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What is Rick Simpson Oil (RSO): Uses, Effects, & How to Consume

By Danyal Swan May 5, 2021
Rick Simpson Oil

Rick Simpson Oil, commonly referred to as RSO, is cannabis concentrate renowned for its potent THC concentration. It has garnered attention for its potential therapeutic benefits, including relief from certain symptoms and conditions. Let's delve into what RSO is, its uses, effects, and the correct ways to consume it.

What is RSO?

Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) is a highly concentrated cannabis extract named after Rick Simpson, who popularized this specific type of cannabis oil. RSO is known for its high THC content, making it different from other cannabis oils, which may contain a balance of CBD and THC or CBD alone. Its thick, syrupy consistency and powerful effects have made it a subject of interest for both medical and recreational cannabis users.

How is RSO Made?

RSO is made by extracting the therapeutic compounds found in the cannabis plant using a solvent. The plant material is soaked in the solvent, which pulls out the cannabinoids, terpenes, and other beneficial compounds. After the extraction, the solvent is evaporated, leaving behind the dense, potent oil known as RSO. This process ensures that RSO retains a high concentration of THC.

Rick Simpson Oil is traditionally made using indica flower, the type of cannabis plant long believed to provide the strongest effect on the body. However it's important to think of the indica/sativa labels as a guide to selecting strains, because in reality, it’s the combination of terpenes that drive strain-specific effects through what is called the entourage effect.

What Does RSO Look Like?

Extracting cannabis using ethanol results in what’s known as FECO, or full extract cannabis oil, defined as such because it extracts the full plant profile with minimal degradation to cannabinoids and terpenes. It also brings the chlorophyll, fats, lipids and more into the oil, making it unsuitable for smoking or dabbing. The resulting oil is dark and viscous, resembling tar, and requires light warming for easiest dispensation.


What Is RSO Used For?

Anecdotally, RSO has shown to be beneficial in treating a number of physical conditions. Chronic pain is one such condition. Because of its potency and high THC content, RSO may be more effective at relaxing the body and combating chronic pain than other forms of medical marijuana. Chronic back pain, migraines, or chronic pain caused by other medical conditions may benefit from the potent dose and long-lasting effects.

RSO is frequently used by individuals suffering from constant inflammation caused by arthritis or multiple sclerosis. Some evidence shows that it can reduce nausea brought on by chemotherapy and may also help with loss of appetite. RSO may also be beneficial in soothing asthma and may even have some ability to curtail seizures caused by epilepsy and other conditions. RSO has also been said to successfully treat various types of skin lesions when applied topically.

RSO and Cancer Treatment

The official scientific research into RSO’s ability to treat cancer is limited. In fact, official studies concerning the medical properties of cannabis are sparse in general. This is because cannabis is still considered a Schedule I drug by the federal government, making it much more difficult for researchers and scientists to get the funding and licensure necessary to complete their research. While there is no official ‘proof’ that RSO can treat cancer, many individuals have reported its effectiveness in treating skin cancer and relieving other symptoms.

How Do You Use RSO?

RSO can be consumed in various ways, depending on personal preference and the desired effects. Users and patients can consume RSO using some of the forms below:

RSO Gummies & Edibles

Integrating RSO into edibles is a popular consumption method. Due to its potent nature, it can be mixed into food items in very small quantities to control dosage effectively.

RSO Capsules

For those looking for precise dosages without the distinct taste of RSO, capsules offer a convenient option. They provide a discrete, easy-to-use method of consumption.

RSO Syringe/Dablicator

RSO typically comes in a syringe or dablicator for easy, precise dosing. This method allows users to apply a small amount topically on the finger or under the tongue for sublingual absorption.

RSO Topicals

RSO topical applications offer a unique way to experience the benefits of Rick Simpson Oil without ingestion. By applying it directly to the skin, users can target specific areas for relief, making it an excellent option for localized pain, inflammation, and skin conditions.

using rso dablicator

What are the Side Effects of RSO?

Due to its high THC content, RSO effects can include dry mouth, red eyes, increased heart rate, and impaired memory and motor skills. As with any potent cannabis product, it's important to start with a low dose, especially for those new to cannabis or THC-rich products, to avoid uncomfortable side effects.

Can You Smoke Rick Simpson Oil?

Due to the way it's processed and its thick, sticky nature, RSO is not suitable for smoking. The high heat can alter its compounds, potentially leading to undesirable effects.

Frequently Asked questions About Rick Simpson Oil

Who invented RSO?

Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) was named after Rick Simpson, a Canadian medical marijuana activist, who popularized the cannabis extract after reportedly using it to treat his own skin cancer around 2003. Simpson has been a vocal advocate for the medical use of cannabis, especially in the form of the potent, THC-rich oil that bears his name.

How much Rick Simpson Oil can you take?

The amount of Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) one can safely consume varies depending on the individual's tolerance, experience with cannabis products, and the specific condition being addressed. It's highly recommended to start with a very small dose, about the size of a half a grain of rice, and gradually increase as needed and tolerated. Consulting with a healthcare professional experienced in cannabis use is advisable for personalized dosage advice.

Where Can You Purchase Rick Simpson Oil

Quality Rick Simpson Oil products can be found at a Zen Leaf dispensary near you! With a focus on customer education, Zen Leaf dispensaries offer a range of cannabis options and information to ensure the best possible experience when seeking RSO or any other cannabis-based product.

Digital Content Manager for MÜV Florida and Zen Leaf Dispensaries. A cannabis connoisseur with a passion for explaining the miraculous possibility of the plant, Swan began her journey with cannabis as a recreational user and quickly realized its positive impact on her depression and severe anxiety. She joined the cannabis industry as Receptionist and MedTender and witnessed first-hand the immense potential of the plant for a wide variety of ailments, deepening her passion for alternative medicine. Swan is dedicated to self-education on the plant and sharing its potential with all. She holds a Journalism degree from the University of Iowa.

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