Acknowledging that cannabis is a drug is the first step towards respecting its potential beneficial and unwanted effects. It is improtant to develop a basic understanding of how cannabis works. And some controlled trail and error will help you determine the dose of cannabis that will produce the desired outcome, whether medicinally or recreationally.
The active ingredients in Medical Marijuana are called Cannabinoids. There are over 80 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis, but the two main ones are Delta 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the primary psychoactive compound of cannabis; and Cannabidiol (CBD). These organic chemical compounds act on cannabinoid receptors on cells in the brain.
Cannabis edibles date back thousands of years while smoking marijuana is a much more recent activity (only a few hundred years). When marijuana is smoked the active ingredient released is Delta-9 THC. When marijuana is properly ingested the active ingredient is 11-Hydroxy THC. This is significant distinction because 11-Hydroxy THC is twice as strong and lasts twice as long as Delta -9 THC. Additionally it can take up to 2 hours before you feel the effects of ingesting a marijuana edible.
You may not die from an overdose of medical marijuana, but an oral cannabis overdose can be very terrifying. It's important for each individual to develop an understanding of how they personally metabolize oral cannabis. Know the edible preparation you are consuming. Start with a very small dose and be patient. Keep in mind that ingested marijuana takes about 4-6 hours to metabolize out of your system.... sometimes longer.
Several factors can affect the onset of edible marijuana and the duration of its effect. Of course, every individual has a different absorption rate and reaction to ingested cannabis. So you need to determine how your body racts versus anyone else. The amount of cannabis in an edible can affect how strong a small or larger portion can be. Lastly, the contents of the stomach is significant so whether you take an edible on an empty stomach or not matters.