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!


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!


zurple punch

Zurple Punch Weed Strain: A Complete Guide

Are you the kind of cannabis enthusiast who’s always searching for the next hot strain? If you are, look no further than Zurple Punch. Zurple Punch is a cannabis strain that will soon carve a name for itself in the annals of the weed world. With great flavor and pleasant middle-of-the-road effects you’re not going to want to sleep on it.

Zurple Punch Weed Strain

Marijuana Reviews: Zurple Punch Weed Strain

Zurple Punch is a fairly rare cannabis strain. It’s also fairly new, which may contribute to that—some people just haven’t caught on yet. That gives savvy cannabis lovers the opportunity to get in on the ground floor with this impressive strain. If you’re the kind of person who chases rare genetics, the strain is not to be missed.

Zurple Punch: Genetics and Effects

This strain’s unique name comes from its parents. Zurple Punch is a cross of Zkittles (a hugely popular strain over the last few years) with Purple Punch (an older, but still popular strain). That lineage gives Zurple Punch a fairly balanced hybrid genetic profile.

That genetic profile plays a large role in determining the effects of this strain. Users report that it helps to spark creativity and sociability. It also may heighten the sensitivity of certain senses. Additionally, some fans of the strain say that it helps them relax and chill out.

Zurple Punch often tests between 20% and 23% THC, putting it in the “middle of the road” category of weed strains. It’s not so strong that it’s overwhelming for those new to cannabis, but its effects are powerful enough to please even the most experienced cannabis enthusiast.

THC isn’t the only thing that determines the effects of Zurple Punch, though. It also contains nearly 1% CBD. While that may not sound like much, many strains contain even less CBD. That means Zurple Punch actually has a decent amount of CBD. 

Terpene Profile: Flavor and Aroma

It has a unique flavor and fragrance that cannabis connoisseurs won’t find in many other strains. It combines notes of blue cheese and sweet berries with some distinctively nutty tones. Additionally, a faint lavender fragrance permeates this strain.

Terpene Profile: Flavor and Aroma

You can thank its terpene profile for that. Terpenoline influences Zurple Punch’s fragrance and tastes the most with its floral funk, along with some help from:

  • Caryophyllene: Caryophyllene is the only terpene that’s also a cannabinoid, which puts it in a unique position. It has a sharp, spicy taste, and you can find it commonly in black pepper. According to some research, it may be effective at reducing swelling.
  • Pinene: The most common terpene in nature, Pinene, has a fresh and uplifting scent that you may associate with evergreen trees.
  • Limonene: Limonene contains the very essence of citrus flavor. You can find this zesty, upbeat terpene n in (you guessed it) citrus plants and their fruits. Some research suggests this terpene may have anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and gastroprotective properties, among others.

Zurple Punch Strain Takeaways

All in all, this is a strain on the precipice of greatness and certainly a strain worth seeking out. Stop by Takoma Wellness Center, call or browse our online menu to see what products we’re currently carrying.

Questions? Comments? Please feel free to reach out: We’re always here to help. And we look forward to serving you!


Top 5 CBD Vaporizers: Benefits, Effects, and What to Look for in a Vaporizer

If you’re new to the world of CBD vaporizers, you’re in for a treat. Because they work electronically to emit a cool-mist rather than potentially harsh smoke, vapes go easy on our lungs—while delivering the same fast-acting benefits as smoked cannabis.

As revolutionary as these devices are, they promise an even greater reward. CBD vaporizers are one of the most popular and fastest-growing segments of the cannabis market, and it’s no surprise why. CBD vapor benefits include the potential to relieve:

  • Chronic pain and inflammation
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Insomnia and sleeplessness

If you’ve been wondering how to access all the benefits of CBD in a discreet and portable format, this article is for you!

cbd vaporizers 1

Effects of CBD Vape: How CBD Works with the Body

As one of the two principal cannabinoids—or “major active ingredients”—in cannabis, CBD has been linked to a number of potential health benefits. In addition to helping treat certain seizures, CBD shows promise in reducing anxiety and stress, addressing chronic pain, and even helping us get a better night’s sleep.

Of course, THC—the most common cannabinoid—is linked to a number of health benefits as well. However, unlike THC’s intoxicating “high,” CBD’s psychoactive effects are minimal. At most, some people report feeling a gentle cerebral “buzz.” This makes CBD-only or high-CBD vaporizers a great choice for those looking for symptomatic relief without distracting psychoactivity.

cbd vaporizers 2

Top 5 CBD Vaporizers: What to Look For

In a sense, a high-CBD vaporizer is no different from any other. Because most vapes accept multiple cartridges, you can use the same battery with any number of oil-filled cartridges, including those that contain higher levels of THC should you want to try that route at some point. Regardless of which you can choose, you can expect the same fast-acting effects as with smoked cannabis, only delivered in a delightfully gentle and cool mist.

No matter what cannabinoid ratio you choose, you’ll want a product that fits your particular needs. If you intend to use your CBD vaporizer on the go, a slim pen-style battery—such as our custom Takoma Wellness Center unit—offers portability and reliability in an astonishingly small package.

Likewise, the Vessel Vista takes the same functional strategy to its logical conclusion. Featuring an ultra-powerful battery and an eye-catching collar design, it’s a truly deluxe accessory for those interested in enjoying the benefits of CBD vaporizers.

On the other hand, the Vessel Compass battery is designed with ergonomic functionality and comfort in mind. Featuring an incredible, high-capacity battery plus tuned airflow and the same flexibility as a standard pen unit, the Compass is truly showing the way forward when it comes to the vaporizers of the future.

For those who want to take their CBD vapor benefits to the next level, there’s the Puffco Peak. Designed to vaporize potent cannabis concentrates, this tabletop unit’s multiple temperature settings and long battery life make it the Cadillac of concentrate vaporizers.

Finally, for anyone looking for a quick and no-fuss solution for their CBD needs, Takoma Wellness offers the Bunji Bros Battery and Painkiller XL set. This dynamic duo includes a high-quality rechargeable battery and a cartridge containing Painkiller XL, a cannabis strain specially formulated to address the symptoms of anxiety, stress, and chronic pain. If you’ve been searching for a “CBD vape near me,” this set offers a simple, intuitive, and cost-effective answer.

CBD Vaporizers: 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. Check out our online menu or stop by. If you have any further questions about the benefits of CBD, don’t hesitate to reach out. We’re always here to help!