Ever since the legalization of hemp products due to the 2018 Farm Bill Act the popularity of CBD has grown exponentially. With the rise of CBD into the mainstream many questions about whether CBD can cause an overdose has popped up. Can you really overdose on CBD? Is it even a real thing?
In this article, we will discuss what is likely to happen if you use large amounts of CBD, above the recommended dosage.
There are situations where people have gone to ER or Emergency Room for taking too much THC. People who are not experienced users of THC, that end up taking too much and go past their threshold may get all the negative side effects of THC.
Can you take too much CBD oil and overdose? What will happens if I take too much?
Also throughout the many decades of cannabis use, there haven’t been any known lethal overdoses of THC as well. Why is this?
All great questions, so sit back relax, and let's find out!
Three Types Of CBD Extracts
Understanding what type of CBD product you are taking will determine what kind of dosage should be taking and how each will make you feel.
Full-spectrum is practically the use of the whole entire hemp plant. What CBD producers will do is extract and obtain all the cannabinoids and terpenes from the entire hemp plant. There will be some loss of each of the compounds during the extraction, but overall the diversity remains the same just not the amount it was at originally.
All of the hemp compounds in the plant extracts are essential for what we would call the “entourage effect”; this is where all the terpenes and cannabinoid compounds harmoniously act together to create the symphony of effects called the entourage effect. They all complement each other like notes to a song to create a full spectrum of effects. Most people mainly prefer CBD products that contain full-spectrum extract.
Full-spectrum CBD will contain 0.3% THC or less due to the use of all the cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant.
CBD isolate is the total opposite of the full spectrum because it the purely just CBD. In the purest form of CBD you will not find any other cannabinoids in this type of extract, not even terpenes. CBD isolate is 99.9% pure CBD; since this type of extract does not contain the other cannabinoids and terpenes you won’t get the entourage effect.
Isolates are known less effective or weaker than full-spectrum, but many people prefer isolates because it contains no THC. CBD Isolate usually has no flavor and this makes it easy for people to mix it into their favorite foods and drinks.
Broad-spectrum can be described as the love child between full-spectrum and CBD isolate.
Quite similar to full-spectrum, broad-spectrum oil extraction aims to extract all the terpenes and cannabinoids from the hemp plant material while leaving out all the THC from the extraction. In broad-spectrum CBD oil, you will get all the compounds without the THC and as a result, you get some of the entourage effect feeling as well, and it’s the best of both worlds!
The majority of people have described the broad spectrum's flavor profile to be “hempy” tasting. Some people may not like this taste, but some CBD oils will contain some mint oil that will help mask the taste of the hemp.
Can You Overdose On CBD?
First off, what is the meaning of “overdose?” To “overdose” has several meanings, the most common meaning is to take more than the normal or recommended amount of a substance often drugs. The other meaning is to take a lethal amount of substance or drug risking one's health and life. Often overdoses on certain drugs will lead to death.
As for CBD, a lethal dose won’t happen on CBD oil because first of all there are no cannabinoid receptors in the brain stem area that is responsible for respiratory function. This doesn’t mean that you can go crazy and do as much CBD as you want.
As of date, there have been no studies that have reported an overdose on CBD in other words there have been no deaths linked to this. This doesn’t mean you can’t take too much. Accidentally taking too much CBD can result in some mild side effects.
There is no precise threshold for how much CBD is too much or what level it takes to “overdose.” The reason there is no universal threshold for an individual is that everyone is different. The factors that must be taken into consideration are age, sex, diet, weight, metabolism, and previous CBD experience.
Can Your Animal Overdose On CBD?
Like with humans, there have been no reports in the United States that mention animals or pets overdosing on CBD oil. Animals and pets are just like humans in the way their bodies react to CBD. As a pet parent, you should be very careful when giving your pet CBD as the largest pet is still three times smaller than a human.
If you are not sure how much CBD is the right amount for your pet. You should consult with your veterinarian or do extensive research online. If you are buying CBD products or CBD oil for the first time stay away from large marketplaces like Amazon. On Amazon, some vendors will sell hemp seed oil and sell it as CBD or totally mislabel the product. Shop with a reputable brand.
What Are The Side Effects Of Taking Too Much CBD?
When taking CBD it is generally well-tolerated in humans and pets. A study done showed that the efficacy and safety of CBD are that it does not cause severe side effects at the repeated dose of 1,500 mg. Most people don’t usually take more than 50 mg of CBD daily, this makes it hard to figure out how much CBD is needed in order to experience unwanted side effects.
The adverse effects of CBD that may happen when taking extreme doses include:
- Dry mouth (cotton mouth)
- Appetite change
- Potential CBD-drug interactions
- Low blood pressure
Dry mouth is a very common side effect among all the cannabinoids, it is the result of the cannabinoid interaction with the endocannabinoid receptors located in the salivary glands. When you take hemp products, the cannabinoids will bind to these receptors causing an inhibition of the saliva. Keep a drink on hand when taking CBD products this will help you stay hydrated.
Dizziness is the cause of a temporary drop in blood pressure when taking too much CBD. Some people say they feel sleepy or drowsy after taking too much CBD out, this may be the desired effect for some though.
Diarrhea might occur as a side effect of consuming too much of the carrier oil that is used in CBD oil.
Appetite change is a new phenomenon that is still being studied by researchers. They still don’t know why some people experience a boost in their appetite while others report that they don’t feel hungry after taking CBD.
