Most CBD Consumers Figure Out Their Own Dosages

There is a constant influx of new CBD, CBG, CBN, and synthetic products flooding the market and ever more consumers turning to them for relief from a range of conditions, relaxation, and a festive alternative to hangover-inducing substances. As regulators struggle to keep up with the seismic growth of the market, a new Leafreport survey sought to uncover how much CBD users are actually consuming and how they choose their dosages.

While some dosage schemes for CBD have been proposed, none have been implemented to date and there is still disagreement on the issue among medical professionals. This means that customers are left to labels, their own research and preferences, and the recommendations of others to determine what the optimal dose for their desired outcome might be. Leafreport’s survey captured US-based individuals ages 21 to 80 years of age. There were 1360 people who responded to the survey, 721 of whom are either using CBD or have experimented with it.

Leafreport’s findings showed that, of those surveyed, 71% of CBD users self-determine their own dosage without consulting a professional while 18% consulted with a doctor and 11% consulted with a CBD/cannabis industry professional. Even industry experts like CEO and Founder of The People’s Dispensary Christine De La Rosa (cited in the report) references the recommended dosage on the label and then adjusts it until she finds what works for her. She does add, however, that advice from a professional can be a helpful source of guidance, as is taking time to gauge your body’s response to a specific dosage. Author Anthony Schroeder (“7 Ways To Manage Pain With CBD”) shared the view that the dosage suggestion on a label should be considered a generic starting point to be increased or decreased based on factors like sensitivity, body weight, and pre-existing conditions.

So self-determining dosage using the label as a baseline may not be such a bad idea, but Leafreport’s survey shows that 26% of those surveyed don’t check for CBD concentration when shopping for a product and 22% don’t check the dose at all before consuming the product. 31% of consumers surveyed using CBD every day and 48% take the same dosage every time they consume CBD.  Again, a full 22% revealed that they don’t know how much they are taking because they never checked the dose. Leafreport’s survey concludes that not paying attention to potency or daily dosage can be problematic and even harmful, as CBD elicits “biphasic effects” at different doses. The survey summary cites the example of how a low dosage might alleviate anxiety while a higher dosage can elevate it. The advent of a standardized dosage scheme may not fully address this issue, as user responses and conditions are incredibly unique, pointing to the importance of obtaining professional advice on dosage, especially for less-experienced consumers. 

Julie Aitcheson

Julie Aitcheson is a freelance writer, author and educator. In addition to Green Market Report, her work has appeared in Vanguard Magazine, The Fresh Toast, Green Entrepreneur, Daily Press, The Baltimore Sun, LA Weekly and The Chicago Tribune. She received a full fellowship to the 2013 Stowe StoryLabs and won second place in the 2014 San Miguel Writers' Conference nonfiction writing competition. She has published two young adult novels and is currently at work on a piece of adult fiction.


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