Cannabis has long been considered a drug for the fringe. However, its use has multiplied exponentially in recent years. This popularization of hemp was done gradually. On the one hand with the legalization of therapeutic cannabis in some countries (Netherlands, Canada, Israel, …). On the other hand with the appearance of CBD (cannabidiol) products on the international market. On this point, France is not to be outdone! Indeed, since 2017, stores dedicated to the
sale of CBD
are multiplying on the territory in all legality. They make the happiness of the consumers of cannabis. The number of CBD products (roasted seeds, liquids, resins, herb, oil, …) is such that all users find their account. They can thus choose their preferred method of absorption (inhalation, ingestion, cutaneous application) according to the expected effects, tastes and habits of each person.
As soon as it arrived in the stores, CBD was preferentially bought to be smoked like the
and this, in spite of the counter indications of this use. But, for some time now, CBD vaping has become a very popular method of inhalation as it allows you to optimize the benefits of the product without having the disadvantages of smoking (combustion). If vaporizers have existed for a decade as an interesting substitute for cigarettes, according to the opinion of smokers, they have remained discreet compared to the famous electronic cigarette. However, the appearance of legal herbs on the French market revalorizes this method of absorption which is currently becoming more and more democratic.
While the workings of other CBD absorption methods are obvious, how does one vaporize CBD?
CBD: its origin, its effects, its toxicity and the legislation that surrounds it
In hemp plants, there are a good number of compounds more or less active and in varying concentrations. Among these substances, 3 main groups stand out:
- Cannabinoids such as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD (cannabidiol) and CBN (cannabinol) are the best known and most concentrated of the hundred or so listed.
- Terpenes which are essentially responsible for the organoleptic properties of plants (taste and smell) such as myrcene and pinene.
- Flavonoids which are compounds with a great interest in the reproduction thanks to the colors that they give to the flowers which attract the pollinators.
Unlike THC, CBD has no affinity for the CB1 and CB2 receptors of our endocannabinoid system (ECS) and therefore does not cause psychotropic effects. To date, in France, the legislative situation of CBD is in a legal limbo. If its cannabic origin questions, it does not appear on the exhaustive list of the narcotic substances of the decree of February 22, 1990 (1). The CBD molecule as such is therefore legal !!!!
The toxicity of CBD as a pure compound is not described by the WHO (World Health Organization) as toxic. Following scientific studies and numerous testimonies from users, some side effects (drowsiness, numbness, nausea, …) are however revealed during overdose and / or misuse (together with a medical treatment, increased sensitivity, allergy, …). Despite these rare occasional risks, a real danger comes to mar the consumption of CBD: combustion! Indeed, if the CBD is found today in different forms (CBD oil capsules, light hemp resin, cannabis oil, dried flowers, seeds, balms, liquids for electronic cigarettes, …), when it arrived on the market, many of its users tended to smoke it in the form of joints. However, as with tobacco, the combustion of a CBD product generates toxic compounds harmful to health.
The vaporizer or the safe absorption of CBD
In France, anti-smoking campaigns accompanied by slogans such as “smoking kills” have made their way. They have allowed many smokers to turn to alternatives much less harmful to their health other than the patch or nicotine gum:
- vape with the electronic cigarette and an adapted e-liquid
- spraying with a spray bottle and a vegetable material
The electronic cigarette has allowed a drastic decrease in smokers. As soon as it appeared on the market, the flavors of the liquids have however put off many. The latter then returned to their first love. Indeed, switching from a cigarette or a weed joint to a pineapple, violet or cannabis flavored liquid does not necessarily please everyone. This is where vaping has become popular with tobacco, illegal cannabis and CBD smokers.
Vaporization : material and method
According to the fundamental principles of physics, vaporization is defined as the change from a liquid or solid state to a gas or vapor. This definition fits perfectly with the use of a vaporizer. Indeed, its function is to extract the compounds of a plant material by heating them and thus allowing their inhalation. This is called phyto-inhalation.
Vaporization has two particularities of its own:
- the extraction of the active compounds is done without combustion. The chemical bonds of the plant material remain welded. As a result, free radicals do not combine to form compounds that are harmful to health (carbon monoxide, tar, etc.). Vaporization is therefore not a deleterious method of absorption if the inhaled plant is not itself toxic.
- Thebioavailability of compounds inhaled with a spray is much greater than with ingestion, dermal application and combustion. For this reason, less plant material is needed to achieve the same effect with a vaporizer than with an herbal tea. To consume CBD, this feature is particularly interesting given the price of cannabis.
