Study: Vaporizing Flower Produces A More Intense High Than Traditional Smoking Methods | Marijuana

Study: Vaporizing Flower Produces A More Intense High Than Traditional Smoking Methods


Vaping marijuana flower gets you higher than smoking it, according to a new study published in an American Medical Association journal.

To test the difference, researchers started by recruiting 17 people who’d consumed cannabis in the past year but had abstained for at least one month. Each individual participated in six sessions that lasted 8 1/2 hours — three in which they smoked marijuana flower and three in which they vaped it. There were three THC concentrations of cannabis plant for both rounds of testing: zero, 10 milligrams and 25 milligrams.

After smoking or vaping, the participants were asked to fill out questionnaires to self-report their experience, and then the researchers administered a series of physical and cognitive tests. Their blood was also subsequently analyzed.

The most obvious result was that when people smoked or vaped the THC-free control substance, it didn’t have a physical or psychological effect. But at 10 milligrams — and especially 25 milligrams — the participants got pretty stoned. They reported feeling hungry, sleepy and pleasant. Their mouths were dry. Some became anxious or paranoid. Three participants experienced adverse events, such as vomiting, after consuming the 25 milligrams of cannabis.

Most regular consumers can probably attest to experiencing at least some of these things from time to time. But what might come as a surprise is that vaporized cannabis “produced significantly greater subjective drug effects, cognitive and psychomotor impairment, and higher blood THC concentrations than the same doses of smoked cannabis,” the study authors wrote in the paper published by JAMA Network Open on Nov. 30, 2018.

In previous studies, researchers allowed participants to adjust their THC dose, which is likely why earlier results suggested that smoking got people higher than vaping. But when you hold the THC dose constant, vaping seems to be a more efficient delivery system, probably because smoking requires combustion that can deplete THC.

“Vendors and consumers of cannabis products should be aware that inhaling cannabis with a vaporizer could produce more pronounced drug effects and impairment than traditional smoking methods,” the researchers wrote.

That’s relevant information as the marijuana market continues to expand. More people are opting for vaporizers, and the study indicates that infrequent or new cannabis consumers should probably approach vaporizers with a bit more caution, start low and go slow.

This article has been republished from Marijuana Moment under a content syndication agreement. Read the original article here.

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  1. I’ve been vaping for about 10 years now. I first got a Happy Vappy then a Cloud V. What I’ve noticed over the years is that you get a different high for each way you consume cannabis. Vaping gets you higher with less cannabis with a more cerebral high than smoking. Smoking cannabis gets you the traditional “buzz” with a more “happy” high. Edibles give you a more encompassing body buzz. I never had the hallucinations or paranoia noted in this study. Like alcohol, you need to moderate your intake until you know how to handle the high. Perhaps for new tokers, vaping can freak you out but I contest the assertion that vaping is dangerous.

  2. I have serious nerve issues due to a tramatic injury which resulted in a BK amputation. Vaping controlled both the pain/neuropathy at a level that no narcotic/norco could ever do. Unfortunately, I live in Texas. Come on Texas!!! Get with the program and stop prohibiting me from a semblance of a normal life.

  3. Perhaps I missed it… but this article doesn’t seem to clarify whether they are talking exclusively about vaping Bud or whether they are including the vaping of THC in something like an Oil Cartridge. For when I vape from an THC Oil Cartridge the high I get is not very significant.

    • I too vape from a THC oil cartridge and vape pen. Thin, silver pen-like object that is nice to hold.
      But what is in it? The oil, the extractant chemicals. What am I vaping? It is not natural, exactly.
      And it does affect my lungs. But I think I have a sensitivity to the oil base. Is is coconut?

  4. be nice to know how they were smoking: joint, glass pipe, bong. also just how much flower was used. my experience is similar to sparkygump’s (although for some odd reason it unnerves me a little to say that :-). vaping is more cerebral than body, and overall a little lighter. each of the smoking methods vary, joints being the least effective while 2 bong tokes are generally solid in mind and body.

  5. Well, It seems to me, the obvious answer to the question u all r asking. 1st… you are able to vape actual flower/bud/herb. That’s what they r comparing. 2nd… STRAINS make all the difference in the world. 25mg of old timey south of the border crap VERSUS 25mg Kryptonic HUGE DIFFERENCE.

  6. I forgot to mention… If you haven’t looked into the new tech of weed concentrates, YOU ARE MISSING OUT! It will blow ur mind!
    Without going into details, they have broken bud down to the point, u r able to purchase 100% THC or 100% CBD OR perfectly measured various combinations from designer strains. Stick em on a battery, WE ALL WIN!! 🤠

  7. Thank you Miss Cindy G I will look into the new teck weed for carts let me know if there are any specific good ones to look into while I’m doing my research

  8. Timothy Ryan Brown on

    Vaping definitely is a different high but in no way is the high stronger or more intense. Vaping is a very light high for me and takes too much cannabis for me to get high. The vaping the helps me is dabbing. Other than dabbing, I prefer smoking my cannabis in a bowl with a lighter on the bong. Bong gets you very high and filters enough for real clean rips.

  9. Smoking out of a bong or dabbing some good concentrates is in my opinion the way to get the most from your flower.

  10. i use a solo 2 vaporizer and get some big rips off it .the high is very cerebral but it doesn’t last very long?but sometimes you dont want to be stoned all day?

  11. Been meditating for 45 years tried every cartridge extracts and live rosin out there with the highest THC percent does nothing for me I’ll stick to the flower and lighter plus it’s cheaper LOL

  12. I could have told you this about fifteen years ago. I’m a recreational user, /geek. Having only ever smoked pure flowers (joints and bongs), and for the last few years dry vaping almost exclusively (with an og volcano and arizer argo), and having tested myself with each after a t-break of around 40 – 60 days, for me vaping wins hands down. It’s fairly close but the major difference is that my vaping high lasts a lot longer, approx 4 hours or more compared to smoking where the high only lasts about an hour and a half tops. My threshold amount is 25-30mg, which is enough for me to notice the effects and still be able to function normally. 60mg knocks me on my ass and sends me to purgatory for about half an hour, then the high settles down and I feel quite relaxed. 60mg in a bong however is quite manageable. So imo vaping definitely delivers more cannabinoids into the blood compared to smoking. To each their own I think, plus I doubt many commentors here are willing to do a long t-break and then test themselves with each method. If you’re a daily user for over thirty days, switching from smoking to vaping will probably not be very noticeable.

  13. Are you seriously promoting a qualitative study of less than 20 people as scientific fact? Promoting bad statistics like this makes the entire marijuana legalization movement look less legitimate (and frankly stupid).

  14. Wow. Responses are all over the map. — For me, vaping takes a little more herb to get the same high, but it’s worth it. — I started having a chronic cough after smoking for more than 30 years, about 10 years ago. — I switched to vaporizing and it’s been cough-free and clear sailing ever since!

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