When is the Best Time to Take CBD?
Here, on the frontlines of the CBD movement, we get asked this question all the time. Since CBD affects everyone differently, there really isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. Instead, let’s look at the main factors to consider when determining what time of day is best for you.
3 key factors that help determine when to take CBD
- Reasons for taking CBD
- Type of CBD product
Listen to Your Body
Before we explore these main factors, the recurring theme here is to listen to your body. What gets one person to sleep may help another maintain energy throughout the day. Why are there such massive discrepancies with the effects of CBD? Well, it’s complicated .
The Human Endocannabinoid System (ECS) regulates many physical processes including pain, memory, mood, appetite, stress, sleep, metabolism, immune function, and reproductive function. CBD acts upon the ECS on a molecular level. Given the complexity of this regulatory system, the potential effect that CBD can have on these processes is totally unique. When beginning your journey with CBD, choose a time of day when you can safely experiment.
For example, if you decide to try CBD for improving sleep, logic would dictate that taking it before bedtime would be most effective. However, some people may feel stimulated when they are trying to catch some z’s . To complicate matters even more, it is possible that when taking CBD in the morning it has a different effect than in the evening. All this leads back to the idea that you want to create enough space to safely experiment. For most of us, that often means the early evening when we are done with the demands of the workplace, and still hours before bedtime. Doing so should safeguard against any potential disruptions to your daily/nightly rhythms. After sufficient time, you will gain more insight into how CBD interacts with your body, and this will ultimately lead to an intake schedule that works best for you.
1. Reasons for taking CBD
People are using CBD for a variety of reasons. Stories range from treating specific symptoms like seizures and acne, to regulating moods, appetite, and more. What time of day you take CBD should largely be based on the reasons you are taking it in the first place. Back to our sleep example. Some of our customers simply take their daily dose before bed, while others take it during the day and find that having it in their system throughout the day helps improve their sleep behavior at night.
Food for thought: my acupuncturist prescribed Chinese herbs for me (they taste gross!) and said, “the best way to take these herbs is to take them.” Meaning, that despite their rancid taste and elaborate boiling protocol, I needed to take them. Similarly, despite our tincture’s great flavor, all the nuances we are discussing here are secondary to the main point: keep taking CBD!
CBD products often include a serving size or daily dose suggestion. However, here too it is important to experiment and find what works best for you. For instance, we recommend starting with 1ml of our regular strength tincture per day, and for some of our customers, this feels right.
Get Creative / mix it up:
- Split the recommended dosage: taking .5ml in the morning and .5ml in the evening allows the effects to be more evenly spread out through the day.
- Double the dose: for some, taking 1ml in the morning and another in the evening provides relief beyond the recommended dose.
For whom the bell curves?
For thee, of course! CBD has been shown to have a bell curve in regards to its effectiveness. This means that as you take more, its effectiveness will ramp up to a maximum efficiency rate before beginning to fall off as you reach saturation levels, resulting in wasted product. Think about your ECS as a gas tank. When you are pumping gas, eventually the pump will click off once the tank is full. You can try to keep squeezing the handle to put more in, but no more will fit. Once your tank is full, you need to put some miles in before it’s necessary to refuel.
Once you know how you react to CBD, play with dosage amounts and times. Think about when you need relief, and plan timing around that.
3. Product Choice
The type of product you are using is a strong consideration when deciding what time you should use CBD. Products like CBD Capsules will have more of a slow, gradual effect since they must be processed through your digestive system. Conversely, a CBD vape will have more immediate effects as vaporizing is one of the most bioavailable ways to consume CBD. Let’s look at the different ingestion methods and how to think ahead for timing your dose.
Think about what you are up against, and how a slow fuse product will interact with it. Do you have anxiety during daytime hours? You will probably want to take CBD capsules in the morning so they can slowly begin working as you go about your day. Do you have trouble sleeping through the night? You will want to take CBD Capsules before dinner, so your body has time to process them before bed.
Full Spectrum Hemp Softgels
Original CBD Tincture
Often called CBD Oil, tincture is taken sublingually and absorbed into glands under your tongue. This will yield a faster result since the tincture will enter your bloodstream more directly than swallowing. Because tincture takes time to work its way through your system, it is much easier to dial in for timing. We recommend 1ml of tincture per day to start with. Most consumers choose to take their daily dose of tincture in the morning so they have CBD pumping through their veins throughout the day. If you find that any results you are experiencing wear off quickly, you may want to double up and take a dose in the evening as well.
What time of day to take CBD varies from person to person, but keep these factors in mind if you’re just getting started with CBD.
