As the medical community is finally starting to realize, CBD can help with numerous illnesses and conditions. Despite CBD’s rise in popularity, there are lots of CBD dosage questions and plenty of misinformation. The main question we receive from customers is definitely “How much CBD should I take”?
We at Blue+Yellow are here to help. We’ve created this guide to help you with your CBD dosage, so you can figure out where to start, how much to increase your dosage by, and what dosage works best for you.
CBD Medical Benefits
CBD can be used to treat a huge number of medical conditions and issues. Here are just a few of the things CBD can help with:
- Relieve pain
- Relieve anxiety
- Reduce inflammation
- Relieve psychosis
- Stimulate appetite
- Reduce nausea
- Reduce seizure/convulsion
- Prevent nervous system degeneration
- Suppress muscle spasm
- Manage blood sugar
- Treat psoriasis
- Inhibit cancer cell growth
- Reduce risk of artery blockage
- Increase bone growth
- Kill or slow bacterial growth
Specific disorders that CBD can treat include:
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Parkinson’s disease
- Chronic pain
- Neuropathic pain
Now that you’re familiar with all the amazing benefits you can get from CBD, let’s figure out what CBD dosage is right for you.
Consult A Doctor First
As with any substance taken for medicinal purposes, please make sure to talk to your doctor, particularly if you are using it to treat any serious condition. He or she can provide clinical information regarding your medical issue and make suggestions about the best form of treatment. It’s also important to keep in mind that the information in this article should not be considered medical advice.
In the US, CBD is still categorized as a “natural remedy” by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA), and there is sparse scientific data to support optimal dosing size. It’s even worse in Canada, as finding proper dosing guidelines on any Health Canada website is nearly impossible. They will generally say to speak with your doctor, but doctors for the most part haven’t received much training on using CBD.
However, one difference between treating yourself with CBD products as opposed to using traditional pharmaceuticals, as you’ll read in the side effects section, is that it’s nearly impossible to overdose on good quality CBD. Experimenting with CBD products has very little risk for most people, and you can find your own “best dosage” without the fear of side effects.
Before we talk about our CBD dosage calculator, though, let’s learn about the best delivery methods.
CBD Delivery Methods
The cannabinoid CBD can be delivered into your body in a number of different ways:
Probably the easiest and most effective method is CBD oil. CBD oil, or tincture, is simply placed under your tongue, where it is absorbed directly into your bloodstream. This method of delivery bypasses the two systems in your body that can minimize the desired effects of CBD: the pulmonary system (lungs) and the digestive system.
Both systems mentioned above can filter out large amounts of the medicine you’re trying to get into your bloodstream, but the digestive system—most notably, the liver—is extremely effective at diluting chemicals that pass through it.
Because CBD oil can be absorbed directly into your bloodstream under your tongue and because these blood vessels are close to your brain, the CBD doesn’t pass through your lungs or your liver. And when CBD bypasses the liver and the lungs, it retains its original potency. We recommend this as the optimal way to ingest this medicine.
Make Notes of Your Dosage
No two people will have the exact same effects at the same dosage. What works for one person may not be enough for another person. As you’ll see in the next section, several factors can affect the amount of CBD necessary to achieve the results you are looking for.
Unfortunately, many of these factors can change from day to day, or even from hour to hour. What that means for you is that finding your perfect CBD dosage is going to take a bit of experimentation.
That experimentation shouldn’t be inconsistent. You don’t want to try one dosage on Friday and then a totally different dosage on Monday. It shouldn’t be about picking random numbers out of a hat. Instead, record your experience down to the last detail until you’ve dialed in just the right dose for your circumstances.
We suggest purchasing a notebook or starting a spreadsheet on your computer or mobile device. In it, record as many variables as you can, including your weight, what you last ate and what it was, the amount of CBD oil you took, how you felt before and after, and anything else that you believe affects the experience.
Remember, this is about improving your health, and therefore your life, so the more rigorous, vigilant, and detailed you can be the easier it will be to find the right CBD dosage.
Things to Consider When Figuring Out Your Dosage
As we mentioned, a large number of factors affect the size of the dosage that will work for you. The type and potency of the CBD oil will certainly affect what you feel, but other factors to consider include:
- Your weight
- Your metabolism
- Your diet
- The condition being treated
- The severity of your illness
- Your tolerance to CBD
We’ll provide some general guidelines regarding weight and suggested dosage, but keep in mind that your weight may change. So if you find yourself gaining/losing weight, adjust your dosage accordingly.
If you lose weight (because of a decrease in anxiety, depression, or an improvement in your general health), the CBD dosage for you should probably go down. If you gain weight (because of regaining your appetite or no longer being nauseated), the amount of CBD you take could increase. That’s why we were saying it’s so important to take notes as you go!
Other factors are not so easy to adjust. Metabolism doesn’t really change unless you make a drastic alteration in your habits (going from a sedentary lifestyle to an active lifestyle, for example). In addition, you can’t measure your metabolism into a number, so it can be tricky to gauge the speed of your digestion. But it’s fair to say that most people have a pretty good idea if they have a fast or slow metabolism.
Similarly, cannabis use of all types (even CBD) can lead to a higher tolerance. So the 10 mg per day you were taking may not cut it 6 months from now.
