CBD Dosing Guide
Ever since I’ve started talking more about CBD here on the blog and on instagram, I’ve gotten the same questions over and over — what brands do I like, and what are the CBD dosing guidelines?
Before we get started, please check out the Healthy Crush medical disclaimer. This is a personal blog, intended to share information and resources – not to be taken as medical advice.
You probably know by now that my favorite CBD brand is Supherbals — I know them personally, I order from them again and again, and I’m really impressed by their dedication to making the highest quality CBD products possible, and their celebration of the cannabis plant. As the co-founder of the company, Greg Prasker, says: “the cannabis plant demands respect!” I couldn’t agree more. Check out their site to order CBD online, and use code JENNY15 for a discount.
If you’re not familiar with why I got interested in CBD, you can read about that here:
What is CBD?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a non-psychoactive compound found in cannabis. It’s one of over 100 chemical compounds called “cannabinoids,” found in various breeds of cannabis plants. THC (the psychoactive compound that makes you feel high) and CBD (non-psychoactive and considered to be therapeutic) are 2 of the most widely used cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids from cannabis bind to receptors in our body’s endocannabinoid system to produce therapeutic effects.
What is the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system in our body (just discovered in the 1990s) contains cannabinoid receptors, or “locks,” and cannabinoids are the “keys.” Cannabinoid receptors are found in the immune system, the central nervous system, the brain, organs, connective tissue, and glands. Our body produces endocannabinoids, and the cannabis plant produces similar compounds called phytocannabinoids.
The endocannabinoid system maintains and restores balance and homeostasis in the body and can affect inflammation, pain, mood, energy, brain health, the nervous system, hormone balance, sleep, disease and more.
What is the difference between CBD from marijuana and CBD from hemp?
Hemp and marijuana are 2 different plants within the cannabis family. CBD from hemp (which contains .3% THC or less) is currently being sold in many US stores and online. CBD from the marijuana plant (often formulated with higher levels of THC) can only be purchased at dispensaries in states with medical or recreational legal use. The CBD molecule is virtually identical from each plant, but some report more significant effects from marijuana-derived CBD vs. hemp-derived CBD (as the marijuana plant often contains higher levels of other cannabinoids, contributing to the “entourage effect” — the presence of more cannabinoids strengthens the effect of the others).
What are the main reasons people use CBD?
I got this image from Vital Leaf, and I love it. They put it together based on a study by HelloMD and Brightfield on CBD Usage (link opens a pdf), which is a very cool and interesting read.
According to the study, the top reasons people use CBD are: anxiety, insomnia, inflammation, depression, tension, headaches, and pain.
So, how much CBD should you start with?
The first thing to remember is that the ideal CBD dosage will differ for everyone, there’s no “one size fits all” type of scenario here. So if you’re curious about CBD, you’ll have to experiment a little bit. (Disclaimer, I’m not a doctor – so don’t take any of this as a personal recommendation, please! This is for informational purposes only.)
I asked my friend Greg from Supherbals to weigh in on this, and here’s his answer:
“When it comes to dosing, everyone is different. Some people could take 15 mg a day and be totally fine, some people may need 50 mg for more severe conditions. With our CBD, we usually suggest people start with 20-25 mg and see how they feel. That may be enough, but they may need more. You start somewhere, and you add more, and you find out what works for you. A lot of people say, ‘yeah, I take CBD but I don’t know if it’s working.’ If you’re taking our CBD, you’ll know it’s working. The fact is, if you’re taking CBD, you should absolutely know…this is working.”
That quote is exactly why it’s important to start low, and experiment with how your body reacts. CBD dosing is not a “more is better” situation. In fact, you’re looking for the minimum effective dose of CBD for your condition, because some people actually report the opposite of their desired effect when they take too high of a dose (i.e. feeling wired instead of sleepy, or feeling more anxious instead of less).
According to Charlotte’s Web (another great CBD brand – I love their mint chocolate flavor):
- Take the product consistently, every day.
- Notice the time of day.
- Consider your setting. Do what you can to be in a relaxed place, for better observation of your personal health response.
- And remember, if you “don’t feel anything,” don’t feel frustrated. This just means that you haven’t found your ideal concentration level yet.
I put together a CBD dosing chart with information from the book CBD: A Patient’s Guide To Medical Cannabis (which is an incredible read, by the way). If you really want to learn everything you need to know about CBD, read this book. It’s a gold mine.
It’s very important when it comes to experimenting with cannabis products to remember the mantra, “start low, and go slow.” If you’re just starting out with CBD, start with the lowest dosage in your weight range for the condition you’re hoping to alleviate.
Take the smallest dose for a few days and see if it helps with what you’re looking for. If you don’t feel a difference, move up to a higher dose, and take that for a few days. Keep a record of how much you’re taking, and notice when you hit the “sweet spot” where the dose really works for you.
These are the dosing ranges based on body weight only. These are DAILY doses (i.e. the total mg of CBD you will take throughout the day — either in one dose, or dosed throughout the day, depending on what condition you’re treating).
Please keep in mind there are many things besides body weight that contribute to the ideal dosing for CBD — the most important factor being your personal sensitivity to the cannabis plant, which you’ll need to experiment with to figure out.
