“When you cook with CBD, you have to be careful not to heat the mixture at too high a temperature”, advises Meg. A search on CBD websites brings up details of CBD evaporating and losing its 'health' properties past 160–180C, though "there is also little understanding of what happens to CBD when you cook it or add it to a drink", says Professor Sumnall.
CBD is normally sold in combination with a base oil, such as olive or coconut, as a supplement, vape, gel to be applied to the skin and more recently, in food and drink.
However, it is not clear whether it would be advisable to consume higher doses of CBD than is currently in these products. “I do worry that if people believe a small amount is good and it’s completely safe, they may believe a large amount is better, says Dr Sarah Jarvis, GP and Clinical Director of Patient Info."
Is CBD a miracle cure?
Coffees and cakes may contain between 5–10mg of CBD. But clinical trials administer doses of around 100–1,500mg per day, with medical supervison.
So why are we increasingly seeing CBD-labelled coffees, cakes and croissants in shops, cafes and restaurants all over the UK?
What is it doing in food?
“Businesses have picked up on growing public awareness and have been promoting their products online, in high-street retailers and increasingly in food and drink,” says Professor in Substance Use, Harry Sumnall, Liverpool John Moores University. We spoke to chefs at two restaurants who use CBD on their menus in completely different ways.
"CBD is actually hard to cook with. It has a disgusting taste", says Greg Hanger, head chef at Kalifornia Kitchen in London, who has created an entire CBD afternoon tea . Greg pays attention to the type of oil that the CBD is mixed with, saying "coconut oil CBD is great in Thai cooking balanced with coriander, ginger and lime. Olive oil CBD is great for Middle Eastern foods like hummus or you could even mask the flavour with rosemary and put it in cheesy sauce or mashed potatoes ."
For this same reason, CBD and THC go hand in hand. For those that may experience negative side effects alongside THC, like anxiety or paranoia, CBD is thought to mellow these out.
While tolerance to these cannabinoids differ from one patient to the next, it’s always best to implement the golden rule of cannabis–– start low, go slow ––until you find what works best for your body.
It Takes Two to Make a Thing Go Right?
But first, what are Cannabinoids?
Did you know research shows there are between 80 and 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant? That’s not even counting the roughly 300 non-cannabinoid chemicals it produces, which shows just how little we’ve skimmed the surface thus far on medical marijuana.