These days, CBD oil has gotten pretty famous for its benefits. From helping treat skin conditions like psoriasis to helping people get over anxiety or anorexia, CBD oil is well known for its potential therapeutic use and its rapid entry into the body’s bloodstream.
What it’s also known for, sadly, is its… “distinctive” taste.
Due the nature of what CBD oil is, namely an herbal extract suspended in inert oil, it isn’t going to have a very pleasant taste. Despite its useful medical properties, users of CBD oil frequently complain about the extremely pronounced flavor when taken directly in the mouth.
| “Due the nature of CBD oil, it isn’t going to have a very pleasant taste — to put it mildly.”
However, there are some ways to deal with the unwanted taste without diminishing the important effects of CBD oil – let’s talk about a few of them.
Firstly, What Exactly is CBD?
As CBD oil is a substance you put into your body, it’s always a good idea to learn exactly what it is and how it affects you.
CBD, or cannabidiol, used to be one of the lesser-known cannabinoids within Cannabis sativa; the “medicinal” cousin of the more well-known cannabinoid THC. Cannabidiol is entirely non-psychoactive, but CBD oil still works in a similar manner to THC with regard to how it interacts with your body, albeit with a few small differences.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, which is the health system within the human body discovered as a result of studying the effects of cannabis.
The ECS has two key receptors, the CB1 and CB2 receptors, which are triggered by an interaction with certain cannabinoids. Endocannabinoids bind with these receptors, forcing them to encourage the body to heal itself using its natural processes.
The primary difference between the two major cannabinoids is how they interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors and the effect they have on the body.
THC, the cannabinoid responsible for getting you high, attaches itself directly to the receptors, engaging them constantly and sending you into the infamous psychoactive high due to this overstimulation.
On the other hand, CBD oil does something a bit different. Instead of triggering the receptors directly, it encourages other hormones and chemicals to trigger them, meaning they are not overstimulated.
What this means is that CBD oil doesn’t give you a high, and it allows the body to heal itself in a more gentle, natural way.
The different cannabinoid receptors are located within different parts of the body, meaning that their activation causes different effects. For example, CB1 receptors are located mainly within the brain, so interaction with that receptor causes an increase of serotonin and melatonin, whereas CB2 receptors are spread out in various organ and tissue systems, thereby encouraging things like homeostasis and immune response.
CBD is becoming more frequently used thanks to legalization efforts across the world, but the sad fact remains that, if you choose to imbibe CBD oil orally, the taste is just really, really unpleasant.
So, how do you deal with this? What’s the best way to mask the taste of CBD oil so you don’t gag every time you try and improve your health? Let’s find out.
#1. Use food!
CBD oil is usually taken orally, hence why it is suspended within inert oil – so as to make it more easily digestible. However, that very same oil – combined with the musky, earthy tast of the plant material – allows the strong, overwhelming taste of the CBD to take hold.
To combat this, consider putting your CBD oil in food instead of directly into your mouth. Ideally, you want to sprinkle the oil over your finished food rather than using it during the cooking process.
The reason for this is that cooking the CBD oil could cause some of the effectiveness of the CBD to be reduced due to burning. After all, if CBD was meant to be cooked, it would be made before you bought it!
By adding CBD to food, you can avoid the immediate taste, as it will be spread throughout the food rather than concentrated in one single mouthful.
If you choose to put it in food though, you need to make sure you eat the entire meal! If you put your CBD oil on your food, then only eat half of it, you’re only going to be getting half of your necessary dose.
This method does carry some risk of still getting the unpleasant taste, especially if you’re sprinkling it over a dry food where the CBD oil can’t mix with any liquids. This is also the case if you choose an especially bland meal.
However, this method is a convenient and easy way to mitigate the taste.
#2. Take a deep breath through your nose
Have you ever seen a professional taster of a food or drink? If so, you’ll likely notice the weird way in which they sample their food – instead of just putting it in their mouth, they’ll likely open their mouth really wide and breath in at the same time.
This is because the proper way to fully taste something is to aspirate the flavors; to do this, you take in air at the same time as the food or drink, encouraging airflow across your tongue. This also ensures you smell your food and encourages your nasal synapses to experience the taste as well.
