As tobacco has fallen increasingly out of favor, dedicated smokers have been forced to seek alternatives. Both cheaper than heavily taxed tobacco cigarettes and marketed as being healthier, herbal cigarettes have recently become increasingly popular around the country.
At the same time, CBD cigarettes have also risen to the fore. What are the differences between CBD cigarettes and herbal cigarettes, and which type of natural smoke is right for your needs?
What are herbal cigarettes?
Despite the fact that this plant is often called “herb,” herbal cigarettes have nothing to do with Cannabis sativa. Instead, these alternatives to tobacco cigarettes commonly contain clove, mugwort, lavender, linden, or any number of other weeds, herbs, and additional legal plants that might have mind-altering or medicinal properties.
In essence, herbal cigarettes follow the perennial rule that if you can roll something up and smoke it, someone will have rolled that substance up and smoked it. Just because herbal cigarettes don’t contain tobacco doesn’t mean they’re safe, and even if an herb has benefits when you apply it to your skin or ingest it as an essential oil doesn’t guarantee that it will also be beneficial when inhaled.
What are herbal cigarettes made from?
Herbal cigarettes come in a wide range of different options. Originally produced in China, herbal cigarettes usually contained a mixture of tobacco and various medicinal herbs in the past. These days, however, herbal cigarettes more commonly only contain non-tobacco plant material, and these alternatives to tobacco cigarettes have become popular throughout Korea, India, Europe, and the United States.
In the Western world, clove cigarettes known as kreteks have been reasonably popular since the early 20th century. These herbal cigarettes have a distinctive flavor and aroma, and they’re often advertised as being safer than tobacco cigarettes. However, most clove cigarettes also contain tobacco, and research indicates that clove cigarettes can do more damage to your lungs and lead to a higher risk of nicotine addiction than conventional tobacco cigarettes.
More recently, American entrepreneurs have taken a leaf from the success of herbal cigarettes in Asia to market non-tobacco herbal smokes to trendy Millennials and nicotine-weary tobacco addicts. Popularized in the wicca community, these herbal cigarettes most commonly contain mugwort, and they are advertised as alternatives to tobacco or even as smoking cessation aids.
Are herbal cigarettes safe?
There is no evidence that herbal cigarettes are safer than tobacco cigarettes, and in some cases, herbal cigarettes may even deposit more carbon monoxide and tar into your lungs than tobacco. Even worse, there’s also no evidence that the benefits of herbal substances are conveyed when smoked. While herbs like lavender and clove are beneficial when used in other ways, no research has been conducted into the benefits of popular herbs when inhaled in the form of smoke.
Herbal cigarettes should not be viewed as alternatives to tobacco cigarettes, and the active compounds in commonly smoked herbs should not be viewed as alternatives to nicotine. Partially due to the vast array of different compounds that are commonly included in herbal cigarettes, it’s hard to establish the safety of herbal cigarettes as a whole, and herbal cigarettes still commonly contain tobacco in addition to other types of plant materials.
What are CBD cigarettes?
CBD cigarettes are convenient, smokable products that contain CBD-rich hemp flower instead of tobacco. There are two common types of CBD cigarettes. On the one hand, you have long, cylindrical smokes that have filters and greatly resemble tobacco cigarettes. On the other hand, you have CBD cigarettes that look more like cannabis joints and usually have cardboard crutches instead of filters.
Compared to tobacco cigarettes, CBD cigarettes taste better, smell better, and offer better effects. CBD cigarettes often contain concentrations of CBD exceeding 20%, making these smokes more potent than other types of cannabidiol products. Depending on how they are produced, CBD cigarettes vary widely in quality with cigarettes that contain indoor-grown, organic CBD flower being the most renowned.
What are the benefits of CBD cigarettes?
Here are some of the most impressive benefits of consuming CBD in cigarette form:
Are CBD cigarettes safe?
There’s a pressing need for more research, but the available studies indicate that Cannabis sativa smoke does not cause emphysema, and it’s unclear whether smoking hemp or cannabis has any carcinogenic potential. Cannabis smoke appears to lack some of the most dangerous properties of tobacco smoke, and unlike THC, CBD doesn’t have immunosuppressive effects, which means that smoking this cannabinoid doesn’t appear to increase your risk of bronchial infections.
Since herbal cigarettes vary so much in terms of their active components, it’s difficult to establish the safety of herbal smokes as a whole. The safety of CBD, on the other hand, has been thoroughly examined, and researchers have concluded that this cannabinoid does not have any significant side effects and that it is remarkably non-toxic.
Unlike tobacco and many of the active components in herbal cigarettes, CBD has been thoroughly studied for its potential health benefits, and the FDA has approved a CBD-based drug for certain types of epilepsy. As an active component, CBD has been determined to be remarkably safe, and this compound may even have a wide range of medicinal properties.
CBD cigarettes vs. herbal cigarettes
Let’s sum things up with a comparison of CBD cigarettes and herbal cigarettes:
Smell, taste, and texture
Many people who have tried herbal cigarettes have been deterred by the unpleasant taste or texture of smokable herbs. Mugwort, for instance, is commonly reported to have an almost unbearably harsh texture, and most people find the taste of clove smoke to be nauseating. Even worse, the aromas produced by certain herbal cigarettes can stick to clothing, skin, and other surfaces even worse than tobacco.
Due to its terpene-richness, on the other hand, incinerated CBD flower smells incredible, and the smoke produced by CBD cigarettes has a mild flavor and even milder texture. Compared to both tobacco and herbal cigarettes, CBD cigarettes are milder while tasting and smelling considerably better.
Herbal cigarettes can have widely varying effects depending on their active components. CBD cigarettes, on the other hand, deliver reliable, consistent effects that most users report as being mild, calming, and relaxing. CBD is not intoxicating.
Herbal cigarettes are often more dangerous than tobacco cigarettes. While the safety of smoking CBD has not been established, the cannabidiol molecule itself is remarkably safe and non-toxic.
Trust the benefits of CBD when you smoke
In the end, herbal cigarettes are often more disappointing than the addictive, carcinogenic tobacco they’re designed to replace. CBD cigarettes, on the other hand, provide reliable, mild effects, and the smoke they produce smells floral and attractive. Trust the known benefits of CBD instead of putting your faith in an herb that’s more at home in tea or an essential oil than in your lungs.