Then there is the side effect caused by CBD-induced drug interaction, this is a very important thing to know especially for those who take medication regularly. CBD is known to compromise the liver's job to metabolize certain pharmaceutical compounds. This is very similar to the way grapefruit juice interacts with medication. So if your medication has a grapefruit warning, you should treat it the same way with CBD. The best thing to do is to always consult with your doctor or a medical professional before using CBD products.
How Much CBD Is Too Much?
Like we said before there aren’t that many studies out there on the toxicity of CBD. It would be very difficult to test that from an ethics perspective. There was a study done in 2011 that was published in Current Drug Safety that said the toxic dose of CBD was roughly 20,000 mg of CBD taken all at once.
In order to meet the “toxic” level of CBD, you would need to consume at least 10 full bottles of full-spectrum CBD at 300 ml per bottle that contains at least 2000 mg per bottle. That is absolutely ridiculous and no one should try this.
The best practice for using CBD oil or CBD products is to follow the instructions that are on the label of the product. Going above the recommended dosage is not suggested and is done at your own discretion.
What Is the Proper Dosage Of CBD?
The proper dosage will vary per individual as everyone’s body will react differently to CBD. It is always recommended that people start low and slow. Give yourself enough time to see how it feels and go from there. A proper dose will vary, for example, if you take CBD on an empty stomach you will more likely feel the effects faster, and if you were to take it on a full stomach after eating it will take a lot longer for the effects to kick in.
The FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) has not approved CBD, in other words, CBD is not regulated. The FDA has yet to analyze the efficacy and safety of hemp-derived products. This means that there are no official dosage guidelines for CBD.
Many brands in the CBD market will have their own recommendations based on a single serving size of their product. The products will vary in strength and size. Some will say to start off with half a dropper if you are using CBD oils.
Some experts say from their studies, that it is best to take 2 - 5 mg of CBD for every 10 pounds of body weight. They also say if you don’t feel much then you can increase the dosage by 5 - 10 mg. The best way to gauge what works for you is to slow and low and record when you begin to feel the effects and how it makes you feel.
After a while of taking CBD and you feel like you are no longer feeling the effects, this probably means that you have built a tolerance. If you feel like this, you should take a break from CBD for at least three to five days. Give your body a chance to reset your tolerance level.
Can CBD Make Me Sick?
If you take pure CBD oil it should be coming from reputable manufacturers that source their oil from organically grown hemp and extracted without aggressive solvents. If they do all these things CBD oil should not make you sick. Great quality CBD oil is a sure way of ensuring your well-being when taking CBD oil.
Take the following steps to make sure you are getting the best high-quality product you can:
- Use CBD oil made from organic hemp
- Make sure the oil is made from CO2 (alcohol) extraction
- The manufacturer provides you with a third-party lab report (very important)
- Check the reviews and reputation of the company
The most important step in this list is the third-party lab reports or COAs (certificates of analysis). The third-party lab report is important because it will tell you the quality of the CBD product. The lab report or COA will analyze the CBD for potency, chemical composition, pesticides, heavy metals, solvents, and any other contaminants. This is one of the ways to see the credibility of the company you are shopping with or their supplier in this unregulated market.
If the shop or manufacturer does not supply you with a third-party lab report, this is a big red flag and you should not be shopping with them.
A third-party lab report or COA will be the best way to ensure you get a high-quality product and this is also ensuring your safety as well.
Can You Build A Tolerance To CBD?
Like with any substance on the market, if take it long enough, you will build a tolerance. When you build a tolerance for any kind of substance, this means your body gets used to the compound, which also means your body will require an increase in dosage or more to feel the same effect.
In a study, some anecdotal evidence showed that CBD may have less of an effect on the user than it did in past usage or it may take longer for the CBD to take effect. These are indicators of higher tolerance but other factors may be at play too. The inconsistency of effects could be the body's metabolism or it could even be the time of day as the sensitivity of cannabinoids changes throughout the day.
The concept of tolerance for CBD is the same as would be for THC in marijuana. Cannabinoid receptors may become desensitized after prolonged use of THC and that will also affect the way CBD makes you feel.
If you use only CBD isolates and you want to change your tolerance, switching to broad-spectrum or full-spectrum CBD may improve the effects that you feel. When the whole plant is extracted for the cannabinoids, terpenes, and trace amounts of THC, you will get the full effectiveness of CBD. Full-spectrum is the use of the whole hemp plant and that means you get all the benefits of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and the trace amounts of THC, this is called the entourage effect. Broad-spectrum is just an extract with cannabinoids and terpenes without THC. CBD isolate is just pure CBD, so you won’t get the entourage effect from just CBD isolate.
Final Thoughts On CBD Overdose
From everything that is known to this date about CBD, even in very high doses, CBD is relatively safe. This goes without saying like with anything taken in extremely high amounts, there are bound to be some negative effects that come with it. On a positive note, there have been no reports of fatality due to high uses of CBD, in other words, CBD overdoses have never led to someone dying.
If you want to achieve the best result from CBD and avoid any negative reactions, we always recommend going low and slow, wait the appropriate amount of time to let your body metabolize the CBD and see how you react. You can then begin to gradually increase your dose until you get the desired effect that you want.
Always buy your CBD products from a reputable company such as Nature's Wealth. Make sure you always buy products that have third-party lab tests or COAs (certificates of analysis) and that their products are natural and organic. If you follow these guidelines you will likely enjoy your experience with CBD products.
The information provided in this article is anecdotal and more research is need to be done. This article is not to claim any health benefits or contradict the advice of your medical physician or doctor. Using CBD products is up to the individual's discretion. Always seek the advice of a doctor or medical professional if you are unsure of what you are taking.