This article’s by Christine Felt (TW: @ChristineFelt)
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When we think of cannabis, we tend to visualize it either as a plant, or a joint.
The second association would probably be marijuana muffins or some similar edibles. However, what is escaping everybody’s attention is the fact that cannabis can be enjoyed as a form of tea.
So, if marijuana infused products are your cup of tea, now you can literally drink it!
The History of Tea
When we take a look back at its origins, we can see that cannabis tea has quite a long history. It’s supposed to have been first made in India, which is no wonder when you know marijuana is regarded as one of 5 sacred plants in India.
The drink is thought to have been first used around 1000 BC as a part of religious ceremonies.
Similarly, Jamaicans are known to have been using cannabis tea for quite some time, but for different reasons. One of them is reducing the feeling of nausea with future mothers-to-be, though contemporary medicine is definitely against it.
Nevertheless, in neither of these countries is marijuana tea made by simply soaking the leaves or buds into boiled water and waiting for five minutes.
Therefore, let’s see how it’s properly done before we focus on the advantages of this intriguing herbal tea.
How to Make Cannabis Tea
First of all, you can choose to make it from scratch, or you can decide to buy one of the commercial cannabis teas on the market.
As a matter of fact, cannabis tea is just one out of many cannabis infused beverages. There are cannabis wine, coffee, and soda, too. The tea, naturally, is the easiest to make.
Prior to any actions, you should decide what you are going to use: stems or buds?
On the one hand, making stem tea is an excellent use of the leftover plant residue from harvesting cannabis.
On the other hand, such tea will not be able to provide you with the same psychoactive effect as the tea made with buds brimming with THC.
Can’t choose? Keep in mind you can use a blend of leftover stems and flowers 🙂
Either way, the production process is fairly the same. You’re going to need cannabis, water, coffee filters, and a binding agent. We shall expand on those as we go.
Extra tea bags are optional, i.e. you can add some other tea of your preference to the mixture just for the sake of flavor.
If you’re using buds, separate them from the stems and seeds. Next, take a sharp knife or a grinder to chop them into tiny pieces (but do not turn them into powder). If it’s stems you’re using, you can choose to break them by hand, or to grind them, too.
In order to make 3-4 cups of cannabis tea, you’ll need half a cup or a quarter of a cup of your favorite cannabis plant material.
Mix the cannabis with its binding agent, and make sure it is properly coated with fat. However, don’t add too much fat, or it will have the opposite effect (diminishing the THC release).
Now, what is a binding agent? Cannabis tea is special in a way that it needs some kind of binding agent in order for the marijuana to have a greater effect.
Interestingly, THC is not soluble in water. Hence, it needs to bind with the fat in order for you to be able to ingest it and feel the cannabis effect (which is why you are doing all this after all).
The binding agent can be almost anything: butter, coconut oil, olive oil etc. Still, different oils have specific advantages and disadvantages, and among those, coconut oil seems to have the best ratio of downsides and benefits.
Take a tea bag/coffee filter and fill it with the mixture of cannabis and fat source (binding agent). Alternatively, you can use a metal tea ball.
Pour the water into a pot and wait until it simmers (don’t allow it to boil). Next, soak the cannabis tea bag and keep it simmering for 30 minutes. Should the water evaporate too fast, feel free to add some. If you wish to spice it up with some flavor, insert the tea of your own choice to get the specific flavor in the last three minutes.
After 30 minutes, remove the pot from the cooker, and take out the tea bag(s). Allow it to cool for 5 minutes.
Finally, it’s tasting time!
You can sweeten the tea to your own preference if you wish, and start sipping your cannabis tea with pleasure.
How long will it take to feel the effects of cannabis tea?
One of the most frequently asked questions about cannabis tea would be how long it takes to feel its effect, and how long they last.
Similarly to cannabis-infused edibles, you can’t expect that THC to kick in instantly.
Depending on someone’s age and build, the cannabis tea can take from 30 to 90 minutes to show its effects.
Bear in mind that once effects begin, it takes another 4 to 8 hours for the all effects to disappear.
If you’re unsure about the right amount, take a tolerance test by using very small amounts to start. After a few times, you’ll know exactly how much cannabis is perfect for you.
Of course, there is always the option when you can make the tea without any binding agent or fat source, in which case you will get a milder tasting cannabis tea with no psychoactive effects.
Such tea is made with stems or broken flowers which are simply boiled as regular tea, often with extra herbs or spices.
Now, for all those of you who are keen on enjoying their cannabis cup of tea, let’s take a look at all the good things that can come from this ritual.
