- How to Take CBD Oil?
How to Take CBD Oil?
Embarking on your cannabidiol (CBD) journey may seem daunting, but understanding how to take CBD oil effectively and safely can make all the difference. In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the essentials of how to take CBD oil, covering everything from its background to the most suitable methods of administration.
We'll help you familiarise yourself with the various types of CBD oil, their legal status, and the difference between CBD and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Additionally, you'll learn how to determine the correct dosage based on various factors and techniques for proper usage and administration.
Furthermore, we will discuss the importance of monitoring your progress by keeping a CBD oil journal, adjusting your dosage based on the results, and identifying potential side effects or interactions. To ensure you use a reputable CBD brand, we will also share tips on verifying quality and safety, lab testing, and customer reviews.
Understanding CBD Oil
CBD oil is a natural product derived from the C. sativa L. plant. It contains CBD, a non-psychoactive compound that interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS), which helps regulate various physiological processes. CBD oil has been explored in numerous studies, with users often turning to it for general well-being and to support a healthy lifestyle.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is created by extracting CBD from hemp plants and then diluting the extract with a carrier oil such as coconut or hemp seed oil. Unlike its counterpart, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not produce a "high" or intoxicating effect, making it an appealing option for those seeking potential therapeutic benefits without the mind-altering effects associated with marijuana use.
The Difference Between CBD and THC
While both CBD and THC are cannabinoids found in the C. sativa L. plants, they have distinct differences in their effects on the human body. THC is the most abundant psychoactive compound in marijuana, responsible for the "high" sensation experienced by users. It binds with cannabinoid receptors in the brain, affecting mood, pain perception, and other feelings.
On the other hand, CBD does not bind directly to these receptors and does not cause the intoxicating effects associated with THC. Instead, CBD is believed to interact with the ECS differently, potentially offering various natural health benefits without the psychoactive effects.
Legal Status of CBD Oil
CBD oil is legal in the UK, as long as it doesn't contain any controlled cannabinoids such as THC or THC-V, among others. To be considered legal and exempt from 'controlled' status, CBD oil must meet these specific definitions:
- The product should not be designed to administer a controlled drug to humans or animals.
- No part of the product should contain any controlled cannabinoids.
Additionally, because of CBD oil's classification as a 'novel food,' all products must be assessed for safety by the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA). The FSA also provides consumer guidelines for the safe use of CBD oil. They:
- Advise against its use by pregnant and breastfeeding women and those on medication.
- Recommend a daily limit of 70 mg for healthy adults unless otherwise directed by a doctor.
Various Types of CBD Oil Products
While CBD oil is a versatile product, it is available in various formulations to cater to different preferences and needs. Understanding these options can help you choose the best type of CBD oil for your specific requirements. Some of the most common types of CBD oil products include:
- Full-Spectrum CBD Oil: Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all the natural compounds found in the hemp plant, such as cannabinoids (including THC), terpenes, and flavonoids. Many users prefer full-spectrum CBD oil due to the entourage effect, a phenomenon where the combination of all these compounds may work together to enhance the overall effects. It is important to note that while many full-spectrum products are available in shops, they cannot be considered as legal because they contain controlled cannabinoids.
- Broad-Spectrum CBD Oil: Broad-spectrum CBD oil is similar to full-spectrum CBD oil, but with one key difference: it contains no THC or other controlled cannabinoids. This type of CBD oil retains other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, providing a comprehensive profile of hemp compounds without the risk of ingesting any controlled substances.
- CBD Isolate Oil: CBD isolate oil contains only the pure CBD compound, with all other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids removed. This option is ideal for those who prefer a pure CBD experience without any other cannabis plant compounds or traces of controlled cannabinoids. However, CBD isolate oil does not provide the entourage effect.
- Carrier Oil Variations: CBD oil can be combined with different carrier oils to enhance absorption, flavour, or shelf life. Some common carrier oils used in CBD oil products include MCT oil (medium-chain triglycerides found in coconut oil), hemp seed oil, and olive oil. Each carrier oil may offer additional benefits or have a unique flavour profile, so it's essential to consider your preferences when choosing a CBD oil product.
