How to Take CBD Oil: CBD Drops, Coffees and Cocktails
So, you’ve read all about cannabidiol (or CBD as it’s more commonly known) and now you’re thinking of giving it a whirl. It makes sense. The food and wellness industries are buzzing about this natural chemical compound, which is said to help with anxiety, arthritis, pain relief, menopause symptoms and insomnia to name but a few.
You’ve decided you want to try it, so what’s next? When it comes to how to take CBD oil, you’re spoiled for choice. From tinctures and topicals to smoothies and coffee blends, there’s an overwhelming amount of options out there. Unsure where to start? That’s where we come in – here’s our CBD oil guide to help you decide how best to take CBD oil.
How to take CBD Oil?
While there are many ways to take CBD oil, it depends on the strength of the oil. With our 250mg CBD Oils (a great starting point), you put five CBD oil drops under your tongue and hold them there for 30-60 seconds, and do that three times a day. You can, however, freestyle, putting your drops into a smoothie, juice or even your morning cuppa. CBD is said to take the edge off coffee too.
Which brings us to…
9 Ways to Take CBD Oil at Home
1. In a tincture
In layman’s terms, a tincture is a concoction you take by dropper or spray straight into your mouth. You can take CBD oil by putting it directly under your tongue (that part of the mouth is a capillary-rich area and so the CBD will reach your bloodstream quicker). Try dropping a dose of CBD under your tongue and holding it there for a minute before swallowing.
250mg Natural CBD Oil
250mg Citrus CBD Oil
250mg Peppermint CBD Oil
Natural 1000mg CBD Oil
Natural 2000mg CBD Oil
2. In a capsule
CBD oil also comes in a capsule form, which can be a good option for people who want to maintain a consistent amount of the compound in the body. However when CBD is ingested it passes through the digestive tract which means you might have to wait upwards of 30 minutes before experiencing any effect.
3. In a smoothie
Some blends of CBD oil can have a pungent, earthy taste. It’s not for everyone, which is why many people like to mask the flavour with other – more delicious – ingredients. Another way to take CBD is by adding half a teaspoon of CBD oil to your morning smoothie for a calm start to the day. If you’re after some smoothie inspo, head over to the 5 Best Self Care Smoothies With Hemp .
4. In coffee
If only there was a way to capture the energy of coffee without its associated jitters. Oh wait… there is! There are an increasing number of CBD coffee brands popping up, who claim that when coffee beans are infused with CBD, they take away the anxiety that caffeine consumption can cause. This makes the ‘up’ that your coffee gives you a little smoother; it takes the edge off. Or use a dairy-free milk that’s infused with CBD to easily control your dosage and allow you to continue using your favourite coffee blend.
5. In a salad dressing
Now we’re talking the same language, right? Try incorporating a little CBD oil into your daily cooking routine to get a bunch of health benefits without much effort at all. For a delicious and nutritious salad dressing, start with three to four tablespoons of olive oil, then add two teaspoons of CBD, the juice of half a fragrant lemon and salt and pepper. Here’s 5 hemp oil friendly recipes for starters.
6. In a vape pen
Okay so this one might sound a little scary, but vape pens are easy to use and can go undetected because they produce little smoke. The plus side of taking CBD in a vape pen is that when CBD is inhaled, it enters the lungs where it rapidly passes into the bloodstream. However, it’s important to note that the long-term safety of vaping is still unknown.
7. In sweet treats
The beauty of CBD is that it can basically be baked into anything, which is why you’ll find everything from cookies and brownies to gummies and caramel candies infused with it. Sweets are easy to take along with you in a bag on the go, while baked goods might need to be kept refrigerated to keep the CBD fresh (or just eat them quickly before they go off?).
8. In a topical rub or balm
In balm or rub form, CBD is often blended with fragrant coconut oil or beeswax, which makes it easy to spread on the skin (and makes your bod smell great too). When used topically, CBD can reach local targets, like sore muscles or joints. We’ve also heard it works wonders for period pain.
9. In a cocktail
If you’re feeling fancy go on the hunt for a CBD cocktail. We’ve heard reports that over in San Diego you can order The Mr Nice Guy – that’s a vodka and mezcal mixed drink that includes CBD. More proof, if any were needed, that CBD can be imbibed alongside any other food or drink, and that you’re going to be seeing a whole lot more of it soon.
How Much CBD Should I Take Each Day?
