The complete guide to CBD usage, intake and dosage
With all the buzz around cannabidiol (CBD), the approval by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration in the US) of the first CBD drug for the treatment of seizures (Epidiolex) as well as all the additional ways in which it can help reduce the severity of a whole range of symptoms, many people are turning to CBD to help them improve their quality of life and wellbeing overall.
But, for people who are new to CBD, it can be daunting to figure out how to best use CBD and a lot of questions can arise. How to use CBD ? In which shapes and forms does CBD come? How to use different types of CBD products? What is the right CBD oil dosage as well as CBD dosage recommendations in general? And so on. Therefore, uWeed is helping beginners to navigate the complexity of CBD critical in helping them to make better decisions about their CBD usage.
That is why we’ve put together this definitive guide about CBD usage, CBD oil usage, CBD intake and CBD dosage. By reading it, you will know:
- What is CBD (Cannabidiol)?
- What CBD products exist and how to intake CBD?
- How to use CBD oil?
- What daily dose of CBD you should take and how to dose CBD oil?
What is Cannabidiol (CBD)?
CBD is a type of phytocannabinoid (cannabinoids produced by plants and found most abundantly in the cannabis plant), is one of 113 different types of cannabinoids identified to date.
Unlike its more (in)famous cousin the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD is an active ingredient that does not have psychoactive effects. In fact, a high dose of CBD has been shown to actually reduce the intoxicating and sedative effects of THC making researchers believe that medical marijuana products should include both CBD and THC, especially for people that are sensitive to the side effects of THC.
How to use CBD ? Forms of CBD intake
Because CBD products come in such a wide range of choices with a wide variety of different ways to use them, it can become quite daunting for a new user to decide which form of CBD intake is best for the human body..
Here we take a brief look at the different types of ways to consume CBD.
- CBD Capsules
Basically nothing more than a CBD oil in a gel cap, CBD capsules come in a wide variety of different strengths and sizes, making it a good option for people that want a precision dose of CBD. They are also discreet, flavourless and easy to swallow and therefore ideal for children, the elderly and people that don’t like the taste of CBD oil.
- CBD Oils & Tinctures
Probably the most well-known and widely used type of CBD products, oils and tinctures usually come in a dropper or spray bottle, making it both versatile and easy to use. The CBD oil or CBD tincture can either be made from a full- or broad-spectrum CBD extract or from a CBD isolate or nano-amplified CBD, and is mixed in with a carrier oil such as hemp seed oil or something like MCT oil. Serving size is usually 10ml bottles. You can buy CBD oil by brands such as Endoca or Swiss Extract on uWeed.
CBD Edibles are created by adding CBD isolates or extracts to a wide variety of different types of food products. This makes for a fun twist on using CBD or for those that do not like the taste of other types of CBD products. Popular edibles include things like gummies such as Endoca’s hemp mint chewing gums, lollipops, and other types of candies and baked goods.
CBD topicals come in a variety of forms, ranging from creams and balms, to transdermal patches. Because endocannabinoid receptors are present in the skin, this is an effective method of delivering CBD to specific areas, providing localized relief without having to pass through the rest of the body.
- Beauty Products and CBD Skincare
CBD is becoming a very popular ingredient in beauty products, including CBD skincare such as skin cleansers, toners, moisturisers and masks. In addition to providing the usual skin care benefits, CBD infused beauty products have the additional restorative, anti-oxidant and calming properties of CBD, reducing inflammation, sun damage and wrinkles.
- Vape Products
Vaping CBD is becoming an increasingly popular way of taking CBD. Not only do vaporizers come in a variety of styles, colours, sizes and flavours, vaping is also a very effective, efficient and fast way to feel almost instant relief for a variety of conditions and symptoms. You can also find various smoking accessories on uWeed.
CBD concentrates are extracts containing high concentrations of CBD. It can come in a variety of different forms which include CBD hash, wax, dabs and oils. Although it has its roots in cannabis culture, due to the fast relief it provides, the CBD community is embracing the smoking of concentrates.
What is bioavailability and why does it matter for CBD usage and intake?
Now that we’ve explored the most popular types of CBD products available on the market, let’s take a look at the effectiveness of each type of product and the absorption rates for the different way ways of administration.
CBD usage: What is bioavailability of CBD ?
Whenever any kind of therapeutic substance is ingested, it needs to be absorbed into the body before it can start doing its job. This rate of absorption as well as the amount administered that reaches the circulatory system unchanged is called its bioavailability.
The most effective method of taking any type of therapeutic compound is via intravenous administration (i.e., injection). Because the substance goes directly into the blood stream, it bypasses all the other physiological systems usually associated with other forms of administration, injection guarantees a 100% bioavailability.
Because people generally don’t go around injecting CBD, it is useful to know the bioavailability of the different methods of consumption.
CBD bioavailability differs by CBD usage and intake
Oral Administration: Capsules & Edibles
Usually CBD capsules and edibles (e.g. CBD gummies) are ingested by mouth, entering the digestive system. From there the CBD molecules must pass through the portal vein and into the liver via a process called first pass metabolism. During this process, the liver metabolises the CBD and other molecules before it enters into the bloodstream.