How the different CBD vaporizers work
There are 2 types of vaporizers:
- lounge or fixed vaporizers: like the
. They require an electrical connection and are rather bulky and expensive. However, they are very efficient to extract all the substances of a plant such as hemp in an optimal way thanks to their precision of heating intensity (the most important parameter of a vaporizer).
- Pocket or mobile vaporizers are battery operated. Some of them can be connected to a smartphone in order to adjust the various parameters of use (voltage, current, temperature). Their size and price will be respectively proportional to their battery life and their quality. But, they will still be less important than for a living room vaporizer.
To be transformed into steam, a substance must reach its boiling point. For this, there are 2 distinct heating systems:
- Heating by conduction: the material is in direct contact with the heating grid. With this type of heating, the temperature rises very quickly and the risk of combustion increases.
- Convection heating: here the material to be vaporized is passed through heated air upstream of the grid. However, there is no direct contact as with conduction. The extraction of the active compounds is then done gently in order to preserve their active principles and their aromas. The choice of a convection heater is then strongly to be preferred to vaporize CBD herb.
As we have just seen, all the arguments are in favor of vaporization, rather than another type of absorption. The power of extraction of the active compounds, the respect of the organoleptic properties of the product and the non-toxicity of this use, are directly dependent on the heating temperature. Indeed, a temperature too low and far from the boiling point of the compound would not allow to extract it correctly. But, too high a temperature could cause combustion.
The optimal temperature for a CBD vaporizer
Each compound in a plant material has its own boiling point. Therefore, a precise heating temperature of the vaporizer is necessary to extract the substrate correctly, without burning. Before spraying a product, appreciate the different boiling points of the compounds in order to extract them in the best way.
The optimal extraction temperatures for the main cannabis compounds sought for their effects are :
- Cannabinoids: variable from 160°C to 220°C and in particular, THC (157°C), CBN (185°C) and CBD (180°C)
- Terpenes: variable from 150 to 198°C and in particular, myrcene (168°C) and pinene (155°C)
- Flavonoids: variable from 130°C to 150°C
The temperature setting of a vaporizer is therefore a crucial parameter. Indeed, it allows to appreciate all the benefits of a CBD product (cannabis flowers or oil). It must be adapted to the variety of hemp to be sprayed, its moisture content and the effects expected by the user. In the case of CBD, a high vaporization temperature (220°C) will result in an enhanced “high” (stimulating) effect. A low temperature (160°C) will offer a relaxing vaporization.
It is best to always test the lowest temperature and then gradually increase it until you find the right one. In any case, in order not to burn the plant material, the combustion point of cellulose (the main component of the plant cell wall) should never be exceeded, which is 231°C.
CBD products to vaporize
Vaporizing CBD can be found in different forms:
- dried flowers with active compounds (such as cannabidiol and terpenes) specific to the hemp variety. They are commonly called: weed, weed, heads, marijuana or ganja
- the light cannabis resin which is a concentrate of active principles and commonly called: shit, chichon or hashish
- CBD crystals or isolates that are pure CBD
from the seeds and stalk of the hemp plant
The benefits of vaping as a method of CBD absorption
Consuming CBD using a vaporizer, rather than other methods of absorption, has many advantages:
- no combustion and therefore no poisonous compounds
- rapid bioavailability (less than 30 minutes) of the compounds and in particular of CBD from 50 to 60% (for approximately 31% by combustion, 20% by inhalation and less than 10% by ingestion and cutaneous way)
CBD Flower Vaporizer
To best vaporize a CBD product like weed, a few tips may be important:
- In order to get the best possible penetration of heat through the material to be vaporized, crumble your marijuana as evenly as possible. Be careful not to make powder. It could then pass through the vaporizer grill and damage the equipment. The use of a “grinder” is therefore strongly recommended.
- Do not pack the grass too tightly into the firebox so that you do not have to force the draft.
- It is best to inhale the steam gently and over a short period of time. A deep and long draw will alter the quality of the vaporization.
- Nowadays most vaporizers have an automatic preheating system. For older models, this is not always the case. Remember to preheat your equipment before spraying any substance.
- Do not hesitate to modulate the temperature according to the product (variety, humidity level) and the expected effects (physical and/or gustatory).
- The maintenance of the equipment is essential. Remember to use the accessories that came with your vaporizer when you purchased it. They allow its cleaning and thus its use in the short and long term.
- Vaporizing CBD does not cause cognitive or psychomotor impairment (2). If no important side effects are felt with a reasonable consumption, the inhalation of the hot and dry vapor can however present an inconvenience by drying the mouth. Remember to drink!
