Special Feature: COOKING WITH CBD OIL
Important Disclaimer: The information on this page is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease. The information provided is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from healthcare professionals. Consult your physician or healthcare professional before consuming CBD, especially if you are on other medications, may be pregnant, or are under 18 years of age.
After being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, I wanted to find something else that would help my symptoms. I am already on a DMD (disease-modifying drug) for my MS, and I didn’t want to take more medications for all my symptoms. Recently, I discovered the benefits of CBD oil, and it is now part of my daily life and has been helping tremendously. Cooking with CBD oil has become my preferred way to ingest it. My symptoms include nerve and joint pain, muscle twitching and soreness, and sometimes have trouble sleeping. Fortunately, CBD seems to help all these things. The best part is that I found something that is more natural, and legal!
I have started cooking with CBD oil, just to make it fun and easier to ingest. Sometimes I get bored with taking it sublingually, so I wanted to find better ways to include it in my daily life.
WHAT IS CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, and it is a naturally occurring compound found in the hemp plant. Though it comes from hemp, it is non-psychoactive, meaning it doesn’t get you “high”. THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, is the compound in hemp that is responsible for the high feeling. CBD oil can only legally have below 0.3% THC content, meaning I PROMISE you won’t have any psychoactive effects. CBD can come in several different forms, such as oil tinctures, edibles, and even in vapes to smoke from. There is even CBD dominant marijuana, but I believe you still need a medical card for that (not entirely sure). CBD oil is becoming legal and more widely used, which is great news because it has so many benefits! In fact, a bill just passed that is allowing the military to use CBD products. Cool, huh? Also, CBD won’t get you in trouble on a drug test.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
CBD has an abundance of great benefits. It has been shown to help:
- Reduce stress
- Relives anxiety and depression
- Relieve pain
- Improves sleep
- Maintain brain health
- Lowers inflammation
- Improve GI symptoms
- Muscle spasms
- Neurological disorders – Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, MS, etc.
- Autoimmune diseases – MS, RA, Psoriasis, Fibromyalgia, etc.
- Improves mood
CBD has been shown to help both humans and pets. I have recently seen CBD pet treats! My best friend uses CBD for her pets because they get anxiety, and they have joint and back pain. I have been playing with a lot of different recipes and have decided that cooking with CBD oil is my favorite way to take it.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I TAKE?
The thing about CBD is that it isn’t like a pill you pop when you need your headache to go away in 30 minutes. It may not show effects after just one day, but it is shown to have more benefits when incorporating it into your daily routine. A lot of people start to see benefits after taking it over the course of a week.
I recommend that you start with a small dosage to see how it affects you. To figure out the dosage in your bottle, follow this math:
(CBD in MG) / (Bottle size in ML) = CBD in mg/mL
For instance, I use 1mL of the Full Spectrum 1000mg CBD Oil from a 30mL bottle.
1000mg / 30mL = 33.33mg of CBD for every 1mL of oil.
The dropper in my Calluna Labs Full Spectrum CBD oil includes markings, so I can take 0.5mL (half that dose) if I wanted to.
You could also take it by the drops. 1 drop of a 1000mg CBD bottle would be 1.0mg.
Some people figure their dosage based on their weight and strength. I don’t have time or patience for all that math, so I listen to my body and determine how much I need from there. To calculate your specific dosage, visit this CBD Dosage article
WHY COOK WITH CBD OIL?
Cooking with CBD oil is relatively new, even though we have seen a plethora of marijuana edibles sweeping the nation since it became legal or medicinal in many states. For so long marijuana has been considered a drug, an illegal substance, something that only stoners and hippies partake in. The idea that CBD and THC come from the same plant gets it an extremely negative stigma. Here’s the thing – we need to stop thinking of these things as a drug. Instead, we need to understand and accept that CBD can help us heal and find relief from so many ailments.
I take a few medications and supplements for my multiple sclerosis. Being involved in holistic nutrition and natural healing, I have never liked taking medication. Since MS is a progressive disease, I take the meds I need to keep from getting worse. I still have symptoms, in which CBD greatly helps. The thing about it is that it gets so dull and boring taking my CBD oil sublingually every day. Cooking with CBD oil not only makes it easier to take, but it removes the stigma of it being a “drug”. Adding it to my food makes it feel more like a natural supplement than just another medication I must remember to take. Another reason I love adding it to food is because it helps mask the flavor. Not that it tastes horrible but adding it to food essentially makes the flavor disappear.
Adding CBD oil to your food allows your body to absorb it over a slower period of time. Ingesting the oil sublingually helps to get it into your system faster. When adding it to food, it can help me feel better all day instead of quickly going through my system.
HOW DO I COOK WITH CBD OIL?
CBD + FAT
CBD is fat-soluble, meaning it absorbs into the body more easily when added to fat, hence ‘CBD oil’. When I add CBD oil to food, I make sure that the food has some form of fat in it. Oil, avocado, coconut milk, full-fat yogurt, a peanut butter – the list goes on and on. You don’t have to add it to fat, necessarily. My friend Erica (a CBD educator) told me that even eating a few almonds along with it will be fine.
TURMERIC + CBD
Eating turmeric along with CBD can have tremendous benefits. Turmeric has amazing health benefits such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-aging, and anti-depressant properties. Alone, CBD and turmeric are both powerful. But together, they are stronger and more healing. They both also need fat to absorb properly in the body. Turmeric is also absorbed better with black pepper, which is why you may see black pepper added into turmeric or curcumin supplements or healthy foods.
HEAT = BAD
Be careful of heat. Heat is the #1 killer of terpenes found in CBD (the compounds that help enable health benefits in hemp). Heating the CBD oil directly can denature the oil and lessen the potency of it. Instead of adding it while cooking, add it afterward as a finishing oil or add it to foods that don’t need to be heated. I like putting mine in sauces, smoothies, vinaigrettes, and even whipped cream! Adding it to hot tea? Put it in after you’ve taken it off the heat! Another great idea is to sprinkle it on roasted veggies after they are done cooking.
AMOUNT TO ADD
The amount of CBD to add to your food can vary. Decide the dosage you want, and then figure out how many servings your dish has. For my tzatziki sauce, I like to eat ¼ – ½ cup at a time. My recipe yields 1 ½ cups of tzatziki, giving me 3-6 servings. I want to ensure I take my full dose of CBD, so I add 3 doses into my sauce. Alternatively, my chimichurri sauce yielded many more servings than that, and I wasn’t sure how much to add. In some instances, it may be best to add your CBD oil to your own personal serving. This way you ensure you get your full dose!
WHERE TO PURCHASE?
It’s extremely important to purchase high-quality CBD that has been lab-tested and approved. It seems like you can find CBD anywhere now. I’ve seen it at paint studios, grocery stores, cafes, and even gas stations. Yes, gas stations. And no, I don’t necessarily recommend buying it from there. The CBD oil I currently use is by Calluna Labs, a company local to Arizona. It is a relatively new company, but it is lab-tested which is what I look for. They also don’t use any artificial ingredients, pesticides, heavy metals, or chemicals. It is a women-owned business and strives to empower women, which is another aspect of the company I love.