The Science, Side Effects, and Safety of Vaping CBD

The Science, Side Effects, and Safety of Vaping CBD

This article is by Scott Mazza, Co-Founder of Vitality CBD

In recent years, vaping cannabidiol (CBD) has surged in popularity as a convenient and potentially therapeutic method of consuming the cannabis compound. In fact, the CBD vape industry is growing at an annual rate of 25%.

However, amidst the hype, questions linger regarding its safety and efficacy. Of course, smoking in general is more harmful than vaping, but where does that leave vaping overall, especially with CBD? Let’s explore the science, consider potential side effects, and emphasize the importance of safety measures for vaping CBD.

What The Science Says About Vaping And CBD

From tobacco to cannabis and both of their related compounds, smoking of all forms has been on the decline for years. Conversely, vaping is growing as a safer alternative. And, with emerging studies backing up the anecdotal claims that CBD can help consumers with anxiety, inflammation, and sleeplessness, it’s no wonder that vaping CBD is on the rise as a popular means for ingestion.

Take anxiety and sleep, for instance. In a phase 2 clinical trial, which I previously wrote about here, cannabis-naive patients with anxiety were treated with a high-CBD, full-spectrum oil for four weeks. Just after one week of treatment, patients saw a significant reduction in their anxiety levels and later achieved and maintained symptom reduction with few side effects. Similarly, in another study on CBD and sleep, which I also covered here, scientists found that low doses of CBD are as effective as the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin in improving sleep quality.

The science looks good for CBD but the jury is out on vaping itself. What we do know warrants some caution. Vaping is “safer” than smoking but that doesn’t mean it’s “safe”. Vaping any compound irritates the inner lining of the lungs. Further, vaping CBD – while it isn’t addictive like nicotine – is considered worse for your health than vaping nicotine. This study from Roswell Park Cance Center found that vaping CBD causes higher levels of inflammation and oxidative stress than vaping nicotine, therefore leading to worse outcomes for the lungs.

What You Should Know About The Side Effects

Vaping side effects are real and include popcorn lung, increased risk of lung or heart disease, and compromised immune health. What’s more, the vape oil ingredients matter just as much as the vaping itself. Many CBD vape products – thanks to low-quality producers and a lack of regulation – contain a cocktail of artificial flavorings, additives, and sometimes nicotine that can have detrimental health effects when heated and inhaled. The long-term impacts of regularly vaping CBD are still a big question mark that gives health experts pause.

The takeaway? Vaping CBD, especially long-term, is not a risk-free endeavor. More research is needed to understand its health implications fully. In the meantime, CBD consumers are wise to proceed with caution and vet their vape products rigorously.

Safety First: What to Know About CBD Vape Products

Product quality and safety are critical concerns in the rapidly growing CBD vape market. Here are key things to keep in mind to minimize risk:

  • Only buy from reputable brands that provide third-party lab test results. Trustworthy CBD companies will pay to have their vape products independently tested to verify CBD potency, check for THC levels below the legal 0.3% limit, and screen for contaminants like heavy metals, pesticides, and residual solvents. Learn to read CBD lab reports and take a look at the certificate of analysis before purchasing.
  • Read customer reviews and industry sources to assess brands. Check trusted CBD news sites and online forums for brand recommendations and warnings. Extensively read customer reviews to see if there are any consistent red flags regarding product quality, adverse effects, customer service, and more.
  • Opt for simple, natural ingredient lists. Avoid CBD vape products with a long list of artificial ingredients, flavorings, and additives which can raise contamination risks. The safest CBD vape oils contain just pure CBD extract, and perhaps natural cannabis terpenes for flavor, blended with a carrier like hemp oil, MCT oil, or propylene glycol.
  • Pace yourself and listen to your body. If you’re new to vaping CBD, start with just a puff or two and wait at least 30 minutes before inhaling again. Stop if you notice any negative side effects like headache, nausea, rapid heartbeat, or allergic reaction. Your ideal dosage will depend on factors like body weight, metabolism, and CBD tolerance. Gradually increase your dose only as needed to achieve the desired effects.

Vaping CBD Responsibly

While vaping can be a convenient way to consume CBD, the current science raises concerns about its safety, particularly its impact on lung health. Evidence suggests CBD vaping may lead to lung and heart issues, and exposure to contaminants in unregulated products.

The smart approach is to be a cautious, educated consumer: only buy third-party tested CBD vapes from reputable brands, choose simple and natural formulas, pace your intake, and stop if you experience adverse effects. Vaping CBD may be best as a short-term or occasional method rather than a daily habit, given the risks. Ultimately, old-fashioned oral or topical CBD might be the safest bet.

As we learn more, the CBD vape industry and consumers must prioritize safety, transparency, and quality control. Only then can we harness CBD’s potential while protecting public health in the process.