It’s also why a really bad-tasting food feels like it’s everywhere, somehow sitting in your nose and throat as well as your mouth.
You can use the opposite of this to avoid the bad taste of CBD oil. After dropping the CBD oil into your mouth and under your tongue, you can take a really deep breath of air entirely through your nose with your mouth clamped firmly shut.
This means that your tongue won’t get the chance to experience the full taste, as it will lack air to activate the majority of the taste buds.
You might look a bit strange very suddenly breathing through your nose like a bull preparing to charge, so this method is best used when alone somewhere very private.
You will still get a portion of the unpleasant taste though, so it might not be the best method.
#3. Take something sweet at the same time
“A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down!” Mary Poppins was more right than she knew, as taking a little bit of something sweet on your tongue at the same time as your CBD oil can help mask the flavor.
The primary reason this works is due to the fact that sweetness is tasted by the tongue before other flavors. This is the reason we put sugar in bitter coffee or honey in our cold medicine – you taste the sweetness first.
Try taking your drop of CBD oil under the tongue, followed immediately by some honey or even syrup on the tongue.
It’s best to avoid using things like granulated sugar or chocolate if you’re going to try this; the sugar might mix with the CBD oil and melt into it, forcing you to taste CBD oil only with a confusing and unpleasant granular feeling.
If you try and eat some chocolate, you’ll quickly find that the CBD oil mixes with the cocoa butter in the chocolate, creating this odd, fatty mixture of CBD and the taste of bitter chocolate. Honey or just some simply sugary syrup is best. It won’t get rid of the taste completely, but it will help mask it a little bit.
#4. Take a breath mint
For some, the biggest problem with CBD oil is the unpleasant aftertaste after you swallow. Despite its helpful medicinal benefits, the lingering sensation of bitter herbs and medicinal tackiness can stick to your tongue long after you’ve already taken your medicine.
To combat this, take a breath mint or a Tic-Tac. This works in a similar way to the above tip, due to the fact that most breath mints are essentially mint-flavored sugar. By giving you a strong dose of sugar, your tongue is cleansed, letting you feel sugar and sweetness instead of bitterness.
Additionally, mint is a taste that sticks in your mouth in the same way that CBD oil does, so it effectively replaces the unpleasant feeling of the CBD oil.
#5. Brush your teeth before!
This might seem strange, but try brushing your teeth before you take CBD oil. If you’ve ever drank a glass of orange juice after recently brushing your teeth, you’ll understand the exquisitely unpleasant, almost painful feeling of conflicting flavors.
The reason this happens is that toothpaste contains things called surfactants, which are substances designed to lower the surface tension between the toothpaste and your teeth. This allows that tiny globule of toothpaste to spread throughout your mouth and give you a really good brushing experience.
However, this messes with your taste buds, essentially turning off their ability to feel sweetness and a few other tastes. So, when you drink orange juice, you’re only tasting the oppressive bitterness of citrus, with none of the complimenting sweetness or depth of flavor.
This actually works to your benefit when taking CBD oil, as the flavors in the tincture that are particularly unpleasant are generally unnoticeable once you’ve brushed your teeth.
Additionally, even if it doesn’t work, if you take it very soon after brushing your teeth, all you’ll be able to taste is the mint from the toothpaste. It’s like taking a breath mint, but you take it before!
This works especially well with taking CBD oil as a routine medicine, as you can just time your dosage to be after you brush your teeth in the morning, and/or before you brush them in the evening. Besides, if you don’t brush your teeth, you’ve got more problems than just the taste of CBD oil.
| “Besides, if you don’t brush your teeth, you’ve got more problems than just the taste of CBD oil ;)”
Final Thoughts on How to Mask the Taste of CBD Oil
CBD oil is, sadly, not the best-tasting thing to put in your mouth. From the raw taste of the oil to the bitter, intense earthy flavor of the hemp, it’s a generally unpleasant feeling.
However, these tips should make the whole thing just a little easier. Just make sure you brush your teeth — regardless what you do!
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