Determining the Right Dosage of CBD Oil
When choosing how to take CBD oil, finding the right dosage is crucial for achieving the desired effects. However, determining the appropriate dosage can be challenging due to various factors influencing how your body responds to CBD.
In this section, we will discuss the factors that influence CBD dosage, the importance of starting with a low dosage, gradually increasing the dosage, and understanding CBD potency and concentration.
Factors Influencing CBD Dosage
When it comes to CBD dosage, you may want to know the recommended dose or exactly how many drops to take. However, the reality is significantly more complex; several factors can influence the ideal dosage of CBD for an individual. These factors include:
1. Body weight: Your body weight plays a significant role in determining the right CBD dosage. Generally, heavier individuals may require higher doses to experience the desired effects, while lighter individuals may need a lower dose of just a few drops.
2. Body chemistry: Each person's body chemistry is unique, which means that the way your body reacts to CBD may be different from someone else's. This factor makes it essential to find the right dosage that works best for you.
3. The condition being treated: The specific condition you are trying to address with CBD will also influence the ideal dosage. Some conditions may require higher doses, while others may respond well to lower doses.
4. The concentration of CBD in the product: The concentration of active ingredient in CBD products, usually measured in milligrams per millilitre (mg/mL), milligrams per container or as a percentage will determine how many drops you will need to take to get your desired results.
5. Taking it on an empty or full stomach: Taking CBD on a full stomach after a meal of healthy fatty foods has been shown to increase its absorption. Even if you choose to let the CBD oil absorb sublingually (under your tongue), this may still make a difference because you will still swallow a small amount.
Starting with a Low Dosage
When first starting with CBD oil, it's advisable to begin with a low dosage. This allows you to assess how your body reacts to CBD and minimises the risk of experiencing any potential side effects. For example, you might start with a daily measure of 5-10 mg of CBD and closely monitor your body's response.
Gradually Increasing the Dosage
After you have started with a low dosage and assessed your body's reaction to CBD, you can gradually increase the amount every few days to find the dose that works best for you.
For example: On day one, day two and day three, take 10mg daily. On day four, increase the daily amount to 15mg. Continue this process, increasing the daily dose by 5mg on every fourth day.
Increasing the dosage slowly like this by adding 5mg or 10 mg every fourth day will give your body time to adjust and allow you to see which amount provides the results you're looking for. Make sure to closely monitor how you feel during this process and adjust the dosage accordingly.
Understanding CBD Concentration
When determining the correct dosage, it's important to understand how strong it is. Most CBD bottles will provide three important values:
- Container size: This tells you how much total oil is in the bottle in millilitres. Most CBD brands sell their CBD oil in 10ml or 30ml bottles.
- CBD total amount: This is how much total CBD is in the bottle; this value is usually given in milligrams. The total amount will vary from product to product but will likely fall between 50mg and 5,000mg. On the whole, the more total CBD oil you get, the more you'll pay for the product.
- CBD concentration: In the UK, the concentration is usually given as a percentage which tells you how strong the product is. Most CBD oils will be between 1% and 50% in concentration.
To help you understand these values, here are some examples:
Example 1: A 10ml bottle containing a total CBD content of 100 mg CBD will have a 1% concentration. This means that 1% of the total bottle volume is made up of CBD. Consequently, every drop or dose you take will also be 1% CBD.
Example 2: A 30ml bottle containing 300mg CBD has a 1% concentration.
Example 3: A 10ml bottle with 1000mg of total CBD indicates a concentration of 10%. In this case, each millilitre of oil contains 100mg of CBD.
Example 4: A 30ml bottle containing 3000 mg of total CBD will also have a concentration of 10%. As with example 3, each millilitre of oil will hold 100mg CBD.
Understanding these figures enables you to gauge the potency of your CBD oil accurately and allows you to calculate the appropriate dosage for your needs.
To measure your dosage accurately, you may use a dropper that's often provided with CBD oil bottles. Some require you to count out each drop while others use a scale to indicate the volume in millilitres. This allows you to calculate and adjust the number of CBD oil drops needed to achieve your desired dosage.
