edibles

Takoma Wellness Center | Edible Dosing Guide

Cannabis edibles are one of the most popular—not to mention one of the most delicious!—ways to reap the benefits of cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. But even for seasoned patients calculating an edible dose can be challenging, leading many to have a less-than-optimal first-time edible experience.

As D.C.’s #1 family-run medical marijuana dispensary, we’d like to help you avoid a potentially unpleasant experience. In today’s post, we’ll discuss THC dosing in edibles, the best way to take edibles, and other topics relating to edible dose questions. Ready? Let’s dive in!

ediblesWhat Are Edibles, and What Do I Need to Know?

Edibles are nothing more than familiar foods or beverages—chocolates, cookies, or iced tea, to name a few—infused with cannabinoids (the “active ingredients”) from the marijuana plant. While they’re an easy and intuitive way to access those beneficial compounds, they work slightly differently than they do in smoked or vaped cannabis.

When you consume an edible, the cannabinoids are processed through the liver and stomach as opposed to the lungs. While the bioavailability—or amount of cannabinoids actually accessed by your body—decreases, the apparent dosage increases. In simple terms, this means that the THC dosage in edibles feels stronger than it does for an equivalent amount of smoked or vaped cannabis.

What’s more, the experience typically comes on much slower than smoked cannabis (approximately 30 - 90 minutes versus to one to five minutes when inhaling) and it lasts much longer (approximately two to six hours as opposed to one to two hours).

ediblesIs There a Recommended THC Dosing?

Of course, there’s no FDA-recommended THC dosage guide. But while everyone reacts slightly differently to THC, it’s possible to formulate a few basic guidelines and principles for determining an edible dose:

THC Dosage: 1 – 2.5 mg

Typical Effects: Mild relief of symptoms including pain, stress, and anxiety; heightened focus and creativity. Great for first-time consumers, or more experienced consumers interested in microdosing.

THC Dosage: 2.5 – 15 mg

Typical Effects: Stronger relief of symptoms; euphoria; impacted coordination and perception. Great for stubborn symptoms not affected by smaller doses; potential treatment for insomnia.

THC Dosage: 30 – 50 mg

Typical Effects: Strong euphoria; significantly impacted coordination and perception. Great for consumers with a high tolerance for THC, or whose GI systems don’t absorb cannabinoids well.

THC Dosage: 50 – 100 mg

Typical Effects: Seriously impacted coordination and perception; possible unpleasant side effects including nausea and increased heart rate. Best for patients managing serious symptoms and conditions, or for those with a high THC tolerance.

ediblesFirst-Time Edible Experience: Top Tips

While the effects of having too much THC can be unpleasant, it’s important to know that they’re rarely dangerous. In the great majority of cases, unwanted side effects subside after a couple of hours at the very most.

That said, we’d like you to have as positive a first-time edible experience as possible. This means that you should consider taking a low edible dose to start for a more rewarding experience. Remember: You can always take more cannabis later, but you can’t take less!

There are other factors to consider as well, including your body mass index (BMI), your age, your experience level with cannabis, and your recent food intake. If you’re familiar with cannabis’s effects, you’ll be better prepared for a positive edible experience. Similarly, a recent meal will tend to slow down the onset of the THC, an experience that many people find more pleasant and manageable than a fast onset.

Edibles at Takoma Wellness Center

Do you have other questions about the THC dosage in edibles (or anything else in the world of cannabis?) Just ask! We’re always here to help.

We’d love to see you at our DC dispensary to help you find the right edible for your needs, stop by today to speak with our helpful team or browse our menu online from the comfort of home! Either way, we look forward to serving you!


best cbd products

CBD in DC: Is it Legal & Where Do I Buy It?

With so many questions about cannabis—Where is it legal? Can I take it across district or state lines?—it’s no wonder so many of us are confused about CBD, one of the plant’s major compounds (and one with a great many purported medicinal effects). If you’re left wondering, “Are CBD products legal in Washington, D.C.?” today’s post is for you. We’ll explain exactly what CBD is, where it’s legal, and where to buy it in the District of Columbia.

best cbd productsWhat is CBD? Tips From a Washington, DC Dispensary

Let’s begin with the basics. The cannabis plant contains hundreds of natural compounds and continued research on the plants is unlocking the science behind the plant’s benefits. Among the most studied compounds in cannabis are cannabinoids, which can be described as the plant’s major “active ingredients.”

Cannabinoids include THC—the compound most directly responsible for cannabis’ distinctive “high”—and CBD. Both of them deliver a wide range of useful medical effects. For instance, THC has been shown to reduce several types of pain. CBD, in addition to helping treat certain seizures, has shown promise in reducing anxiety and stress. Unlike THC, CBD’s psychoactive effects are very minimal. At most, some people experience a gentle cerebral “buzz.”

Due to its lack of intoxicating effects, CBD is legal for sale in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. However, many states require that CBD products contain only a trace amount of THC. In this case, CBD is typically derived not from the cannabis plant, but from its cousin, wild hemp.

Because CBD’s psychoactivity is so mild, high-CBD cannabis products are a great choice to use with microdosing, a topic we’ve covered in the past. Some researchers have begun to demonstrate that CBD works particularly well in concert with THC, a phenomenon often called the entourage effect. If you’re looking to add CBD’s medicinal effects to those of THC, we’d love to recommend a few products from our shelves.

best cbd productsThe Best CBD Products From a Washington, DC Dispensary

Liberty CBD Oil
A proudly D.C.-based enterprise, Liberty produces a CBD oil designed to address such symptoms as anxiety, monthly cramps, inflammation and pain, and certain types of seizures. It’s a staff favorite for its purity and consistent, precise formulation.

Infused Honey, District Cannabis
Another hometown favorite, this all-natural sweetener delivers an equal balance of THC and CBD. It has quickly developed a following for its ability to turn down chronic pain, anxiety and depression, and a variety of other symptoms and conditions. As with all cannabis edibles, it’s important to keep this out of childrens’ reach.

Citrus Tango, District Growers
Another product offering a balance of CBD and THC, this sweet and fruity strain delivers a gentle elevation without the paranoia and racing thoughts that can sometimes accompany high-THC products. Instead, you’ll enjoy a moderate uplift tempered by CBD’s soothing, anxiety-quelling effects.