We always suggest starting the day with a few drops – it just sets the tone, you know? But you can top up throughout the day, no problem. Everyone will have an amount that works for them, just play around with it and see what feels good. We recommend starting with 5mg doses, 3 times per day and increasing your dosage incrementally over the course of a few weeks, ensuring you always stay below 70mg each day.
Check out our guide to CBD dosages for detailed advice.
Should I Refrigerate CBD Oil?
No, you shouldn’t. It’s best kept in a dark place like a pantry or cupboard so that it stays cool without getting too cold.
Should I Drink CBD Oil or Rub it Into My Skin?
Whichever you prefer! As outlined above, you can add CBD oil to a variety of different drinks or rub it into your skin as a topical balm. However, rubbing it into your skin tends to be better for sore joints or muscles.
What Does CBD Oil Under the Tongue Do?
This is one of the many ways the body can absorb CBD oil – as we mentioned above, your tongue is capillary-rich, meaning this method will allow the CBD to reach your bloodstream quickly.
How Long Does It Take for CBD Oil to Work on Joint Pain?
It depends on a variety of factors, such as how strong the CBD oil is (the stronger the concentration, the faster you will feel its effects) as well as how you are consuming it. For example, if you are taking CBD oil by placing a few drops under your tongue, it should take effect in around 15 to 45 minutes , while a topical application may take longer.
How Often Should I Take CBD Oil?
This varies from person to person and, when in doubt, you should always consult a doctor. However, we recommend starting with one of our 250mg bottles of CBD and taking five drops three times a day. After you begin to learn how this affects your body, you can better decide whether you should scale your dosage up or down (as long as you don’t exceed 70mg of CBD per day!).
Should I Take CBD Oil in the Morning or Evening?
Again, this is up to you and how CBD oil affects your body. People who find that CBD oil makes them feel energised, awake and clear-headed may prefer to take it in the mornings (or afternoons when they need a bit of a boost), while those who find that CBD oil helps them unwind and relax may prefer to take it in the evenings.
Can CBD Keep Me Awake at Night?
It can, but it probably won’t. While some people do feel that CBD oil makes them feel more alert, preliminary studies have shown that CBD oil is an effective way to treat insomnia.
Have we caught your attention? Now that you know how to take CBD oil, are you interested in trying it out for yourself? Check out our range of Pure CBD oils and start experimenting with your smoothies, baked goods and more!
If you’ve ever wondered how to take CBD oil you’re not alone. Check out Good Hemp’s CBD oil guide for the nine best ways, how much CBD to take and more.
How to Safely Use CBD: Should You Inhale, Spray, Apply, or Eat It?
Cannabidiol, touted for its many possible health benefits, is in pills, creams, and even salad dressings and honey
CBD, a cannabis extract touted for its potential health benefits, can now be found in a dizzying array of products and forms.
In dozens of states, health food stores, pharmacies, and even supermarkets and restaurants are carrying CBD products. That includes pills, oils, balms, vaping devices (like e-cigarettes), and edibles, including gummy bears, honey, coffees, and alcoholic beverages, among others.
But how do you choose among the different forms, such as smoking or eating your CBD? Experts we contacted say there are pros and cons to each, and settling on the one that works for you may require close scrutiny of the products and a little trial and error.
CBD has become so widely used in part because early research suggests that it may offer possible health benefits—potentially reducing pain and anxiety, for example.
While this chemical compound comes from marijuana or its close relative hemp, CBD does not get users high, unlike another compound from the marijuana plant, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. The Food and Drug Administration this summer approved a CBD-based drug to treat two serious seizure disorders.
Still, the legality of CBD remains murky, particularly when it comes from hemp, which has kept the compound from being more widely studied and available to consumers. (See “What is CBD? What to Know Now About This Cannabis Product.”)
Thirteen percent of Americans say that they have used CBD to help with symptoms related to a health issue, according to a recent Consumer Reports nationally representative survey of 1,003 American adults. And nearly 90 percent of those who have used CBD say it helped ease symptoms related to their health issue.
Perhaps even more challenging for those looking for treatment is discovering the dose that might work best for their particular condition. That’s because so much remains unknown about CBD, including how it works, says Norbert Kaminski, Ph.D., a professor of pharmacology and toxicology at Michigan State University and director of the Institute for Integrative Toxicology.
For problems such as anxiety, depression, and insomnia, “the quickest way to deliver CBD to the brain is by smoking it,” Kaminski says. “The next quickest way is by using a tincture. Eating it, and especially a topical, will take longer before there is an effect.”
“CBD’s effectiveness has only really been established for Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndrome,” Kaminski says, referring to the two seizure disorders that can be treated with Epidiolex, the CBD-based drug the FDA recently approved.
