CBD Gummies Dosage: How Many Hemp Edibles Should You Take?

Illustration of gummies and a jar
Written by Livvy Ashton | Last updated: July 19, 2021

If you’ve recently hopped on the idea of adding CBD to your daily routine and are now looking at the bottle of CBD gummies, wondering “How many gummies should I eat?”, then you’re reading the right article.

There are actually plenty of people asking the same question — just Google it and you’ll see hundreds of results with new users asking “how many CBD gummies should I eat”; of course, there are as many answers as the threads depending on who you ask.

That’s because there’s no straightforward, universal answer. That being said, our guide provides some handy tips that can make it more of a funny experiment instead of an ordeal.

We’ll cover a lot of basics to help you the best decision on your CBD dosage.

Long story short:

  • There is no one-size-fits-all dose of CBD. Every consumer is different, so take your time to experiment and find what works for you.
  • Several individual factors affect the number of CBD gummies you should take, from your chemical composition to the potency of your gummies to the ailment that you want to address, and more.
  • The best approach to taking CBD gummies is to start with low doses and gradually increase the amount of CBD once you’re comfortable with the results.

Factors Determining the Right CBD Dosage for You

a lady measuring cbd

Most people want simple answers when it comes to “how many CBD gummies should I eat?”

Take one for mild pain.

Take two for anxiety and sleep.

And, if you’re suffering from a severe ailment, eat four gummies.

Alas, this doesn’t work that way.

CBD gummies come in a range of potencies; some contain 5 mg of CBD, while others pack 25 mg of CBD or more per gummy. You might take three of a low-dose gummy, but only one if you have a high-potency product.

Once you figure out what dosage works for you — measured in milligrams — you need to translate this amount into the correct number of gummies, based on several parameters that we’ll discuss in the next section.

The right dosage for CBD gummies depends on the following factors:

  • Bodyweight
  • Bioavailability
  • Unique body chemistry
  • Desired effect and potency
  • Condition being address

You can use the totality of these factors as a framework, but keep in mind that everyone is different. In the end, nothing can beat the classic trial and error.

Here we cover each factor affecting CBD dosage to give you an idea of how complex they are.

1. Your Body Weight

In drinking culture, the term “lightweight” refers to a person that needs a smaller dose of alcohol to get drunk. In contrast, “heavyweight” users need more booze to call it a night.

These terms also apply to health supplements, so if you’re called a lightweight user, this isn’t necessarily an insult. It’s just a colloquial way to describe the science behind how your body metabolizes different compounds.

Weight is an important indicator of how well your body processes certain compounds, whether it’s CBD or another health supplement. You can use your body weight to establish your starting dose — and adjust it accordingly if you’re looking for stronger effects.

Here’s how it works for different weight groups (more or less):

  • Under 130 lbs – up to 11 mg
  • 130 to 230 lbs – up to 18 mg
  • Above 230 lbs – up to 23 mg

Even the above categories are quite broad when it comes to finding a good point of reference. For example, there’s a large difference between people weighing 130 pounds and 230 pounds. 11 mg can be too much for someone weighing 130 lbs or less, while it can be nowhere near the desired effects for someone over 230 lbs.

You can also calculate the dosage by taking 1-5 mg per 10 pounds of body weight. Simply divide your weight by 10 and you’ll get the number of milligrams that you can start with. You can start at the low end, and if you don’t feel any relief, increase the dose gradually until you find the sweet spot.

2. Your Metabolism

Here you need to consider your lifestyle.

Are you an active person?

Do you have a sitting job or does it require you to be up and about all day?

What is the cornerstone of your eating? Do you consume nutrient-dense food or are you a sugar burner?

Your metabolism plays an important role in establishing the right dosage of CBD because it affects the rate at which your body processes it along with other cannabis compounds.

