Do you know what CBD drinks are? Are you familiar with the saying, “let food be your medicine”? Well, this should be a new mantra for the Cannabidiol industry, which has spread across the world.
Thanks to new technology and creative minds, cannabis-infused beverages have hit the shelves of many bars and coffee shops. However, they have one thing in common, and that’s cannabidiol, which doesn’t have psychoactive effects on your body.
Now you can choose various forms of drinks such as teas, sodas, coffees, and even flavored sparkling waters. They are all examples of cannabidiol-infused refreshments available for consumers nowadays.
Now, you must be wondering, how come they have become so popular? Well, there is a simple answer to that. Compared to THC, CBD makes you feel peaceful and relaxed without altering your perception.
Featuring a specific dose of cannabidiol, these infused products cause a natural feeling of calm. So far, scientists have proven numerous benefits of CBD. Therefore, making drinks with this component comes as a logical step, which aims to conquer the food and beverage industry.
When we mention the word cannabis, people often connect it to opioids, but it doesn’t have to be like that. Considering that weed has nearly 600 active components, CBD the least harmless one.
So, let’s see what to expect, and what kind of effects cannabis drinks can have on your body.
What are CBD Drinks and How Do They Work?
CBD beverage is an infused hemp extract which comes in three different forms:
- CBD isolate – pure cannabidiol
- Full-spectrum – a complete range of beneficial hemp plant compounds
- Broad-spectrum hemp extract – same as full-spectrum but without THC
The last two forms are considered to be superior to isolated cannabidiol because they contain various active components. They all work together and create a phenomenon known as the entourage effect. Nowadays, you will find many cbd drinks, with water and tea being the most popular ones.
However, the beverage industry is now pushing THC options as well, and we are all aware of the fact that this component is responsible for the cannabis high.
Now, let’s move on to their function and what effect they have on our body!
Each person has an endocannabinoid system (ECS), which consists of a network of receptors. Cannabinoids produced inside of our body and those produced outside regulate the work of those receptors. Every time you take cbd drink, it affects the (ECS) and keeps your body in a healthy state.
This condition is known as homeostasis.
How It’s Made?
You must be wondering why in the first place you want to make a cannabis drink? Aside from its healing properties, this component has a beneficial effect on our nervous system. Therefore, if you are going through a stressful time in your life, or you have an anxiety disorder, then you might want to consider cannabidiol oil.
However, the bioavailability issue imposes itself, or at what degree your body can absorb this compound. The majority of beverages are infused with either CBD oil, which uses carbon dioxide as a solvent to extract active components or CBD isolates.
Even though these drinks may have some effect on your body, they tend to achieve poor bioavailability. The only way for cannabidiol to enter our bloodstream and accomplish a high degree of efficiency is when it’s made to be stable and water-soluble.
However, establishments that offer such type of refreshment don’t have nanotechnology necessary for this process. For that reason, most of the drinks you consume won’t be absorbed directly into the bloodstream.
On the other hand, to enhance the absorption of cbd beverages, the drink will need to be infused with shelf-stable, water-soluble cannabidiol. You could add creamer to a cup of infusion, which will increase the absorption of this compound into the blood and lymphatic circulation. However, it won’t have any significant effect, since it’s not bio-enhanced CBD.
Keep in mind that the majority of cannabidiol refreshments you consume in food and drinks has already been extracted before they hit your body at all.
How Important is Stability?
Another obstacle the industry is facing right now is the stability of cannabidiol infused drinks. Even with the use of a binding agent, water and oil tend to separate over time, often known as a sedimentation effect. Additionally, sedimentation can decrease the bioavailability.
However, many companies and establishments are focusing on unique compounds to improve stability. Actually, they are applying nanoemulsions in food and drinks, which isn’t a revolutionary breakthrough. Back in 2006, an article was published in the Journal of Physics, which concluded that nanoemulsions showed improved shelf consistency.
Considering how poorly regulated cannabis market is in the U.S., manufacturers still need to prove that stability. In the chemical context, emulsified doesn’t mean compound is dissolved. So, to use the term water-soluble is not technically correct.