Approaches to Taking CBD
There are two primary strategies for taking CBD:
A. On-Demand Consumption: This approach mirrors how our bodies naturally produce cannabinoids - in response to particular needs. Individuals following this method take CBD only when they feel it's needed, such as during stressful moments or when certain symptoms flare up. This could mean taking a single dose or several doses over a few days or weeks until the need subsides. John, a 35-year-old software engineer, told us, "My job often subjects me to high-stress situations. I prefer the on-demand approach to taking CBD. I've found that taking it whenever I feel my stress levels peaking helps me regain control and stay focused."
B. Regular Consumption: This strategy is commonly used by individuals whose endocannabinoid system might be significantly impaired and require a more constant supply of cannabinoids. In such cases, on-demand use isn't as effective, and regular dosing becomes essential. This approach entails taking CBD consistently as a daily supplement, typically 2 to 4 times per day, over an extended period. Sarah, a 42-year-old teacher, explained, "My endocannabinoid system seems to be quite hampered with my chronic condition. On-demand consumption wasn't helping much, so I switched to regular doses. I now take smaller doses of CBD in the morning, at lunch, and at night. It's made a world of difference to my symptom management."
The approach to CBD consumption largely depends on individual needs and how one's body responds to CBD. The goal is to find a system that works for you and delivers the maximum benefits.
Proper Usage and Administration
When it comes to deciding how to take CBD oil, several methods of administration cater to individual preferences and specific needs. In this section, we will discuss the various ways to use CBD oil, including the sublingual method, ingestion, topical application, and inhalation. Each administration method comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. We will examine these aspects to assist you in making a well-informed choice on the most suitable way to include CBD in your everyday life.
The sublingual method involves placing a few CBD oil drops under the tongue and holding it there for between 3 to 9 minutes before swallowing. This allows the CBD to be absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the mucous membranes, bypassing the digestive system and liver. This method offers a rapid onset of effects, usually within minutes, and is considered one of the most efficient ways to take CBD oil.
If maintaining the oil under your tongue for the full 9 minutes proves challenging, we recommend that after about 3 minutes, you use your tongue to spread the oil onto your outer gums and inner cheeks. This approach continues to capitalise on the mucous membranes' ability to absorb the CBD directly into the bloodstream. By distributing the oil in this manner, instead of simply swallowing the remaining oil, you enhance the efficiency of absorption, ensuring you receive the full benefit of your CBD oil dosage.
Taking CBD oil entails consuming it orally, either by mixing it with food or ingesting it in the form of capsules. Alternatively, a few people even drink CBD oil. Upon ingestion, the CBD travels through the digestive system and undergoes metabolism in the liver.
During this process, a significant amount of CBD is destroyed by the first-pass effect, and some is converted to 6 and 7-hydroxy metabolites. This makes ingestion less efficient compared to other methods. However, ingestion offers a longer duration of effects and is a convenient and discreet method of administration.
Should you drink CBD oil?
Yes, you can drink CBD oil by mixing it with beverages or purchasing a ready-made CBD drink.
Some CBD oils can be made into topical products, such as creams, balms, and lotions. However, most topical applications are more effective when done with purpose-made topical CBD products designed for skin absorption. When applying CBD topically, the CBD interacts with cannabinoid receptors in the skin, providing targeted relief.
The pros of this type of application include targeted effects, no risk of ingestion, and ease of use. The cons include the potential for skin irritation, slower onset of effects, and lower bioavailability compared to other methods.
Inhaling CBD is not recommended with traditional CBD oils, as they contain carrier oils that are not suitable for vaporisation and inhalation. Instead, those interested in inhaling CBD should opt for a purpose-made vape pen or CBD e-liquid.
Using a product like a vape pen to inhale CBD allows for rapid absorption of CBD into the bloodstream through the lungs, providing almost immediate effects. However, the long-term safety of inhaling CBD from vape pens is still under investigation, and some users may experience throat irritation or other respiratory issues.
Monitoring Your Progress
When incorporating CBD oil into your wellness routine, monitoring your progress and adjusting your dosage is essential. This enables you to ascertain the optimal dosage tailored to your specific requirements and ensures you remain informed about any possible adverse effects or interactions with other medicines.
In this section, we will explore the significance of maintaining a CBD journal, modifying your dosage in response to outcomes, and recognising side effects and interactions.
