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Review: Treat Yourself Vegan Tartlettes

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: We love featuring high quality, well-vetted THC or CBD products, but we especially like featuring women-owned companies, Treat Yourself! Here’s what one of our product reviewers, Carrie, has to say about their vegan tartlettes. 

I was one of “those kids” who didn’t get to eat sugared cereal, corn chips, or toaster pastries. When I discovered those foods in my teenage years, I was delighted at all the naughty options.

Since then, I’ve laid off the Pop Tarts. But now, along comes an alternative: Treat Yourself Mini Pop Tartlettes.

Each product comes in a beautiful package that leads with: “Vegan, Gluten Free, Soy Free, and Refined Sugar Free.” Each package is hand-tied with delicate rope and looks like something a crafter like me would come up with. I loved handling the packaging and untying the bow to uncover my healthy, cannabis-rich tartlettes!

I tried two variations:

Cherry Almond – 13 mg CBD:5 mg THC

Strawberry Rose – 10 mg CBD:10 mg THC

These tarlettes have no preservatives in them, so it’s advisable to keep them fresh by storing them in the freezer. I let my pastries come to room temperature before eating them, but I think in a dash I could have had them frozen like Thin Mints. At room temperature, the texture was a bit chewy, so I tried warming the next one up. Perfection!

I was excited to find the tartlettes were healthier and better tasting than typical toaster pastries, and the effects of the products themselves hadn’t even kicked in yet! The fruit in the middle rivaled anything I could get at a San Francisco Farmer’s Market.

Treat Yourself’s label on their tartlettes revealed more:

“A healthy twist on an old classic, we’ve created a chia seed dough and filled it with goodness. Great for menstrual cramps, relaxation and inflammation.”

Finally, a product made by women for women – without stereotypical pink or purple packaging!

While I’m beyond needing products for menstrual cramps (Hallelujah), I did use the product for lower back cramping. I found that about an hour after eating my pastry, my back muscles started to disengage and my body relaxed. Given how painful my menstrual cramps used to be, I could imagine how this product would address that kind of cramping as well.

I am looking forward to trying their other nutrient-packed products including their PALEO coconut banana bread (40 mg CBD:15 mg THC) and their topical whipped body butter (a jasmine-vanilla blend).

Editor’s Note: So are we!

Learn more about the founders of Treat Yourself, Inc. on Her Canna Life.

OUR REVIEWER: Carrie Rice is a nonprofit consultant living out her hippie dreams in San Francisco. In addition to her passion for bringing cannabis health education to women, she has a passion for bringing empathy to nonprofit management.

Review: The Green Cacao Company Chocolate Bars

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: We love featuring high quality, well-vetted THC or CBD products, but we especially like featuring women-owned companies, like this one! Here’s what one of our product reviewers, Carrie, has to say about The Green Cacao Company’s products.

When I think of cannabis edibles, the last thing I’m thinking about is the taste. Sure, I don’t like products that taste like bong water, but that’s about it. While medical cannabis can be good and helpful, most edibles candy bars are full of junk. For me, it’s a matter of taking an edible for the effects, not for the overall health factor of the product.

When I got the opportunity to try all four raw and superfood rich chocolate medical cannabis bars from The Green Cacao Company, I hoped they would be decent-tasting as well as provide positive effects.

The Green Cacao Company offers four products to choose from:

  1. Sativa 15 mg THC per section
  2. Indica 15 mg THC per section
  3. CBD Rich10 mg CBD and 10 mg THC per section
  4. CBD Xtra Rich 15 mg CBD and 1.1 mg THC per section

I was thrilled to read on their discreetly packaged products that each product contained “organic & raw ingredients” and “botanical super foods” with “no agave, cane, dairy, gluten.” The products also have a low glucose indicator. The attractive brown cardboard packages are simple,  well-designed and recyclable. Inside, the four doses are stored in a compostable cellulose packaging with a small instruction sheet that describes each variety.

I’ve never had raw chocolate, so I was excited to find out how it differs in quality and taste from standard cannabis candy bar chocolate – or even a Snickers bar.

According to Green Cacao, raw chocolate maintains its molecular and chemical structures which maintains its wellness properties.

