CBD hemp flower can be a great and effective alternative to just smoking weed. Learn about smokable hemp and more in this guide.
Scientifically reviewed by: Dr. Vance Green, PharmD.
Updated on February 24, 2022
We take you through the benefits, options, and important criteria you should consider this question; Can you smoke hemp?
In recent years, CBD has become an international sensation. Consumers use it to treat chronic pain, anxiousness and mental worry and apprehension, and insomnia. In addition, some people enjoy it recreationally for its relaxing and calming effects.
If you’re new to the world of hemp and CBD, you may be wondering whether you can smoke hemp. The answer is yes.
CBD-rich hemp flower is an effective alternative to smoking THC-rich cannabis. It allows you to enjoy the multitude of benefits of cannabis without the intoxicating effects of THC.
In this guide, we’ll go over the science of smoking CBD hemp and the most popular consumption methods. In the end, you’ll be able to determine if smoking hemp is suitable for you.
Can you smoke hemp?
If you’re new to the world of hemp and CBD, you may be wondering whether you smoke hemp. The answer is yes, you can smoke hemp.
Can you smoke CBD buds?
CBD buds are the flowers from cannabis / hemp that contain high amounts of the cannabinoid CBD. It’s not uncommon for consumers to get a little confused between terminology. CBD Buds, CBD Flower, CBD Hemp are the same things.
Smoking CBD Hemp vs. Smoking THC
CBD and THC actually have a lot in common. They are the two most abundant cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. Their atomical structure is also incredibly similar. The main differences are relating to legal definitions around cannabinoid contents set out in the 2018 Farm Bill. Cannabis plants that contain <0.3% THC are defined as hemp. Cannabis plants containing >0.3% THC are legally defined as Marijuana.
Because of these similarities, they have similar effects on the body. But the primary difference between the two is that THC is intoxicating while CBD is not.
Companies often tout CBD as a nonpsychoactive alternative to THC. But that’s not precisely accurate.
The calm feeling that users report after taking CBD is actually a psychoactive effect. Any substance that directly affects brain function is considered psychoactive.
Even though consuming CBD often has a calming effect, it won’t get you high. That is because it doesn’t impair brain function the same way that THC does. That is why it’s more helpful to think of CBD as a nonintoxicating alternative to THC.
You can drive and operate machinery after consuming CBD with no worries. By contrast, you should absolutely not do those things after consuming THC, as it can be intoxicating even in small doses.
How Does CBD Work?
CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system or ECS. The ECS is a cell-signaling system in your body. It helps regulate various body functions and processes like sleep, appetite, memory, mood, fertility, and reproduction.
Interestingly, your body naturally produces endocannabinoids even if you don’t consume any cannabis products. These endogenous cannabinoids keep your body running smoothly.
These endogenous cannabinoids are anandamide (arachidonoyl ethanolamide) and 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG).
There are two kinds of endocannabinoid receptors throughout your body. CB1 receptors are found primarily in the central nervous system. CB2 receptors are located in the peripheral nervous system and immune cells.
THC binds with CB1 receptors to produce what we know as the classic weed high. CBD, on the other hand, has the opposite interaction with CB1 receptors.
Experts believe that CBD prevents endocannabinoids from breaking down quickly. That allows these endocannabinoids to have more of an effect on your body.
When THC and CBD get consumed together, your body breaks down the THC slower. This minimizes unwanted side effects of THC over-consumption, such as a rapid heartbeat and anxiousness. In addition, consuming both cannabinoids at once increases their enjoyable and therapeutic properties.
In addition to endocannabinoids and cannabinoids found in cannabis, other plants also contain cannabinoids like compounds.
Why People Are Smoking CBD Hemp Flower?
Your consumption method plays a crucial role in how long it takes to feel the effects of CBD. Inhalation is the most effective delivery method for CBD.
- When smoking CBD hemp buds, cannabinoids transition quickly from your lungs to your bloodstream. From there, they are circulated throughout the body, where they can bind to your CB1 receptors.
- Smoking is the fastest method of CBD delivery. Consumers will feel effects within minutes of inhalation. Edibles, on the other hand, take between one and two hours to exhibit the effects.
- CBD is also more potent when inhaled. Around 50% of the CBD that you inhale makes it into your bloodstream. By contrast, only 5-20% of the CBD that you eat is absorbed into the bloodstream.