If you want to speed up the onset of effects, you can take CBD gummies on an empty stomach. For more pronounced but slower-acting effects, we recommend consuming the gummies after a meal. While it will slow down the metabolism of CBD, it will also increase its bioavailability so that more of the active ingredient reaches your bloodstream.

3. The Potency of Your CBD Gummies

Gummies bears on the table

Your body’s tolerance is just one of the many things to consider when identifying your dosing range. Some people are aiming for more substantial effects and thus may need to eat more gummies than an average consumer.

The starting doses highlighted above are recommended based on mild effects. These doses can change depending on the power you expect from your reactions:

Moderate Effects Strong Effects
Below 130 lbs 12 – 14 mg 15 – 17 mg
130 – 230 lbs 19 – 23 mg 24 – 27 mg
Over 230 lbs 24 – 30 mg 31 – 45 mg

By moderate effects, we mean increased relief from pain and better stress management. Strong effects refer to dosages used for easing severe mental and physical discomfort.

Those weighing under 130 lbs can use relatively low doses to experience the health benefits of CBD. If you’re in this weight group, you should be able to get decent results without crossing a dose of 20 mg.

But, since everyone is different, there are more factors to consider.

4. The Condition Being Addressed

How many CBD you need to eat depends on why you’re taking CBD. Outlining your priorities is paramount if you want to experience specific effects. Different physiological or psychological ailments may benefit from lower or higher doses of CBD.

  • Anxiety– 15 to 30 mg to ease the discomfort and enhance focus.
  • Healthy sleep– 10 to 25 mg before bed can influence your sleep cycles and positively affect different stages of your sleep.
  • Pain and inflammation– the optimal dosage range for inflammatory pain can range from as little as 5 mg to 50 mg to reduce soreness and mitigate pain signals. The efficacy of CBD for pain varies greatly depending on the severity of the discomfort and the type of pain. People with severe discomfort may need anywhere close to 600 mg, although these are extreme cases.
  • General support and focus – 5 mg to 15 mg should suffice if you’re looking for a subtle boost of concentration to kickstart your workday. You can use this dosage range without addressing any specific ailment. Many people consume CBD daily in lower amounts to support healthy levels of their own endocannabinoids.

The journal Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research issued a report on the safety and efficacy of CBD, concluding that the compound is safe and well-tolerated by humans, even in doses as high as 1,500 mg per day.

That being said, CBD has a few mild side effects and can interact with a lot of medications, so we recommend exercising caution and talking to your doctor before buying CBD gummies for any specific condition. We’ll get to that later in this article

5.Your Body’s Chemistry

This factor is a little bit more difficult to predict, as it boils down to how different individuals experience the effects of CBD after specific doses. For some people, CBD provides great results with first use, while for others, it can take upwards of 2 weeks to notice a difference.

The efficacy of CBD depends on how deep your endocannabinoid deficiencies are. As the modulator of the endocannabinoid system, CBD works to balance its functioning and help it maintain healthy levels of endocannabinoids by acting on different hormones and enzymes throughout the body.

Although extremely rare, it may happen that you experience unwanted reactions after CBD that occur every time you eat CBD gummies. Should that be the problem, discontinue CBD use and try to find where the issue is.

There are a few possible explanations for feeling bad after eating CBD gummies, including:

  • Negative drug interactions – CBD can interact with a lot of daily prescription medication. Consulting your pharmacist or doctor will help you establish the right routine and avoid these interactions.
  • Contamination with unwanted ingredients – this is the peril of buying CBD in an unregulated market. Some companies still neglect lab testing, which results in many contaminated products being churned out for sale. Always look for the certificate of analysis from a third-party laboratory; the lab analysis should list the potency of CBD, the entire cannabinoid and terpene profile, as well as the results for common contaminants such as heavy metals, solvents, pesticides, and mycotoxins.

If you don’t take any drugs, and the gummies you have are of high quality, the dosage may trigger adverse reactions. If you feel uncomfortable, try a lower dosage and increase it slowly until you can experience the health benefits of CBD without any side effects.

