Let me clarify something right from the start. I’m not a doctor, and the information posted here should not be considered medical advice. CBD products are not approved by the FDA to diagnose, cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent any disease. I’m just offering information you may find helpful. Clearly, you should consult with your doctor before starting any dietary supplemental program, particularly if you are already on prescribed medications.
HOW MUCH CBD (CANNABIDIOL) SHOULD I TAKE?
While dosage seems like a fairly straightforward question, it’s not. CBD dosing is not a “one size fits all” proposition and there are many factors that go into deciding what the right, effective dose is for you. Let’s break it down into easy to understand language.
As with anything, you want to strike the proper balance. Ideally, you’ll be taking the right amount for the desired effect and not taking too much (or too little).
CBD is non-toxic and non-addictive, even in larger dosages, so having an impact on your general health should not be a primary concern. The main reasons for accurate dosage are mostly practical and financial. CBD products can be pricey, and by finding your minimum effective dose, you won’t be tossing premium milligrams of CBD out the window.
You’ll also hear people say they tried CBD and it didn’t really do anything for them. That certainly happens too, and CBD is not for everyone. The most likely reason for an unimpressive CBD experience is either under-dosing or inferior quality CBD. In short, it may take a little trial and error to get to your effective dose with the right product, but you can get there as long as you are using quality CBD products.
There are some basic things that will go a long way to simplify the process. First of all, Cannabidiol (CBD) is measured in milligrams, and the key to dosing is to find your personal sweet spot, which is the minimum number of milligrams per day (MPD) needed to have the desired effect. Some factors are reasonably straightforward, such as body composition. A larger person is probably going to need more than a small-framed person. This is not always true, but it is certainly a general guideline.
It’s also important to consider the severity of symptoms you are looking to relieve. Bigger issues may take a few more milligrams than minor issues that may come with things like aging.
A quick glance around the web will certainly offer plenty of charts and graphs that can be helpful. Here is a composite of some of the numbers that may offer a good starting point.
THE REST OF THE STORY
So before you go find your weight and start gobbling CBD gummies to the equivalent milligram numbers, please realize it’s not quite that simple. There are a few other very important considerations, the most important of which is something called bioavailability. Bioavailability is such an important consideration, it really deserves its own blog post (which you can read here).
In the meantime, let’s review the basics. First, a dose is how much CBD (in milligrams) is contained in one specific amount of product. Next, bioavailability is the amount of bioavailable CBD milligrams that actually make it to the bloodstream for the body to use. This is a highly variable number that is dependent mostly on how your CBD is introduced. Whether you smoke or vape CBD flower, use tinctures, enjoy edibles (such as gummies or capsules), or prefer a nice bath bomb, this will need to be factored into the equation, since they each offer different levels of bioavailability.
CBD is a molecule, and as such, only a fraction of what is taken in will actually make it into your bloodstream for a variety of reasons. Put another way, only part of the “dose milligram” is destined to become a “bioavailable milligram” to be used by your body. In fact, for every 20mg dose of CBD you take, you will only net roughly 2mg to 20mg of bioavailable CBD, depending on the bioavailability of the method of ingestion.
Taking it intravenously directly into the bloodstream is the only way to get 100% bioavailability. However, shooting up CBD is not exactly the ideal way to get your daily dose.
Inhalation (smoking or vaping hemp flowers) has the highest natural bioavailability and will net you approximately 35% to 55% of the ideal dosage. This equals approximately 11 active milligrams per 20mg dose (ideally). However, there are health risks to the lungs associated with smoking or vaping anything.
Sublingual tinctures (doses held under the tongue for at least one minute) yield anywhere from 12% to 35% or roughly 7 bioavailable milligrams per 20mg dose. Edibles and capsules, which can be fun and are probably the most convenient, have a very low natural bioavailability, ranging anywhere from 4% to 20%. These products should not be dismissed out of hand based on naturally low bioavailability, because there are now technologies (such as nanoemulsion) designed to turn traditional low bioavailable products into highly bioavailable ones. You just have to make sure that when you choose edibles, the base CBD takes advantage of this technology. Soul Blossom’s Softgel Capsules are all created from water soluble CBD using nanoemulsion technology.
SO WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN?
The above graph is based on bioavailable milligrams per day, not dose milligrams. However you choose to take your CBD, you need to understand how many bioavailable milligrams are suitable for you. Once you find your sweet spot, you can mix and match methods as long as they add up to your ideal total. Keep in mind that this total may be higher or lower than the numbers on the chart, which is merely a guide.
There are a few other factors that affect bioavailability as well, namely other cannabinoids and terpenes, which, when used in concert with CBD, create what’s known as the entourage effect (which you can read about in this post).
In short, the best strategy is to start low and use the bioavailable milligrams chart as a guide. Fairly soon, you should begin to see an improvement in whatever brought you to CBD in the first place. Once there, you will have likely found your sweet spot. That sweet spot may change over time, but armed with this knowledge, you’ll find it easier to adjust it as needed.