Unlike a typical Snickers, Green Cacao’s chocolates contain super food ingredients in each bar in addition to the raw cacao such as chicory prebiotics and raw maca. Instead of conventional sugar or “franken-sweeters,” the bars are sweetened with only goji berry and xylitol. For the record, xylitol is a LowGI (low glycemic index) sweetener sourced from USA-grown, GMO-free Birch trees. Ultimately, the bars are nutrient-dense food, not candy.

In terms of the cannabis and its effects, The Green Cacao Company only uses whole plant cannabis, grown organically outdoors. Each formulation has different effects. The sativa and indica strains are THC only, while the other products are a balance of CBD and THC.

For relief from depression and for increased focus, I found the sativa product to be ideal. For keeping anxiety and stress in check and dealing with insomnia, the indica was the winner. And for chronic back pain relief, the CBD/THC hybrids were perfect.

For myself, I find that the 1:1 CBD:THC ratio in the CBD Rich chocolates is ideal for pain. If you are worried about the psychotropic effects of THC, I would suggest the CBD Xtra Rich, which is almost exclusively CBD.

Overall, I enjoyed this product! It was rich and creamy with a deeper flavor, like coffee. I also enjoyed the texture. Plus, a little bit went a long way!

For more information, visit http://thegreencacaocompany.com/.

Have a product that you’d like us to review? We have reviewers with medical cards where required. Get in touch!

Photo credit: Matt Jepson

OUR REVIEWER: Carrie Rice is a nonprofit consultant living out her hippie dreams in San Francisco. In addition to her passion for bringing cannabis health education to women, she has a passion for bringing empathy to nonprofit management.

Review: Kiva Blueberry Bites

Carrie is our cannabis reviewer. She is a nonprofit consultant living out her hippie dreams in San Francisco. In addition to her passion for bringing cannabis health education to women, she has a passion for bringing empathy to nonprofit management.

I am not new to edibles. As far back as my early 1990’s grunge college days, I remember stumbling upon pot brownies or cookies (once even a bright green Rice Krispie treat) at a party and eating them without any idea what the dosage was or what the effect would be. Each experience left me either too high or had no effect at all. I mostly stuck with smoking cannabis.

And then along came medical marijuana, and I no longer had to guess at what and how much I was taking of a given product. Here’s my review of Kiva Blueberry Bites.

Kiva Confections is a California based not-for-profit collective. They claim to make the highest quality medical marijuana products from all natural ingredients combined with cannabis. They are very serious about consistent THC potency and lab-test every batch to ensure it.

I was immediately drawn to Kiva’s beautiful packaging for these truly delicious chocolates.

Kiva Bites are the latest addition to the Terra Bite line from Kiva. Although I’ve enjoyed many of Kiva’s other edibles, the Bites stand out because they come in such small and easily measurable doses.

The Bites come in the kind of tin you’d buy fine chocolates in for a dinner host gift. The container is very discreet – almost too discreet for those of you who might have children around. The packaging is definitely not child-resistent – it really does look like high-end candy – so be careful to keep out of reach of children!

Each container includes 24 five-milligram Bites.

Once I popped open the tin, I found a bunch of adorable individual chocolate balls inside.

When I started consuming the Bites, I started with one. Half a Bite for someone new to edibles should be enough. I ate mine on an empty stomach, and it took about an hour to take effect. The Bite itself is a tasty chocolate, without the cannabis aftertaste of most edible products. The chocolate is a bit waxier than a premium dark bar, but deeper in flavor than a grocery store bar. The dried blueberry inside is plump and substantive.

I experienced both physical and mental effects from the Bite.

My body relaxed, and my shoulders lowered. My various aches and pains – including from fibroids – subsided. My mind was stimulated a bit, but not with any sense of anxiety or paranoia but rather a creative and uplifting effect.

Now, if I eat them first thing in the morning, by the time I sit down to work or interact with clients, I feel focused and calm. I would say the effect lasts for up to four hours. If I want to stay in approximately the same state over a longer period of time, I eat another one – again, on an empty stomach – after about three and a half hours for a full day of uplifted productivity.

Overall, I would recommend Kiva Blueberry Bites, especially to women who are seeking a gentle entré into edibles. I haven’t been able to find another chocolate as delicious and so easy to dose!

