Whether you’re trying cannabis for the first time or an avid consumer, edibles are seen as an approachable method of consumption. They are clearly dosed and straightforward to use- no additional papers, fire, or gear required. There are options for everyone – vegan, gluten free, sugar free – as well as a wide variety of flavors and textures. The only downside is the lengthy onset time. 

This is because of the time it takes for the edible to be digested. Traditional edibles are digested in the stomach and intestines, then THC is metabolized in the liver and effects will be felt anywhere from 45 minutes to three hours after initially consuming them. This lengthy onset can be confused for the product not working, which can lead to people taking a more than the needed dose and having a less than enjoyable experience. 

Those who enjoy the controlled dosing of edibles but are looking for a quicker onset may enjoy cannabis infused beverages. Cannabis beverages have a general onset time of 30 minutes or less. This quick onset is due to the liquid form. With cannabis beverages, the cannabinoids, like CBD and THC, are absorbed into the bloodstream through the mouth and stomach. This means you don’t have to wait for the drink to be digested to start feeling the effects. 

Cannabis drinks, like Tonic and Tonic Fizz from PTS, use a process called liposomal encapsulation. This is the process of infusing water droplets with cannabinoids at a microscopic level. Cannabinoids are not traditionally water soluble, so this process is crucial to accurate dosing and the flavor of cannabis drinks. 

There are a variety of cannabis beverages available in Illinois. Tonic, the first cannabis infused beverage in Illinois, offers 100mg of THC in a 12oz fruit flavored drink. The Tonic brand has expanded to include Tonic Fizz, a cannabis infused seltzer with 25mg THC per can, and Tonic Frost, THC and CBD infused popsicles. 

Just like traditional edibles, it is best to start with a low dose of a cannabis beverage. Even though the onset is faster with drinkable products, it is recommended that you wait at least 30 minutes before consuming a second dose. Stop by your favorite Chicago dispensary to try out this unique cannabis experience today! 

Ready to try a cannabis beverage? Mix up a Tonic Canna-Mule! 

½ oz. Tonic Citrus Lime 1:1 (1/2 oz of Tonic = 4.2mg THC/CBD) 

½ oz. Fresh Lime juice 

3 slices of ginger 

1 lime slice 

Ginger beer or ginger ale 

In a glass, mix ½ oz of Tonic Citrus Lime 1:1 with ½ oz of fresh lime juice. Add ice and fill the glass with ginger beer. Garnish with ginger slices and a slice of lime. Enjoy responsibly!