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4 Tips to Properly Dose Your Cannabis Intake

One of the main criticisms some people hold against cannabis infused edibles is that it’s difficult to determine their dosage. And while this may be true for new users, there are actually many ways to find out the exact dosage of what you’re consuming to avoid any potential problems.

If you plan to be smart about your cannabis intake, here are 4 important tips that should give you a good understanding on the correct way to dose your edibles.

Exercise Patience

Many novice cannabis users forget that edibles take much longer to kick in than when it is smoked. Because of the way cannabis is metabolized when it is eaten, it can take anywhere from half an hour to an hour before you can actually feel its effects. After ingesting cannabis, it is metabolized by the liver and converted to 11-hydroxy-THC – a metabolite that affects the brain and causes intense and lasting highs.

Other factors like body weight and metabolism can also affect the dosage. Because of these factors, it’s best to wait things out until you start to feel the effects of the first dose. But before this happens, don’t be too hasty when it comes to popping the next edible.

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Carefully Read the Packaging

An easy way to find out the dosage of what you’re eating is simply reading the packaging of the product. Many states now have specific guidelines on labeling how much THC is included in a cannabis edible product. For instance, edibles in Colorado have a standard dosing guideline of 10 milligrams per serving.

Once you intake one serving of an edible, make sure to observe the effects it has on you. For cannabis newbies, it’s recommended to start with half the amount of a regular serving. This way, you can easily consider your own tolerance to the dosage that you’re consuming.

Calculate Your THC Dosage Accurately

If you’re more into making your own homemade treats, then you should carefully calculate the percentage of THC you’re packing into your edibles. A 2009 study by the US government states that the average THC in plant material is around 10 percent. While THC still varies depending on the cannabis strain, this should give you a rough baseline number that you can use when calculating your dose per serving. This means that for every 1,000 milligrams of cannabis used, 100 milligrams is the average dose of THC.

To get the amount of THC per serving dose, calculate the number of milligrams in your infusion and the exact amount of the infusion that you’ll be using in your recipe. Next, get the number of servings that your recipe makes then divide that number with the amount of infusion that you used. This should give you the exact dose per serving.

As a more concrete example, let’s say you used 20 milligrams of cannabis to make one cup of butter for a cookie recipe, giving you 2,000 milligrams total. You ended up using only 1/2 cup of butter for your recipe, which you then decided to divide into 36 cookies. In this case, divide 1,000 milligrams by the number of servings (36) and this should give you about 27.8 milligrams of THC per serving.

If your recipe has too strong of an effect, you can easily adjust the dosage by diluting or cutting the amount of cannabis infusion that you used. Similarly, if the dosage isn’t enough, you can adjust this amount accordingly.

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Don’t Intake on an Empty Stomach

Remember that consuming edibles still depends a lot on your own metabolism. This means that, depending on how much you’ve eaten before you dose, the effects of the cannabis edible can kick in faster or slower than usual.

Just like any prescribed medicine, dosing on an empty stomach will make you feel the effects much faster. In cases like these, it’s best to cut your dosage by half if you can’t find something to eat beforehand.

It’s also important to note that alcohol can increase THC blood concentration by a significant amount. So if you decide to mix the two, make sure to moderate your dosage so that you don’t go overboard.