There are several ways you can consume cannabis. You can eat it, drink it, smoke it, apply it topically, or take it as a capsule. If you want to get a little more creative, you can even take it as a suppository! Point is, you’ve got options.
One option that’s become increasingly popular is vaping. We recently described what vaporizers are, how they work, and the benefits they offer. In this post, we’re going to expand on those benefits by taking a closer look at some of the main reasons cannabis users like to vape.
The fundamental difference between smoking and vaping is that no combustion occurs when you vape. While this may seem like a meaningless scientific distinction, it has a profound impact on your health. Here’s what Health Canada has to say about it:
Vapourization of cannabis has been explored as an alternative to smoking. The potential advantages of vapourization include the formation of a smaller quantity of toxic by-products such as carbon monoxide, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and tar, as well as a more efficient extraction of Δ9-THC (and CBD) from the cannabis material. The subjective effects and plasma concentrations of Δ9-THC obtained by vapourization of cannabis are comparable to those obtained by smoking cannabis. In addition, the study reported that vapourization was well tolerated with no reported adverse effects, and was preferred over smoking by the test subjects.
In layman's terms: a vaporizer ensures you ingest more of the compounds you want, like THC and CBD, and less of the stuff you don’t, like carbon monoxide and tar.
If you’re used to smoking weed, the idea of temperature control may seem both foreign and pointless. But there are two good reasons to care about it.
The first reason is flavour. When you aren’t just burning your weed to a crisp, you can actually taste it. As dried flower, for example, cannabis is somewhat similar to the herbs you sprinkle into any number of recipes to enhance the taste.
The second reason is that different temperatures produce different highs. This is because different chemical components within cannabis are released at different temperatures. For example, if you’re vaping a strain of cannabis that contains both THC and CBD, you can control whether you ingest just the THC or both compounds by changing the temperature of your vaporizer, since the boiling point of THC is about 40 degrees fahrenheit lower than CBD.
Because different compounds have unique effects, controlling temperature gives you influence over how vaping makes you feel. When you set fire to a joint, on the other hand, you’re entirely at the mercy of the strain you’ve chosen.
High-quality vaporizers can take a beating, last years and are resistant to the elements.
While as good a method as any for the backyard, vaping is an especially convenient way to enjoy cannabis when you’re camping, hiking or just out for a stroll. Our Summit+, for example, was designed for outdoor enthusiasts in mind. Trust us when we say it holds up better than a joint when you go from car to canoe to hiking trail to campfire.
Most cannabis vaporizers are made for dry materials. This means you could vape any herb or spice of your choice. It’d be weird, but you could.
More pertinently, vaporizers are often equipped to handle cannabis in multiple forms - e.g. concentrates as well as dried flower. Some even vaporize oil extracts.
If you enjoy cannabis in all its forms, a vaporizer is a good thing to own. It’s also handy if you’ve ever wondered what basil vapor tastes like.
Some vaporizers are portable, others are desktop. Both types have their own advantages, which will prove more suitable for different types of users. The important thing is that you’ve got options.
If you only use cannabis at home, a desktop vaporizer makes sense, especially if you usually use it in social settings, like when friends are over. If you like to use cannabis when you’re out and about, and want a safe and discreet way to consume it, a portable vaporizer is a great choice.
Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from getting the best of both worlds, by having one of each.
Using a vaporizer is easy. You put dry, ground material (or whatever your vaporizer is built for) into the chamber, turn it on and wait for the device to heat. No looking for papers, no fumbling to roll a joint (some of you are terrible at it, admit it), and no wondering where the hell you put that lighter.
Additionally, the absence of smoke means vaporizers can be used in settings where smoking is disallowed. For example, many apartments and condo buildings prohibit residents from smoking indoors, because of the pungent smell and potential smoke damage. Vaping eschews both these problems, making it virtually undetectable, and completely harmless to your surroundings.
Discretion is also easier in public, since the smell a vaporizer produces is less intense than a joint, and vapor is far less visible than smoke.
Vaporizers vary in cost, with cheap ones starting around $30, and high-end options exceeding $400. As with most consumer goods, price is somewhat representative of quality, though absolutely not without fail.
To illustrate how vaping can save you money, let’s say you spend $100 on a vaporizer, tax included. If you’ve chosen a quality product, you can expect it to last at least a few of years, over which period you’ll spend less on rolling papers and lighters. These may seem like nickel and dime expenses, but they can add up for regular users.
Still, the real savings come from increasing the potency of the cannabis itself. Because vaporizers don’t cause combustion, less weed is wasted during consumption - i.e. none is burned off. In other words, you can buy less without consuming less.
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