Best CBD Products: In Conclusion

As the District’s first and longest-running medical cannabis dispensary, we’re grateful that so many Washingtonians turn to Takoma Wellness Center. You can shop for our products by visiting the dispensary or via our online menu. If you have any further questions about CBD products, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re always here to help!


cannabis for sleep

Cannabis & Sleep: The Best Strains for Insomnia and Nightmares

In case you haven’t noticed, cannabis is all over the news these days. From new research suggesting medical cannabis may help fight pain and inflammation, ease anxiety, and control certain types of seizures, it seems there’s no end to potential uses for the cannabis plant. And this holds doubly true for one of the most prevalent health issues facing us today: Insomnia and related sleep disorders. Adding to a wealth of anecdotal accounts, a growing body of evidence suggests that using cannabis for sleep may be an effective and sustainable strategy.

Does cannabis help you sleep? If so, what are the best cannabis products for sleep? We’ll dig into these questions and others in today’s post. By the end, you’ll have a solid understanding on how to use cannabis for insomnia and other common sleep disorders.

Insomnia: An Introduction

Insomnia has several subtypes, but the simplest way to categorize the disorder is to define insomnia as: “inability to fall asleep and/or stay asleep.” In truth, insomnia is a complex group of sleep disorders. While many of us find the variations on the possible causes frustratingly familiar and difficult to differentiate, the reality remains: an estimated 70 million Americans suffer from insomnia or other sleep disorders at any given time, and insomnia can be notoriously difficult to treat.

If you or someone you love has ever suffered from insomnia, you’re probably familiar with the countless remedies currently available. Ranging from gentle homeopathic drops to powerful—and potentially risky—pharmaceuticals such as benzodiazepines, none can be said to be 100% safe and effective. But as we’ll see, the growing acceptance of medical cannabis is fueling hopes that it might prove to be an effective and sustainable solution. First, though, it’s useful to understand that cannabis isn’t a single medicine, but many medicines in one plant.

cannabis for sleepCannabis for Sleep: What the Science Says

We tend to think of cannabis as a single drug, but the truth is a bit more complicated. The cannabis plant actually contains several-hundred compounds—including cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. As far as cannabis for insomnia goes, the two most important compounds to know are the cannabinoids THC and CBD.

THC is the compound most directly responsible for cannabis’ distinctive “high.” By comparison, CBD is mildly psychoactive, delivering at most a very gentle cerebral “buzz.” That’s why CBD on its own is legal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. In addition to their subjective effects, both THC and CBD deliver a wide range of medical benefits, several of which we outlined earlier in this article.

To understand how cannabis may affect our sleep, it’s useful to keep those two cannabinoids in mind. While the federal prohibition of cannabis has hampered research into its use for insomnia, we do know that THC and CBD exert different effects on our sleep cycles.

For instance, one sleep study found that cannabis with a higher ratio of THC to CBD reduced the amount of test subjects’ rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Why is this important? It turns out that REM is the sleep stage in which people experience dreams, and the theory is that by reducing dreams, sleepers spend more time in a restorative “deep sleep” state.

This also ties in to the issue of nightmares. In addition to being unpleasant and unsettling, nightmares are a major cause of sleep disruption. Just like other dreams, they occur during REM sleep. A reduction in REM sleep seems to correlate with fewer nightmares—a finding supported by a separate, small-scale sleep study.

Then there’s the subject of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. While the intersection between cannabis and PTSD is a wide-ranging topic in and of itself, research suggests that moderate cannabis use is by and large an effective response to PTSD-related sleep issues.

cannabis for sleepCBD for Sleep

Thus far, we haven’t addressed the topic of CBD and sleep. However, we mustn’t miss the promising potential of this important compound. There’s some evidence that the “second cannabinoid” may be even more beneficial than THC for sleep. One study from 2017 found that CBD may hold promise for reducing REM-related sleep disorders and quelling excessive daytime sleepiness. A large-scale study from 2019 found that CBD helped reduce anxiety—a major factor in sleep disruption—and improved sleep scores in most of the test subjects.

Taken together, the research suggests that by carefully tailoring cannabis ratios for the physiologies and needs of individual patients, clinicians could usher in a new era of gentle, sustainable, and effective treatments for insomnia and other sleep disorders.

Given what we know about cannabis for insomnia, we can make some educated choices about specific cannabis products. And this local team—at the District of Columbia’s longest-running medical cannabis facility—has some suggestions.

cannabis for sleepBest Cannabis Products for Sleep: Specific Recommendations

Standard: Sleep, by Abatin Wellness
Specifically formulated to encourage deep and restful sleep without grogginess, this tincture contains a precise mixture of the cannabinoids THC, CBD, and CBN. They’re empowered by specific terpenes, the aromatic compounds in cannabis and other natural products, geared towards relaxation and rest.

Granddaddy Purple Cartridge, District Cannabis
This much-loved indica strain delivers a potent hit of cerebral dreaminess and full-body relaxation. Known for a strong “couch lock” effect, it’s just the thing to get you tucked into bed for a night of deep, restorative, and long-lasting sleep. This cartridge contains .5g of concentrate, and is designed to fit a standard 510-style vape pen.

Classic Cookies, Abatin Wellness
An alternate name for GSO—itself an alternate name for the trademark-protected “girl scout cookies”—this legendary strain is known for imparting a deep and long-lasting euphoria. Its legions of fans turn to it for reliable relaxation, a head-to-toe calming effect, and the lure of a restful night of sleep.

Pre-Roll 6-Pack: Gelato Cake, District Cannabis
Yet another strain with a fervent fanbase, this cross between Gelato and Wedding Cake comes in a beautiful handmade case of prerolls for your convenience. Packing a hefty dose of relaxing THC, Gelato Cake’s delicious flavor profile—think sweet crushed grapes and aged cognac—is primed to ease you into deep, stress- and pain-free sleep.

