Edibles are considered to be the most problematic way to administer cannabis, especially for inexperienced users. The problem is the delayed onset of effects; most people don’t feel anything until an hour or more after they eat an edible. Because of this delay, it’s difficult for people to monitor and adjust their dose.
Aside from the dosing problem, the benefits of eating cannabis are huge. When you eat cannabis, your liver converts most of the THC to hydroxy-THC. Hydroxy-THC is 3 to 7 times stronger than THC. This gives you more “bang for your buck.” Hydroxy-THC also lasts longer, staying in your system for 6 to 8 hours. This is pretty impressive compared to the 2 to 3 hour duration of effects that you get from smoking or vaporizing your cannabis. When you eat cannabis, you also avoid the negative effects of smoking, including carcinogens, smoke, odor, cough, congestion, sinusitis, carbon monoxide, and butane inhalation.
Another method of taking cannabis is by absorbing it through the tissue in your mouth. This is called intraoral administration, and includes both sublingual (under the tongue) and buccal (in the cheek) absorption. Intraoral cannabis is absorbed quickly because of the high number of blood and lymphatic vessels in the mouth. Onset can be as fast as 30 seconds. That makes it easy to adjust your dose.
Lollipops, lozenges, gum, and chewy candy give you the benefits of both oral and intraoral administration methods. Because these types of edibles stay in the mouth for a long time, much of the medicine is absorbed through the sublingual and buccal membranes. This means that you get both the immediate effects of intraoral absorption, and the long-lasting duration that comes with edibles.
For intraoral methods to work properly, you need to keep these points in mind:
- Suck on the candy rather than chewing and swallowing it. The candy must stay in your mouth for at least three minutes before swallowing.
- Don’t smoke or vaporize anything for one hour before you eat the candy.
- Avoid drinking for one hour after you eat the candy.
- Do not smoke, drink, or eat while you’re eating the candy.
It’s easy to make cannabis lollipops from ingredients that you can find in the grocery store, online, and at a dispensary. Here’s what you’ll need:
- A bag of hard candy (your choice of brand and flavor)
- Lollipop sticks
- Silicone lollipop molds
(I use these molds. They are all the same size and are pretty easy to use.)
- A 0.5 gm syringe of CO2 concentrate (your choice)
Before you start making the lollipops, you need to figure out how many servings you can make with the concentrate you’re using. You can figure this out using simple math.
If the concentrate is 60% THC, this means there are 300 mg of THC in 0.5 gm of concentrate (1000 mg/gm * 60% * 0.5 gm). If you want each lollipop to have 10 mg, you can make 30 lollipops from 0.5 grams of 60% concentrate (300 mg total divided by 10 mg per lollipop).
Now that you have your dose figured out, it’s time to make your lollipops:
- Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.
- Place your lollipop mold on a cookie sheet.
- Put one or two candies into each cavity of your lollipop mold. Use enough so that the mold will be filled but not overflowing when the candy melts.
- When the oven is preheated, put in the cookie sheet with filled molds and bake for 10 or 15 minutes. Remove the molds from the oven when the candy is melted.
- Working quickly, squeeze a tiny bit of the concentrate into each cavity. Syringes often come with lines on them that you can use to help you to divide the concentrate into equal portions.
- Stir the concentrate into each lollipop with a toothpick.
- Immediately add the lollipop stick, turning it once to coat.
- Let the lollipops sit at room temperature for around 15 minutes until they harden.
- Wrap the lollipops tightly in air- and moisture-proof packaging (such as cellophane), and store in a cool dry place.
Organic lecithin has been shown to increase the bioavailability of cannabis edibles. For a stronger effect, you can add a drop of lecithin with the concentrate during Step 5.
Now you have a recipe that will give you the benefits of both edible and intraoral administration, at a fraction of what it would cost to buy them in a dispensary.
Happy Candy Making!!!