This is one of the reasons why average customers tend to be misled. We have claims which don’t support the scientific evidence. However, since we are in cannabis bubble now, it is crucial to separate facts from hype.
But, when we put this issue aside, any cannabidiol beverage has a great taste and binding agents don’t affect the texture or taste of the drink.
Are There Any Alternatives for Emulsions?
Companies such as Recess have gone for advanced emulsion technologies, while many smaller manufacturers decided to take a different approach. For instance, some of them use powdered CBD isolate to mix with cocktails.
In most cases, the isolate is extracted using CO2 and cryo-ethanol technologies. As we already mentioned, there are different forms of cannabidiol, but so far, a powdered version has proven to be the best in terms of stability.
On the other hand, water-soluble drinks include putting the powder into cocktails, and if it sits a while, it will dissolve a bit better.
Another form, spectrum oils are extracted from non-psychoactive hemp plants. However, they still contain traces of THC, usually 0.3%. This caused the leading manufacturers such as Young America, Recess, and Protein Bar, to choose an isolate or broad-spectrum options, instead of full-spectrum.
Additionally, this approach helps brands avoid false positives on drug testing, allowing their customers to enjoy fresh beverages without involving any risks.
But, when we consider the market’s preferences, they are moving toward fuller-spectrum oils. However, it’s challenging to determine potential benefits among spectrums and isolates, due to intense federal restrictions placed on cannabidiol research.
For that reason, Young American uses some form of a water-soluble CBD isolates, or they are buying a finished product – already infused with cannabidiol.
Moreover, some establishments allow guests to add 15 milligrams of water-soluble tincture to any cocktail or drink, or they have CBD infused beverages prepared. This is an excellent way to have some fun and experiment with different ingredients or type of drinks.
CBD Infused Drinks Types
CBD Infused Water
The newest form to hit the market is cbd infused water made by mixing water with cannabidiol particles. Based on numerous claims, this is the most comfortable way to get your cannabidiol fix and obtain the potential health benefits.
However, consumers often face one particular difficulty, and that’s a small amount of cannabidiol in their drinks. Unfortunately, many of them aren’t even aware of this fact.
Usually, per serving, you can expect between 2-5 mg of an active compound. Even though the dosage may vary, the majority of studies that evaluated the positive effects of cannabis, recommend at least 15 mg per day.
On the other hand, many brands use nanotechnology as an excuse for low cannabidiol content. They explain that particles obtained by nanotechnology will improve your body’s ability to utilize and absorb cannabidiol, which is not entirely true.
Research in the field of nanotechnology and its effects on compound absorption is quite limited. We require more studies which will confirm these claims and justify the use of cannabis beverages.
We already mention the stability issue, considering how unstable cannabidiol is. Careful preparation and adequate storage will help keep its medical properties. If CBD is exposed to air or light, then it may lose potential beneficial effects.
One study researched how particular storage conditions affected the cannabinoids. They’ve managed to determine that light exposure leads to the most considerable loss of this compound. On the other hand, the temperature doesn’t affect its consistency, but air causes significant damage.
As soon as you open the bottle, cannabidiol starts to break down immediately. According to these findings, this beverage is unlikely to improve your health condition or offer any healing properties.
It’s not a secret that cannabis can offer a lot of benefits, but CBD infused water contains minimal amounts. Of course, you can test its features, but if you want something stronger, then you should stick to other cannabis products.
The Most Buzzing CBD Drinks
Amount: 20 mg cannabidiol per can
Packaging: vibrant colors and marijuana sign are not as unique as other designs, but these features help Sprig packaging stand out. They work to Sprig’s advantage, considering it is sold and distributed in cafes, natural stores, and convenience stores across the U.S.
Taste: the flavor of melon is by far the most popular among the consumers. Also, the brand tends to use a lot of citrusy flavors, where three out of four are marked as citrus. When it comes to sweetened and unsweetened version, you won’t notice much of a difference.