- Smokable hemp flower contains not only CBD but secondary minor cannabinoids and terpenes. Terpenes are aromatic compounds that give different strains their unique flavor profiles. Smoking hemp is a great way to enjoy these flavors and aromas without getting couch-locked for the entire day.
The secondary cannabinoids found in hemp plants contribute to the overall effectiveness of the product. This is known as the entourage effect.
In short, the entourage effect is the theory that all of the chemicals that are naturally present in cannabis plants work together when consumed. As a result, they produce a more potent and synergistic effect on the body than CBD isolate.
These additional compounds interact with your endocannabinoid system in different ways. Research isn’t entirely clear on exactly how these compounds impact your body. But consumers report feeling more potent when consuming full-spectrum CBD with all of its natural terpenes and cannabinoids.
Can you smoke the whole hemp plant?
Not all parts of the cannabis/hemp plant can be smoked, you should avoid smoking the stems, hemp seeds, roots and the large fan leaves around the hemp flower.
Stems, stalks and roots do contain some therapeutic compounds, the roots in fact, contain some very unique compounds that studies show have some amazing therapeutic medicinal potential. However, they would be extracted via other methods and not at all useful via smoking.
Seeds also contain some healthy fats and micronutrients, again, not useful from smoking.
If your hemp flower contains seeds, we would advise you remove them before smoking. They will induce headaches and leave a nasty taste in your mouth.
Smoking Hemp CBD for Pain
Although smoking hemp derivatives is a great way to enjoy its benefits, it may not be suitable for all ailments.
Many people use CBD to potentially treat pain, muscle aches, joint aches, or discomfort. If you use it to help with one of these localized symptoms, topical creams might be a better option. They deliver the cannabinoids to the specific localized area with absorption through the skin.
If you plan to try hemp derived products to help with chronic pain, experiment with what consumption method works best for you. Try creams and smokable hemp separately. Determine which one works better to relieve your symptoms and use that method going forward.
Absorption into your blood stream is almost instant and results in improved bioavailability. Studies show inhalation results in absorption rates of up to 51% direct to your blood stream.
How to Smoke CBD Hemp Flower
There are many different ways to enjoy smoking CBD hemp flowers. One of the most popular is via joints.
Joints are made by rolling ground-up flowers inside a thin rolling paper. They typically have a filter or crutch at the end. This is a small piece of thicker paper or cardboard that adds stability to the joint and allows you to smoke it all the way down without burning your fingers.
People who use CBD to treat anxiousness and worry find the action of preparing and rolling a joint to be just as therapeutic as the actual smoking of it. If you want to try smoking hemp flowers via joints, make sure you buy joint papers that include crutches or filters.
How to Roll A Hemp Joint
To roll a joint, start by grinding up your CBD hemp flower in a grinder. This gives it the light, fluffy texture of a smokable flower. You can also pick it apart by hand, but the process is messy and sticky.
Once you have your hemp in its ground-up state, the next step is to make the crutch. First, make a few accordion folds at on end of the thick paper or cardboard. Then roll the material around the folds to your desired thickness.
Put the crutch onto one end of your rolling paper and pinch the other end. Then, fill the paper with your finely-ground hemp flower.
Once you’ve loaded the joint, pinch the long ends of the paper between your fingertips. Then, roll it back and forth to pack the hemp down into a cone shape.
Next, carefully tuck the side of the paper without glue into the roll. Then, starting on the crutch side, roll the joint up to the glue line. Use a little bit of moisture to stick the paper down to itself.
Work your way down the seam and carefully seal the joint closed. Then, use the open end of the joint to pack the hemp flower down flat. You can use any tool small enough to fit through the opening.
Once you pack the flower, close the open end with a firm twist. Don’t worry if you don’t get it exactly right the first time; joint-rolling takes practice to perfect.
How to roll a joint video.
How to Smoke A Hemp Joint
To smoke the joint, carefully light the non-crutch end with a lighter. Rotate the flame around the entire circumference to ensure that all sides are burning evenly.
Do not inhale until you have a nice, even burn at the other end. This is referred to as a cherry.
Once your cherry is burning, inhale slowly and think about pulling the smoke down into your belly. Make sure you have water on hand in case you start to cough.
Other Ways to Smoke Hemp
Although they are the most popular, joints are not the only way to smoke CBD hemp flower. Bongs or water pipes are good options, especially if you want to conserve your flower.