Keeping a CBD Journal
A CBD journal is a valuable tool for tracking your experiences with CBD oil. By documenting your daily intake, symptoms, and any changes in your overall well-being, you can better understand how CBD oil drops affect you personally. Be sure to include information such as the date, time, dosage, and any specific symptoms or feelings you experience before and after taking CBD. This will help you identify patterns and make informed decisions about your CBD usage.
Adjusting Dosage Based on Results
As you monitor your progress with CBD oil, you may find that adjustments to your dosage are necessary. Keep in mind that each individual's body responds uniquely to CBD, meaning that what is effective for one person might not be for another.
Begin with a low dose and incrementally raise it until you attain the desired outcomes. If you experience any negative effects or if your symptoms don't improve, think about lowering your dosage or seeking advice from a healthcare expert for direction.
Identifying Side Effects and Interactions
Although CBD oil is typically deemed safe, it may lead to certain side effects, including dry mouth, reduced blood pressure, lightheadedness, and sleepiness. Instances of liver damage have also been documented with high doses of CBD used in scientific research. It is crucial to be aware of these potential side effects and monitor your body's response to CBD oil.
CBD oil can interact with certain medications, including anticonvulsants, sedatives, and narcotics. CBD interacts with cytochrome P450 enzymes, potentially affecting the metabolism of certain medications and causing adverse effects.
Avoid combining CBD oil with medications metabolised by P450 enzymes, such as warfarin, amiodarone, levothyroxine, and others. However, if you are taking any medication, it is essential to consult with your healthcare provider before using CBD oil to avoid negative drug interactions.
Finding a Reputable CBD Brand
When it comes to taking CBD oil, one of the most crucial factors is finding a reputable brand that offers high-quality and safe products. With the growing popularity of CBD in the UK, the market has become saturated with various brands, making it challenging for consumers to determine which ones are trustworthy.
This section will discuss how to ensure the quality and safety of CBD oil, the importance of lab testing and certificates of analysis, and the value of product reviews and customer testimonials.
Ensuring Quality and Safety
To guarantee the quality and safety of CBD oil drops, it is essential to consider the following factors:
1. Source of Hemp: Look for brands that use domestically sourced hemp, as this ensures that the plants are grown under strict regulations and adhere to high-quality standards.
2. Extraction Method: Opt for products that use CO2 extraction, as this method is often considered the most efficient way to extract CBD from hemp plants.
3. Type of CBD: Choose a broad-spectrum hemp extract instead of CBD isolate, as these contain a range of beneficial cannabinoids and terpenes that work together to enhance the overall effects of CBD.
4. Avoid Hemp Seed Oil: Be cautious of products labelled as "hemp seed oil," as these may not contain any CBD and may not provide the desired effects. The label of genuine CBD oil drops should state how much CBD the contains.
Lab Testing and Certificates of Analysis
A reputable CBD brand should always provide third-party lab testing results, also known as Certificates of Analysis (CoAs). Accredited laboratories generate these reports and detail the chemical composition of a CBD product, ensuring its safety, purity, and potency. CoAs can usually be found on the company's website or upon request.
When reviewing a CoA, pay attention to the following information:
1. Cannabinoid Profile: This section shows the levels of various cannabinoids present in the product, including CBD and THC. In the UK, legal CBD products must not contain any THC or other controlled cannabinoids.
2. Contaminants: The CoA should also indicate whether the product has been tested for contaminants such as heavy metals, pesticides, and residual solvents. A bottle of high-quality CBD oil drops should be free of these harmful substances.
3. Batch-Specific Results: Ensure that the CoA provided is batch-specific, meaning it corresponds to the specific batch of the product you are purchasing. This guarantees that the information is accurate and up-to-date.
Product Reviews and Customer Testimonials
Another way to determine the reputation of a CBD brand is by reading product reviews and customer testimonials. These can provide valuable insights into the quality, effectiveness, and overall customer satisfaction with the brand's products. Look for reviews on the company's website, social media platforms, and third-party review sites.
Bear in mind that personal experiences can differ, and a method that is effective for one individual might not yield the same results for someone else. However, a consistent pattern of positive reviews and testimonials can indicate that a CBD brand is reliable and trustworthy.