Result: it will take you a full can of Sprig CBD to fully experience the effects, but once it happens, you can expect 100% Zen mood. For that reason, we don’t recommend drinking Sprig on workdays. Maybe it’s best saved for the weekends because it can cause a slight impairment.
Price: a 12-pack approximately costs around $50.
Amount: 10 mg cannabidiol per can
Packaging: pastel-colored cans and font resembling Instagram stories, make this beverage ideal for millennials. Many consumers find the packaging quite attractive, and we have to agree.
Taste: Recess features new flavored combinations, which are quite popular among customers. A lot of people lean to peach and ginger combo, while hibiscus is the next on their list. The blackberry chai is the least favorite due to a peculiar mixture of spices and carbonation.
Result: Recess CBD contains anxiety-busting cannabidiol, as well as energy-boosting components such as ginseng and Schisandra, which make it a suitable workday beverage. We should point out that ginseng stimulates the brain, while Schisandra increases thinking speed and focus.
Therefore, many people find this beverage to be an excellent solution when they require an extra kick. It can improve mental abilities and help you get through a busy day.
Price: 8-pack costs $40.
Amount: 15 mg per 14 oz. bottle
Packaging: Vybes comes in a 14 oz. glass bottle, featuring a black cap and a paper label. In terms of design, it’s minimalistic but very effective. Additionally, each taste has its matching label color.
Taste: according to customers’ reviews, these products are quite tasty. Compared to other brands, they use sweeteners with zero calories and only relying on natural sugars from the juice. Vybes cbd drink is a light and refreshing beverage, and also features flavors which will satisfy everyone’s taste.
You will find combinations such as blubbery mint, peach ginger, and strawberry lavender.
Result: considering it doesn’t contain a high amount of active component, Vybes can be an excellent refreshment for afternoon handouts with your friends.
Price: the product retails for $8 per bottle.
Amount: 7 mg per 12 oz. bottle
Packaging: comes in a see-through glass bottle and features an elegant and sleek design. It might resemble a Pellegrino bottle, but that only contributes to its design.
Taste: Sweet Reason comes in three different flavors, cucumber and mint, grape, and strawberry and lavender. Many describe it as the tastiest sparkling water. Since it’s a naturally flavored drink, it doesn’t contain sugar, sodium, sweeteners, or any artificial ingredients.
Result: each bottle has 7 mg of hemp-extracted cannabidiol, which the company claims it’s enough to boost your balanced and healthy lifestyle, but low to enjoy Sweet Reason every day. This compound has many beneficial effects, such as clearing your mind, minimizing mild discomfort, and reducing stress.
Additionally, it can reduce tension in your muscles, which was caused by too much exercise.
Price: available in more than 150 natural stores, it retails for $39.99 for a 6-pack.
Amount: Known for nearly 2000 years, Kombucha is naturally-carbonated drink, brewed initially in China. Nowadays, you can find a lot of brands making CBD kombucha; however, the dosage of the active component may vary.
For example, 7 ml of CBD will be enough for people who want to enjoy an everyday drink. On the other hand, 15 ml or more are for the individual who wants something stronger and with enhanced effect.
How to make: the process of making Kombucha start by brewing tea leaves or tea bags. Then, you either add scoby or fermented kombucha to the sweetened tea. This mixture should be placed in a glass jar, covered, and left to ferment for ten days.
You can serve Kombucha unflavored, or add fruits, or herbs to adjust the flavor.
Result: Kombucha soda benefits are numerous. It’s considered to have healing properties, such as helping with weight loss, preventing cancer, and lowering down the blood pressure.
CBD Infused Coffees and Teas
Caffeine is probably one of the most harmless drugs in the world. It stimulates brain activity and helps people stay active and alert. Caffeine blocks the receptors in our brain from taking adenosine, a compound which helps us realize when it’s time for sleep.
But, when our brain can’t detect adenosine, then we feel energetic and awake. On the other hand, cannabis plant consists of cannabinoids, with THC being the most popular one. This compound transmits signals between neurons in the brain, stopping our chain of thoughts and making us relaxed.