One obvious drawback of this method of delivery is that the enzymes in the liver not only breaks down the CBD, but it also reduces the concentration of the CBD compounds before it enters the bloodstream. This means that the bioavailability of CBD is vastly reduced to the lower end of between 4% and 20%.
Sublingual Administration: CBD Oils & Tinctures
Sublingual administration is when a desired amount of drops are put under the tongue and then held there for 60 - 90 seconds before its swallowed. When hemp oil is held under the tongue, some of the CBD is directly absorbed into the mucous membranes.
However, because the majority of the CBD product is swallowed, and having to follow the same route as orally administered CBD products, sublingual administration is only slightly more effective than oral administration that falls in around a 10% to 20% range of bioavailability.
Topical Administration: Topicals & Beauty Products
Another popular way of CBD intake is by applying a CBD rich cream, salve or balm directly to the skin. The theory is that the CBD molecules penetrate the skin and enters the bloodstream through the little capillaries and veins situated underneath the dermal layers.
Unfortunately, to date, no specific studies have been done to assess the bioavailability of CBD via the skin.
Inhalation: Vape Products & Concentrates
Inhaling CBD (with vape pen or e-cigarette) is a highly effective way of getting a dose of CBD. With its quick onset time and up to five times higher level of bioavailability compared to oral administration, inhalation is fast becoming one of the most popular methods of consumption.
Due to the large surface area and high permeability of lung tissue, research shows that vaporization produces bioavailability levels that range between 2% to 56% depending mostly on the way the CBD is inhaled. The deeper and longer the CBD is held in the lungs, the more CBD is absorbed with the average bioavailability being around the 40% mark.
This makes vaporization or smoking ideal for people that are suffering from acute conditions that require fast and effective relief. However, vaporization and inhalation still carries similar risks than regular smoking meaning that it might not be suitable for everyone.
Summary of bioavailability of different CBD usage
Method of Administration
4% - 20%
30 - 90 min
± 7 hrs
10% - 20%
20 - 40 min
± 6 hrs
60 - 90 min
± 6 hrs
2% - 56%
2 - 5 min
± 3 hrs
CBD dosage : how to properly dose and intake CBD?
Unlike with many pharmaceuticals, there is no one “correct” CBD dosage that works for everybody. This is due to the way that CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, with most of the health benefits coming from restoring homeostasis within the body.
The rule-of-thumb is to start low and go slow with the recommended starting dose of 25 mg of CBD taken twice a day. Slowly start increasing the amount of CBD every 3-4 weeks by adding another dose of 25 mg daily until symptoms or pain relief is attained. If however symptoms get worse, it is recommended to decrease the dose by 25 mg.
Research and clinical trials suggest that certain conditions can benefit from the following proper CBD dosage guidelines:
- Loss of Appetite in Cancer Patients: 2.5 mg THC (orally), with or without 1mg CBD for six weeks.
- Chronic Pain: 2.5-20 mg CBD (orally).
- Epilepsy: 200-300 mg of CBD (orally) daily.
- Sleep Disorders: 40 mg-160 mg CBD (orally).
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS) symptoms: Cannabis plant extracts containing 2.5-120 mg of a THC/CBD combination daily for 2-15 weeks.
- Schizophrenia: 40 mg - 1,280 mg CBD (orally) daily.
- Glaucoma: A single CBD (orally) dose of 20 mg - 40 mg (>40 mg may increase eye pressure).
In the end everyone is different with an individual’s optimal dosage needing to be determined through a bit of experimentation and paying attention to the effects of CBD. while taking a few things into consideration.
What is the proper CBD Dosage for me?
CBD quantity or concentration is measured in milligrams, indicating the amount of CBD present in the product. This is different from dosage which refers to the amount of CBD per serving. To figure out CBD% to milligrams, you can use the following formula:
CBD Oil Quantity:
1ml CBD oil = 1,000 mg of CBD oil
CBD% of 1,000 mg = 0.0% * 1,000 /ml
You have a 10 ml bottle of CBD with a concentration of 20% CBD
20% of 1,000 mg = 0.2 X 1,000 = 200 mg of CBD / ml
This means that a 10 ml bottle contains 10 x 200 mg of CBD = 2,000 mg
Body weight and composition also plays a role in how much or how little CBD is needed. Generally, lighter framed people or people with a lower BMI need smaller doses of CBD than people with a higher body fat percentage or a heavier frame. In case of weight loss, think about reducing your dosage too.
Different doses are needed for different types of conditions as well as symptom severity. For instance, people suffering from chronic neuropathic pain will need a higher dose of CBD for the treatment of this disease and reduced pain, than someone taking CBD for general health and well being. So a consumer using cannabis oil to reduce anxiety will likely not need as much CBD daily as a patient with an immune system disorder.
CBD dosage: can you overdose on CBD?
Because of the way that CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, it is non-toxic and have very few side-effects with no known fatal overdoses ever having been reported. However, as with everything, there is a limit between just enough and too much. Reduce your CBD dosage if any of the following symptoms or CBD side-effects are experienced with CBD drops or any other products:
- Anxiety / depression
- Nausea / vomiting
- Dry mouth
- Changes in appetite
Please note that CBD usage, and CBD dosage as well as CBD oil dosage recommendations are generic and based on an average human being. CBD can work differently on different people and we recommend you to seek medical advice before starting to take CBD as your doctor or pharmacist will be able to support you with your choices.