Cannabis and the many products derived from it have increased in popularity dramatically over the past few years. This is largely thanks to the laws that have traditionally restricted its use being relaxed in many states across the country. CBD, in particular, has found its market, and people from all walks of life are discovering this useful compound. It is estimated to now be a multi-billion dollar industry.
But with this vast new user-base comes many questions from those new to CBD. Questions such as how best to utilize CBD. A big question that many new consumers have is whether they should or should not eat when taking CBD - and if so, what the best foods to have with it are? This may seem like an unimportant question. However, eating the right food can make a big difference in how efficiently the body makes use of the CBD that is taken. We’ll look a bit deeper into this, as well as explore why eating is important when ingesting CBD.
What Is CBD?
Before we look at these questions, however, we must understand exactly what CBD is. This is because its chemical structure and how that relates to and interacts with the human body is a vital link to what food is best to eat when taking CBD, as well as what food is not good to eat.
Cannabidiol - known by its shorter name of CBD - is a compound found naturally within the cannabis sativa plant. It has found popularity in the health and wellness industry in recent years. This is in a big part down to how versatile CBD can be. CBD can be infused into oils, other food supplements such as butter, used in gummy candies, vaped, and many additional kinds of products.
How CBD Works
The human body already produces its own cannabinoids, which are very similar in their chemical structure to CBD. These human cannabinoids are processed in the endocannabinoid system - or ECS for short. Every human body has an ECS and it is closely tied with the nervous system.
These cannabinoids, produced by our bodies, help to regulate all kinds of processes within the human body. From telling the brain to produce more endorphins, to helping maintain your body’s homeostasis (the balance of your body’s systems). Thanks to how similar CBD is to our own cannabinoids, CBD can easily make use of the ECS, traveling to all different areas within the body.
Eating And CBD
While there is ongoing research into how different people interact with CBD, there do seem to be some definite factors that determine how much an individual feels the effects.
These can be as varied as how much a person takes, their metabolism and general health, and potentially even your genetic makeup. One big factor behind how strongly CBD is felt is what foods are eaten alongside CBD.
As research progresses, the results increasingly show that particular kinds of foods are better than others for encouraging the absorption of CBD into the body. Some foods make that process more efficient, while others slow things down. These varying rates of absorption of CBD into the body are known as its bioavailability. In short, how much of the CBD ends up in your system.
So what are the foods that can help and hinder your CBD experience?
What You Should Eat
The best advice is to eat just before taking your CBD. CBD is oil soluble, and cannot be processed by the human body without being in some kind of oily carrier medium. The foods you should be eating to make the most of CBD and aid in its absorption into the body tend to be ones that contain medium and long-chain fatty acids. These really help boost the bioavailability of the CBD, as they encourage a much more efficient transference of CBD into the body’s systems. So, which foods should you look for in order to maximize your CBD’s bioavailability?
In short, look for foods with a high-fat content. This includes food containing things like:
For example, eating a breakfast burrito just before taking your regular dose of CBD is a great way of preparing your system for maximum CBD absorption. Different kinds of oils are great to include in meals that you plan on eating just before taking CBD. Some of the best ones include:
- Olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Sesame oil
Oils are best for helping encourage CBD absorption, and any high-fat food will help in this regard also. Fat and oils from these kinds of foods also have other health benefits, and often contain the healthy kind of fat that every human body requires.
What You Should Not Eat
As CBD is a very safe compound, there are no foods that react in a negative way when eaten alongside CBD. However, keep in mind this fact that everyone taking CBD should remember if they want to maximize their CBD intake. Never take CBD when you have an empty stomach.
CBD oil is best absorbed into the body when the stomach is already digesting food. This lessens the time that the CBD is sitting in your digestive system. This is good because CBD can quickly become nullified by the acids and chemicals inside your digestive tract. This significantly reduces the bioavailability of the CBD.
If you don’t have time to eat, but still want to take some CBD, there is still a good alternative. Many CBD products come in an oil carrier medium. This oil helps your body absorb the CBD, especially when taken sublingually (below the tongue). This is a good method of avoiding losing that bioavailability on an empty stomach.
Conclusion - Oil and Food Are Your Friends
So, as we’ve discussed, what you eat can make a big difference when it comes to aiding your body in the processing of CBD. Foods that are high in medium and long-chain fatty acids such as avocado, eggs, fish, and meat are the best for helping promote high-efficiency CBD processing. Including different kinds of oils in your cooking is also a great way of doing this. Why not try coconut oil, sesame oil, or just standard olive oil?
Remember - it’s always better to eat something before taking CBD, rather than nothing at all! Taking CBD on an empty stomach significantly reduces the bioavailability of your CBD, and wastes a good deal of the CBD you ingest. Taking CBD in an oil carrier medium can be a good middle ground, however. So, why not try that breakfast burrito before your CBD? See if you notice the difference in how much you feel the effects.