Some medications need increasing dosages to stay effective, but is CBD one of them? Read on and discover why you WON’T develop a CBD tolerance.
Reading Time – 6 min
Developing a tolerance to something means you need to use more and more of it to feel the same effects. You’re probably already familiar with this concept in some form. It’s quite common to build up a tolerance to things like caffeine, alcohol, and even certain prescription drugs like barbiturates or opioids. But what about nutritional supplements like CBD?
Luckily, CBD isn’t habit-forming and evidence suggests a tolerance is unlikely if not impossible. However, there are a few variables worth considering to make sure you’re seeing maximum benefits from your CBD.
Read on and discover why you won’t develop a CBD tolerance and how full-spectrum CBD products can provide additional relief without added risk.
Tolerance, Dependence, and Addiction
First, it’s important to distinguish between tolerance, dependence, and addiction. Your body develops a tolerance when it doesn’t respond to a substance how it initially did. One of your body’s main tasks is to maintain homeostasis (balance). When you ingest substances, your body processes them and then attempts to rebalance itself. Caffeine is a great example of this.
Perhaps when you first started drinking coffee, you only needed one cup to get you through the day. Over time, however, your body became accustomed to the added caffeine, it got better at regulating the chemical imbalances caused by caffeine, and not you need more and more coffee to feel that same rush of focus and energy. Sound familiar?
A dependence, on the other hand, means your body will go through withdrawals when you quit using that substance. Depending on the substance, you could experience mild symptoms like headaches, fatigue, irritability, etc. If you depend on caffeine to get through the day, you’ve probably noticed some of these symptoms after missing your morning cup of joe.
If you’re dependent on substances like opioids, however, the withdrawal symptoms can be more severe and even life-threatening (sleeplessness, anxiety, abdominal distress, high blood pressure, etc.). If you wish to stop using certain prescription drugs, a doctor may taper your dose over a long period of time to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
Today, addiction is now considered a disease. Similar to tolerance and dependence, it’s often caused by the repeated use of a substance with increasing dosages. Once someone reaches the point where they continue using a substance despite its harmful effects, that’s considered an addiction. That means someone can develop a tolerance and dependence on a substance without actually being addicted. So, your self-proclaimed “coffee addiction” is most likely just tolerance or dependence.
Fortunately, you won’t develop an addiction, dependence, or tolerance to CBD.
Why You WON’T Develop a CBD Tolerance
CBD (cannabidiol) is a compound produced by hemp with several therapeutic benefits like anxiety relief, inflammation relief, and more. Unlike THC, CBD is non-psychoactive and interacts with ECS (endocannabinoid) receptors differently. This is the main reason why CBD is non-habit forming and why you won’t develop a CBD tolerance.
When someone consumes THC, it binds to ECS receptors in the brain. That’s part of the reason why THC has psychoactive effects. If someone uses enough THC, however, those receptors start to desensitize and effects begin to diminish. Over time, someone who heavily relies on THC products will likely develop a THC tolerance and need more to experience the same effects.
CBD, on the other hand, doesn’t have this problem. While THC directly binds with CB1 receptors, CBD only partially binds. Essentially, CBD molecules aren’t able to cause the same desensitization that THC molecules can. Several studies have even shown that various dosages of CBD don’t cause serious side effects or any signs of tolerance.
CBD As A Treatment For Substance Abuse Disorders and More
Additionally, emerging evidence shows CBD may be a promising therapy for substance use disorders (SUD). In 2019, Frontiers in Psychiatry evaluated CBD for its potential in treating a variety of SUDs. They found “…CBD has a good safety profile, with generally mild side effects in animal preclinical studies or human studies. This, coupled by the limited abuse liability of CBD, makes it a good therapeutic candidate.”
Overall, CBD is regarded as safe, non-toxic, and it’s well-tolerated by most individuals. It’s even possible that CBD could promote reverse tolerance. The idea is that individuals may actually need less over time because CBD may inhibit the reuptake of endocannabinoid levels. While anecdotal evidence supports this theory, more research is needed to fully understand the mechanism behind this phenomenon.
Full-Spectrum CBD Provides Maximum Relief With Minimal Risk
If any of the above information has you feeling wary about THC, we’re here to ease your concerns. While you can develop a tolerance after regularly using high doses of THC, the minimal amount (no more than 0.3%) in full-spectrum CBD products isn’t enough to cause those issues. Plus, full-spectrum CBD can actually provide additional relief without added risk.
Full-Spectrum products have it all. They include CBD, various other cannabinoids, botanical compounds, a tiny amount of THC, and any terpenes present in the plant. Something really amazing happens when these compounds are used together though. This phenomenon, known as the Entourage Effect, is when different compounds work synergistically together and end up being more effective than they would have been on their own.
Each compound has its own unique benefits, but when they work together their effects are amplified. Additionally, all of these compounds together help people overcome what’s known as a “bell-shaped dose-response.” Essentially, taking CBD as an isolate generally keeps the effects consistent even when you increase the dosage. That makes it difficult for those who need additional relief. Several studies, however, have shown how full-spectrum CBD overcomes this issue.
In one particular study, researchers gave two different groups of mice full-spectrum CBD or a CBD isolate. “When comparing the data of the two groups, the results proved that the group administered with full-spectrum CBD were provided with higher levels of relief. Furthermore, the study demonstrated that full spectrum CBD continued to provide relief as the dose increased, while CBD isolate did not provide the same effect when there was an increase in dosage.”
Try Full-Spectrum Products Without Developing a CBD Tolerance
If you’re looking for relief but worried about taking anything that could require higher and higher doses, you won’t develop a CBD tolerance with full-spectrum products. We want to remind everyone that while CBD is considered a safe and mild supplement, you should always talk with your doctor before adding CBD to your regimen.
Take your time to determine what CBD strength works best, how often you need to dose, and even what time of day you should use CBD. Everyone is different, so be patient and go slowly. In the end, you still deserve to live pain-free and/or without anxiety.
Check out the full-spectrum CBD products in our store today so you can start to feel better and live more.