It can feel like you need to be able to understand another language to choose the right hemp/CBD product for you. Labels that toss around words like cannabinoids, terpenes, flavinoids, nano-emulsified, and bioavailability can leave your head spinning.
So let’s focus on that last term: bioavailability. While it’s true that different consumption methods of hemp can influence how you experience the effects, that’s not all there is to it. Another lesser-known factor that plays a surprisingly large role in CBD is its bioavailability. Here’s what you need to know.
What Is Bioavailability?
According to the Collins English Dictionary, bioavailability is “the proportion of the dose of a drug that reaches the systemic circulation intact after administration.”
In other words, bioavailability describes how much of a consumed substance actually reaches its place of action where it can unfold its effects. For the cannabinoids found in hemp like CBD, this place is our bloodstream. Depending on how we take CBD, it follows different routes to reach our bloodstream where it can then circulate through our body. The more obstacles it must face getting there, the lower its bioavailability will be.
Since only a proportion of the CBD you’ve consumed actually makes its way into your circulation, you won’t be getting the full effects. For example, if you take CBD edibles with 100mg CBD and a bioavailability of 30 percent, you’ll only actually feel the effects of the 30 mg of CBD that make it to your bloodstream.
Understanding the Role of Bioavailability in CBD Products
In short, a higher bioavailability in CBD means you’ll be getting more from less. In other words, you will get the same beneficial effects from a smaller dosage of CBD.
Bioavailability can be affected by how the CBD was processed (we’ll get to that in a minute), but the consumption method also has a big impact on bioavailability. As mentioned above, there are different obstacles to face when ingesting or applying CBD onto your skin.
CBD edibles (such as gummies) have one of the lowest bioavailability rates. After an edible is consumed, the CBD in it travels through your stomach to your liver, where a part of it is absorbed. This is known as the First-Pass-Effect and this “obstacle” significantly lowers the bioavailability of CBD edibles.
CBD oil, such as our Broad Spectrum Hemp Oil, can bypass this First-Pass-Effect since it follows a different route to reach your circulation. You’ll have a much faster onset of effects by putting a few drops of CBD oil under your tongue, since the majority of the substance is absorbed straight into your bloodstream instead of passing through your digestive system first.
Topicals work differently than all other forms of CBD. Since CBD is hydrophobic and naturally can’t be absorbed into your skin to reach your bloodstream, it unfolds its effects by interacting directly with your skin’s cannabinoid receptors. Our skin has its very own endocannabinoid system, allowing CBD to work on a cellular level. Because of this, hemp topicals have one of the highest bioavailability rates, and can offer quick relief to targeted areas.
For immediate troubles, such as menstruation cramps, topicals can work wonders. If you need quick relief, try applying some of our Broad Spectrum Hemp Comfort Cream to the area. Topicals also have many more benefits to your skin, which you can read more about here.
How SHE Handles Bioavailability
SHEbd products are made with some of the best technologies in the industry. We use nanotechnology to break cannabinoid particles (including CBD) down into micro-particles, which make it easier for the body to absorb. We use a similar process to make our CBD water-soluble. Our patent-pending process ensures that our CBD products have a higher bioavailability rate. In fact, SHEbd products are up to six times more bioavailable than standard CBD.
For you, this means that our CBD products will last longer than others, since you’ll get the same desired effects from a lower dose.
Of course, it’s still important to make sure that the quality of your CBD is up to your standards, regardless of what the bioavailability rate is. If you consume CBD with high bioavailability, it just means that you will experience the effects more strongly, be they good or bad.
All SHEbd products are held to strict standards to ensure that they are the purest and highest quality CBD-rich hemp supplements you’ll find. It’s important for you to understand the bioavailability of CBD in order to choose the best products for your own self-care and wellness goals.
Zoe Hudson is a digital nomad freelance writer specializing in CBD. Her work has appeared in publications such as CBD Health & Wellness and Terpenes & Testing.