CBD administered orally is known to have relatively low bioavailability (the amount entering the bloodstream and offering its active effects). Before we explain why, let’s first acknowledge that certain methods of delivery — specifically by inhalation — can improve CBD absorption rates, yet those means tend to discourage a significant number of potential consumers. Luckily, there are other ways to increase CBD bioavailability without inhaling it.

Would you anticipate greater market share for your company if you could marry edible CBD with greater bioavailability? Good news: This article explains why CBD has naturally low bioavailability and how water-soluble CBD may substantially increase it.

The Challenge of CBD Absorption

Bioactive molecules tend to be either lipophilic or hydrophilic. This means that they are either attracted to and dissolvable in fats and oils (lipids) or water (hydro). As you know, oil and water don’t mix. You can blend them together for a short time, but left undisturbed, they quickly separate.

CBD is a hydrophobic and oil-soluble molecule that provides relatively low bioavailability in many popular forms. Our bodies can absorb some lipophilic CBD molecules directly through the mucosal systems in our mouths and noses, at a 6% to 9% percent absorption rate if taken in a fasting state.

But, what if we could make cannabinoid molecules water-soluble, while also transforming them into smaller molecules that our bloodstreams could welcome with open arms? Well, after years of research and development, countless trials, and studies – now we can.

How To Increase CBD Bioavailability

What CBD and other fatty cannabinoids need is a way to disguise their water-repellency.

Wrapped in a carrier composed of both hydrophilic and lipophilic aspects, those tiny molecules can slip right inside the door, then shed the wrapper and immediately release into the bloodstream. This carrier is called a liposome.

By using an emulsifier (a compound that can bind oil and water together) the cannabidiol or other hemp molecules become encapsulated to form liposomes (tiny, two-layer balls surrounding the cannabinoid molecule). The inner portion of the liposome that touches the cannabinoid is lipophilic, while the outer layer is hydrophilic. The outer layer appeals to the water content of the blood while concealing its cargo of fatty CBD.

Once the bloodstream invites the liposome into the house because of its attractive aqueous constitution, the outer layer dissolves, exposing the lipid aspect of the liposome. The lipid aspect then also dissolves, leaving the cannabinoid free to interact with the ECS.

That said, liposomal technology isn’t the only way to increase CBD bioavailability. At GenCanna, our CBD isn’t actually liposomal. Instead, we add cannabinoids to a natural carrier system with emulsifiers that mimic liposomal structures and functions. We use ultrasonic homogenizers to break down the carrier and CBD and bind them together, resulting in a liquid nanoemulsion. We then dehydrate this natural carrier complex and grind it down to a fine white powder, which forms a stable water soluble powder. Both product types are flexible with respect to the CBD concentration, or load — from 1% to our standardized 20% load.

The soluble powder we create will work in any water-compatible product. And it’s not limited to CBD isolate. We can create full- or broad-spectrum CBD powders, or isolate other cannabinoids using this method. Flavors and other active ingredients are possible as well!

CBD Powders for Water-Based Beverages and Other Finished Goods

So, what can you do with a water-soluble, more bioavailable CBD powder? Just about anything you want! You can combine the powder with all-natural flavors in stick packs to be mixed with water, juices, tea or coffee. You can also create your own line of ready-to-drink beverages, shots, edibles, or supplements. In capsule form, you can enhance bioavailability further by incorporating time-release technology. And you’ll need less CBD per serving because research has found the absorption rate to be four times higher.

With the advantages of water-soluble CBD, you can expand your health and wellness offering to win a much larger market share. Contact our sales team today to see how our unparalleled knowhow and your product ideas can come to life and improve your CBD product line.

©2021 GenCanna, Winchester, KY
Pharmaceuticals – Towards Better Delivery of Cannabidiol (CBD)
Merck Manual – Drug Bioavailability
Science Direct – The Effect of Pro NanoLipospheres (PNL) Formulation Containing Natural Absorption Enhancers on the Oral Bioavailability of Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD) in a Rat Model
CNS Drugs – Critical Aspects Affecting Cannabidiol Oral Bioavailability and Metabolic Elimination, and Related Clinical Implications
News Medical Life Sciences – What Is a Liposome?
International Journal of Nanomedicine – Liposomes as Nanomedical Devices