Getting Started With CBD: Your First 30 Days
Getting Started With CBD: Your First 30 Days
We’ve seen CBD’s popularity soar in the last few years and heard a lot of buzz about its many benefits. But lost in all the excitement was proper information on how to receive the most benefit from CBD products. The most common problem people have when they begin taking CBD is that they think that taking it once will solve their problems. In truth, erratic and intermittent dosing will not provide long-lasting benefits. To experience the best results from CBD, consistency is key. So, to get all the benefits CBD has to offer, it’s all about how much, how often, and how long.
What is CBD?
A cultivar of Cannabis sativa, a.k.a. the marijuana plant, and sometimes referred to as Cannabis sativa L., the hemp plant is abundantly supplied with the phytocannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD). The hemp plant also contains other lesser-known phytocannabinoids CBN, CBG, and CBC along with small amounts of THC, the psychoactive phytocannabinoid responsible for producing a “high.” However, products made from hemp extract, sometimes simply referred to as CBD, are non-psychoactive. You will not get high from ingesting CBD or other phytocannabinoids found in hemp, including the trifle amount of THC (<.3% on a dry-weight scale), as this is not enough to induce a high.
How does CBD work with the body?
CBD works by engaging with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which is in charge of maintaining homeostasis. The word “cannabinoid” refers to the active components of the Cannabis plant. Placing the prefix “endo,” which means “within,” before it modifies this reference to mean the cannabinoids that are produced within the human body. Therefore, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is responsible for making its own cannabinoids that help the body function as it should, that is, maintain homeostasis. Researchers discovered the ESC in 1992 and pinpointed two endocannabinoids to date: anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). Our bodies release these chemicals when needed to help regulate certain bodily functions, including the immune system, mood, appetite, sleep, pain, and others.
Not only does the body benefit from its own cannabinoids but it also benefits from “phyto”cannabinoids, those produced by the Cannabis plant. Products made from phytocannabinoids, such as CBD, are as equally effective as endocannabinoids at reacting with the ESC to help regulate homeostasis.
How much CBD should you take?
There is no single answer to this question. Everyone’s system is different, so it is recommended that when you start taking CBD, you begin with 50mg a day, and from there you can work your way up to as much as 200mg a day, if needed. This can be done with a single dose, or you can break up your total daily milligram intake into three equal doses every four hours. When regularly dosing with oral CBD, it’s important to remember that it has a half-life of between six and eight hours. Therefore, most people benefit quickly from CBD when they dose regularly at 33mg 3 times a day for four weeks. This is a great way to get into a CBD routine, and from here you can tweak the doses as needed.
How often should you take CBD?
The frequency of your dosing depends on what kind of CBD product you choose to use. If using oral CBD, like elixirs, oils, and gummies, it will take approximately one to two weeks of consistent dosing for it to build up in your system. However, it may take two to four weeks for some people. For a sublingual CBD product, one administered under the tongue, like a breath spray, the effects are felt much faster, but they don’t last as long as an oral product.
How long should you take CBD?
Once again, there is no one answer to this question, because CBD has an immediate effect and a cumulative effect, depending on which type you use. So, most people who use an oral elixir, for example, will not feel CBD’s effect immediately after a single dose. Oral CBD must travel through the digestive system, which includes the liver, and because the liver breaks down CBD, making it ineffective, it usually requires at least one to two weeks before CBD builds up in the system. Therefore, when you are consistently dosing, CBD can accumulate in the body as soon as two to five days after ingesting.
While elixirs, tinctures, and other oral CBD products are ingested with long-term benefits in mind, sublingual CBD products are taken for quick relief. For instance, a CBD breath spray will produce immediate results, but it will not last long, nor will it build up in the system. Sublingual CBD is intended to be used for acute symptoms, so depending on your needs at the time, it may be your best bet as an easy, quick, go-to choice.
Many people don’t understand that to receive the greatest benefit from CBD products, you need to determine your adequate dosing and take it regularly. Because our bodies metabolize at different rates, finding the sweet spot for dosing will require some tweaking. Consistent dosing of three times daily for a minimum of two weeks to a month should produce the benefits you’re looking for. Remember: consistency is key.