Best Cannabis Products for Sleep: Wrapping Up

Whether you’re comfortable with the psychoactivity of THC or prefer the gentler, stress-reducing effects of CBD, the best cannabis product for sleep that will suit you to a T is out there waiting for you. If you’d like more guidance, check with the team at Washington, DC 's longest-running medical cannabis dispensary for expert recommendations and a stellar lineup of cannabis products!


Understanding Cannabis Terpenes: A Foundational Guide

We’ve talked about a few of the most important compounds in cannabis before: cannabinoids such as THC and CBD that give the plant its medicinal and euphoric effects. But while we sometimes describe the cannabinoids as the major “active ingredients” in cannabis, they’re hardly the only piece of the puzzle. If you’re new to cannabis or looking to deepen your knowledge, it’s time to get familiar with cannabis terpenes.

A large family of aromatic oils, cannabis-derived terpenes are best known for giving different strains their distinct aromas and flavors. Behind the scenes, these compounds also lend powerful medicinal benefits to the cannabis plant’s already potent effects. Let’s dive in!

What Is a Cannabis Terpene? An Introduction

In scientific lingo, terpenes are aromatic hydrocarbons—what many of us might call “essential oils”—found in the cannabis plant. They’re produced and secreted by trichomes, the same tiny silvery glands that produce THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids.

But terpenes are hardly unique to cannabis. If you’ve ever wondered why cannabis can smell like fresh fruit, Christmas trees, or even Diesel fuel, terpenes are the common denominator. They occur in countless natural flora, and even in some insects and animals! In fact, some botanists believe that terpenes are the single largest and most diverse group of natural products on the planet. For the purposes of this post, we’ll stick with the topic of cannabis-derived terpenes.

As we’ve hinted, terpenes do more than simply add enticing flavors and aromas to cannabis. Research suggests that terpenes work in partnership with cannabinoids in what’s termed the “ensemble” or “entourage effect” to produce specific therapeutic results. While still theoretical, a growing body of evidence supports the concept, and it may hold the key to future therapies based on cannabis-derived terpenes.

What Is a Cannabis Terpene? Meet the Top Five

There are a great many terpenes in cannabis (at least 150 of them)! Today, let’s begin with the five most common:

Myrcene

Just as THC is the most abundant cannabinoid in cannabis, myrcene is its most abundant terpene, meaning it is found in some concentration in the majority of strains. Characterized by a fruity and grapelike flavor, myrcene is gently sedative. What’s more, this terpene synergizes and helps potentiate the actions of other terpenes and cannabinoids, making it a crucial player in cannabis’ active ingredient ecosystem.

Myrcene-rich strains include: Skunk XL, White Widow, and Special Kush

Alpha-pinene and Beta-pinene

Known collectively as “pinene,” these related terpenes are identified by their distinctively piney aroma. You’ll also find this terpene in pine trees, orange peels, and herbs such as basil and rosemary. Studies suggest that pinene exerts a gentle anti-inflammatory effect, reducing inflammatory responses such as asthma.

Pinene-rich strains include: Strawberry Cough, Blue Dream and Dutch Treat

Caryophyllene

This spicy and peppery terpene is being investigated for its analgesic and anxiolytic effects. It also binds to our cells more readily than many other terpenes, making it a valued ingredient in some topicals and balms.

Caryophyllene-rich strains include: Super Silver Haze, OG Kush, and Rock Star

Limonene

Bright and cheerful-smelling, this citrus-scented terpene adds its uplifting effects to many cannabis strains. Clinical studies underscore its potential use to reduce stress and anxiety. And believe it or not, at least one study suggests limonene may have a role to play in fighting COVID-19.

Limonene-rich strains include: Sour Diesel, Durban Poison, and Jack Herer

Linalool

A main component in the classic “marijuana smell,” linalool may also help fight anxiety and depression. Research suggests this important, cannabis-derived terpene might also help reverse the cognitive impairment and memory loss associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s Disease.

Linalool-rich strains include: Amnesia Haze, Special Kush, and Lavender

Cannabis Derived Terpenes: Wrapping Up

We hope this introductory guide on cannabis terpenes has been helpful! Not just the flavor and aroma powerhouses of the cannabis plant, these compounds are showing therapeutic promise all their own and may be key to understanding how cannabis offers its multifaceted effects. 

Do you have other questions about terpenes (or anything else in the world of cannabis)? Just ask! We’re here to help. You can always visit our dispensary to learn more about terpenes from our friendly and knowledgeable team, or peruse our online menu to see what we’ve currently got in stock. We look forward to serving you!


DC Dispensary Guide to Cannabis Microdosing

New (and seasoned) cannabis consumers can benefit from an understanding of microdosing. Here’s everything you need to know.

If you’re a seasoned cannabis consumer, you’re likely familiar with the potency race to the top. As cannabis becomes legal in a growing number of states, producers battle to attract consumers with products that pack a more potent punch.

But stronger doesn’t always mean better!

There are days when you want to experience the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, but you still need to get things done. That’s where cannabis microdosing, our Patient Consultant’s secret weapon for sustainable daily cannabis consumption, comes in. So what is cannabis microdosing? How can you incorporate the benefits of microdosing cannabis into your daily routine? Let’s take a closer look.

cannabis microdosingWhat is Cannabis Microdosing?

First thing’s first: What is cannabis microdosing? While the actual amounts of cannabis an individual uses for microdosing can vary from person to person, microdosing consists of using a minimal dose of cannabis (more on what that means below). You can ingest a microdose either by taking a small amount of a pure THC product or a high-CBD, low THC product that can be subtly enjoyable yet fully effective over a longer period.

The technique of microdosing cannabis was initially associated with hallucinogens such as LSD or mushrooms. These techniques have recently been investigated for possible therapeutic potential using a low dosage THC.

The idea is to harness the desirable therapeutic benefits of THC while mitigating the sometimes overwhelming psychoactive effects. All this culminates with microdosing to create sustainable regular (perhaps even daily) consumption.

How is Cannabis Microdosing Different From a Full Dose of Cannabis?

When it comes to cannabis consumption, microdosing is all about calibration. Rather than maxing out THC levels for a complete mind/body experience, the small doses utilized by practitioners of cannabis microdosing are designed to deliver precise effects.

