While both types can be effective, full-spectrum extracts tend to be more popular than isolate products. Full-spectrum extracts encourage what’s known as the “entourage effect,” which describes all of the compounds of the cannabis plant working together in a complementary way. In essence, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
Everyone’s endocannabinoid system is unique in its makeup and level of functionality. Just like any other system in the body, people can naturally have more or fewer receptors—or those receptors function in different ways. There can also be differences in the number of endocannabinoids that are produced or in how quickly they’re metabolized. Some people’s endocannabinoid systems are well-nourished and supported. For those people, introducing CBD may produce barely-noticeable effects.
While many other companies would like to have you believe differently, it’s true. It’s not a panacea. It’s not a miracle product. Millions of people have already begun to regularly use CBD for one reason or another, but the truth is it doesn’t work for everyone.
3. There is a huge variety of products available and you might not have the right one.
It is true that CBD does occasionally produce noticeable effects for some users right off the bat. This can usually be attributed to the person having a very different endocannabinoid system or possibly even experiencing the placebo effect. However, like many nutritional products, it usually takes several weeks of consistent daily use to observe any impacts, if not longer.
How do you know if your endocannabinoid system needs support? Although there’s not enough solid research to make a definitive answer, if you have experienced changes in your environment, you might be needing some extra cannabinoid support.
Even if you’re opting for high-quality CBD products over CBD lattes, it still may require some road testing to get where you want to be.
There are many reasons for this. Some of them have to do with the nature of CBD and the endocannabinoid system; some have to do with the fact that every person is different and has a unique lifestyle and genetic makeup.
It probably goes without saying, but each person’s body will respond to cannabinoids in its own way. While some people notice immediate changes from using CBD products, others may experience more gradual benefits.
Another interesting fact about dosing comes from Dr. Bonni Goldstein, medical director for Canna-Centers, who recently explained to Marie Claire that CBD in low doses can act as a stimulant while CBD in high doses can act as a sedative. Interesting right?
Mistake No. 1: You’re Not Taking It Regularly.
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“If a person purchases a high-quality CBD product, the key is that they know what CBD does and does not do,” said Mitchem. “CBD is one of over 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. You may in fact need a more complex cannabinoid profile in the plant for it to be effective,” he explained. High-quality CBD can help with ailments like depression, and highly concentrated topical CBD can also be very effective for pain, he explained. If you want to use CBD to treat chronic ailments like Crohn’s disease, he said you would benefit more from a blend of CBD and another cannabinoid, like THC. But THC is a psychoactive compound, so these formulations would only be available in states where marijuana is legal.
If you don’t live in a state with legal cannabis, you’re not totally out of luck — you just need to do your research on the products you’re buying. “Unfortunately, some products could have a very low concentration or even no CBD at all,” said Joel Stanley, cofounder and chairman of CW Hemp. “Sadly, when the FDA tested CBD products and released the results to the public, many of the products contained fractional to no CBD. It’s important to look for a trusted brand and reputable manufacturer.” He said to find out if it controls the manufacturing process “from seed to shelf,” to ask where its raw materials are sourced from, and to see if it does the CBD extraction itself. “A consumer should be able to request batch testing that shows purity and potency,” he added.
Another factor: “It depends on what they are trying to treat and the bioavailability of the product,” said Jordan Dorn, the cofounder of LionCura, a wholesale CBD supplier to restaurants and health markets in Los Angeles. Bioavailability is how easily your body can absorb the product, he explained.
You May Need a Blend of Cannabinoids
Finding the correct dosage of CBD is complicated. “CBD at the tiny doses that people are taking (10 to 40 milligrams) is simply not effective,” said Jordan Tishler, MD, a Harvard physician, cannabis therapeutics specialist, and the CEO/CMO at InhaleMD. He pointed out studies on CBD that show that doses need to be much, much higher — think 600 to 1,200 mg.
Todd Mitchem, managing partner and cannabis expert at DacorumStrategies.com, told POPSUGAR that one of the biggest issues is the lack of regulation in mail-order and over-the-counter CBD products. “If the consumer lives in a state with legal cannabis, we always recommend they go there first since the regulated products are far safer and of better quality.”
A quick refresher: CBD (cannabidiol) is an active compound found in hemp, but it’s nonpsychoactive. Read: it doesn’t get you high. In addition to its antianxiety and anti-inflammation benefits, there’s evidence that it can treat issues like IBD and epilepsy.
However, Dr. Burns told POPSUGAR that “there is no magic number because every condition is different. Dosing depends on the severity and chronic nature of a condition. There’s an art and science to all of this, so there is no blanket one-answer-fits-all dosage.” She starts her patients at a low dose and gradually increases the dosage. (POPSUGAR spoke to several doctors about how to find the right CBD dose here.)