To conclude on vaporization…
For all the CBD consumers who did not know yet the virtues of vaporization coupled with those of cannabis, it is done! Admit that it looks tempting a powerful, fast, effective and safe CBD bioavailability! While for some the use of a vaporizer may seem misleading, don’t stop there. Leave all these settings to the experts. As with the arrival of the electronic cigarette on the French market, specialized shops offer kits for beginners at the right price / quality ratio. Then, you just have to go to our online store, the Bistrot CBD, and find different varieties of legal herbs (THC < 0.2%), rich in cannabidiol and terpenes and let you be bewitched by their vapors!
FAQ: Vaporizing CBD
Pour vaporiser de l'herbe CBD, quelques conseils ont leur importance :
- Effriter les fleurs de façon la plus homogène possible sans pour autant en faire de la poudre.
- Ne pas trop tasser l'herbe dans la chambre de chauffe afin de ne pas devoir forcer sur le tirage.
- Inhaler la vapeur en douceur et sur une période courte.
- Si le vaporisateur est dépourvu d'un système de préchauffage automatique, il est nécessaire de préchauffer manuellement le matériel avant de vaporiser de l'herbe.
- Moduler la température en fonction du produit (variété, taux d'humidité) et des effets escomptés (physiques et/ou gustatifs).
- L'entretien du matériel est primordial.
- Penser à boire pour limiter l'assèchement buccal !
Consommer du CBD en utilisant un vaporisateur plutôt que d'autres méthodes d'absorption, présente de nombreux avantages :
- pas de combustion et donc de composés vénéneux
- biodisponibilité rapide des composés et notamment du CBD
Le CBD est une molécule légale en France en tant que telle. Il est donc tout à fait légal de vaporiser du CBD si le produit consommé est lui même autorisé en France.
La chambre de chauffe d'un vaporisateur n'est pas adaptée pour recevoir de l'huile de CBD pure. Pour vaporiser de l'huile CBD, disposez quelques gouttes sur une substance adéquate à la chambre de chauffe de votre vaporisateur (fleur de chanvre, tabac, ..).
Les températures optimales d'extraction des principaux composés du cannabis recherchés pour leurs effets sont :
- Les cannabinoïdes : variables de 160°C à 220°C et notamment, le THC (157°C), le CBN (185°C) et le CBD (180°C)
- Les terpènes : variables de 150 à 198°C et notamment, le myrcène (168°C) et le pinène (155°C)
- Les flavonoïdes : variables de 130°C à 150°C
Le réglage de la température d'un vaporisateur est donc un paramètre crucial. Dans le cas du CBD, une température élevée de vaporisation (220°C) entraînera un effet « high » (stimulant) renforcé. Une température faible (160°C) offrira plutôt une vaporisation relaxante.
Attention, au delà de 230°C, la matière végétale brule!
Il est préférable de toujours tester la température la plus basse puis, de l'augmenter graduellement jusqu'à trouver la bonne.
Il existe 2 types de produits au CBD qui peuvent se vaporiser (3 en comptant l'huile mais plus rare) :
- les fleurs de chanvre CBD (dont les Rocks)
- la résine de cannabis CBD
Il n'existe pas une forme plus forte qu'une autre. Pour obtenir le plus d'effets en vaporisant du CBD, il convient de choisir un produit hautement concentré et de régler au mieux la température de chauffe.
Malgré son origine cannabique, le CBD est une molécule complétement légale en France en tant que telle. De ce fait, les dépistages tels que les tests salivaires ne sont pas destinés à déceler cette molécule.
Consommer du CBD ne vous mettra pas dans l'illégalité et ne vous rendra pas positif si le produit au CBD consommé ne contient pas de THC. Afin de ne prendre aucun risque quant à la présence de THC il est alors nécessaire d'acheter un produit au CBD dans une boutique française sérieuse respectant la législation en vigueur.
- Order of February 22, 1990 establishing the list of substances classified as narcotics: https://www.legifrance.gouv.fr/loda/id/JORFTEXT000000533085/2020-10-09/
- Pharmacodynamic effects of vaporized and oral cannabidiol (CBD) and vaporized CBD-dominant cannabis in infrequent cannabis users, Tory R.Spindle, Edward J.Cone, EliaGoffi, Elise M.Weerts, John M.Mitchell, Ruth E.Winecker, George E.Bigelow, Ronald R.Flegelc, RyanVandrey, published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence, Volume 211, June 1, 2020 : https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0376871620301022