Where consuming a full dose of THC creates a specific bodily experience that is not always desirable, the effects of microdosing are far more subtle and vary from person to person depending on several factors, including the cannabis strain, dosage level, and your body’s tolerances. Basically, the effects of microdosing are more subtle and controlled—allowing you to experience the possible therapeutic benefits of THC while continuing to go about your day unimpeded by the psychoactive effects.

cannabis microdosingWhat Does Microdosing Feel Like?

Microdosing cannabis produces very different results than ingesting a full dose.

The intense euphoric, intoxicating, and mind-altering effects are much milder, and sometimes barely noticeable, when cannabis is microdosed. This can be a huge boon for people who want to benefit from the therapeutic effects of cannabis, but don’t really want to feel ‘high’.

Whenever we discuss the possibility of microdosing with our Washington DC dispensary customers, ‘What does microdosing feel like?’ is usually the first question we get. The answer is that microdosing cannabis is a much more relaxed and less intoxicating experience than simply ingesting a regular dose.

Microdosing cannabis can be a great strategy for people who need to perform cognitively throughout the day without the distraction of intoxicating euphoria. Microdosing THC allows for a relatively clear state of mind, while still imparting some of the potentially therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids and terpenes. A clear mind is one of the most sought-after microdosing benefits and a big reason why many people turn to microdosing.

Additionally, you may find that in certain situations, a microdose can be more than enough to get the job done. For example, ingesting too much THC may cause feelings of nervousness and has been known to worsen anxiety. Microdosing THC may instead minimize the chance of feeling anxious as there is less THC being ingested.

What Are the Benefits of Cannabis Microdosing?

So, why microdose? The short answer is, it all depends!

Individuals might try microdosing for a variety of reasons relevant to their individual physical and psychological needs. Some people enjoy the relief microdosing can provide for bodily conditions such as relief from chronic pain or topical treatments for inflammation. In contrast, others turn to the treatment for conditions such as insomnia, anxiety, and depression.

While most academic studies on microdosing have been done on psychedelic substances such as LSD and psilocybin, consumers often report symptomatic relief from microdosing cannabis, as well. In addition, if you’re new to the world of cannabis consumption, microdosing can be a great way to test your tolerances and find out the right level of THC for your individual needs.

How Much Cannabis Do I Microdose?

If you’re thinking about trying microdosing, there are a few things you should keep in mind in order to increase your odds of enjoying the full benefits of microdosing.

The first, and most obvious, thing is to be mindful of your dosage. A common dose people refer to as a “microdose” lands below 0.2 grams per session. For example, a study on pain management with THC found positive results when dosing just 0.05–0.1 mg of cannabis. Consuming anything beyond 0.2 grams could make the intoxicating effects of cannabis more noticeable, so starting smaller will keep you firmly in the micro range.

However, that doesn’t mean that you won’t experience microdosing benefits at slightly larger doses without experiencing the psychoactive effects you may be trying to avoid by microdosing. It may turn out, due to your individual physiological factors, that a dose of 0.2–0.3 works better to relieve your symptoms and still doesn’t tip you into feeling any psychoactive influence.

Just start with the lowest for a few days or a week. If desired, increase your dose by a tiny increment (no more than 0.3 grams to remain at a microdose level) after at least 3 days if you aren’t experiencing the desired effects.

The smallest dose possible is a good place to start when microdosing THC—whether you’re doing it for the first time or starting up a new round of microdosing. Also our bodily physiology can change over time. It is wise to reset to the low dose every time you start a new round of microdosing after taking a break.

If you’re looking for an informative and interesting read on the subject of microdosing and what doses might work well, we enjoyed the book Weed Mom: The Canna-Curious Woman's Guide to Healthier Relaxation, Happier Parenting, and Chilling TF Out.

cannabis microdosingCannabis Microdosing Consumption Methods

Additionally, you should be mindful of the differences between consumption methods. The advantage of smoking or vaping your microdoses is that you will feel their effects within a matter of minutes, much more quickly than with other consumption methods. However, unless you take the time to carefully weigh each dose with a very precise scale, it can be hard to tell just how much you are actually ingesting, possibly causing you to ingest more than just a small microdose.

We prefer other consumption methods for microdosing, such as tinctures and oils. The liquid form will allow you to measure your doses much more precisely, so you can dose accurately and consistently.

Edibles may work as well, as an alternative. However, they can sometimes be inconsistent when it comes to accurate dosing (especially when homemade) since the distribution of cannabis throughout an edible may not be perfectly even. Consuming a precise dose of an edible isn’t always possible.

Lastly, while microdosing THC is what most people prefer, that doesn’t mean that the benefits of microdosing are limited to one cannabinoid. Microdosing a mixture of THC and CBD may provide better results than just one or the other. Ultimately, it’s up to you to experiment a little and find out what works best for your situation and physiology.

How to Start Microdosing

First things first—let’s get you in touch with a professional!

As with any change in your wellness or supplement routine, you should always check with an expert who understands the ins and outs of consumption to see if cannabis microdosing is right for you. A qualified Patient Consultant will help you determine if cannabis microdosing is right for you and show you how to start microdosing.

Once you’ve got the professional go-ahead, check out some of our favorite low-dose products! If you’re brand new to the world of microdosing, a high-CBD product such as Abatin Wellness CBD oil can be a great place to start. A low THC/high CBD tincture such as Liberty’s MediHaze allows you to control your dosage drop by drop. Or try a little infused honey for a sweetly light dose.

Whatever product you choose, the experienced budtenders at our Washington, DC dispensary are here to help guide you through your cannabis microdosing journey.

Drop by Washington, DC’s finest—and first—medical cannabis dispensary today to start your microdosing journey!


Cannabis Concentrates: Benefits & Effects

Cannabis concentrates have become some of the most popular items at our dispensary—and it’s no surprise why. Not only can they be aromatic and flavorful but the effects of cannabis concentrates are usually quite potent and hard-hitting, which many customers love.

What Are Cannabis Concentrates?

Concentrates are highly potent cannabis products that produce intense effects and bold flavors. Concentrates are primarily made by collecting the resinous trichomes of the cannabis plant. The benefits of cannabis concentrates are imparted thanks to the large volume of cannabinoids and terpenes gathered from these fresh, crystalline trichomes.

