Process to determine your dose
Cannabinoid dosing is highly individualized! One person may need 1 drop of tincture a day to alleviate symptoms, while another person with the same condition could require 50 or 100 drops. This individualization is completely different from how physicians and patients manage prescription medications, which understandably leads to confusion on how much cannabinoids to take.
The following is the process recommended by Integrated Hemp Solutions to determine your dosage.
Of note: Cannabinoids iare non-FDA regulated and specific dosing guidance is not allowed. This means that a company can’t tell you exactly how many milligrams of a cannabinoid you should take for your condition.
Your goal is to find the minimum dose that work best for you.
Dosing tip: 1 full dropper of a 250 mg = 1/2 dropper of 500 mg = 1/4 dropper of 1000 mg
1 full dropper has 1 ml of tincture.
Cannabinoids have many delivery methods! Common delivery types and their effects include:
Tincture products can be found in many different concentrations and flavors. Because some cannabinoids are fat soluble and the Endocannabinoid System itself is also lipid based, most high quality tinctures use a carrier oil like grapeseed, olive, or hemp oil to increase absorption. The product is administered sublingually (placed under the tongue) and held there for 30 to 60 seconds. This allows for increased absorption via mucous membranes in the mouth, and also partially bypasses premature cannabinoid breakdown in the liver.
Why use tinctures?
- They offer the most cost effective way to consume cannabinoids.
- They present quick delivery of cannabinoids into the bloodstream.
- Best way to get perfect, consistent dosing! Tinctures most often come in 30ml containers with a 1ml dropper. If you know the concentration of your hemp product you can obtain a reliable dosage. Some standardized doses are shown below:
The world of hemp edibles is quite expansive. Edibles can come in the form of food (snacks, baked goods, candies, etc), drinks, or capsules. The common theme, of course, is the inclusion of hemp infused oil or butter!
Why use edibles?
- Kids! Many kids do not like the taste of tinctures and would prefer taking hemp in the form of a gummy or other tasty preparation.
- Longevity. Compared to tinctures, onset of effects is delayed, yet beneficial effects themselves last longer. This can be super convenient for those on high doses of cannabinoids.
- They are perfect for “on the go” situations! Edibles may be a great option for those who use hemp as needed in special situations – like exam anxiety, airplane rides, meetings, etc. Edibles often come conveniently packaged in both individual and multi-pack servings.
- They may offer the most effective delivery method for gut problems like IBS and Crohn’s disease, as cannabinoids are carried directly into the area needed most: the digestive tract.
Vapor is an efficient way to get higher concentrations of cannabinoids into the body. Vapor is inhaled via a device called a vaporizer. The most common type of vaporizer is called a vapor pen.
Why use an inhalation product?
- Fast Acting! Vapor is absorbed very quickly into the bloodstream, especially through the lungs, and is great for immediate onset of effects and quick relief.
- Convenient! Vape pens are compact, discrete, and very easy to use.
- They offer an excellent delivery method for people with severe nausea from chemotherapy, who find that vaporizing offers fast relief from that symptom.
Topicals are hemp-infused creams or oils that are applied to the skin and absorbed through the epidermis. Because there is no systemic absorption, topicals will affect only the applied area.
Why use a topical?
- Products stay localized ! This is a great way for reducing pain in specific areas.
- They are great for helping the immune system fight skin conditions.
- They have reported success with reducing symptoms of psoriasis patients!
Since 95% of hemp users consume the product in a tincture form, this publication will focus only on tincture dosing.
Of note: Hemp is non-FDA regulated and specific dosing guidance is not allowed. This means that a company can’t tell you exactly how many milligrams of a cannabinoid you should take for your condition.
Fortunately, though, this is not a large barrier, because cannabinoid dosing is highly individualized anyway! One person may need 1 drop of tincture a day to alleviate symptoms, while another person with the same condition could require 50 or 100 drops. In general, more severe conditions require more. Known factors that affect dosing include:
- The current state of the individuals ECS and how it is modulated by cannabinoids
- The body’s sensitivity to cannabinoids (as seen at CB1, CB2, and other receptor sites)
- The patient’s body weight; lighter patients usually require less cannabinoids
- The patient’s general health and mitochondrial function
- The patient’s body chemistry and possible pharmaceutical interactions. Certain cannabinoids help modulate blood pressure, so patients taking HBP Medications should start at lower doses and be sure to take their hemp extract at least an hour before / after pharmaceuticals.
This individualization is completely different from how physicians and patients manage prescription medications, which understandably leads to confusion on how much hemp extract to take.
The best way to obtain helpful information with regards to dosing is to talk to other individuals who are taking hemp extract or who work in the industry. If you are lucky enough to live near an Integrated Hemp location, then you can drop by one of their locations and speak to folks who have extensive insight into the world of hemp and hemp extracts.
One general rule of thumb: LESS IS (OFTEN) MORE! Start with low doses and slowly increase as needed to find your own minimum effective dose. The concept of Biphasic Effect, or two phase effect, applies to cannabinoid dosing in that diminishing returns will begin at some point as you take more and more cannabinoid. In general, small doses tend to stimulate, while larger doses tend to sedate.
- Buy a product that you trust, one that is third party independently tested.
- Start with the lowest concentration of the product and slowly work your way up to find your individualized dose. Consider weekly increases as needed.
- Take the product consistently, every day.
- Most individuals start taking their hemp extact at night. Many soon report that hemp extact promotes a sense of calm and relaxation. Improved quality & quantity of sleep is also often reported.
- Be patient. Your body needs to adjust to this new supplement.
- After your body has become accustomed to your new hemp extact product, you may choose to take it 2-3 times a day to see more consistent benefits.
- After months of consistent hemp extract use, patients on a high dose (50 mg/day+) may consider taking monthly “reset days” where supplemental use ceases for 24-48 hours.
Keeping a journal is a good idea! It can help you establish a consistent routine and will help you to better evaluate how your current dosage is working for your health needs.
If you don’t feel anything at first, don’t get frustrated. It just means that you haven’t found your ideal dosage yet. Some people feel the effects immediately, for others it takes weeks. You may end up at a higher dose than you originally thought. The restoration of your Endocannabinoid System that is so critical to your health can take time.
When first experimenting with hemp extract, it is recommended that you are in a calm environment; preferably not driving or operating machinery, as hemp extract can have different effects on different people.