Can you vape CBD tincture oil? (Hint: “should you” Is the better question)
Update: In our opinion, vaping CBD tincture oil is not safe and is irresponsible. Following the recent outbreak of vaping related pulmonary injury (VAPI), the FDA has recommended that the public refrain from homemade vaping products or products obtained on the street. Read the full FDA report here.
For many consumers of e-liquid products, vaping is about more than getting your daily dose of nicotine. These days, a considerable percentage of vapers use their vape products like electronic pod mods, shisha sticks, and tank systems to medicate a variety of illnesses and disorders. This is done with CBD vape juice and terpene-infused e-liquids, which ameliorate the symptoms of anything from chronic anxiety to Parkinson’s disease.
But what if you find yourself in a state where cannabis consumption and CBD products are illegal? In countries like Japan, for example, cannabis, CBD, and hemp usage are still frowned upon by the government. This means CBD vape oil is unavailable at vape shops, and can’t be mailed in from overseas. However, CBD oil is legal for medicinal purposes, specifically in tincture form. This has led to some overseas vapers posting on CBD message boards to ask “Can you vape tincture?” and whether or not it’s safe. In this post, we go over everything you need to consider before vaping CBD or CBD tinctures.
Are There Major Risks to Vaping CBD Tincture Oil?
To understand why it isn’t recommended that you vape tinctures, it’s important to get familiar with the differences in composition between an e-liquid and a standard tincture product. The average e-liquid base is comprised of a combination of propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerin (VG) in varying proportions. On the other hand, most CBD oil tinctures use coconut oil, which is essentially a medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil base.
This is an important distinction to make because both PG and VG are established as “optimized” for vaporization using the nickel, titanium, and stainless steel coils used in vape devices. This is not the case for MCT oils, which if vaporized via a vape atomizer could cause a condition known as lipid pneumonia.
What exactly is lipid pneumonia?
Exogenous lipid pneumonia is a condition caused by lipoids (or fat molecules) entering from outside the body via the mouth or nose and reaching the lungs, causing inflammation. Symptoms of lipid pneumonia include fevers, chronic cough, chest pain, and serious difficulty breathing. Less common symptoms include dysphagia – which is difficulty swallowing – and hemoptysis, which is the coughing up of blood.
Advanced Vapers & Vaping with CBD Tinctures
There are some who fly in the face of conventional vape pen wisdom by using unregulated mods, homemade hybrid coils, and low vegetable glycerin DIY e-liquids. Vaping with tinctures is no different. Some advanced vapers are confident in their ability to incorporate precise ratios of ingredients and claim to regularly mix standard non-CBD e-liquids with tincture oils in a 10/90 or 5/95 ratio.
However, mixing e-liquid with tincture oil is not recognized as “safe” by the large majority of the vaping community, and will not be mainstream practice anytime soon.
Are your CBD products vapable? A common-sense checklist
- Is it labeled ‘tincture’?
Check the packaging of your CBD vape oil. Make sure it doesn’t say ‘tincture’ anywhere on the bottle. If it does, it isn’t vape juice and you shouldn’t be vaping it.
- What are the directions for use?
How does the manufacturer suggest you use it? If it suggests that it should be taken orally, this is a big red flag.
- Check for Omega-3, Omega-6 and Vitamin E
CBD oil that contains Omega-3, Omega-8, or Vitamin E should definitely NOT be vaped.
- Look for a thinning agent
If you vape CBD oil, it’s important that it is made with a thinning agent like PG or VG. This means that when heated, the CBD oil will actually turn into vapor.
The above list is certainly not exhaustive, and shouldn’t be taken as medical or scientific advice. However, if you’re checking your CBD vape products for all of these things you’ll at least be on the right track.
Can you vape CBD Tincture? The Verdict
Do not vape CBD tincture unless it is clearly stated on the label that it is safe to do so. There are certainly a number of vapers who claim to get away with it, but the risks to vaping the MCT oil in CBD tinctures are well-known in the medical and scientific community. Lipid pneumonia and its various symptoms can be extremely detrimental to the human system and is simply not a risk worth taking in our opinion.