Even with so many unknowns about CBD’s effectiveness, retailers are popping up across the country. Tia Tagliaferro is chief operating officer for Hemp Garden, which sells hemp-based CBD products at its stores in New York City and Wilmington, N.C. She says the potential healing benefits of CBD and its popularity are what spurred the company to open its latest shop in New York earlier this summer, with plans to expand into other East Coast locations in the coming months.
Ashley Garris, 28, of Wilmington, N.C., says she started using CBD three months ago to treat her fibromyalgia, anxiety, and headaches. “It was a complete life-changer for me.” She says she prefers vaping or rolling cigarettes using hemp flowers, and she has had good success with CBD topicals for immediate pain and muscle cramp relief.
Several people in CR’s recent survey also said CBD helped them deal with a variety of health problems. Among them, a 42-year-old woman in Eugene, Ore., who says she uses CBD to relieve severe menstrual cramps, a 60-year-old woman in Phoenix who takes it for better sleep, a 74-year-old man in Casper-Riverton, Ill., who says it helps his arthritis, and a 26-year-old man from Denver who finds CBD “very helpful” in easing symptoms of anxiety.
We spoke to experts about the different CBD forms, how they work, and what you can reasonably expect from the experience. And remember: If you want to try CBD to treat health problems, talk with your doctor first, especially if you’re seeking relief from a serious health problem that could be helped by more proven medical care.
Some people get CBD by smoking the flowering parts of the hemp plant, similar to the way people may smoke marijuana in rolled cigarettes. But increasingly CBD is available via e-cigarette vaporizer devices, or “vape pens,” says Amanda Reiman, Ph.D., a cannabis policy and public health expert based in California who also works for Flow Kana, a cannabis company.
The device heats up a small portion of concentrated CBD oil until it boils, allowing you to inhale the vapor, says Michael Backes, an expert in cannabis science and policy, and author of “Cannabis Pharmacy” (Hachette). He has also worked with the nonprofit educational and research group Project CBD.
Pros: Inhaled CBD tends to enter the bloodstream faster than other forms—in as quickly as 30 seconds or less, according to Mitch Earleywine, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at the State University of New York, Albany, and an adviser to the marijuana advocacy group NORML. He is also the author of “Understanding Marijuana” (Oxford University Press). The quick action means it should affect the body sooner, which could be especially useful to ease immediate pain or anxiety, for example.
Vape pens are easy to use and can go undetected because they produce little smoke, Raiman says. (Note that Oregon and certain other states have laws that prohibit vaping in the same places where smoking cigarettes is prohibited.)
Cons: The CBD cartridges used in vape pens can contain a solvent called propylene glycol, which is also used in e-cigarettes containing nicotine, Earleywine says. At high temperatures, propylene glycol can degrade into formaldehyde, a chemical that can irritate the nose and eyes and could increase the risk of asthma and cancer. Earleywine suggests looking for CBD vape pens that advertise “solvent-free oils.”
Also, controlling dosing can be particularly difficult with vape pens. How much CBD you absorb depends on how hard and long you inhale, Earleywine says. In addition, labels on vaping devices can be especially confusing, he says. “You might get a vape oil that says it has 1,000 mg of CBD, but it’s not clear if that’s how much is in the whole bottle or in each inhalation. It can be hard to guess what your dosage really is under some of those situations.”
Finally, even if you’re using a vape pen without propylene glycol, it’s important to know that the long-term safety of smoking CBD in any form, including vaping, is unknown. Backes particularly emphasizes that vaping high concentrations of CBD—and even THC in marijuana products—“has not been studied at all.”
Good to know: Consider trying the lowest dose first—in this case, a single inhale—then wait a few minutes and see whether there is an effect, such as pain relief or reduced anxiety. If not, try another. And avoid holding your breath after inhaling, because that can irritate the lungs.
Tinctures (Drops or Sprays)
Tinctures (usually in oil form) are taken by dropper or spray, straight into your mouth. The CBD used in these forms is extracted from marijuana or hemp plants using pressurized carbon dioxide gas or a solvent such as ethanol. The solvent is then removed under vacuum, Backes says. The remaining CBD is diluted with an oil, such as sesame or coconut oil, to improve the taste and preserve the cannabidiol.
Pro: Tinctures are the second-quickest method to absorb CBD, after smoking, Earleywine says, typically taking about 15 to 30 minutes. The quick action could make it especially useful in treating pain or anxiety.