There are a few ways trichomes can be collected. For example, while rosin is made by using heat and pressure to squeeze that resin out, kief is made by simply shaking those trichomes loose with agitation and collecting the fine powdery residue they produce. More on types of concentrates later: Let’s start with the benefits of concentrates.

cannabis concentratesThe Benefits and Effects of Cannabis Concentrates

Why use a cannabis concentrate? Most people who enjoy concentrates are looking for a strong and efficiently-delivered cannabis product. If a dab of shatter clocks in at 70% THC but some cannabis flower only possesses 20% THC, that means the one dab would produce over 3 times the effect through the same inhalation of smoke or vapor.

Additionally, thanks to a high terpene content, hits of concentrates can be delightfully flavorful and possibly more therapeutically effective, as a concentrate can contain a higher concentration of terpenes than a small bud of regular cannabis flower can.

While potency is a benefit of concentrates that can be particularly useful for patients who need high doses of THC to manage symptoms, it’s wise to exercise care with concentrates. With high potency also comes a higher chance that you inadvertently consume too much. If you’re new to concentrates start with very small doses and always give your body plenty of time to feel the full effects before consuming more—start low and go slow!

cannabis concentratesDifferent Types of Concentrates

There are many different types of cannabis concentrates. A concentrate’s type is typically determined by the methodology with which it is made. Because of this, concentrates can vary in form and texture, even though they may contain similar levels of cannabinoids and terpenes. There is no “best cannabis concentrate” because which formulation you prefer can depend on your personal tastes.

Here are some of the many different types of concentrates that you may come across at our dispensary.

Kief: Kief is a powdery collection of cannabis trichomes that have been shaken loose from flower buds. You can even collect kief for bud yourself with a kief catcher. Kief is the least potent concentrate out there, usually clocking in at between 25%–35% THC.

Hash: Hash is the oldest concentrate on earth, having been smoked for many centuries. It’s made by collecting the loose trichomes that make up kief and squeezing them together into a solid block or chunk. Hash can also come in a loose form called ‘bubble hash’ or dry sift hash. Hash is usually more potent than kief but less potent than most other concentrates, typically coming in somewhere between 35%–55% THC.

Shatter: Shatter is a popular concentrate made using a BHO (butane) extraction process. It gets its name from its glass-like form, which is a thin sheet of solidified oil that shatters into many small pieces when handled. Shatter typically has a THC percentage landing between 50% and 80%.

Rosin: Rosin is a sticky and terpene heavy concentrate that packs in a lot of flavor. It’s made using a solventless extraction process and has become a favorite among health-conscious consumers looking for a solvent-free extract that features bold flavors. Rosin usually ranges from 60% to 70% THC.

RSO: RSO, also known as Rick Simpson Oil, is a thick and sticky cannabis oil that is rich in THC and has a reputation for potent medicinal properties. It’s got a syrupy and thick consistency and usually comes in a syringe from where it can be applied sublingually or transferred to other foods and liquids. While RSO is usually high in THC, it can also be CBD-dominant.

Distillate: Distillate is a concentrate made through a complicated distillation process that methodically separates THC from every other compound found in the source plant material. Because this extraction process is so successful at isolating THC, many distillate oils can reach incredible potency levels of roughly 99% THC.

cannabis concentratesCannabis Concentrates at Takoma Wellness

Ready to experience the potent effects of cannabis concentrates and benefits of cannabis concentrates for yourself? Our budtenders can help you find the cannabis concentrate that suits your individual needs and interests.

Come down to our dispensary today or (if you already have a concentrate type in mind) shop our online menu right now to choose from a wide selection of cannabis concentrates. We look forward to seeing you!


cook with cannabis

Cooking with Cannabis: A Complete Guide

Have you ever wondered what cooking with cannabis would be like? Crafting your own infused delicacies and looking forward to that extra-rewarding first bite? Luckily, learning how to cook with cannabis isn’t extraordinarily difficult. In this post, we’re going to look at the basics of cannabis cooking and share two important recipes that will enable you to make many different cannabis-infused treats.

Cooking with Cannabis: The Basics

Cooking with cannabis is just like regular cooking. There’s just one difference: THC. While it would be great to just mash some cannabis flower into a brownie and call it a day, that’s unfortunately not an option.

That’s because cannabis flower doesn’t actually contain THC. Instead, the plant develops THCA. This chemical precursor turns into THC when exposed to heat through a process called decarboxylation. That usually happens when you spark up some flower for a puff. However, since there’s no flame involved with edibles, you’ll need a “decarb” workaround.

How to Decarboxylate Cannabis Flower

The term “decarboxylation” may look scary on paper. But its bark is worse than its bite.

All you need to do to decarb cannabis is heat-activate it. That’s a two-step process. First, grind your cannabis with an herb grinder. Then, put it on a cookie sheet covered in wax paper. Bake it at 245 Fahrenheit for about 30 minutes. Mix it every 10 minutes to make sure it cooks properly. When all your cannabis is a light golden brown, you’re ready to rock.

Cannabis Cooking: Two Important Recipes and Tips

Now that we have the basics of cannabis cooking under our belts, we can get down to the fun business: recipes. THC is a highly lipid-soluble molecule. In other words, it binds readily to fats. Butter and oil both contain tons of fats. These are the foundational ingredients for any cannabis-infused product.

Having a recipe on hand for both cannabutter and infused coconut oil will give you two solid options for a versatile cannabis ingredient with which to infuse recipes. Armed with cannabutter or cannaoil, you can start baking or cooking with cannabis using any normal recipe that calls for butter or oil.

Before you begin: Always label your infused products clearly, so no one accidentally uses a cannabis product. Keep out of the reach of children. Store cannabutter or canna oil in the fridge or freezer.

How to Cook with Cannabis: Cannabutter

Cannabutter is a classic medium for carrying THC. Countless recipes use normal butter, which you can substitute with cannabutter super easily. Here’s how to make it.

Cannabutter

Ingredients:

  • 7 grams decarboxylated flower
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup water

Instructions for Making Cannabutter:

First, decarb your flower as outlined above. Once your flower is decarbed, you can begin the cannabutter-making process.