However, cannabidiol makes sure those breaks don’t happen, and when combined with caffeine, it can boost the brain’s activity, improve mood, and help you focus better.
Making cbd infused coffee is a complicated process, and it’s not as simple as putting a couple of drops of cannabidiol into coffee grounds, before making a new pot. During the roasting and grinding coffee releases natural oils, which are used as a carrier for CBD.
If this isn’t done, then coffee may taste strange. There are plenty of health benefits that cannabis coffee offers. For example, it can serve as pain relief, prevent anxiety or depression, and even help with chronic seizures.
If you prefer tea over coffee, then you will be pleased to know that this process is far easier than previously mentioned one.
First of all, boil the kettle and start preparing your favorite tea. If you are using green tea, then soak them in cold water for a couple of minutes. This will help them lose the bitterness. However, you can always use tea bags.
Add tea to the boiling water and let it steep. You will find on the packaging how long does it take for the tea to be ready.
Once you finish brewing tea, it’s time to add CBD oil. Considering this compound doesn’t mix well with water, you should add a splash of milk, to combine everything together. Make sure tea is cold before you drink it up.
If this process requires too much time, you can always buy cannabidiol-infused tea in many natural stores.
Another way to infuse CBD is to make a cocktail, and it seems like everyone is experimenting with this compound these days. Compared to THC, which can impair our judgment and cause cannabis high, cannabidiol is usually linked to feelings of euphoria, and relaxation.
Additionally, this compound is often applied in medicine as pain relief, or to decrease anxiety, and alleviate nausea. However, when it comes to its use in the beverage industry, we don’t only have CBD oil, but tincture as well. Of course, they both behave differently, considering tincture is alcohol-based.
Outside of the flavor, these two forms integrate differently as well. For example, oil-based cannabidiol floats on top of the drink; you can see the texture, smell it, and taste it. This type will integrate perfectly into any cocktail which has a generous amount of foam or head on it.
On the other hand, tincture blends into cocktail flawlessly, just like any other alcohol. When it comes to dose, it all depends on the person. However, the majority of cocktails start with the 25 mg of cannabidiol. It’s up to you whether you need a stronger dose or not.
If you are mixing it with alcohol, then it’s best to keep it a 15 mg per drink. Also, pay attention to AVB, or alcohol by volume, which measures the volume of alcohol in a particular beverage. The more alcohol the drink has, the less you’ll experience the effects of cannabidiol.
But, too much of this compound will make you sleepy. When choosing a drink, keep in mind that cannabis oil has a strong taste and smell, which is not the case with a tincture.
The Benefits of Drinking CBD
Natural pain relief: you get to avoid prescription drugs and over the counter medicines. Cannabidiol could be a natural alternative to traditional medications. Based on some studies conducted on mice and rats, researchers managed to discover that CBD significantly minimized pain and chronic inflammation.
Soothing abilities: people suffering from anxiety and who tend to work in a stressful environment can experience positive benefits of cannabis drinks. It can calm your body without affecting your mind or altering consciousness.
Fighting cancer: back in the 1960s, researchers in Israel were the first to discover cannabidiol and suggested that it may have healing properties. The modern studies indicate that CBD is a potent antioxidant, which can potentially protect the cells from the influence of free radicals.
Improves well-being: the molecules of cannabidiol have the ability to inspire a natural sense of calm and promote natural ease with its consumers. When it’s infused in drinks, this compound is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. Therefore, when consuming cbd infused drinks, you are more likely to experience a calm effect than with capsules or food.
No one can dispute the potential health benefits of cannabidiol. Even now, when technology is evolving every day, we have some new forms of this compound, which makes this market quite lucrative. However, before you decide to test some of these beverages, you should know the potential risks, as well as its advantages.
Fortunately, in this article, we tried to explain some of the basics, such as what is cbd infused drinks and how to make cbd drinks. This will provide you with a general idea on what to avoid, and what products to try.
Regardless of all the facts you read, drinking cbd infusions can be an exciting way to experience something different, and give yourself a much-needed break.