Ask most people about “microdosing” and you’ll get either a quizzical “huh?” or a conversation about LSD or psilocybin mushrooms, but among a group of cannabis enthusiasts you might hear about THC, and perhaps how ingesting it in small doses could be the secret to unlocking the true potential of the red-hot CBD market.
Max Simon is a vocal member of that group. Simon, founder of Green Flower Media, says that THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, can be taken in small amounts that do not induce a high but do make the therapeutic effects of CBD more substantial and sustainable.
“We often say that CBD is the gateway to THC,” says Simon.
Simon, who founded Green Flower Media after managing a product line for the Chopra Center for Well Being says that he discovered low-dose THC helped him control his attention deficit disorder—“THC has been literally life saving for me in small doses—and that a combination of THC and CBD could be especially effective for people suffering from anxiety, one of the most common disorders for which consumers seek relief from CBD. Anxiety was the highest ranked condition cited by consumers who purchased CBD in proprietary research by Nutrition Business Journal.
The science remains scant on CBD's efficacy, but Simon contends that the best benefits come at dosages far higher than most product labels suggest. CBD users may also see a lack of effect over time as they build a tolerance to the cannabinoid, he says, claiming that adding THC boosts the efficacy at lower dosage while also blocking the tolerance effect. This means users can continue to get the same benefits without ramping up their CBD dosage.
“I think it’s great,” Simon says of CBD. “It’s just the being though, when it comes to cannabis.”
Green Flower Media offers educational programs to the cannabis industry and Simon thinks businesses need to take a look at other compounds, especially THC, outside of the recreational applications. “The plant has so many interesting ingredients in it that are quite profound in their application.”
Many supplement companies are already beginning to examine and call out other compounds among the more than 100 cannabinoids discovered in cannabis.
Legal obstacles to obtaining THC have decreased remarkably as states have instituted either medical marijuana provisions or legalized recreational use, but Simon contends there is still a stigma. “People are so afraid of it," he explains.
CBD could open a door to lessening that stigma as more people who did not use cannabis recreationally are introduced to its therapeutic benefits. THC is available as a tincture in most dispensaries, says Simon, and he recommends 3 milligrams under the tongue to enhance the effects of CBD.
“I think society will stop being afraid of THC,” Simon says. “It is a far superior ingredient for a pretty enormous range of health conditions.”