How Do CBD DNA Test Kits Work?

I recently came across a CBD DNA test kit advertisement, and I thought to myself: “How in the world could this work? What exactly is the DNA test going to tell me about my body and how it responds or reacts to CBD supplements?” While it seemed a little over-the-top, the CBD DNA test kit results were actually better than I expected. DNA tests seems to be the latest “fad” (if you will) and, honestly, I’m not surprised that one exists to help determine how your body responds to CBD, and other cannabinoids.

What is a CBD DNA Test?

First and foremost, I have to get these disclaimers out of the way…

  • Always consult a medical professional to determine if medical grade CBD and THC are appropriate for you.
  • CBD, and other cannabinoid supplements, have not been approved as a dietary supplement by the FDA. The comments within this blog are not verified or accepted by the FDA, and the comments should not be taken as any type of definitive medical advice.

Being the owner of a hemp-based company like New Phase Blends brings upon a TON of marketing emails and calls. I received a call from a company (let’s let them remain unknown for now) offering CBD DNA test kits. The salesman told me that the test is similar to an Ancestry DNA test, and it will tell you how your body specifically responds to CBD use. He continued to tell me that the test will tell the user how much CBD they should be taking, and how often. The results are all determined by analyzing your DNA and figuring out how your CB1 and CB2 receptors respond best to CBD supplementation.

Sounds cool, eh? I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but I was given a free CBD DNA test kit so I figured I would give it a shot.

Keep reading to learn a little more about the CBD DNA test kit.

How Does the CBD DNA Test Work?

This particular company advertises that their CBD DNA test kit will tell you precisely how much CBD you should be using on a day-to-day basis. Since there are no guidelines currently issued by the FDA for CBD use, people have generally been buying 1000mg CBD tinctures and taking about 33mg per serving for general use. There is nothing out there that exists to show exactly what the normal recommended amount of CBD is, or should be. This is an excerpt straight from their profile: “…offers a unique patent-pending and scientifically proven personal genetics test that provides recommended dosages and alternative ratio recommendations for relief from insomnia, anxiety, chronic pain, and other conditions.”

For instance, we know that Ibuprofen has a recommended dosage of 200mg-800mg at a time, depending on the severity of your pain.

The goal of the test is Our goal is to arm the customer with knowledge about how their body may react to different cannabinoids based on their specific genetics so that they can have a better idea of how to treat their pain, insomnia, or other issues with CBD. The CBD DNA test kit is focused on how you your body reacts to the prominent cannabinoid compounds in
cannabis, CBD and THC. They specifically test various RECEPTOR, SIGNALING and METABOLIC ENZYME genes and variants.

The CBD DNA test will give the user three different fields to reference, after the DNA has been analyzed…

CBD DNA test fields

  1. Ratio (CBD:THC) – This data point establishes the ratio of CBD to THC that is likely optimal for your body based on your genetic makeup
  2. Dosage – This data point establishes what dosage you should be taking of the above ratio
  3. Mode of Delivery – There are many modes of delivery (methods of delivery) for cannabinoid products due to the numerous forms that in which cannabis can take-on.

Is this all making sense so far? It seemed pretty straight-forward to me at this point…

I received a package in the mail with a tube that the user was prompted to spit into. I had to get enough spit to fill the CBD DNA tube to a certain point. I think It took about 3 minutes of spitting to get it to that point – not hard at all. After that, I had to activate the CBD DNA test kit. Each kit comes with a code that you input into a website. You enter information like your name, age, gender, etc… and put in the code when prompted.

The spit tube looked something similar to this picture (photo source: samplifybio.com):

DNA Test Spit Tube

Once the code is put in, that’s it! I was told I would be emailed with the results within 2 – 4 weeks. I would recommend keeping the code on hand incase you run into any issues. I did NOT keep the code, and ended up having to give them my name to check on the results. For those of you who are scared about giving out personal information with your CBD DNA test kit, you can EASILY give a fake name and made up information (PRO TIP). That way, those of you who don’t want people having your DNA linked to you personally won’t have anything to worry about.

Results From the Test

My results came in about 3 weeks later. I received a nice email explaining some of the information to me that I listed above in the blog. It came with a 5 page pdf report that explains all types of things – some of which were completely over my head and I didn’t even remotely understand. Anyway, the results were loud and clear and impossible to miss. The results gave recommended CBD:THC use for pain, insomnia, and anxiety. Different levels of CBD consumption were recommended, depending on what symptoms you were trying help ease.

