“Extra-strength” is used to describe many of the products found on the shelves of your local pharmacy, from headache relievers to heartburn tablets. Whatever the over-the-counter medication is supposed to accomplish, buying it in its “extra-strength” version means that it will do it better, or at least faster, than its ordinary counterparts. The ones without that magical prefix. Right?
High potency CBD
In the CBD space, the term used to indicate that a product is extra strength is “high potency.” Products labeled as high potency are taking the CBD market by storm, and are appearing virtually everywhere CBD products are being sold. What makes a CBD product high potency? What are the benefits of high potency products? Can there be unintended side effects from taking them? Are high potency CBD products suitable for every person and every ailment? Does high potency mean higher cost?
And finally, can consumers be sure that so-called high potency CBD products really are stronger than other, less potent products? Is it possible that some manufacturers are making exaggerated claims in order to attract more buyers?
There are good reasons for seeking answers to these questions. We will explore those answers, and take a closer look at the benefits of products that contain larger amounts of CBD, but first, let’s take a look at exactly what that “high potency” description means.
What is high potency CBD?
There is no official consensus in the CBD industry about what constitutes high potency. However, an unofficial industry standard holds that 300 milligrams (mg) per 30 milliliters (mL) is a low potency product, while 1,000 to 5,000 mg per 30 mL would be considered high potency. The most potent product we’ve found on the market is a 9000 mg CBD tincture (30 mL) from Crescent Canna, which amounts to 300 mg CBD per mL
The potency or strength of a CBD product depends on how much cannabidiol is in it. Cannabidiol is just one of more than a hundred naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis plant. The hemp plant, or Cannabis Sativa, is a relative of the Cannabis Indica marijuana plant. Unlike marijuana, though, CBD contains only trace amounts of THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), the chemical that produces a sensation of being “high” in people who ingest it. This is important to those who want CBD’s therapeutic benefits but don’t want a mind-altering effect when they take it.
The benefits of high potency CBD
Although it is still relatively new in the health and wellness marketplace, CBD oil is attracting lots of interest from consumers, the health care industry and the pet care industry. Researchers and doctors are increasingly launching studies intended to explore CBD’s properties and its potential. There is still a great deal to be learned about CBD, but early clinical research indicates that the more potent a CBD oil is, the more effective it may be in treating severe symptoms.
William upgraded to the 9000 mg (30 mL) drops and noticed a difference right away. “Having used a product with 5000mg CBD for quite some time, the extra strength product seems quite powerful and relieves the pain very well,” he said.
Products that contain greater amounts of CBD may help the user achieve results more quickly than ordinary strength products. They may also keep the troublesome symptoms at bay longer, as compared to a dose from a lower potency CBD oil. As a general rule, the worse the symptom, the higher potency the CBD product used to treat it should be.
“The extra strength tincture has been a wonderful addition to my daily routine,” says Francesca. “I take a full dropper of it in the evenings to help with my aches and pains before I go to bed. Have already recommended it to many friends and family.”
Likewise, Rob says that high strength CBD tincture helps him with pain and inflammation. Aaron uses it specifically to relieve lower back pain.
James says he takes an extra-strength CBD tincture “for sleep and chronic pain.”
“I find that this increased potency really helps my arthritis body pain even more than the lower potency did,” according to Penelope. “And, actually, the price is extremely competitive if you take a half dropper in the morning and again at night. I’m very happy with the results I’m getting.”
High potency and cost
When doing comparison shopping, you may find that extra strength CBD tinctures or oils cost more per bottle, but that can be misleading. Extra strength is actually LESS expensive peruse, dose, or serving, as well as more effective in delivering therapeutic results.
In fact, cost-effectiveness is one of the main reasons people choose high potency CBD oil or tincture over regular CBD products.
Why people are turning to CBD
CBD products of all kinds are expected to continue proliferating in the coming years, with innovation being driven by high consumer demand and a heightened interest in alternatives to traditional medications. People are looking for more natural remedies to address their health problems and enhance their general wellness. Given the level of interest, it is not surprising that the CBD industry is projected to be worth more than $20 billion by the year 2024.
The dizzying array of CBD options – an array which will continue to expand – makes it difficult for consumers to evaluate what it is they’re buying. The potency is one of the most important features they need to consider when selecting a CBD product.
Confirming the CBD potency level
The FDA does not regulate CBD, which is considered a supplement. In the absence of government oversight, manufacturers are free to assert qualities that their products may not actually have. Most CBD companies are genuinely dedicated to manufacturing and distributing high-quality products that live up to their billing, but with the incredibly rapid expansion of the industry, it is likely that there are a few “bad actors” in the mix, or companies selling expensive high potency products that are anything but.
Consumers who don’t know enough to check the validity of potency claims may be overpaying for the CBD products they’re buying, because they’re not “extra-strength” at all. Worse, they may not get the results they want, whether it be pain relief or a reduction in stress and anxiety.
How do you make sure that the product you’re about to buy really has the amount of CBD its label says it has?
It’s fine to look at the product label or view the information about its ingredients online, on the company’s website, but since there are no standard labeling requirements, you will find it difficult to compare products if you’re trying to find one with strong potency.
The best place to get that information is on the Certificate of Analysis (COA), which reputable CBD makers have on their websites or available upon request. The COA is an indication that the product has been tested by an independent, third-party laboratory. Additionally, it displays the results of the tests. You will likely see that a product contains a variety of cannabinoids, like CBG, CBC, and CBN. These may be helpful as analgesics and to reduce inflammation and combat insomnia, among other purposes. The label will reveal the total number of milligrams of CBD in the product or the number of milligrams in each serving.
Reputable manufacturers have a Quick Response (QR) code on their labels or packaging that allows customers to easily view full-panel testing results of their products.
How much high potency CBD should you take?
In order to determine the appropriate dosage, a number of factors must be taken into account. For instance, is the CBD being used for general wellness, or to address a specific health problem? How serious is the problem? Will the product be taken every day, or occasionally, as needed? How much does the individual weigh? How efficient is his or her metabolism?
For some people, trying a lower dose first or splitting a daily dose into morning and nighttime portions is a good strategy. In the case of the 9000 mg (30 mL), CBD drops, for example, the recommended dose is 1 mL (one full dropper) once a day or 0.5 mL (half dropper) twice a day.
“My sister suffers from severe anxiety,” said Gabriella. “I got her to take some CBD oil that is supposed to help people feel calmer. She tends to react strongly to medications, so I got her a low potency one at first, so we could see how it affected her. It did make a bit of a difference. After she took it for a while, she felt confident in trying a stronger dose. The high potency oil turned out to work very well for her. She is happier. Able to relax and enjoy life more.”
People who are considering taking a CBD product to treat a health condition should discuss the matter with their physician, especially if they are taking medications that could interact with the CBD.