Consuming Cannabis: Edibles 101

Remember that time in college when you ate a pot brownie and got really high? Maybe it was fun, maybe you felt a little nauseous, you giggled, or you were a bit paranoid, you were so relaxed, or a little out of control. That was then.

This is now. You’re all grown up, and if you didn’t continue to use cannabis once you left school, you probably can’t imagine getting that high at this point in your life with everything you’ve got going on. But maybe recently you’ve heard that cannabis could be helpful and provide relief from stress, anxiety, insomnia, even physical pain. Or maybe you’re seeking a way to simply unwind at the end of the day.

You may be curious about infused edibles as a way of trying cannabis for the first time or to reintroduce yourself to cannabis. Edibles are often perceived as a more discreet way to consume cannabis. Exploring edibles begins with education. Here’s are some things you should know about edibles.

How Edibles Are Made

In order for food to be infused with THC, the psychoactive compound of the cannabis plant, the flowers from the female plant need to be processed in a way to activate the THC. This process is known as decarboxylation. When you smoke or vaporize (vape) cannabis, the heat rapidly transforms a more inert material into what gets you high.

In terms of foods, cannabis must first be heated slowly over time (220 to 235 degrees F for 30 to 45 minutes) to produce the psychoactive reaction. Raw cannabis buds can be ground and spread on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.

The most popular edibles on the market today – and the ones you can easily make in your own kitchen – are baked goods. Another way to decarboxylate cannabis for baking is to slowly heat cannabis buds in butter or oil and to use the THC-infused carrier in recipes.

Effects of Edibles

The effects of THC consumed through edibles come on more slowly than THC derived through smoking, vaping, or dabbing (smoking concentrated cannabis extractions). Digesting edibles can take 30 to 45 minutes or longer before you feel the effects because your body has to digest and metabolize. Experts recommend that you “start low and go slow” when consuming edibles for the first time. A low dose of THC is considered to be around 5 to 10 milligrams.

Much of the literature on edibles says that people describe the high as more throughout the body than a straight “head high” that is more common to smoking. The effects of edibles can last a few hours to up to twelve depending on the dose and other factors such as what else you consumed.

If you’re just starting out, it is best to consume edibles without alcohol and to understand that food acts as a carrier to THC unlike how it acts as somewhat of a barrier to alcohol absorption. Even so, experts recommend eating a meal then trying your first edible rather than eating one on an empty stomach.

If you are looking for a different kind of effect – such as anti-nausea – edibles higher in the cannabinoid CBD could provide more of the medicinal effects you’re seeking. Keep in mind that some edibles are “oral” like a mint, lollipop or tincture versus “digestible” such as brownies, cookies, chocolates, and other foods.  The effects of THC-infused oral edibles can come on much more quickly when absorbed through your mouth.

ATTENTION: Keeping your edibles/medibles away from children can be a challenge, especially those of the sugary variety like cookies, brownies, gummies and lollipops. Do not treat them like ordinary food or candy, but instead, keep them in a locked box or stashbag. Also consider purchasing and adding warning decals on the packaging, then teach your children the meaning of the symbols – that the contents are medicine for adults only. Use the same instructions you use for medicine in your medicine cabinet. 

Dosages or Dosing

Edibles affect everyone differently, especially when you first consume them. A challenge of making edibles is the difficulty controlling the dosage. Most “home” methods for decarboxylation do not produce exact dosages of THC. Even professional cooking methods require consistent production and frequent testing. Different brands, as well as different foods, can produce varying effects.

Look for products with clear labeling. States that have legalized cannabis for medicinal or recreational purposes enforce testing and labeling to protect consumers. Even with products from trusted brands and specific information about doses, there are many other variables that can change your experiences with edibles.

A good time to try an edible is after dinner and hours before bedtime. You can feel the effects in time and will probably  have a relaxing evening and a good night’s sleep. Consider keeping a journal to document the types of edibles you try, their dosages and their effects to find the right edibles for you.

As with any substance you consume that affects your brain and body, don’t get behind the wheel. Enjoy the effects and benefits of cannabis in a safe and responsible manner.

Infographic by MassRoots & MedicalJane