This CBD dosing guide is separated into 3 categories of doses — a micro dose of CBD, a standard dose of CBD, and a macro dose of CBD.
From the book CBD: A Patient’s Guide To Medical Cannabis.
These are very general guidelines – everyone is different! Please consult your medical provider before starting any CBD regimen.
CBD DOSING CHART (by body weight)
Micro doses of CBD are often used for sleep, headaches, mood, nausea, PTSD, and stress.
Standard doses of CBD are often used for pain, inflammation, autoimmune disorders, lyme disease, anxiety, depression, arthritis, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, IBS, autism, and weight loss.
Macro doses of CBD are often used for cancer, epilepsy, seizure disorders, liver disease, and other severe conditions.
How do you know how much CBD you’re taking?
Most CBD products should tell you the total mg of CBD in the entire product, as well as how many mg of CBD are in a dose.
With tinctures, for instance:
Let’s say you have a bottle of CBD oil that has 850mg of CBD total (in the whole bottle), like the one from Supherbals.
If the bottle is a 30ml bottle, and 1 dropperful is equal to 1 ml, 850mg total divided by 30ml means each dropperful would have 28mg of CBD in it.
So if you want to take about 15mg of CBD, which is on the higher end of micro-dose for a 150lb person, you’d take 1/2 a dropperful of that particular tincture and see how you feel.
Most tinctures that you purchase will tell you on the label how many mg of CBD are in 1 serving, dropperful, or number of drops — so you can carefully measure out your dosage. Every one is different, so check your labels and contact the company if you aren’t sure!
If you are taking capsules, the bottle should clearly tell you how many mg of CBD are in 1 capsule.
With vaping, it’s a bit more difficult to say, but from what I hear, you generally get about 1-2mg of CBD per “pull” (or inhalation) from the vape – but this varies, so check your product.
If you’re eating CBD edibles, like chocolates, they’ll usually tell you how many mg of CBD are in one square of chocolate (5 or 10mg per serving, for instance).
My experience with CBD dosing:
The first time I tried CBD oil, I took only about 10mg in the form of a tincture before bed — and I was amazed by how deep my sleep was. I had been having a hard time sleeping for awhile, and it made a huge difference for me. Since then, I take anywhere from 10-30mg for sleep, anxiety, or just to chill out or take the edge off. So somewhere in the micro to standard dose range for a 125lb person usually works well for me.
When my dad started taking CBD, he was taking 2 30mg capsules per day (so 60mg total), which is in the standard dose range for a 200lb person, and he noticed almost immediately that his joint pain had completely gone away when walking up the stairs!
Methods of CBD Delivery (a few examples):
Inhalation: vaporizer. Onset: immediate. Duration: 2-4 hours.
Ingestion: edible, in food or liquid. Onset: 30 mins – 2 hours. Duration: 6-8 hours.
Oral: tincture, under tongue. Onset: 15-60 mins. Duration: 4-6 hours.
Topical: Balm, lotion. Applied to skin (local pain relief). Onset: 15 mins. Duration: 2-4 hours.
Transdermal: Patch. Onset: 15 mins. Duration: 12 hours.
Buy my favorite CBD tinctures, vapes, and roll-ons here and use discount code JENNY15.
Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil Review
Commissions we earn from partner links on this page do not affect our opinions or evaluations. Our editorial content is based on thorough research and guidance from the Forbes Health Advisory Board.
Table of Contents
- Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil at a Glance
- About Charlotte’s Web
- The Charlotte’s Web Experience
- Final Thoughts
You’ve probably noticed the selection of cannabidiol (CBD) products lining the shelves of many grocery, pharmacy or health food stores. Maybe you’ve experimented with a couple brands yourself, hoping it might prove a good addition to your health routine. If so, you’re not alone. Cannabidiol (CBD) is increasingly popular and often used by people looking to boost their overall wellness.
“The three most common reasons people use CBD are for sleep, mental health and pain relief,” says Lea Durante, a nurse practitioner and owner of Lea Durante Consulting, a wellness and CBD consulting company in Napa, California. “CBD is an amazing tool for improving mental and physical health, but guidance and support are essential for optimum benefits.”
Penguin CBD Oil
On Penguin’s Website
$45 per container
Penguin CBD Gummies
On Penguin’s Website
$45 per container
Penguin CBD Cream
On Penguin’s Website
$55 per container
Penguin CBD Capsules
On Penguin’s Website
$45 per container
(Note: All prices are accurate as of publication and are subject to change.)
I wanted to find out whether CBD oil might be right for me, so I purchased a 30-milliliter bottle of Charlotte’s Web CBD oil containing 60 milligrams of CBD per milliliter. I consumed it twice a day over a period of three weeks. Here’s a review of my experience.
Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil at a Glance
- Cost: At $120 for a 30-milliliter bottle of CBD oil with 60 milligrams of CBD per milliliter, Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil is more expensive than other CBD oils on the market.
- Potency: One dose of .5 milliliters, which is clearly marked on the dropper, contains 30 milligrams of CBD. A 60-milligram dose requires one full dropper of CBD oil.