All of these factors should be considered, tweaked, and recorded, allowing to properly track how much you should be taking.
A Word on CBD Side Effects
There are very few side effects associated with taking CBD. One of the only commonly reported issues is a little bit of dry mouth. Pot smokers will be very familiar with this. In a world full of medications that have a 30 second disclaimer for side effects in a 60 second commercial, this is a pretty small price to pay!
The only other side effect of CBD is a potential decrease in your liver’s ability to process other drugs. So if you take a heart medication and add CBD to control your blood sugar, you could be doing more harm than good. Be sure to talk to a physician about whether CBD is right for your condition.
Is It Possible to Overdose On CBD?
It’s also important to note that it’s nearly impossible to overdose on CBD if you use it sensibly. And by overdose, I mean get sick. I can’t imagine a person dying from it, outside of choking to death while trying to swallow bags of the powder. Nobody has ever died from a CBD overdose.
There have been a few studies of toxicology of CBD done on animals. The most recent one that I could find is from 1981, which had a LD50 of 212 mg of CBD per kg, given intravenously to monkeys. This means that a monkey that weighs 100 kg, has a 50% chance of dying after being injected with 21.2 grams of CBD. There’s really no reason you would ever have to take that much CBD, let alone inject it. The largest bottle of CBD that we carry is 1000 mg (1 gram), and that would normally be taken over the course of 2-8 weeks.
So it’s safe to say that even doses up to 1500 milligrams for an extended period of time (eg., 4 weeks) are safe and won’t cause any negative side effects.
CBD Is Biphasic/Adaptogenic
Another thing to keep in mind when calculating your best dosage is that CBD is biphasic. That means that at certain levels, CBD provides a certain list of effects. At other — often higher — levels, CBD can provide different effects.
This biphasic idea can go against common sense, but it isn’t all that uncommon. Alcohol, for example, is biphasic. Below a certain blood alcohol content (BAC), alcohol provides a stimulating effect. Above that blood alcohol content, alcohol provides a depressant effect. Think of how you feel like you can conquer the world after that first beer, but all you want is a nap after 6 of them.
That’s not to say that CBD will act as a stimulant at one dosage level and a depressant at another, but the effects may change as the dosage increases. Again, that’s why it’s vital to record your experience so you can fine-tune what works for you.
Below, we’ve produced a table of dosage suggestions based on your weight and the severity of your ailment (pain level). Use these suggestions as a starting point and adjust your dosage up or down accordingly.
With these suggestions in mind, let’s move to our CBD dosage calculator.
CBD Dosage Calculator Method
To determine how much CBD you need to take, simply look at the dosage per full dropper located on the side of the bottle. The image below is from the Honest Botanicals 500 mg CBD oil, so if you were a 140 pound person with medium pain, you could take approximately 1 dropper full. If you are a 260 pound person with very mild pain, you could take approximately 1.4 droppers full. (22.5 mg suggested dose, divided by 16.6 mg per dropper = 1.4 droppers!)
To find just the right dosage for your situation, we highly recommend starting small. Remember, the least amount of medicine you can take to feel relief from your symptoms the better.
Experiment with a certain dosage for three days to give your body time to react to the medication. Adjust the dosage up or down accordingly for the next three-day period. If you feel any discomfort from a dosage, decrease it immediately the next time you take the CBD oil. You can always increase gradually from there.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, CBD can be very useful in the fight against many chronic and debilitating diseases, but the medical community is still catching on. Until they come out with their own set of dosage recommendations, you can calculate your ideal number with a bit of experimentation and some simple math. So what are you waiting for?
CBD Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is a safe dose?
A: Assuming no other medications are being taken that need to be processed through the liver to work, the only safety issues would be possibly getting a little bit of a “high” from the small amount of THC if one was taking the full spectrum CBD Oil, it would take about 6 droppers full within a 4 hour window to feel any high. For the zero THC option, I would consider anything under 500 mg per day to be completely safe.
Q: Up to how many times a day can I take it?
A: I think up to 3-4 full dropper fulls per day, spaced apart, would be completely fine, no matter how sensitive to THC a person was. There are no ill effects from too much CBD, in a bottle this size, outside of possible dry mouth.
Q: What is the maximum dose I should use at each dose?
A: Probably more than comes in the bottle, take a look at the dosage chart above and start with the correct dosage for your weight, and adjust up or down from there.
Q: What is the maximum dose per 24 hours?
A: A whole lot. Multiple bottles of CBD oil at the minimum. This isn’t like traditional pharma, there is no overdoses or anything like that. Only real possible side effect is getting a little bit high if using CBD with THC (full spectrum). There’s a better chance of getting an upset stomach from the oil, then having any ill effects from the CBD.
Q: When should I use it?
A: I would recommend a dropper full in the morning and a dropper full at night before bed, depending on your weight and the strength of the CBD oil. But more or less is certainly fine.
Q: What are the side effects?
A: Very little. May have some slight sleepiness depending on tolerance. May feel a little of the “high”, which is very light, if using a full spectrum oil. Possibly some dry mouth. And possibly having an affect on other medications you take if they are processed in your liver. Talk to your doctor!