Combine butter and water in a saucepan on a low heat. Once the butter has begun melting, add your decarbed flower. Keep simmering at a low heat (about 170 Fahrenheit or so) for between 2 and 3 hours. Never let it boil fully!

Finally, let the butter cool slightly (but make sure it's still in liquid form) and strain the cannabutter into a jar through a cheesecloth. Refrigerate until solid, then seal with a lid. If any water separates during solidification, you can discard that excess water.

How to Cook with Cannabis: Infused Coconut Oil

Sometimes, you don’t want to cook with butter. In that case, coconut oil makes a great substitute that readily absorbs THC and tastes great. Check out this recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 7 grams decarboxylated flower
  • 1 cup coconut oil

Instructions:

Place both the coconut oil and the flower into a high heat-rated Mason jar or similar (Find out how to assess your jar for safety.) Place the jar into a pot. Fill the pot with enough water until the water line is above the oil/flower mixture. Important: Start with room temperature water (not cold, as that could cause the glass to break), bringing it to a boil slowly.

Both the jar and the pot should remain uncovered for ventilation. Keep on a medium boil for 2 hours, monitoring closely. Keep an eye on the water level, since some of it will boil off. Add more water, as needed, to maintain the original water level in the pot.

Lastly, let the oil cool slightly (it still needs to be in liquid form but you don’t want it steaming hot), then strain the canna oil into another jar through a cheesecloth. Once cool, seal with a lid.

Cooking with Cannabis: Wrapping Up

Now that you know how to cook with cannabis, you need to start working on your own recipes! First things first, though. You’re going to need to stock up on some flower of your own. That’s where we come in. Check out our full selection of flower or come visit our dispensary to get cooking. We look forward to serving you!


cannabis edibles

What Are Cannabis Edibles, How Long Do They Last?

If you’re returning to the world of cannabis after many years, you’ve probably noticed that much has changed. In addition to entirely new classes of products such as vaporizers, concentrates, and topicals, the world of cannabis-infused edibles has been turned into a confectionary powerhouse.

If you grew up thinking “cannabis edibles” meant inconsistent (and often dry) marijuana brownies, you’re in for a surprise: From infused honey to mouth watering chocolates to chewable lozenges and discreet capsules, there’s a wide and truly impressive variety of cannabis-infused edibles on the market. If you’re curious about edibles but haven’t known where to begin, you’re in the right place. This post will answer such important questions about ingestible cannabis, such as:

  • What are cannabis edibles?
  • How long does it take cannabis infused edibles to work?
  • How long do cannabis edibles last?
  • What’s the right dosage of cannabis edibles?

Are you ready? Let’s dive in.

cannabis ediblesWhat are Cannabis Infused Edibles?

At the most basic level, a cannabis edible is a food or beverage infused with cannabis or its major active ingredients, natural compounds called cannabinoids. The two most prevalent cannabinoids are THC and CBD. THC is the cannabinoid most directly responsible for cannabis’ distinctive “high.” By comparison, CBD imparts—at most—a gentle cerebral “buzz.” That’s why CBD on its own is legal in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. In addition to their subjective effects, both THC and CBD deliver a wide range of medical potential, from reducing several types of pain to helping treat certain seizures to reducing anxiety and stress.

In part because cannabis itself can be processed into so many forms—from fresh, fragrant flower to the aforementioned concentrates and tinctures—there's practically no limit to the number and types of foods and beverages that can be transformed into cannabis infused edibles. But while many of them take the form of familiar (and delicious!) infused chocolates, cereal treats, and other sweet snacks, others take a more straightforward approach.

A capsule may not seem the likeliest format in which to take cannabis, but that’s an increasingly preferred choice for many people. Especially popular with those new to cannabis medicine, capsules offer a portable, shelf-stable, and discreet way to access a consistent and precise dose of cannabis. Needless to say, this is especially useful when the goal is to address chronic symptoms and conditions such as pain, anxiety, and the side-effects of chemotherapy.

One of the most popular forms of cannabis infused edible is the lozenge or troche (pronounced “trow-kee”). Smaller and more shelf-stable than infused cookies or chocolate bars, they provide a carefully measured dose of cannabis medicine along with a burst of juicy flavor.

For all the variety and choices offered by cannabis edibles, though, it’s important to understand the ways they function in our bodies in comparison to inhaled cannabis. That’s a great excuse to dive into our next topics: “How long do cannabis edibles take to start working?” and “How long do cannabis edibles last?”

How long do cannabis edibles last?How Long Do Cannabis Edibles Take to Start Working?

When we ingest cannabis by smoking it or inhaling it through a vaporizer, we feel its effects quickly, typically within about ten minutes. That’s because the cannabinoids are rapidly absorbed through the lungs.

With edibles, by comparison, the cannabinoids are processed by the liver. Among other things, this means that it takes much longer for the cannabis to take effect. Apart from such factors as an individual’s age, weight, metabolism, and recent food intake, you can typically expect an edible to take between 45 minutes and 2 hours to begin taking effect.

Perhaps the most common issue around cannabis edibles is that inexperienced users—believing the product simply “didn’t work”—will take more. But when the double dose of edibles finally kicks in, the effect can be much stronger than anticipated.

That is why we always counsel our clients to “start low, go slow.” Knowing that it may take up to 2 hours for an edible to take effect, you’ll be better prepared for a predictable, positive, and fruitful experience.

How Long Do Cannabis Edibles Last?

Just as cannabis infused edibles take longer to reach their full effect, they also last much longer in our bodies. Whereas you can expect the effects of smoked or vaped cannabis to last from around 1 to 3 hours, the effects of edibles often last from 5 to 8 hours—and in some cases, up to 24 hours.

That’s a wide range, and again, several factors influence its duration. As we mentioned earlier, THC is the cannabinoid most directly responsible for the cannabis plant’s distinctive “high.” If you’re concerned about excess psychoactivity, we recommend you try a cannabis edible with either a balanced THC:CBD ratio, or one that contains very little THC. Especially if you’re new to edibles, this is a good way to mitigate effects that might otherwise feel slightly overwhelming.

