Written by Brittney Ferris
The use of cannabis in our diets as a food source is slowly gaining popularity. Right now, most people are only aware of the benefits from smoking cannabis flower, vaping concentrates, topicals, tinctures, or eating edibles that are made using decarboxylated flower…most of which will get you high. But the decarboxylated flower isn’t the only way to obtain relief of symptoms and treat disease. There are other ways to consume the cannabis plant without having any psychoactive effects, and these methods may be the some of the most therapeutic ways to consume cannabis.
The most nutrient-dense part of the cannabis plant are the seeds, which contain high levels of calcium, fiber, fatty acids, and protein. Not only are the seeds nutritious, but the entire plant (leaves, stems, and roots) also contain their own nutritional benefits. The vegetative leaves of the cannabis plant, for example, are an excellent source of fiber, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, and contain antioxidants. The stems and roots are typically less popular in regard to eating because of their woody texture but can still be added to food.
Just like any other food source, the best way to reap these benefits is through the digestive tract. So, how do we incorporate cannabis into our diets without getting high? One of the easiest ways is to juice the raw leaves. Raw cannabis leaves can be juiced the same way you would juice spinach or kale. Adding them to a smoothie along with other fruits and vegetables is a delicious way to create a nutrient-dense drink. If smoothies or juices aren’t really your thing, consider replacing or adding the leaves to the greens of your own salad recipes. Drying the leaves and using them like a seasoning is another easy way to get the greens in!
The possibilities are endless and because these methods of consumption don’t involve any heat and there are no psychoactive effects. The consumption of raw cannabis means pain relief, digestive assistance, and immune support without compromising mental focus. Another nutrient-packed leafy green may be hitting the grocery stores sooner than we think (or so we can hope!). As the cannabis industry grows, we look forward to seeing the plethora of possible uses expand beyond the current consumption methods.