6. The Bioavailability of CBD Gummies

Bioavailability is expressed in percentages and refers to the leftover amount of CBD that circulates in the bloodstream upon ingestion. Different forms of CBD offer different bioavailability.

For example, the bioavailability of CBD oils is around 35%. For vapes, this figure is even higher, reaching 56% (1).

Unfortunately, oral forms of CBD such as gummies and capsules offer the lowest bioavailability of all consumption methods. In the best case scenario, 20% of the ingested CBD content will end up in your circulatory system.

You can increase the bioavailability of CBD gummies by either choosing a product with added fatty acids (e.g. from hemp oil) or by eating them after a hearty meal.

7. Full-spectrum CBD vs. CBD Isolate

There are three main types of CBD: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate.

Full-spectrum CBD reflects the original phytochemical profile of hemp. It contains CBD along with adjunctive cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and traces of THC. Depending on the extraction method, it can also contain chlorophyll and other water-soluble compounds.

Broad-spectrum CBD is similar to its full-spectrum counterpart; the only difference is the lack of THC, which is further removed after initial extraction.

CBD isolate is just pure CBD. It usually occurs in the form of crystalline powder, which is then infused into a range of products, such as tinctures, capsules, vapes, and gummies.

Full-spectrum CBD is the most effective type according to consumers and scientific studies (2). That’s because CBD works synergistically with other hemp compounds to create more pronounced therapeutic effects. This phenomenon is known as the entourage effect (3). Unlike broad-spectrum CBD and isolates, full-spectrum extracts are also more predictable in terms of determining the effective dosage.

Still, if you’re concerned about failing a drug test with full-spectrum CBD gummies, the latter options are a safer pick — provided that the manufacturer can prove the THC content with relevant lab reports.

How Many CBD Gummies Should You Eat?

a girl eating cbd gummies

People usually take 1–5 gummies per day depending on their potency and their goals with CBD.

As we said, there’s no universal dosage for every individual. That being said there ARE a few hacks that you can use to correctly gauge the number of gummies in your daily routine.

Tips for Correctly Dosing Your CBD Gummies

Gummies offer an easy way to ingest CBD. They’re tasty, easy to carry around, convenient, and contain a predetermined dose of CBD per serving. The container will clearly indicate how much CBD is in a single gummy. They’re labeled as “10 mg” or “25 mg” depending on the potency. There is no such thing as a standard dose of CBD gummies.

Fortunately, you can easily find a way to match the potency with your dosage so that your supplementation turns out affordable in the long run:

  • Purchase high-potency gummies and portion them. If you purchase gummies with 40 mg of CBD, you can cut them into quarters and use half of the gummy one day, and the other half the other day. With low-potency gummies like 5 mg, you’d need to increase your sugar intake along with CBD, which isn’t good for your health.
  • Up the dosage using smaller increments. You can play with the size and potency of your gummies the other way round. When you’re trying CBD gummies for the first time, choosing lower strengths gives you smaller increments that you can use to gradually increase your dose and make precise adjustments without overdoing CBD and triggering unwanted reactions.
  • Get high-strength CBD gummies for potent effects. Some gummies can contain 40-50 mg of CBD, so if you pop two before bed, you can easily put yourself to sleep and wake up rested at night due to the size of your dose. Such gummies are great if you want to embrace the relaxing side of using CBD.

Some people take a few gummies at a time; others split their dosage throughout the day. Some eat CBD gummies in the morning to boost alertness and productivity, while other users enjoy them shortly before bed to get that recommended 8 hours of shut eyes.

Are CBD Gummies Safe?

CBD gummies are safe as long as you buy them from a reputable source that uses organic hemp, natural ingredients, and tests its products in a third-party laboratory.

It’s impossible to lethally overdose on CBD because it doesn’t interfere with the brain’s region controlling respiratory functions.

