CBD is short for cannabidiol. It comes from a plant called cannabis in the form of a chemical compound. CBD is one of over one hundred cannabinoids found in cannabis. It is different from THC in that it has no psychoactive properties. In recent years, CBD has gained momentum because of its alleged health benefits. Today, a variety of products contain CBD. As a result, many are curious to try it for themselves.

Of course, before choosing to make CBD a part of your routine, you may have some questions. For example, what happens if you take too much CBD?

Ways to Take CBD

To better understand what happens if you take too much CBD, you first need to know about the different ways you can ingest it.


Edibles are great if you are looking for a subtle way of taking CBD that won’t leave as much of a distinctive taste. They are called edibles because you can ingest them through gummies, mints, and other forms (though they are not to be confused with actual food). On the downside, it can take a few hours before the CBD begins to take effect. Furthermore, CBD is only about 30% potent when it is edible. Why is that so? Simply put, through digestion, the liver naturally breaks down foods and products like CBD through the digestion process.

Under the Tongue

Some consumers who want to avoid additives such as sugar and preservatives might appreciate the sublingual method of taking CBD. In this case, CBD doesn’t have to go through the digestive tract, so you will feel its effects more quickly. Some CBD products that you can apply sublingually are tinctures, lozenges, sprays or oils.

On Your Skin

A topical application of CBD might be good for you. It may prove to be advantageous for those seeking to use CBD to target specific parts of their body, rather than their entire system. This is because a topical application of CBD provides concentrated benefits towards the applied area.

Skin isn’t as permeable as the mucous membranes, so if you plan on applying CBD topically, choose a product with a higher concentration of cannabinoids. You’ll also want to make sure you are applying it in larger quantities. Some products that allow you to apply CBD on your skin are lotions and creams, balms, salves and patches.


Perhaps the quickest way to absorb CBD is by smoking it, or through a vaporizer or vape pen. Cannabinoids ingested through vaping go straight to your bloodstream and tend to have a higher concentration. If you choose a vaporizer, find one that has a cartridge. If you choose a vape pen, find one that has a chamber. These are what will contain the CBD oil or concentrates. As a result, those who vape CBD will likely feel its effects within minutes and benefit from up to 56% of its potency.

Types of CBD Products

The correct dosage of CBD will help you make the most of the potential effects that it has to offer. Some users claim that it brings relief from symptoms such as pain and inflammation. Others feel that it helps reduce feelings like stress and anxiety, while others believe it has improved their quality of sleep. It’s important to note that none of these claims are yet to be verified by scientific data, nor are these claims approved by the FDA.

On the other hand, if you have taken CBD and have experienced no change at all, you may not have had enough of it to be effective. Alternatively, you may consider changing the type of CBD product you use to find what works best for you. Let’s talk about the two main types of products that contain CBD.

CBD Isolate

Isolate, also known as pure CBD, is labeled as such because it contains 99.5% to 100% of the cannabis plant’s extract. It is produced in a lab and there are typically no other ingredients, such as terpenes or additional cannabinoids. As a result, this product is considered to have a higher potency and is taken in lower quantities.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full spectrum CBD is different from its isolate counterpart. It contains CBD, as well as other cannabinoids, terpenes, and healthy fatty acids. Together, they cause the entourage effect. This happens when the different compounds in full spectrum CBD work together and enhance their potency.

Know Your Dosage

You now know that CBD can be ingested in different ways. These methods vary by how quickly they can deliver CBD to your body and how readily your system will absorb it. You have also learned that there are different CBD products available.

The opposite of too much is not enough, and somewhere between these two extremes is balance. When you find the right amount of CBD for you, you will have a better chance of feeling the difference it can potentially make on your health and mood.

How do you calculate the adequate amount of CBD to suit your needs? The right dosage for you might not correspond to that of another person. Instead, this amount depends on factors such as body weight, your reasons for using CBD, your body’s chemistry, and the concentration of CBD you will be ingesting. For this reason, we suggest talking about your intention of using CBD with your health practitioner first. We also advise that you follow their recommendations, for your safety. This is especially true if you are already on medication.

What if your doctor didn’t provide you with a dosage? In that case, you might want to start with a very small dosage and slowly work your way up. Continue doing so until you feel it is making a difference. Some people find it helpful to track their progress with a pen and paper or with an app. Record your dose of CBD and how you are feeling afterwards.

Read the Label

Some products tell you how much CBD they contain. For instance, edibles and capsules might state the amount of CBD they contain on the packaging. Products that can be taken sublingually, like droppers, may provide you with how much CBD can be found in the entire bottle. In this case, you’ll have to do the math.

For example, consider a 10 ml bottle of CBD oil with a label that reads 1000 mg of cannabidiol. That means that if a bottle has up to 200 drops, each one will have about 5 mg of CBD. If you wish to start with a small dosage of 20 mg, you’ll need four drops of CBD under your tongue.

Can You Take Too Much CBD?

Studies that have been conducted on CBD products seem to suggest that it is generally safe for humans, but the FDA has released information relating to potential side effects that one should consider before beginning a CBD regimen. However, using CBD might put a person’s health at risk if they are already on medication or have health problems with their liver. According to the Current Drug Safety journal, CBD may be considered toxic at around 20,000 mg, assuming you ingest that amount in a short period of time. It is highly unlikely that you’ll take that amount of CBD since most starting daily doses of CBD range between 5 to 20 mg. As for an entire bottle of CBD, a tincture can contain up to 5000 mg, so you’d need to consume four whole bottles rather quickly to reach the 20,000 mg danger zone.

Side Effects

In some cases, people may experience unpleasant symptoms after taking CBD. If they take a lot of it, side effects may include weight gain or weight loss, a bigger or a smaller appetite, fatigue and diarrhea. In a few instances, consumers of CBD have had adverse reactions to it. If you exceed your recommended dose of CBD, you might also feel lethargic, nauseous and slightly disoriented. Upon further examination, it has been found that synthetic CBD may have been the cause. As with other products you ingest, it is important to do your research and read the label for manufacturing details and the list of ingredients.

In Conclusion

CBD can also be ingested in the form of edibles, tinctures, creams, and through smoking and vaping. A growing number of people are using CBD because of its wide range of properties. Researchers are exploring its potential as a means of relieving pain, inflammation, anxiety, stress, and more.

Can you take too much CBD? The answer is “unlikely” unless you consume far beyond the recommended dosage. However, a misuse or abuse of CBD can lead to some unpleasant adverse effects.

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