dos and don'ts for cannabis newbies blog

WELLNESS

A Beginner’s Guide to Cannabis Edibles

So, you want to try cannabis? Fantastic decision. But we get it, stepping into the world of weed can be daunting.

Indigo Jones

07.23.21

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There’s still that ridiculous old stigma to overcome, let alone understanding the various cannabinoids, potencies, ratios and what the hell is a terpene?

Fear not, we’ve got you. Kikoko was founded for people just like you. We believe the healthiest and easiest way to try cannabis for the first time is with low-dose edibles. You can trust that our edibles are organic, properly dosed, and they have added wellness ingredients like Vitamins D and B, L-theanine, GABA, turmeric. . . and the list goes on. After all, our whole raison d’être is to make healthier cannabis products and ensure you never board the Crazy Train (i.e. get too high).

So here’s some words of wisdom gathered from years of experience:

DO’s:

Learn the difference between CBD, CBN, THC and THCV

The first thing you need to know is the difference between these main cannabinoids. 

  • THC is the major psychoactive cannabinoid, aka the one that will get you high and the number you need to watch. Legal edibles come in 1-10mg THC. 
  • CBD is non-psychoactive and will not get you high. Like all cannabinoids, this one has incredible medicinal effects and can be taken every day. 
  • CBN is the “drowsy cannabinoid” and is only very mildly psychoactive (i.e. you will not feel high). We use this one for sleep.
  • THCV is a fabulous rare cannabinoid that gives you a very mild high with a boost of energy as a bonus. It is also said to be an appetite suppressant.  

Start low, go slow, with 1-3mg THC

Cannabis is a bit of a Goldilocks situation and takes some experimenting. In the same way alcohol affects us differently, we all have different cannabis tolerances. Most people start to feel the slight effects of THC at around 2.5mg THC. Which is why we suggest starting with 3mg of THC or less. (Looking at you, Focus Mints, Calm Mints, Sympa-Tea, and Focus HoneyShots.) 

Some people (read some budtenders) might scoff at this as a crazy low dose and direct you immediately to something with 5mg of THC. This can be way too high for most canna-newbies and put you off ever trying it again. It’s wise to start low and build incrementally.

Taming the Pain

If you want to kill pain, the reality is you need THC. CBD works wonders for inflammation and cramps, but THC is the one that actually dampens pain. In fact, in many cases it kills pain better than opioids. (We cannot wait for the day that cannabis is prescribed instead of those addictive opioids. Prescription opioids alone killed 14,139 Americans in 2019. Number of cannabis deaths ever: ZERO). 

For pain, higher doses of THC are better. Try starting with a Calm Mint (2.5mg THC and 5mg CBD). If you feel you can handle a higher dose of THC, try our  Buzz Mints (5mg),  Positivi-Tea (10mg), or a Buzz HoneyShot (10mg). Then rest up and take care of yourself. Your mood will improve as a bonus. 

Anxiety

CBD is not only an anti-inflammatory, but it has anti-anxiety properties and can counteract any paranoid or anxious feeling. Our Day Tincture, Sympa-Tea and Calm HoneyShot have the highest doses of CBD at 25mg, 20mg and 10mg, respectively. THC also makes CBD more effective, thanks to the entourage effect, so we add a little of that too. 

Wait at least 90 minutes.

‘I don’t feel anything. Gimme another!’ is the crazy train tale we always hear. Don’t take another. Just wait. Edibles can sometimes take up to two hours to kick in. This is rare, but it’s because they’re digested through your stomach, then liver, then find their way into your bloodstream and finally to your brain. An edible high tends to be a slower onset (20-60 minutes typically) and a longer high (3-5 hours). More bang for your buck, really. If you don’t feel anything after two hours, try taking a few more milligrams. 

Be patient.

It may take a few tries to find your dose. We highly recommend that if you are uncertain, start with our Focus Mints. These only have 1mg THC and 3 of CBD. 1mg will not get you high. These little beauties allow you to find your perfect dose by increasing the amount you take at once. 

Eat something before an edible.

Cannabis hits way harder on an empty stomach. Edibles on an empty stomach means a faster onset and higher high, which can be intimidating for a first-timer. 

Be bold with your budtender!

Budtenders are the sommeliers of the weed world. They know everything (hopefully) that you need to know about each product in a dispensary, but sometimes they can bring their own high-dose bias to the newbie. For these folks, 10mg THC is paltry. For some newbies, 10mg can have the crazy train coming off the rails. If you’re nervous or don’t know where to begin, tell them you’re a newbie and looking for low-dose products with 1-3mg THC and no more. 

For newbies, we suggest trying Sympa-Tea, our Little Helpers Mints, Day Tincture or Calm HoneyShot. Check out our dosage guide for where to start with all our products.

Resist the brainwashing: the stigma around cannabis is rooted in racism.

Cannabis goes by many names: weed, kush, dope, grass, marijuana, etc. We prefer the term ‘cannabis’ as it’s the scientific name for the plant. ‘Marijuana,’ derived from the Mexican term for the plant, is fraught with an ugly history. In the 1930s, the US government stigmatized cannabis by tying the xenophobia of Mexican immigrants at the time to “the devil Marihuana.” They outlawed cannabis a few years later. This isn’t to say that using the term ‘marijuana’ makes you a bad person, but we think it’s important to know about the history of the term. 

DON’Ts:

Don’t worry. You can’t die, but you can get too high. Here’s what to do.

No one has ever died from an overdose of cannabis. Seriously. At the end of the day it’s just a plant. 261 people die from alcohol every day in the US. If you can live through blacking out from booze (and the inevitably embarrassing anecdotes that come with it), you can definitely make it through ‘greening out,’ or getting too high.

If you read the above and heed the advice, you will not get too high. But if you ever do, remember that it will pass. The first thing to do is try to distract yourself. Watch a movie, call a tolerant friend, go on a walk. Take a cold-ish shower — cold showers are actually proven to help the body oxygenate and calm the nervous system. Ingest some CBD if you have any. CBD can tone down the psychoactive effects of THC (our Calm HoneyShot has 10mg CBD and no THC, so good to have on hand). Alternatively, sniff or chew peppercorns (Neil Young swears by it).

Don’t do anything stupid.

Don’t drive a car, free-climb for the first time, or text your ex. You can die from doing these things while high (from embarrassment in the case of ex-texting). 

Don’t drink alcohol

Definitely don’t mix cannabis with alcohol if you’re new to this. Alcohol enhances the effects of cannabis, so it will only make you higher. As the saying (that we just made up) goes:

Weed before wine - you'll be fine.
Wine before weed - Take Heed.

Don’t make your own first-ever edible.

Baking your own edibles is fun but does not ensure reliable dosing. This is a surefire way to get yourself, and others, way too high. If you don’t know how much THC is in that slice of brownie because it hasn’t been tested, you really have no idea what you’re getting into. We’ve done all that for you: everything is precision dosed and quadruple lab tested. Trust us, it ain’t easy, so we don’t suggest you try it at home. 

If you have any more questions, feel free to email us at hello@kikoko.com or check out our FAQs page! We also regularly share cannabis education tidbits on our Instagram too: @kikoko_hq.

About the Author: Indigo Jones

Indigo Jones is a social media maven and conscious content curator at Kikoko. She is also an avid hiker, nature lover and fashionista, and has combined her passions into an unparalleled geekiness for sustainable fashion and clean beauty. Indigo runs a slow fashion Instagram and blog Live Fast Buy Slow, which discusses the environmental impacts of the fashion industry and provides advice on switching to slow fashion. Follow her on insta @livefastbuyslow

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