Think You’ve Tried Everything for Your Sleep Issues? Enter CBD…
As editor-in-chief and co-founder of Miss Grass , an elevated lifestyle shop and publication for women and cannabis, Anna Duckworth has tried cannabis for everything from sex to cooking. And now, she’s sharing her cannabis knowledge with Well+Good. Today, she takes on a topic we’re all more than a little bit obsessed with over here: how to get a better sleep.
We are an exhausted nation: Roughly 70 million Americans suffer from chronic sleep disorders. And, considering lack of sleep can lead to mood and personality changes, we’re a cranky one, too. To put it simply, we’re tired of being tired and we’re looking for solutions.
Cannabis—CBD (cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive component of cannabis that’s cropping up in everything from lotions to lattes) in particular—is a tantalizing alternative to the typical Ambien prescription or medicine cabinet full of melatonin that, according to Elizabeth Cramer Ernst, nurse practitioner and owner of the medical marijuana clinic Hamptons Medi Spa, could provide significant relief for insomniacs. In recent studies, CBD has shown promising signs of being both an effective and safe way to get more zzz’s, although much more research needs to be done before definitive conclusions can be drawn.
Through the fog that comes with pulling unintended all-nighters night after night, however, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that difficulty sleeping is very rarely just that. It’s almost certainly the result of an underlying condition. For many people, a lack of sleep comes down to anxiety—which, as we know, can be attributed to any number of external or internal factors from PTSD to financial strain. For others, sleepless nights are rooted in something physical, like chronic pain or restless leg syndrome. That’s why there’s truly no one-size-fits-all solution for sleep problems—including cannabis.
To find the best way for you to use cannabis or CBD oil for sleep, follow these three steps. And remember, it’s important to speak with your doctor before adding any new supplements to your routine.
1. Get to know your options
Cannabis remains illegal for recreational and/or medical use in many states. The good news for the canna-curious who live in a state that’s still under prohibition is that the passing of the Farm Bill in late 2018 federally legalized hemp, the cannabis plant that contains less than 0.3 percent of the psychoactive compound known as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). And that means you can now legally access a whole range of hemp-derived cannabis products no matter where you live.
If you’re experienced with products that contain THC, know that some amount of the high-inducing compound can be effective in treating sleep disorders. But if you’re new to the cannabis party, it’s recommended to start with non-intoxicating cannabis products. These contain a high concentration of other active compounds—like the ever popular CBD (cannabidiol) or the lesser known but powerful sedative CBN (cannabinol)—that work by activating a network of receptors in the body known as the endocannabinoid system. Ultimately, your job is to test and try different products to find the dose just right for you.
2. Identify your main sleep issues
Everybody and every body is different. When you’re deciding on a course of treatment for sleep issues, first ask yourself this question: Do you have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or both?
According to Cramer Ernst, when using cannabis or CBD oil for sleep, there are a range of products from short-acting ones that can help you fall asleep fast to long-acting ones that can help you stay asleep, so you want to make sure you pick the one that addresses your particular ailment.
A vaporizer like BEBOE’s Calming CBD Blend is considered short-acting because it takes effect in as little as 90 seconds, but only lasts about an hour. (Short-acting products are best for people who need help falling asleep.) A tincture under the tongue, like Mineral’s Robyn for Sleep, is considered medium-acting because it takes 20 minutes to kick in and lasts between four and five hours. And then there are the edibles or capsules, like Plant People’s Be Calm Caps, which can take up to two hours to take effect but typically last between six and eight hours. (These long-acting ones are a great bet for people who can nod off easily but need help staying asleep.)
3. Integrate CBD into your sleep hygiene routine
So many of us stay up late working or scrolling through Instagram and don’t shut off our screens until it’s way too late (guilty!). Blue light from the screens has been proven to interrupt sleep dramatically and, experts say, should be avoided for up to four hours before bedtime. That’s not realistic for a lot of us, but even putting your phone down and turning off the TV an hour before you snuggle between the sheets can make a difference. It also helps to keep a regular sleep schedule so your body can start to anticipate the routine and begin shutting down without you having to force it.
One easy way to ease off the tech and begin regularizing your sleep habits is to create a bedtime ritual for yourself (with or without CBD—but, me being me, I vote for “with”). Practice meditation if that’s your jam, spritz your skin and bed with a soothing lavender spray, dim the lights, and give yourself a little massage with something like Apothecanna’s Calming Body Oil. One of my favorite tricks is to take a CBD bath with Vertly CBD Bath Salts or the CBD Bliss Bath Bomb, which Cramer Ernst says works by being absorbed into your skin. The mood-boosting power of a good soak plus CBD could be just the ticket to Dreamland you’ve been after.
Melatonin, magnesium, or prescription pills not doing the trick with your insomnia? Here, a cannabis expert explains how to use CBD oil for sleep.