CBD Capsules: How They Work, How to Use Them & More
CBD capsules offer the benefits of CBD in a convenient capsule form, making them as easy to use as any other capsule-based supplement.
Unlike CBD tinctures, which are designed to sublingual use, or CBD vape oil, which is designed for use with a vape pen, CBD capsules let you consume CBD the same way you’d consume an ordinary multivitamin.
Below, we’ve explained how CBD capsules work, as well as how they compare to other forms of CBD. We’ve also looked at some of the potential benefits and uses for CBD capsules, from their effects on your sleep quality to anxiety, depression and more.
How Do CBD Capsules Work?
Like other CBD products, CBD capsules contain either full spectrum or isolated cannabidiol, a naturally-occurring cannabinoid that’s best known simply as CBD.
Most CBD oil is made in tincture form, meaning it’s designed for use under your tongue. When you use a CBD tincture, your body absorbs the CBD through the soft tissue under your tongue, allowing the CBD to diffuse into the blood and circulate around your body.
Other CBD products come in vape form. When you use a vaporiser to inhale CBD, the CBD in the e-liquid is converted into vapour and absorbed into your bloodstream via the lungs.
CBD capsules are a little different. Instead of delivering CBD directly into your bloodstream, the capsules are broken down by the digestive acids and enzymes in your stomach. Your body then absorbs the CBD content from the capsules through the stomach lining.
Then, your liver metabolises the CBD before it passes into your bloodstream. Because the CBD passes through your digestive system first, CBD capsules take slightly longer to take effect than other forms of CBD.
This slower absorption makes capsules a great choice if you’re looking for a form of CBD that’s a little more gradual and slower-acting.
Advantages of CBD Capsules
CBD capsules offer all of the potential health benefits of other forms of CBD, from deeper sleep to the potential to relieve certain forms of pain. Our complete guide to CBD’s benefits lists these in more detail, along with the current scientific data for each potential benefit of CBD.
Beyond the numerous benefits of CBD, softgel capsules offer a level of convenience that can be difficult to find with other forms of CBD. Instead of needing to use a vaporiser or apply a tincture beneath your tongue, you can simply swallow a convenient softgel capsule.
This makes CBD capsules ideal if you need a quick, convenient source of CBD that you can use while you’re out and about during the day or in other situations where vaping or using a CBD oil tincture isn’t possible.
Another advantage of CBD capsules is that you won’t actually taste the CBD oil itself. This can be a big benefit if you want to use CBD for relaxation, improved sleep or other potential health benefits but aren’t a fan of the taste of CBD oil.
Disadvantages of CBD Capsules
Like other oral supplements, CBD capsules need to pass through your stomach and liver before the CBD content makes its way into your bloodstream. During this process, a percentage of the CBD in each capsule is processed away by your body.
This means that if you use a capsule that contains 25mg of CBD, there’s no guarantee that the entire 25mg will make its way into your bloodstream.
Studies of CBD show that its oral bioavailability (the total percentage of CBD that makes its way into your bloodstream from your stomach) is fairly low. In one study from 2018, the researchers found that only 13 to 19% of oral CBD actually makes its way into your system.
In contrast, approximately 35% of the CBD in tinctures and vape oils successfully makes its way into your bloodstream.
This means that if you’re used to vaping CBD or using CBD tinctures, you might not experience the same effect from an equivalent dose of CBD from a softgel capsule. Instead, you may need to increase the total dose of CBD you consume to make up for the lack of bioavailability.
While this isn’t a very big deal — after all, it’s not difficult to simply adjust your dose over time — it does mean that you’ll need to take into account the lower effectiveness when you compare CBD capsules to other forms of CBD.
How to Use CBD Capsules
Like other forms of CBD, using CBD capsules is simple. CBD capsules come in a wide range of concentrations, allowing you to tailor your dose based on your needs and preferences.
Most CBD capsules contain 10 to 50mg of CBD. If you’ve purchased CBD capsules, follow the dosage instructions that are provided with the capsules to make sure you don’t take too many the first time. Over time, it becomes easy to adjust your dose based on your needs.
It’s generally recommended to take CBD softgel capsules with a glass of water. Eating a normal sized meal before consuming oral CBD can help to make the absorption process easier for your body and is generally recommended.
When not in use, store your CBD softgel capsules in their original packaging in a cool place with no direct sunlight. Make sure you choose a place that’s outside the reach of small children, such as a bathroom medicine cabinet or a difficult-to-reach cupboard.
Learn More About CBD
Are you interested in using CBD? According to recent data, an estimated 300,000 people in the UK alone now use CBD on a regular basis, making it one of the fastest-growing products in the world of health and wellbeing.
Our guide to CBD oil explains how CBD oil is made, the key differences between “full spectrum” and “isolate” CBD, common uses for CBD oil and much more.
We also stock a wide range of CBD products in our shop. View our selection of CBD tinctures, CBD e-liquids, CBD edibles and more, all while enjoying free UK delivery on all orders with a value of £25 or more.