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The Truth About CBD Dosing and Pricing

cbd in tea
Add CBD oil to your favorite beverage

First, I must thank all my customers for their endless patience in waiting for Edible Calm products to return to the market. Due to an avalanche of orders during the liquidation sale in 2021, it was impossible to quickly restock, as all Edible Calm products have to be specially packaged from the warehouse. After that came a redesign of the website, which took longer than normal because people were out as a result of the omicron Covid variant. Although the plan was to have the site ready for Black History Month, that was not to be. Well, just as important is women’s history, so we’ll celebrate this month of March with 20% off all products, including the subscriptions, which already have a 20% discount over the regular price.

Important announcement

Edible Calm has decided that a higher strength of the Mystic Mint CBD Oil should be offered. This meant an entire reformulation of the product, and you’ll understand the reason if you read on.

CBD Status with FDA

We must be honest: The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has licensed CBD (Epidiolex) for only one disorder, a severe type of epilepsy found in Lennon-Gastaut Syndrome (LGS) and Dravet syndrome.

The FDA still has concerns about CBD side effects and overuse of CBD. Unlike the regulated medication Epidiolex, casual or recreational use doesn’t have the same stringent measures.

CBD: formulations

CBD in its various forms has many potential health benefits, including for people of color. Studies have shown its positive effect on conditions like insomnia, pain, headaches, Parkinson’s disease, and dyslexia.

As a result, companies have rushed to make CBD available in many forms: tinctures/oils, cookies, drinks, gummies, tablets, gelcaps, lotions, and so on. Apart from that, there are different formulations, like…

  • Full spectrum: Contains all parts of the CBD plant including up to 0.3% THC.
  • Broad spectrum: Contains most parts of the CBD plant, but only trace or no THC.
  • Concentrate: Contains pure CBD with no other cannabinoids or THC.
our shop
Array of CBD products on shop shelves

Research into the effects of CBD on sleep still has a long way to go. We still need trials of cannabinoid therapies in sleep apnea, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder-related nightmares, restless legs syndrome, rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, and narcolepsy.

The dosing issue

Many products like gummies contain a 10 mg to 25 mg or so of CBD, while oils or tinctures may go anything from 10 mg to 75 mg per dose.

While many companies and websites correctly inform customers or would-be customers that they should always try a low dose of CBD to start, i.e. get the biggest bang for their buck, most don’t reveal an important fact: many of the studies on the effect of CBD on pain, insomnia, seizures, and anxiety used higher doses than people customarily take with the products on the market. But the ability to take higher amounts depend on two factors: availability and cost.

Higher dosing is becoming more available as companies offer a wider variety of dosing within each product category, e.g. oils/tinctures up to 75 mg per dose.

The problem, though, is cost! A review of the large, leading companies shows some hefty pricing for the large-dose products.

The studies

There are different ways to conduct studies, one of the best being the randomized, controlled trial, or RCT, where the participants are randomized (like shaking up a hat of raffle tickets) and neither the participants nor the study designers are aware who got the placebo and who got the treatment. Within the RCT, there is the crossover study, in which those who get the placebo move onto the treatment side and vice versa.

Three areas in which CBD has been studied, more than others, are anxiety, pain, and insomnia.

Anxiety and insomnia

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Anxiety, depression and insomnia may occur simultaneously

An important 2017 PubMed article review of RCTs of cannabis-based medications for different conditions showed some solid results. CBD significantly reduced Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD), in three separate RCTs. The doses used were 600 mg; 400 mg; and 100/300/900 mg respectively. In the last study, neither the 100 mg nor the 900 mg had a positive effect on the SAD. It was noted that the 400-600 mg dose did cause some mental sedation.

A good study in the Permanente Journal concentrated on the effects of CBD on sleep and anxiety using doses of 25 to 175 mg/day, which are lower than the quantities described above in the SAD study. Two months after the start of CBD treatment, 78.1% (32/41) and 56.1% (23/41) of patients reported improvement in anxiety and sleep, respectively, compared with the prior monthly visit.

Research into the effects of CBD on sleep still has a long way to go. We need trials of cannabinoid therapies in sleep apnea, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder-related nightmares, restless legs syndrome, rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder, and narcolepsy.

Pain

Many good scientific rationales exist to justify the use of CBD in chronic pain sufferers–at least on paper.

A 2021 Journal of Cannabis Research study outlined a CBD regimen for doctors with chronic pain from different causes, starting with a low dose of 2.5 or 5 mg twice a day and increasing the amount every 2 – 3 days to a maximum dose of 40 mg/day or until relief from pain was evident.

In PubMed, researchers observed a 64-75% drop in the narcotic needs of 7222 chronic, non-cancer pain patients who used medical cannabis (no dose was mentioned) along with their opioid medications. Although the authors, in absence of good RCTs, stopped short of recommending the use of medical cannabis with opioids as standard practice, it should be considered by all clinicians to reduce dependence on and addiction to narcotic medications.

CBD might also be helpful to sufferers of different types of headaches. See also my own account of my personal experience with CBD and tension headaches.

Can CBD be dangerous?