Benefits of Cannabis Tea
Depending on how regularly you drink your tea, you will without a doubt begin to feel certain benefits.
Medical marijuana has finally gained the recognition it deserves (though, sadly, not in all the world countries), and drinking tea is a much healthier alternative to smoking, for instance. Here is a (long) list of conditions which can be aided with regular tea drinking.
As we have mentioned in our introductory part, cannabis tea is great when it comes to tackling nausea. Feeling sick is one of the side-effects of chemotherapy, which in turn results in loss of appetite. On the other hand, drinking tea will help you feel a bit hungry.
Chronic pain treatment
As opposed to types of pain which last for a short while, chronic pain occurs regularly, and it can even be always present.
For such patients, drinking cannabis tea can bring major satisfaction.
Cannabis has plenty of advantages over ordinary painkillers. First, there is less chance of overdosing. Second, it is not as addictive as treatments with painkillers. Patients with chronic pain who regularly use pain medications usually become intolerant to the dosage after a while.
As for cannabis tea, there are almost no serious side-effects with responsible and careful use.
Everybody struggling with poor digestion and frequent constipation should think about including tea into their daily routine. Cramps can be eliminated as well, and heartburn and acid-reflux can be helped too.
Anxiety and depression
This effect is almost taken for granted as plenty of people without these symptoms are using marijuana for pure enjoyment and relaxation.
However, for those suffering from anxiety and depression, cannabis tea is much more than a soothing drink as it helps them deal with serious issues successfully.
THC from the tea enhances our mood and has neurotransmitter-releasing effects (minimizes the stress hormones). As a result, it is highly efficient in this respect.
Having experienced a long illness, surgery or an injury, one needs all the help to recover and get back to normal. As we have stated, the tea can help with gaining weight since it boosts appetite.
While cannabis is still demonized in some parts of the world as a substance leading to substance abuse, this is far from the truth.
Interestingly, cannabis can be used for helping battling with alcoholism or drug relapses. Cocaine cravings are much easier with regular tea drinking.
Since the effect of marijuana tea is long-lasting, it’s excellent for insomnia or similar conditions requiring an effect that lasts for several hours.
Basically, it is a healthy alternative to sleeping pills.
This simple term can be the core or consequence of a plethora of problems.
Multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease, and even lupus – all these are autoimmune diseases causing different types of inflammation that are treated with great efforts.
Cannabis tea can help reduce inflammation in the body.
Alzheimer’s and dementia
Despite all the advances in medicine, certain diseases are still treated with little success, especially if they concern brain and its neurological functions, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.
However, this is where cannabis tea comes to the rescue. While some studies find no positive effect, research which was done last year suggests THC from cannabis helps our brain fight ageing by eliminating the toxic accumulations responsible for Alzheimer’s.
What is more, cannabis tea is a very practical beverage for several reasons:
- It isn’t as strong – compared to vaporizing or smoking, drinking tea can be prepared as a milder dose, which is quite fine if you were counting on not getting too high. In short, you’ll get that relaxing effect you were going for without too much hassle.
- It’s economical – in case you’re growing your own cannabis, you’ll be able to do something useful with the stems.
- It’s creative – since you’ll be mixing marijuana with oils and possibly add some flavors or extra teas, you can set off to find the perfect combination for you. Eventually, perhaps you could consider a business in making cannabis tea if your mixture proves to be a success among your friends!
- It’s convenient and inoffensive – sometimes you just need to relax without getting any special attention from your environment, which is hard if you are planning on smoking cannabis. Drinking cannabis tea is much more discreet.
Potential Side Effects
Finally, don’t forget we are all unique, both in mind and body.
On that account, you should find out what your ideal dosage is and stick to it. A well known strategy for not getting uncomfortably high is to “start low, go slow”.
That means using a much smaller amount of cannabis than what a recipe calls for. The point is to observe how a small amount makes you feel and only increase the amount gradually if need be.
Nothing is perfect, so the tea can have some side effects, just like all types of cannabis products.
One could experience nausea, dizziness, fatigue, hunger, confusion etc. Nevertheless, we can say the positive effects of cannabis tea outweigh any negative effects for many people.
You should always speak to a trusted medical professional before using cannabis products. Do not solely rely on what you read from publications.
Bearing all the possible contributions to one’s well-being, it seems like cannabis tea, and not ambrosia, was the drink of the gods.
Just prepare one cup, and you’ll see for yourself.
Have some soothing cannabis tea stories you want to share? Let it all out in the comments section below!