Best Way To Take CBD

A question I get all the time is, “Steve, what’s the best way to take CBD?” The truth of the matter is that there is no one way to use CBD. Since cannabidiol extract covers such a wide variety of uses, the question you need to ask yourself is, “What am I trying to accomplish by using CBD?” From dealing with insomnia to assisting with workout recovery – how you consume CBD ultimately depends on what your goals are.

Before diving into the various methods of delivery, it’s essential to consider your specific goals to develop a solid CBD game plan that maximizes efficacy and impact. Foremost, if you are already taking prescription drugs, it’s best to consult with a medical professional before adding any supplements to your diet. Once the doctor gives a trusted stamp of approval and you’re clear on your CBD goals, it’s time to start journaling! 

That’s right – I keep a CBD journal. Keeping a record of CBD usage is the best way to stay on track and discover what individual solutions work best for your specific needs. For me, this helps to monitor not only my body (e.g., sore knee, joint pain) but also CBD dosage and how that product/dose ultimately worked for me.

The last and most important step is sourcing high-quality CBD. Best practice? Always read the label. Look for domestically sourced hemp in states such as Oregon, Colorado, Washington and California that all have high production standards with decades of experience in hemp cultivation. And of course, make sure it’s grown organically and has been third party tested like CTFO

A Certificate of Analysis tells you the quality of the CBD source, listing key information such as potency, microbial analysis, solvents and any testing done for heavy metals and pesticides.

The best way to take CBD

Tinctures/Oil Drops

My first CBD experience was a tincture. It was an eye-opening moment that changed my life. I immediately felt the potential CBD could have for so many people, not just fishing pros like yours truly. Taken sublingually (apply drops under the tongue) the oil is absorbed fast by the mucous membrane under the tongue. Important note: be sure to hold it under your tongue for at least a minute to aid in proper absorption into your blood stream. This one is good for insomniacs out there, as tinctures can be felt for up to 8 hours and work well as a nighttime therapy.

Good health starts from inside the body, so what you put in it matters. The various methods listed below is a good starter guide to a personalized CBD wellness plan that you can begin straight away!

The downside here, at least for me, is that the oil gets a little messy. If you travel a lot, CBD oil is not a great on-the-go product (over time, the bottle can get everything it touches greasy). Nonetheless, tinctures are highly effective and are a staple in my medicine cabinet.


If you are used to taking OTC drugs or nutritional supplements, then capsules might be right for you. I like the soft gel capsules – easy to swallow and tend to work faster because they are in oil form. Be patient, capsules work much like edibles – it can take 1-3 hours for capsules to take effect. 

This is because absorption happens first in the digestive tract before entering the bloodstream where it makes its way to the liver. The enzymes in the liver break down the active ingredients and get released back into the bloodstream where they will travel to the brain. Capsules can be tremendously beneficial for chronic pain because relief is extended up to 8 hours and provides for an all-around body effect.


Lotions, creams, balms, salves and other topicals work best on the localized pain level. They work remarkably fast – in minutes. The application is simple – just rub the topical in, keep the area uncovered and allow it to absorb. Topicals work on  Endocannabinoid System (ECS) receptors in the skin and provide relief at the site of application for about two to four hours. 

Since only a little CBD enters the bloodstream this method is least effective for whole-body relief. Consider topicals for sore knees, arthritis, joint/lower back pain and plantar fasciitis. Just be mindful of CBD dosage in topicals. In most cases a little dab will do the trick. Personally, I like to put muscle balm on my knees after a tough workout. You gotta get in front of that pain!

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