With that in mind, we’ll share some dosing guidelines.Cannabis Edibles Dosage

What’s the Right Dosage of Cannabis Edibles?

Every package of cannabis infused edibles we sell is labeled with the precise dosage of THC in each individual unit, denoted in milligrams (mg). Here’s what you can expect in terms of subjective effects.

THC Dosage of 1 mg to 2.5 mg

Expected Effects: Mild relief of symptoms including pain, stress, and anxiety; heightened focus and creativity.

Recommended for: First-time consumers, or more experienced consumers looking to microdose cannabis.

THC Dosage of 2.5 mg to 15 mg

Expected Effects: Stronger symptomatic relief; euphoria; slightly impaired coordination and perception.

Recommended for: Stubborn symptoms not affected by smaller doses; treatment for insomnia.

THC Dosage of 30 mg to 50 mg

Expected Effects: Strong euphoria; significantly impaired coordination and perception.
Recommended for: Those consumers with a high tolerance for THC, or those whose GI systems don’t tend to absorb cannabinoids effectively.

THC Dosage of 50 mg to 100 mg

Expected Effects: Seriously impaired coordination and perception; possible unpleasant side effects including nausea and increased heart rate.

Recommended for: Experienced, high-tolerance THC consumers; patients living with inflammatory disorders, cancer, and other serious conditions.

Cannabis Infused Edibles: Other Considerations

These guidelines provide a useful starting point, but because everyone’s individual physiology is unique, you may respond a bit differently. Again, that’s why we urge you to “start slow, go low.” Begin with a low dose, and remember to wait at least 2 hours before taking any more.

If at any point the effects of cannabis feel too strong, don’t panic. Though the sensations—which could include nausea, paranoia, or a racing heart rate—may feel unpleasant, they’re rarely dangerous. Try watching a show, snuggling with your animal, or stepping outside for some fresh air and to take a gander at a nearby tree. That said: If you suffer from pre-existing heart conditions or other serious medical issues, please consult with a cannabis-informed physician before trying infused edibles.

What Are Cannabis Edibles: Wrapping Up

As the District’s first and longest-running medical cannabis dispensary, we’re grateful that so many Washingtonians turn to Takoma Wellness Center. Check out our edibles via our online menu or stop by. If you have any further questions about cannabis edibles, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re here to help!


cannabis edibles

Ask a DC Budtender: How to Take Edibles

New cannabis consumers often approach edibles with a mixture of excitement, fear, and caution. We get it: Edibles have a questionable reputation. But they shouldn’t. Our basics will help you have the best experience, every time. 

When it comes to cannabis-infused edibles, there’s an element of mystery that can make taking the first bite of that infused chocolate bar (or oat bar, marshmallow crisp, or cookie in a jar) a nerve-wracking experience. How do you know the correct dosage? And what effects will you experience? 

Unlike more familiar forms of cannabis, such as flower and vape cartridges, it’s hard to make a visual assessment of the perfect amount (and variety) of cannabis edibles to suit your needs. 

That’s why we decided to sit down with our favorite professional Patient Consultants from the best dispensary in Washington DC to learn the ins and outs of cannabis edibles, how to take edibles, and how new consumers can ensure a perfect experience every time.

cannabis-infused edibles

What are cannabis edibles?

Let’s start with the basics. What are cannabis edibles and how do they work? 

Put simply, it is any cannabis-infused food product that contains either THC or CBD. Enthusiasts prefer an edible consumption method for many reasons: convenience, circumventing possible impact of smoking on their lungs, delayed effects, and more. 

These days, cannabis-infused edibles come in many forms beyond the familiar pot brownie—from beef jerky to breakfast cereal! With the world of cannabis edible brands expanding by the day, it’s easy to find a product to suit your palette (and dosage and effects requirements).

Types of Cannabis Edibles at Dispensaries

Nowadays, you may come across many different types of edibles at dispensaries. Edibles can differ in both their form and their contents, resulting in potential changes to how long their effects can take to kick in and what kinds of effects you may experience when ingesting them.

For example, you may opt to go with a candy or mint that may get absorbed sublingually and kick in faster, or a baked goodie such as a cookie or a brownie that is processed through your stomach, then liver, thus kicking in only after some time has passed (usually, 30 minutes to 2 hours). It’s important to be mindful of the kinds of cannabinoids and cannabinoid ratios that each type of edible contains. This will be detailed on the packaging.

An edible containing solely THC can be expected to produce the typical psychoactive and mind-altering effects that are usually associated with cannabis. The type of THC strain used to make the edible will indicate which types of psychoactive effects are most likely. As a general guide: sativa tends to produce more active, energizing uplifting effects and indica usually will lean more mellow, spacy, and chill. A high-CBD edible will produce some physiological effects, but not psychoactive ones.

Different ratios of these two cannabinoids can result in vastly different edible experiences. Thanks to the entourage effect, consuming THC and CBD together will produce effects that are different than if either one was to be ingested on its own. 

Exactly what kinds of effects you can expect from a mixed edible will depend on its exact cannabinoid ratio. A 1:1 THC to CBD ratio indicates a blend of mild euphoria and calm relaxation. The more CBD in the ratio, the less euphoria and psychoactive effects. For example, a 1:10 THC to CBD ratio may mean that there’s no (or very little) noticeable euphoria or ‘high’ whatsoever, making it preferable for therapeutic dosing. 

Pay close attention to the label of your edibles to see what their cannabinoid ratio is, and think carefully about what kinds of effects you want to experience from them. Whether you’re looking for a fun and euphoric buzz, or a calm and therapeutic one, you’ll be sure to find it among the many types of edibles at dispensaries. You just need to make sure you choose the right one.

How long does it take cannabis edibles to kick in?

Cannabis-infused edibles tend to take longer to kick in than inhalable cannabis products. 