Consulting with a Healthcare Professional
Before incorporating CBD oil into your daily routine, it's crucial to seek advice from a healthcare expert. This becomes particularly significant if you have any worrisome symptoms, existing health conditions, or are using medications that could potentially interact with CBD. In this section, we will discuss the importance of discussing CBD use with your doctor, ensuring safe and effective treatment, and monitoring drug interactions and contraindications.
Discussing CBD Use with Your Doctor
When considering using CBD oil, it is essential to speak with your general practitioner (GP) or another healthcare professional. They can provide guidance on whether CBD oil is appropriate for your specific needs and help you navigate the complex landscape of CBD regulations in the UK.
Since CBD oil is classified as a dietary supplement rather than a medicinal product, it is not regulated in the same way as prescription medications. This means that the quality and content of CBD oils available on the market can vary significantly, making it even more important to seek professional advice before starting any CBD regimen.
Ensuring Safe and Effective Treatment
To ensure that your CBD treatment is both safe and effective, it is vital to follow the guidance provided by your healthcare professional. They can help you determine the appropriate dosage, frequency, and duration of your CBD treatment based on your individual needs and circumstances. Additionally, they can advise you on the best method of administration, such as oral ingestion, topical application, or vaping, depending on your preferences and the specific health concerns you wish to address.
It is also important to source your CBD oil from reputable suppliers who adhere to strict quality control standards. This can help minimise the risk of consuming contaminated products or those with inaccurate ingredient listings. Remember that the NHS warns that there is no guarantee that over-the-counter CBD products will be of good quality or provide the intended health benefits.
Monitoring Drug Interactions and Contraindications
CBD oil has the potential to interact with certain medications, including statins, blood-thinning medication, and calcium channel blockers. It is crucial to discuss any potential drug interactions with your healthcare professional before starting CBD treatment. They can help you identify any possible risks and adjust your treatment plan accordingly.
Furthermore, some individuals may be more susceptible to the side effects of CBD oil, such as dry mouth, diarrhoea, reduced appetite, drowsiness, and fatigue. Pregnant or breastfeeding women should avoid using CBD oil, as its safety for these populations has not been established.
By consulting with a healthcare professional, you can ensure that your CBD treatment is tailored to your specific needs and circumstances, minimising the risk of adverse effects and maximising the potential benefits.
Conclusion: Making the Most of Your CBD Oil Experience
As interest in CBD oil continues to grow, it's essential to understand how to make the most of your experience with this natural compound. By personalising your routine, being patient and consistent, staying informed on the latest research, and sharing your experiences with others, you can ensure that you're getting the most out of your CBD oil journey.
Personalising Your CBD Oil Routine
Everyone's body is unique, and the way you respond to CBD oil may be different from someone else. To add CBD oil to your routine and adjusting it to work for you:
- Start by choosing a high-quality CBD product that meets the UK's legal requirements, such as containing being free from any controlled cannabinoids.
- Experiment with different methods of consumption, such as sublingual CBD oil drops, capsules, or adding CBD to your food and drinks.
- Keep track of your progress and adjust your dosage as needed to achieve your desired results.
Being Patient and Consistent
It's important to remember that CBD oil may not produce immediate results. It can take time for your body to adjust to the compound and for you to notice any changes. Be patient and give yourself at least 21-28 days of consistent use before evaluating its effectiveness. Consistency is key when it comes to CBD, so try to establish a regular routine for taking it every day.
Staying Informed and Updated on CBD Research
The world of CBD research is constantly evolving, with new studies and findings emerging regularly. Stay informed about the latest developments in CBD science and regulation by following reputable sources and signing up for newsletters or updates. This will help you make informed decisions about your CBD oil usage and ensure that you're using it safely and effectively.
Sharing Your Experience and Learning from Others
One of the best ways to learn about CBD oil is by sharing your experiences and learning from others who have tried it. Join online forums, social media groups, or attend local events focused on CBD to connect with like-minded individuals. By sharing your journey and learning from the experiences of others, you can gain valuable insights into how to make the most of your CBD oil experience.
In conclusion, making the most of your CBD oil experience involves personalising your routine, being patient and consistent, staying informed about the latest research, and connecting with others who share your interest in this natural compound. By following these guidelines, you can ensure that you're using CBD oil safely and effectively, ultimately enhancing your overall well-being.