because you can cook them on your own.
  • If you buy your CBD edibles online, it is easy to know how much CBD you’re getting per individual sweet, making the dosage a simple process.

Cons of CBD Edibles:

  • When digested, CBD takes longer to enter the bloodstream, and it might not actually all make it there. In other words, it’s less effective.
  • If you’re known to gorge on a whole packet of Haribo, it’s probably not a good idea to buy a whole tub of CBD gummy bears to eat in one sitting!
  • Making CBD edibles at home can be fun, but the dosage isn’t really accurate and its near impossible to know how much CBD you’re actually getting.
  • Purchasing CBD edibles can sometimes seem outlandishly expensive.

Which CBD Product Should You Be Using?

While both CBD oils and CBD edibles have their own list of pros and cons, we can’t really tell you what you should be using. That’s all a matter of personal preference. This guide is simply here to give you an indication of the differences between the two so you can make an informed decision. Perhaps you’ll decide to give both a go!

That being said, we recommend that beginners start out with CBD oils, as the vast array of strengths available allows newbies to try it out with a low strength and see what they think. If you like having CBD in your routine, then you can progress onto higher potencies and maybe try stronger edibles.

There’s no right or wrong way to take CBD, so just do what feels right for you.