- Quality: This product meets high standards for label accuracy and transparency of ingredients, levels of THC and presence of heavy metals, solvents, pesticides, yeasts and molds.
What I liked:
- Certificate of analysis (COA) for all products available on company website
- Dropper dose clearly marked
- This CBD product is Certified Organic.
What I didn’t like:
- High price, making the product expensive to use daily
About Charlotte’s Web
Charlotte’s Web Stanley Brothers, founded in 2011 and headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, creates full-spectrum (total plant) hemp health supplements. Its CBD products include oils, gummies, capsules and topicals like gels, creams, balms and sprays.
Charlotte’s Web grows all of its hemp plants on family farms in Colorado, Oregon and Kentucky. However, not all Charlotte’s Web CBD products are Certified Organic. All Charlotte’s Web products are gluten-free, vegan and non-GMO. Each batch is analyzed by a third-party laboratory for the product’s certificate of analysis (COA). The COA shows the quantity of CBD and cannabinoids present in the product, as well as levels of heavy metals, pesticides, solvents and THC found in each batch.
Charlotte’s Web has a Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating of “F.” According to the BBB, the “F” rating results from 17 customer complaints about Charlotte’s Web products not arriving as promised, nonresponsive customer service and the company’s failure to respond to BBB inquiries regarding customer complaints.
I purchased the 30-milliliter bottle of Charlotte’s Web CBD oil tincture, which retails for $120. This size contains 1,800 milligrams of CBD, or 30 milligrams per 0.5-milliliter serving, a cost of $2 per serving. That price is higher than many other brands of CBD oil, but subscribers who sign up for regular shipments can receive a 20% discount on the full price.
The Certificate of Analysis (COA) for this product shows it to be a high-quality CBD oil overall, and some people may not mind paying the higher-than-average price. Charlotte’s Web also offers a starter size of this product—a 10-milliliter bottle for $50.
The bottle of Charlotte’s Web CBD oil I purchased contains a total of 1,800 milligrams of CBD. I started with the recommended single-serving dose of .5 milliliters containing 30 milligrams of CBD two times a day. After a couple of days, I increased my dose to 60 milligrams twice daily—I felt comfortable taking a higher dose because I have used CBD oil products before. However, someone new to CBD may want to start with a smaller dose and gradually increase it once they’re familiar with how their body reacts to the product.
The product I chose is labeled USDA Certified Organic. The Certified Organic designation ensures that the soil, water, growing and manufacturing conditions are clean and free of contamination from pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, fungus and bacteria.
“Hemp is a bio-accumulator, absorbing the environmental conditions it’s grown in, which then become concentrated in the final product,” says Durante, making this organic certification all the more important.
This product’s certificate of analysis (COA)—easily available on the website’s COA lookup page under the tag “Certificate of Analysis”—shows the amount of CBD in one millilter (69 milligrams) slightly exceeds the 60 milligrams listed on the product label.
Charlotte’s Web CBD oil is available in three flavors: orange blossom, mint chocolate and lemon twist. I chose orange blossom, which didn’t taste much like oranges, but it wasn’t unpleasant, either.
Pure, Premium, Powerful CBD
FAB CBD’s products are made from organically grown, lab tested, Colorado hemp. Their range of products include CBD oils, gummies, topical CBD cream, dog treats and more.
The Charlotte’s Web Experience
Since I’ve tried CBD oil before as a sleep aid and to reduce stress, I chose a product with a higher potency (60 milligrams per milliliter) than someone with no CBD experience might use. During the first few days, I didn’t feel much of an effect on my mood or stress level with a 30-milligram twice-daily dose, so I upped my consumption to 60 milligrams twice a day.
With the higher dose, I thought I might feel more relaxed and focused; instead, I felt drowsy and slightly irritable. Drowsiness and irritability are both signs that the dose may be too high, so I reduced my consumption back to the 30-milligram dose twice a day. When taking the lower dose, I was a little more relaxed and focused for a few hours after taking the tincture.
After researching CBD, I learned that guessing a dosage that “might” work was a classic beginner’s mistake. It usually takes two to four weeks of using CBD with expert guidance to get a good idea of its effects. Each person’s natural endocannabinoid system (which interacts with CBD) is different and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all CBD dose and dosage regimen.
“Everyone’s endocannabinoid system truly is as unique as their fingerprints, so the use of CBD needs to be personalized,” says Durante. “Working with a peer or coach or clinical professional that has experience with CBD is vital to getting results. I encourage each person I work with to be actively engaged in the process of starting low, going slow and taking CBD consistently to find that ‘sweet spot.’”
Overall, the 30-milligram dose of Charlotte’s Web CBD Oil helped me feel calmer and less stressed throughout the day. However, the $120+ price tag for a month’s supply was more than I could easily afford if I were to add this product to my long-term daily wellness regimen.
Before choosing this product, I recommend comparing prices and reviewing COAs of other CBD oils that meet similar USDA Certified Organic, labeling and transparency standards. For best results, consult an integrative medicine physician, naturopathic clinician or holistic practitioner who is knowledgeable about CBD oil and can guide your dosage regimen safely and effectively.