Health Lifestyle  | Science

Is Smokable Flower Right for You?

Smoking the cannabis flower is an ancient custom that dates back thousands of years. The practice hasn’t changed much since the first person thought to pick a cannabis flower off the plant, ignite it and inhale the smoke. For centuries, smoking cannabis has been used for spiritual celebration, deep meditation and its many therapeutic qualities. With smokable flower becoming available in more and more states, we wanted to share some of the basics of the most traditional form of cannabis consumption.

Why smoke flower?

Smokable flower is a great choice for anyone who wants to immediately feel the effects and maintain control of their intensity.

When you inhale cannabis, the onset is almost instant, which makes it easy to gauge how much you need. With some other methods, such as edibles, you have to wait an hour or more to fully experiences the effects. This can make it difficult to figure out the right dose, and can even lead to overconsumption in inexperienced users. Inhalation also avoids the digestive system, which can be helpful to people dealing with nausea or digestion issues.

In addition to making dosing easier, smoking flower allows you to take advantage of all of the cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids found throughout the cannabis plant. This is known as whole plant, or full-spectrum, medicine. Many believe that cannabis therapies that utilize the entire plant can typically be more effective than medicines made from synthetic cannabinoids.

But… smoking?

We get it, the idea of smoking is a huge deterrent for a lot of people. As daunting as inhaling smoke might be, studies show that a joint a day does not increase lung damage or your risk of cancer. Smoke in the lungs is counteracted with cannabis’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Smoking flower, of course, is not entirely harmless. Inhaling smoke can irritate your throat and create excess mucus. It’s not for everyone—people living with chronic respiratory conditions like asthma or looking for relief from serious lung-related health issues such as cancer need to consult a physician before attempting to smoke cannabis flower. However, for those with healthy lung function, smokable flower comes with far fewer risks than you may think.

How do you smoke cannabis flower?

Smoking methods are pretty diverse. They all have their pros and cons, whether it’s ease-of-use or smoke quality. The choice is up to your own personal preference.

  • Hand Pipes

    Cheap and convenient. It’s a one-piece unit, so you don’t have to worry about extra accessories or water. The small size makes it easy for storage and travel.

  • Water Pipes

    These are your bongs and bubblers. Like hand pipes, the styles and design can vary. Unlike hand pipes, the combusted smoke is channeled through water to reduce the temperature and help filter some of the heavier combusted molecules. Filling the pipe with cool water and ice can reduce irritation in the throat and lungs.

  • Vaporizers (Vapes)

    Advances in vaporization technology offer consumers an alternative method of inhalation with fewer health concerns. Vaporizers heat the flower to the point of vaporization using either conductive or convective heating. (Note: This type of vape is different from the vape pens that are used to inhale cannabis oil.) These vapes are typically very easy to use. Simply grind your flower and place it in the loading compartment. The flower is then vaporized with a push of a button. Many vapes offer the option to select a level of intensity.

  • Joints

    Joints consist of ground cannabis flower wrapped in thin, cellulose paper. A paper or carbon filter is often placed at one end to keep the cannabis in place as the smoke is drawn. Many cannabis companies sell pre-made joints known as “pre-rolls.” Joints are a familiar inhalation method for many people because they offer convenience and ease-of-use.

Just like with any other cannabis product, you should choose the smokable flower method that helps you feel your best.

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