Although they are constructed in many different ways, all bongs are designed to do the same thing. They cool and filter the smoke that comes from the burning hemp.
Bongs feature a central chamber that holds water and a mouthpiece that extends from one end. At the other end, they have a bowl to hold dried, ground-up flowers.
To use a bong:
- Put your mouth to the mouthpiece and gently inhale.
- Simultaneously, light the hemp in the bowl.
- Pull the smoke into the bong until the device is full.
Once the bong fills with smoke, remove the CBD hemp flower bowl and quickly inhale the smoke. This delivers a fast, potent hit that exhibits effects almost immediately.
Dry pipes are another good way to smoke hemp. They come in a wide variety of shapes and colors, so you can choose one that matches your personality in style. Hits from dry pipes tend to be harsher than hits from bongs, so make sure to take it slow and have water on hand in case of coughing.
Can You Smoke Hemp Legally?
Federal law makes it legal to grow, cultivate, and consume hemp in the United States. Unfortunately, not every state is on the same page when it comes to recreational CBD consumption. Some states like Texas and North Carolina are actively trying to ban smoking hemp.
Even though smoking hemp is federally legal, you can still end up in a legal mess if a cop catches you smoking it in public. It’s hard to tell the difference between THC and CBD flowers without a comprehensive lab test. The smell alone gives them probable cause to investigate.
Cops are also known and documented to target and harass people over cannabis consumption. In addition, they may use smell or appearance to enact violence against marginalized groups, even if smoking hemp is entirely legal in the area.
That’s why it’s so important to be smart about your CBD consumption. If you live in a state with strict cannabis laws, make sure you only smoke hemp flowers at your home or on private property. If you want to be extra cautious, consider vaping your CBD hemp instead. This helps you avoid the pungent cannabis aroma altogether.
There are plenty of CBD vapes and oils that contain natural terpenes and cannabinoids as well. This allows you to obtain the full benefits of smoking CBD hemp without potentially putting yourself in danger.
Overall be smart, use your best judgment, and don’t smoke CBD hemp in public unless it is legal to consume THC recreationally in your state.
What can CBD Potentially Treat?
Scientists are still debating the specifics of exactly how CBD works. Research suggests that its interaction with the endocannabinoid system helps with pain, nausea, and anxiousness.
The most well-researched medical use of CBD is in treating childhood epilepsy syndromes. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome typically don’t respond to anti-seizure medications. Currently only one product is authorized in the U.S for the sale and marketing to treat these conditions. Epidiolex from GW Pharma.
In many studies, CBD reduced the number of seizures patients experienced. In some cases, it was able to stop them altogether. The FDA recently approved the first cannabis-derived medicine to treat these conditions.
Many people use CBD to treat social worry and insomnia and some studies back this up. (source) Although we don’t advertise this as fact, we are reporting on initial studies and anecdotal reports from users around the world. Studies suggest that CBD helps with both falling asleep and staying asleep.
It may also have potential to help treat different types of chronic pain. An animal study in the European Journal of Pain showed that topical CBD helped lower symptom’s and pain due to joint swelling and discomfort.
Another animal study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits symptoms and neuropathic pain. These are the two most difficult types of pain and discomfort. That’s not to say it’s effective or viable to use. There simply isn’t enough evidence or data on effective doses available to the public.
Because this research is still in the early stages and has mostly been conducted via animal trials, significantly more human studies are needed to determine the medical benefits of CBD definitively. Don’t trust any vendors that tout it as a cure-all for different conditions. It isn’t.
Consumers report that CBD products have helped them with pain relief, stress relief, and insomnia. But everyone’s body interacts with CBD differently. It may help you address these issues, or it may not.
The only way to know for sure is to try high-quality hemp products designed specifically to target one of those three ailments. If it works for you, wonderful! If it doesn’t, other well-researched medical solutions can provide relief.
Enjoying Smokable Hemp Flower
Now you know the answer to the age-old, can you smoke hemp question. Smoking CBD hemp is a fast, effective method of delivering CBD to your entire body. You get to enjoy its relaxing, calming effects without the intoxication brought on by THC.
If you’re looking to buy CBD hemp flowers from a brand that you can trust, shop our full line of CBD hemp flowers today. We also have tons of educational resources on our website to make smart, informed decisions about your CBD consumption.
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