As the popularity of CBD oil continues to rise, many people, for some bizarre reason are continuing to use vaporizers to consume the oil.
I am sure they have their reasons. The problem we have now though is a series of mysterious deaths which authorities are linking to people vaping CBD oil. But, whilst I am not a fan of crime dramas, I have watched enough of them to know that just because the deaths all have ‘vaping CBD oil’ as a commonality does not mean that this is the cause. So, is vaping CBD oil safe?
According to Vice.com:
The problem many CBD vapers have faced recently seems to stem mainly from poor regulation over the vaping market in general, and the subsequent unreliable quality of any vape or vape oil.
It seems that Vice is suggesting that it is not CBD oil that is unsafe, but an unregulated industry that is allowing poor quality and even dangerous products onto the market. We have seen a sudden increase in CBD vaping related illness and death but does this suggest that something has happened recently in the industry to cause this sudden change in statistics?
Experts and existing evidence largely agree, though, that CBD itself, even when vaped, is largely safe. But that is only if you can get your hands on unadulterated CBD tinctures to vape.
Again, Vice suggests that CBD in itself is safe, even when vaped.
Like anything in life, nothing is good for you in excess though.
Extreme cases aside, the common sense approach seems to be to get your hands on a pure ‘unadulterated’ product. But, given that your CBD oil is from a reputable source and does not contain mysterious additives, surely the risks are virtually non-existent, right? Well, not according to Michelle Peace, a toxicologist and vaping expert at Virginia Commonwealth University:
“When you inhale something as opposed to eating something,” the way many other CBD products are consumed, “you do have to be careful about dosing because inhalation is a much more efficient way to get drugs into the system and be active.”
Still, it doesn’t feel like it is being suggested that vaping is dangerous, but let’s just say, it’s not exactly a health food like some people are making out. Then again, there has to be a difference between vaping pure, clean CBD oil and vaping a ‘cartridge’ which it seems many of the vaping victims did. From greenentrepeneur.com :
The most prevalent problem on the illegal vape market are concentrate cartridges that contain high levels of pesticides. When consumed at concentrated levels, inhaled pesticides cause health problems. To ensure that vape cartridges don’t contain hazardous pesticide level, it’s important to purchase from reputable brands that disclose third-party test results and include screening for pesticides.
Cutting agents can be added to enhance the intensity of the vapor cloud and overall mouthfeel of the vapors. Common cutting agents that are sometimes infused with cannabis oil and e-cigarette vape juice include:
- Polyethylene glycol (PEG):a cutting agent used in vape liquids to keep the product evenly mixed.
- Propylene glycol (PG):a binding agent that is added to cannabis vape cartridges because of its ability to foster even vape draws.
- Vegetable glycerin (VG):Added to vape liquids to help generate large vape clouds for the user.
Although the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has labeled these cutting agents as safe for human ingestion, questions remain about what happens when these compounds are inhaled. A 2010 study, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, found that inhaling PG could potentially exacerbate asthma and allergies. Additional research also suggests that, when vaporized at high temperatures, both PEG and PG breaks down into the carcinogens formaldehyde and acetaldehyde.
Yep, you read that correctly: formaldehyde and acetaldehyde. Substances that are considered straight out carcinogens are being inhaled directly into the lungs with no filter. Besides these added agents, multiple other compounds are being blamed for the deaths including Vitamin E.
Martin Dockrell, Head of Tobacco Control at Public Health England says:
“A full investigation is not yet available but we’ve heard reports that most of these cases were linked to people using illicit vaping fluid bought on the streets or homemade, some containing cannabis products, like THC, or synthetic cannabinoids, like Spice.”
Again, Dockrell is echoing the sentiment that it is not CBD that is to blame, but illicit cartridges that contain other substances. Talking about spice is opening a whole new can of worms.
The synthetic version of THC which has now been outlawed in many places across the world
From my own experience:
It began with a feeling of absolute dread, followed by a feeling of being utterly alone in the universe. It was finished by a sense of utter depression and suicidal thoughts, something that I have never experienced before in this life.
I had other friends who experienced alien abduction and painful anal probing as well as numerous other nightmarish visions whilst trying the herb ‘spice’. Again, this might lead one to think that Spice itself is bad, but the utter variance of experience might suggest that it comes down, once again, to unregulated products in the market.
There was one brand of spice known as ‘puff’ which was made in New Zealand. It looked different from the others. It was dark green with hints of purple in it. It lifted one into a state of euphoria and unconditional love and intelligence. The high lasted no more than 20 minutes after which one was sober without the slightest trace of a hangover or even tiredness but instead a mild feeling of wellbeing.
It was an incredible drug and one could be inclined to think that perhaps this is where the original inspiration for ‘spice’ came from. Anyway, ‘puff’ along with all the others was banned some years ago.
It seems like the common theme here is that, whilst vaping itself is still considered safe, certain ‘bootleg vape cartridges’ are not.
Last week, the New York state department of health shed more light on the mystery with reports that 10 out of 18 of the bootleg THC cartridges they had received from patients had tested positive for vitamin E acetate, a compound most often used in topical skin creams and supplements – Rolling Stone Magazine
So the underlying lesson here might be: When it comes to CBD oil, why not just put it under your tongue? If you really must vape, then vape a pure oil from a reputable company. If it were me, I would avoid vape cartridges, but, again, if you must, please check the ingredients.
It seems that vaping is generally considered a healthy alternative to smoking. Possibly, given the chance, these latest problems are great PR opportunities for those to whom CBD oil and vaping are a threat, so we must not get carried away by these latest issues and instead, use a common-sense approach to CBD oil and vaping.
This article is a collection of ideas by the author. It does not constitute facts or advice in any form. Please consult a medical professional and check the legality in your area before purchasing or taking CBD products.
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