So, you’ve heard all about CBD and you’ve decided to try it for insomnia, headaches, pain or some other reason. You order a bottle of 500mg CBD oil and you take it in the morning for a migraine, but nothing happens. You’re understandably upset: You just paid good money for that CBD oil and it’s not fulfilling all the claims you’re heard about it. But, before you return it or whip off an angry email to the CBD company, just hang in there for a moment. There are a few reasons why CBD doesn’t work for you; some fixable and others not. Here are some to consider:
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate CBD products. That means there are no official standards or requirements in place for selling CBD products. But they’re wildly popular, so some people looking to make a quick buck are selling inferior, untested CBD products. In fact, one study found that only about 1/3 of tested products contained the amount of CBD shown on the label. Almost 43 percent had more CBD than stated and 26 percent had less. That means there’s a one in four chance you’re not getting the strength of CBD that you think you are.
Reputable brands have their CBD tested by a third-party independent lab and the results are posted on the website. That way you can be sure you’re getting the amount of CBD on the label, and the product is free from THC, contaminants, and other harmful substances.
The Amount of CBD
It makes sense to order a product with a low concentration of CBD to start, but the amount you start with might not be enough.
Here’s what we recommend for dosages:
- For general wellness, start with 25mg once a day.
- For specific ailments, start with 50mg once a day.
- If needed, increase dose to twice a day.
- Increase in 25mg increments until desired result is achieved.
A bottle of one brand’s 250mg CBD oil has about 17mg of CBD per 1ml dose (1 dropper). So, as you can see, taking that brand once a day doesn’t meet the minimum amount we recommend starting with for general wellness – and certainly not as much we recommend for specific ailments. Our 1500mg CBD oil contains 50mg CBD per dropper. Take half a dropper (1/2 ml = 25mg) for the perfect concentration to start with.
You need to experiment to find the perfect dose for you. Don’t worry that at more than 50mg you’re taking too much. A US Government patent concludes that “No signs of toxicity or serious side effects have been observed following chronic administration of cannabidiol to healthy volunteers (Cunha et al., Pharmacology 21:175-185, 1980), even in large acute doses of 700 mg/day.”
How You Take It
The fastest way to get CBD into your bloodstream and start to feel results is with vaping, but that has its own issues as does taking any kind of smoke into your lungs. The second fastest delivery method is taking it sublingually: place the CBD oil or isolate under the tongue and hold it for a minute or so. These methods also take into account bioavailability, or the portion of CBD that gets into your system. Numbers vary by source, but in general vaping has a bioavailability of about 30% to 40%, while taking CBD sublingually has a 20% to 35% bioavailability. Taking CBD with food or in a capsule has a bioavailability of 5% or so.
Here’s more from Ministry of Hemp:
How Long You Take It
If you take CBD once and expect relief, your expectations aren’t realistic. As with many things, it takes time for your body to adjust. If you take it for a week and don’t get results, don’t give up! It could take several weeks – or even months – to feel the intended effect. Give things as much time as you – and your wallet – are able.
Genetics, Gender, Lifestyle
Yes, these are all things that can figure into how CBD affects you. Women are more sensitive to CBD. Some people have naturally high amounts of endocannabinoids in their bodies, so CBD doesn’t have much effect on them. Others have a deficiency, so the effect may be more pronounced. Everyone is different and there are physical, genetic and biological factors that are simply out of your control.
You May Build Up a Tolerance
As with other substances, after prolonged use it may be possible to build up a tolerance, which causes the CBD to be less effective. An older study reported there is no tolerance with CBD, but a new study involving adults and children who were taking CBD for epilepsy found a tolerance developed in about one-third of the patients. If you’ve been using significant amounts for, say, years, try cutting back for a time to “reset” your body, then start again.
The bottom line is that nothing works for everyone. Just as some medications work for some people better than others, CBD is effective for many users, but not effective for some. If you’re one of those few, it’s unfortunate because so many people find relief and general well-being once they find the right dosage and CBD brand for them. But, be sure to take everything into consideration before determining that CBD “doesn’t work.”