However, taking too many CBD gummies at once may trigger a few mild reactions.

What Are the Side Effects of CBD Gummies?

The side effects of CBD gummies include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Appetite fluctuation
  • Dizziness
  • Irritation
  • Diarrhea

There’s also the risk of interactions with certain prescription medications, so once again, we suggest that you consult a doctor if you’re taking any medications and are considering adding CBD gummies to your regimen.

Where to Find the Best CBD Gummies

The ideal dosage may vary between you and your friends — but quality should remain the same.

Choosing the right CBD gummies is just as important as finding the right dose.

While CBD gummies are widely available in stores near you, we recommend finding a trustworthy online supplier if you’re looking for the best deals on high-quality CBD.

Online stores don’t have to deal with the middleman, so they can offer regular discounts, bulk pricing, and reward programs for their products.

Another perk of buying CBD gummies online is the number of opportunities for researching your potential vendors.

Here are a few important things to check for:

  • The hemp source – the best CBD gummies are made from locally-grown, non-GMO, organic hemp. Such plants yield clean, high-CBD flowers, which are the perfect source for full-spectrum CBD extracts. On the contrary, mass-produced hemp imported from overseas is likely to be contaminated with pesticides and chemical fertilizers on top of the heavy metals from polluted soil.
  • The extraction method – CO2 and ethanol extraction are two popular methods of making CBD gummies. CO2 is the golden standard because it captures the original phytochemical profile of hemp without adding too much heat or using aggressive solvents on the way. Reputable companies will never use hydrocarbon solvents like propane or butane because they are dangerous for the user and highly flammable — increasing the risk of explosions.
  • Third-party testing – if a company doesn’t post third-party lab reports or doesn’t send them via email, it’s an instant red flag. Always look for relevant and up-to-date Certificates of Analysis confirming the potency and purity of your CBD gummies.
  • The company’s reputation – trustworthy companies have a lot of positive reviews on third-party websites. Their social media channels are also full of positive feedback from satisfied customers. If there’s anything wrong about the company, the Internet will spit it out, so if you notice a brand with a lot of negative reviews all over the web, you may want to look for CBD gummies somewhere else.

So… How Many CBD Gummies Should You Take?

CBD gummies are easy to dose if you know your body’s tolerance to CBD and the principles behind the metabolism of cannabinoids. Using your weight and the intensity of effects is a good way to determine a starting point, whether it’s 5 mg, 10 mg, or 50 mg of CBD daily.

From there, you’ll need to adjust the number of CBD gummies to your optimal dosage, keeping in mind that oral forms of CBD offer lower bioavailability. If it takes more gummies than expected, you may need to switch to a more potent product. Don’t get discouraged if it takes a couple of tries to nail your dosage — consistency is key.

How many CBD gummies do you eat per day? What does your dosage help you with? Let us know in the comments!

Reference Links:

  1. Millar, S. A., Stone, N. L., Yates, A. S., & O’Sullivan, S. E. (2018). A Systematic Review on the Pharmacokinetics of Cannabidiol in Humans. Frontiers in pharmacology, 9, 1365. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2018.01365
  2. Gallily, Ruth & Yekhtin, Zhannah & Hanus, Lumir. (2015). Overcoming the Bell-Shaped Dose-Response of Cannabidiol by Using Cannabis Extract Enriched in Cannabidiol. Pharmacology & Pharmacy. 06. 75-85. 10.4236/pp.2015.62010.
  3. Russo E. B. (2011). Taming THC: potential cannabis synergy and phytocannabinoid-terpenoid entourage effects. British journal of pharmacology, 163(7), 1344–1364. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1476-5381.2011.01238.x

Livvy is a registered nurse (RN) and board-certified nurse midwife (CNM) in the state of New Jersey. After giving birth to her newborn daughter, Livvy stepped down from her full-time position at the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey. This gave her the opportunity to spend more time writing articles on all topics related to pregnancy and prenatal care.

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