Typically, you can expect to wait between 30-60 minutes to experience the effects of cannabis edibles, though it may take 2-3 hours, depending on your physiology and tolerance. Many such factors can affect the timing of cannabis absorption via edibles. Let’s go over a few:

  • You might feel the effects of high dosage THC edibles more quickly than a lower dose product.
  • Edibles you consume by sucking on them (such as lozenges, lollipops, and gum) tend to kick in faster since some of the cannabinoids are absorbed directly through your saliva sublingually. 
  • Chewable edibles (such as gummies, cookies, or oat bars) take longer to kick in since they have to be digested before your body absorbs the THC or CBD they contain. 
  • Other factors, such as how empty your stomach is and your sex, weight, and cannabis tolerance, can affect how quickly your body reacts to edibles, as well.

If you’ve consumed an edible and don’t yet feel the effects, have patience! Our Budtenders recommend waiting 24 hours before dosing again to avoid consuming too much. Instead, try eating a bit of food to kick-start your digestion.

cannabis-infused edibles

How do edibles make you feel?

One advantage of edibles is the intensity they offer compared to other cannabis products. Cannabis-infused edibles create a more powerful high than some other consumption methods, and you’ll feel the effects longer than inhalable cannabis products. Because an edible is slowly digested by the stomach, an edible high can last for as long as 6–8 hours.

Exactly how an edible will make you feel will largely depend on the strain of cannabis that you’re ingesting. As we mentioned, a strong indica strain often helps you feel relaxed and even sleepy, while a potent sativa will feel much more stimulating and energizing. In general, you should expect a strong body buzz when ingesting cannabis-infused edibles, especially if you’re ingesting an indica strain.

How to Take Edibles: Dosing Your Edible

Getting your dosage right is really important when you’re considering how to take edibles. If you’re planning on trying a THC edible, you should always try to stick to a dosage that you’re sure you can handle.

Ingesting too much THC is a common mistake that people make when enjoying edibles and, while it won’t endanger your health, it can lead to an overly strong buzz that may feel overpowering and may expose you to THC’s side effects like anxiety and paranoia. 

That’s why it’s best to start low and go slow with your THC edibles. Try a low dosage that you’re sure you’ll be comfortable with. If you find that’s not enough, go ahead and move up to a larger dosage next time. Just don’t try to ingest more until you’re sure the buzz of your first one has peaked or you may end up taking too much.

How to Take Edibles: Wrapping Up

Looking for the best dispensary in Washington DC for cannabis-infused edibles? Come down to Takoma Wellness today or browse our online menu from home to shop a huge variety of delicious cannabis edibles that you’re sure to love! 

Have a question about how to take edibles that we haven’t answered? Don’t be afraid to ask us. We’ll be sure to help you however we can. Taking a mindful approach to cannabis edible consumption will ensure you have a blissful, relaxing experience that’s DC Budtender approved. We look forward to seeing you!


top marijuana strains

Hash History: A Study of Top Marijuana Strains at Takoma Wellness

There are history buffs in nearly every topic of interest—and one topic that’s been drawing a lot of attention recently is cannabis history. Cannabis buffs look at the study of marijuana strains and their origins in the same way other amateur historians look at airplanes or boats. If you’re one of these people, rejoice! We’re going to take a deep dive on the history of three top marijuana strains in this post.

marijuana strains

Let’s Study Marijuana: Top Strains at Takoma Wellness Center and Their Origins

While we were tempted to only look at old-school strains, we decided against it: That would be like only covering ancient history. We’ve put together a survey of classic and more modern genetics for this history lesson. Check out our breakdown of Blue Dream, OG Kush, and Do-Si-Do below.

Blue Dream

We’re going to kick things off with one of the biggest strains of all time: Blue Dream. This sativa-dominant strain was all the rage in the late 2000s and early 2010s. But its story starts before that.

Blue Dream traces its origins to California in 2003. It was created by crossing the legendary cannabis breeder DJ Short’s Blueberry strain with the equally renowned strain Super Silver Haze. While no one’s sure exactly who bred the first Blue Dream plant, some believe it originated in the Santa Cruz area.

Like its parent Blueberry, Blue Dream has a sweet, juicy flavor. One of the things that cannabis lovers found so attractive about Blue Dream was its euphoric and cerebral effects. That makes it a great daytime strain, in contrast to couch-locking indicas. Blue Dream often features a THC content that hovers around 20%, and it has little CBD to speak of.

Check out our menu to experience Blue Dream for yourself.

top marijuana strains

Classic OG Kush

If someone asked you to think of the biggest strains of all time, chances are OG Kush is one of the names you’d come up with. OG Kush is a hybrid that offers both relaxing and uplifting effects. It usually has a fairly high THC content, regularly clocking in above 20 percent.

And who could forget the flavor and aroma? OG Kush seamlessly blends the spicy incense-like fragrance of Kush plants with the distinctive scent of dirt that typifies OG strains. Sparking it up is often reminiscent of walking through freshly plowed earth.

OG Kush’s real genetics are shrouded in mystery. Despite its seemingly obvious nod to rap, we don’t even know what “OG” really stands for! Some insist it means “Original Gangster.” Still others point to the term “Ocean Grown” in a reference to coastal California. However, experts generally accept that Chemdawg is involved, and crossed with either a Thai or Hindu Kush plant.

Want to learn more? Find Classic OG Kush at our dispensary.

Best Marijuana Strains

Do-Si-Do

So far, we’ve really only looked at old-school strains in our deep dive into the origins of top marijuana strains. But we’re going to change that and spark up something a little more modern: Do-Si-Do.

If you’re familiar with modern cannabis genetics, you’ve probably heard of Do-Si-Do. It’s a cross between Girl Scout Cookies and Face Off OG. First hitting the scene in 2016, this strain quickly grew in popularity and was named Leafly’s “Strain of the Year” for 2021.

What really makes Do-Si-Do stand out is its high THC concentration. It often reaches a percentage in the high 20% range, sometimes even surpassing 30%. Its flavor hits you in the face, too, and definitely has notes of that classic OG taste we mentioned earlier.

Do-Si-Do is the kind of strain you need to try to believe, and with a strain this high in THC we always recommend the old adage for consumption: start low and go slow. You can browse the Do-Si-Do products we have in stock on our online menu.

The History of Marijuana Strains from Takoma Wellness Center

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed our cursory study of some classic marijuana strains. If you’re looking for other legendary genetics, check out our complete menu!

Questions? Comments? Please reach out, we’re happy to help. We look forward to serving you!