Cons: It also could be challenging with tinctures to determine how much CBD you’re getting, either from the bottle dropper or from each spray, especially if the bottle shows only total CBD content and doesn’t list the per-dose amount. If needed, ask a retail salesperson for help or get out your calculator to calculate the amount of CBD per dose. The price per bottle could be more for a product with a higher CBD content per dose.
Good to know: Earleywine suggests you drop a dose of tincture under your tongue and hold it there for 30 seconds before swallowing, or apply a single spray of the tincture on the inside of your cheeks. Doing so speeds up the effects of the CBD. If you put the tincture on the top of your tongue, you’re likely to swallow it sooner, sending it into your digestive tract, which will absorb the CBD more slowly. If you add a CBD tincture to foods or drinks, it could take up to 30 minutes for it to enter your bloodstream.
Earleywine suggests starting “with a small dose, perhaps 10 mg, to see how sensitive you are.” But don’t be surprised if you don’t feel any effect until you reach, say, 30 mg per dose. And ongoing conditions such as chronic pain are likely to better respond with daily doses, he says.
Shake the bottle well before using, Backes says, because CBD often gets stuck on the side of the bottle.
Topical Rubs and Balms
Topicals are rubbed directly onto sore muscles or joints, where they may ease pain by reducing inflammation, Earleywine says. CBD balms typically include extracts mixed into a fat, such as beeswax or coconut oil. That recipe not only makes it easier to spread the product on your skin but also allows the CBD to penetrate.
Pro: Topicals aren’t absorbed into the entire body, as other forms can be. That could make them safer—which could be important if you use CBD on a regular basis—considering how little is known about the long-term safety of CBD and other cannabis products.
Cons: To be effective, products probably need to have a lot of CBD—which can make them expensive, Backes says. For example, Hemp Garden in Manhattan sells a topical called Full Spectrum that has 500 mg of CBD per 4 ounces for $50. Another company, PlusCBD Oil, sells its Extra Strength topical in a smaller but still concentrated dose of 1.3 ounces that contains 100 mg of CBD for $52. The company sells a less concentrated version for $32.
Good to know: In a retail store, ask whether you can sample the product first, says Tagliaferro of Hemp Garden. She says some people start feeling effects almost immediately after rubbing it on. Others say they notice relief later in the day, and return to buy the products. Some don’t get any relief at all.
Edibles and Pills
When eaten or consumed in a drink, CBD from hemp in particular may have an aroma or a flavor of “newly cut grass,” Earleywine says. But flavors in some cocktails or coffees might overpower CBD so that it’s undetectable, while other food products, such as cookies and brownies, may try to feature it. Most pills will be tasteless, Earleywine says.
Pros: In some states finding CBD-infused food and drinks at a retailer, restaurant, or café can be fairly easy. At Inday, an East Indian-inspired restaurant in Manhattan, as a promotion, customers could order CBD-infused ghee (clarified butter) to be added to any dish. In San Diego, cocktail lovers can order “The Mr. Nice Guy”—a vodka and mezcal mixed drink that includes CBD—at the restaurant Madison on Park.
Kickback, a maker of bottled CBD-infused cold-brew coffees and ice teas, sells its products in California, New York, and Texas.
Hemp Garden’s Tagliaferro sells gummies and caramel candies infused with CBD. These sweets may have a longer shelf life if kept in a cool, dry location, so they don’t degrade, plus they’re easy to take along with you in a bag or purse. Other baked foods, such as brownies and cookies, may have a shorter shelf life and need to be placed in a refrigerator to keep the CBD oil fresh, says Backes, an expert in cannabis science and policy.
Cons: Edibles might seem a fun way to take CBD, but it’s a particularly inefficient method, says Kaminski, the pharmacology and toxicology professor at Michigan State. That’s because eating or drinking your CBD means it will enter the bloodstream through the digestive system, so it will take a while—30 minutes or longer—before you feel it. Plus, the food it’s in, as well as other foods you consume, could affect how the body absorbs it, and undermine its potential effect.
Good to know: You can also consume CBD in pill form. Similar to ingesting CBD in an edible, pills can take upward of 30 minutes or more to digest before you experience an effect, Earleywine says. One benefit though is that the per-pill CBD dose should be clearer on packaging than for other forms. And for chronic conditions such as fibromyalgia, where you might be trying to maintain consistent CBD levels in your body, pills may be an easier solution.
CBD, touted for many health benefits, is in pills, creams, and even salad dressings and honey. Consumer Reports looks into how to use CBD.