CBD for pain dose

To be honest, I don’t understand where they get their ratios. I know it’s rooted in the whole “entourage effect” buzzword, but to this day, I know of zero peer-reviewed, scientific data that has singled out the exact amounts of each cannabinoid needed to induce the entourage effects. Furthermore, entourage effects can exist in many other plants – not just cannabis. As you can see, the CBD dosage recommended for pain is anywhere from 50-800mg of CBD per day. 800mg of CBD per day?!?! Yes, you read that right. That seems like an awful lot of CBD per day. We sell a 1000mg tincture of CBD, and that would mean that a user would have to consume about 7-8 tinctures per week. That is a LOT of money and a LOT of CBD. The 50mg range that the CBD DNA test kit mentions, on the lower end, is more likely to what I’ll be sticking with. If you are reading this, please, do not take 800mg of CBD per day. Remember, this is simply a review on a CBD DNA test kit – nothing more.

Next, we move into the anxiety dosing recommendations from the CBD DNA test kit…

CBD for anxiety dose

Again, I don’t know what they are basing their ratio data on. A ratio of 436:1 is very specific, and I would love to find out more about how they came to conclude a ratio of 436:1 CBD:THC is better for me personally than, say, a ratio 236:1 CBD:THC. The dosage recommends, again, 50mg to 800mg of CBD per day. This is a huge range, and I personally think they need to narrow down this range. It’s exactly the same as the pain dosage, but with a different CBD:THC ratio.

Lets get into the CBD for insomnia dosing recommendations according to this CBD DNA test kit…

CBD for insomnia dose

At this point, I am done talking about the ratios. You can read my comments on the ratios in the above paragraphs located within this blog. The dosage SEEMS TO BE more in line with what I would expect them to be. For example, our product called ‘sleep’ (click here to see the product) has roughly 66mg of CBD-rich hemp extract per serving. This falls in line with the recommended dosing of this CBD DNA test kit, and it makes much more sense to me. A range of 10-100mg of CBD is much more believable than 50-800mg of CBD.

Genetic Variants

Genetic Variants for CBD and THC

There is an entire section of the CBD DNA test kit report that is dedicated to going over the user’s “genetic variants.” I don’t really understand the variants all too well, and the report isn’t super detailed in explaining how the variants affect your personal CBD use. The variants are separated into three categories: transporter and receptor genes, signaling genes, and metabolic enzyme genes.

  1. Transporter and receptor genes – Transporters and receptors are proteins that transport and receive chemical signals from outside of the cell. When a chemical signal is recognized by its corresponding receptor, it causes some form of cellular and tissue response.
  2. Signaling genes – Signaling proteins acts as switches to mediate cell and tissue responses. These switches are triggered in response to chemical signals interacting with receptor proteins.
  3. Metabolic enzyme genes – Metabolic enzymes are proteins which build, modify, or degrade chemical compounds such as cannabinoids. Metabolic enzymes can increase or decrease the activity of compounds within cells and tissues.

I’m not going to get too deep into these areas, because I don’t personally know enough about them or exactly how they influence the test results. A basic explanation of each gene is listed above.

Are CBD DNA Tests Worth It?

I’ve thought long and hard about this question. Is the CBD DNA test kit really worth the money? It MSRPs, depending on where you get one, for about $150 or so. That’s not exactly cheap. The main issue I have with the test kit is the fact that the recommended ranges for dosing vary far too much. A range of 50-800mg is an incredibly large range. If the ranges were more exact (I’d even be happy with a 100mg variance) I would say that yes, they are definitely worth it. Here’s why…

CBD is not a cheap product. Until the refinement and extraction methods come down in price, the consumer is going to have to pay a pretty penny for a CBD product. That’s just the unfortunate state-of-affairs that the CBD marketplace is experiencing. I believe a reasonably priced tincture of 1,000mg CBD is going to run anywhere from $55 to $100 depending on the quality, brand, and type of CBD you are purchasing. If a CBD DNA test kit can help narrow down EXACTLY how much CBD you should be taking, it will eventually save you money in the long run. However, to have a range of 50-800mg of CBD is just not specific enough.

All in all, the experience of the kit was a positive one. I really hope that they are able to hone in on the recommended dosing, though. According to a portion of the results pdf, “Much of the science related to medicinal uses of cannabinoids and the interaction of cannabinoids with human biology is new and rapidly developing.” Until the point when the dosing ranges are more developed and accurate, it’s just not going to be exact. Until then, I would only consider purchasing one if you can truly afford it.

References

Food and Drug Administration: https://www.fda.gov/media/112979/download
Samplify Bio: https://www.samplifybio.com/
US National Library of Medicine: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5794848/
National Institutes of Health: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3976677/
National Center for Biotechnology Information: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24160757/

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