Is there such a thing as a CBD overdose? We know that THC in excessive doses can cause paranoia, auditory and visual hallucinations, and other adverse side-effects, but what about CBD by itself?

CBD can have hepatic, gastrointestinal and other effects. In people who received the drug for the treatment of epilepsies and psychiatric disorders, the most common adverse effects included tiredness, diarrhea, nausea, and hepatotoxicity. But overall, these occurrences were relatively infrequent, and in comparison with other drugs employed for the treatment of these diseases, CBD has a better side effect profile. No deaths have been linked directly to CBD consumption, but the CDC recommends against vaping of CBD because of reports of lung damage.

The bottom line

What do the results of these studies mean to you as an individual, and is it true, as the Harvard Health Blog suggests, that the hype over cannabinoids doesn’t match the science?

Let’s boil it all down to some basics that can be easily applied to [your] real life:

  1. More studies, preferably RCTs, are needed, and quickly.
  2. While this website doesn’t itself make specific claims about what CBD can do, there’s no reason, while we’re waiting for these RCTs, for you not to try CBD. If you have a personal physician, it’s a good idea to let them know that you are using CBD or considering it. There are some drug-CBD interactions reported, so that should be borne in mind.
  3. In some studies of CBD use for pain, insomnia and anxiety, the doses were much higher, e.g. 400-600 mg/day, than what most consumers are used to taking commercially. Still though, it is still best to start with a low dose, i.e. 2.5 – 5 mg CBD and titrate upward.

Below are some specific conditions with CBD dosages that researchers have used to study the therapeutic effects (from Medical News Today.) All doses are oral.

Caution: these should not be interpreted as a substitution for medication prescribed by your physician. Always consult with your physician before starting on a cannabinoid product.

  • Anxiety: 300-600 mg
  • Bowel disease: 5 mg twice daily
  • Type 2 diabetes: 100 mg twice daily
  • Cancer pain: 50-600 mg per day
  • Parknson’s Disease: 75-300 mg per day

Recommendations for using Edible Calm

With Edible Calm’s new higher-dose 2250 mg CBD oil formulation, each 1 ml dropper contains 75mg of CBD, i.e.

1 ml = 75 mg

0.5 ml = 38 mg (rounded off);

0.25 ml = 19 mg

0.125 ml = 10 mg (rounded off)

  • If you haven’t used CBD before, start with one-eighth (0.125 ml) of the dropper using the markings on the dropper. That’s a little less than 10 mg of CBD
  • If you have used CBD in the past with satisfactory results, start with approximately the same dose you were using before.
  • If previous CBD use was unsuccessful in giving you relief, start increasing the dose in daily 0.125 ml steps, using the graduations on the dropper. When you get to the point that seems to be effective for your condition, stop there, but it could be you might have to increase it in a couple of days.
  • Try dosing twice a day (split the total dose, e.g. , 0.5 ml in the morning and evening), as this sometimes makes it more effective. For anxiety, daytime use of CBD might be more effective, whereas taking the CBD at night might be better for insomnia. Likewise for pain, which often seems worse at night, a dose before bed might be the way to go.
  • Whether you dose once or twice a day with the Edible Calm CBD oil, consider adding a Strawberry Lemonade or Green Apple gummy to the regimen as a nice treat after dinner or a “booster” during the day. Each gummy contains 10 mg of CBD, and you can even split them in half for a 5 mg dose.

In the near future, new flavors of the tincture will be available from Edible Calm: fresh lime, and luscious tropical, which I have tasted and it’s delicious straight into the mouth or in coffee, just like the mint, and a new soft drink is also forthcoming.

Pricing

There’s a wide range of pricing of CBD products, especially the oils. Since different manufacturers have different doses, it makes more sense to compare the brands’ prices by a standard unit of cents per mg of CBD oil. Here is a great review of CBD oil prices by CBD Examine. If you don’t have time to read the report, please, please watch the corresponding YouTube video–it is very informative.

The bottom line is that CBD oils now have a wide range of prices but are averaging around 10 cents per milligram of CBD. To get that figure, divide the price in dollars of the product by the total mg of CBD in the bottle. So, if you pay $50 for a 500 mg bottle (total, not per dose), the price per mg is $50/500mg = $0.1, which is 10 cents.

The 2250 mg CBD Oil from Edible Calm will sell at the low end of the pricing spectrum. At $96.95, that’s $96.95/2250 mg = $0.04 per mg, or 4 cents per mg.

Edible Calm believes there is no reason for price-gouging. Sure, cannabinoids are still in Wild West territory, but that doesn’t mean merchants should be greedy. For instance, there’s a CBD oil that costs 80 cents per mg CBD, which is simply outrageous. Edible Calm wants to keep its high-dose oil under $100 per bottle.

Important factors to think about when buying a CBD oil:

  • make sure it says CBD Oil, and not something like “hemp oil,” or “hemp extract,” because then you have no idea what’s in it.
  • the price per mg of oil, as explained above
  • third-party testing: check the product’s website for its test result. It should look something like this.

Happy Women’s History Month!

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