Hey guys, it’s Sneaky Pete here and today I want to talk about something that you may have heard come up in conversation: microdosing. Microdosing isn’t a brand new idea, but it is starting to gain more prominence as a concept in the general sphere. It’s a really interesting approach which has a lot of potential benefits, so let’s take a closer look at the topic and methods of microdosing.
What is microdosing?
Microdosing in its simplest definition is consuming a substance below the threshold of effect but above the threshold of benefit, essentially taking an amount of a substance so that you won’t get messed up or high but you’ll still enjoy the beneficial elements of that substance.
Microdosing seems to have gained prominence in the 2000's in silicon valley and mainly with psychedelics. By utilizing sub-effect level doses, so that the user can still go about their day as usual and not feel like they’re on psychedelics, microdosers were reporting improvements in their problem solving ability, an increase in focus, and other benefits.
My focus is on flower, rather than fungi, so we’ll discuss it through that lens. For our purposes it’s inhaling or eating just enough flower so you either don’t quite feel it, or feel it on the lowest possible threshold of intoxication, we’re talking a 1 out of 10.
Why should you try microdosing?
Now this sounds kinda weird, right? I mean usually the point of the experience is to get to that supreme level, we’re all looking for devices that push out those huge clouds with ease, aren’t we? That is definitely true and it won’t ever change, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for other options in your routine.
With microdosing we’re aiming to experience the psychologically beneficial and medicinal aspects of the plant, without feeling super ripped. Whether your goal is pain management, mood management, easing anxiety or depression, or treating a range of other conditions, we want the helpful effects while still keeping your baseline level. This is preferable when you need to concentrate on work or study, or just if you don’t feel like being blazed all day long.
Microdosing is also a great way to help improve your tolerance. Flower is so strong these days, the active ingredients are often 3-5x more potent in modern strains than the brick of yore, and most of us build up quite a tolerance over time. Microdosing forces you to take a look at how much a small amount really affects you, and it can help to reset your tolerance levels to start feeling it from a smaller amount again like the old days.
How do you microdose?
With flower, the easiest way to microdose is with edibles. With edibles you have a very small pre-measured dose, so there’s no question about how much you are consuming. If you want to use a thermal extraction device (TED) it’s definitely possible, but it’s not going to be quite as predictable as with edibles, as you have to factor in both the strength and profile of your flower, as well as the size of the draw you are taking, but it is possible.
The key to microdosing with a TED is to take a single draw, and then wait for 15 minutes. You may think “ahh, that wasn’t enough, let me hit one more”, but you are not doing yourself any favors by taking that route. Although sometimes you’ll feel the effects of a big hit almost instantly, they really don’t peak until a few minutes after your hit. So take a hit, set a timer for 15 minutes, and then assess. Maybe that one hit was enough and you found a good level for you, but maybe you find that two hits are needed to get any benefits, which is just as fine. Either way, do it one hit at a time, wait 15 minutes to assess, and repeat as necessary.
There are actually a couple of devices that are designed specifically with dosage control in mind, they aim to remove all guesswork regarding how much active material you are ingesting. There is one called the Dosist and it’s designed so that when you inhale on it, it delivers an extraction of 2.5mg and then it stops. So you know that with every extraction you are inhaling up to 2.5mg of active ingredient as long as you don’t stop your draw early. It’ll give you a very predictable and repeatable experience, which will allow you to dial in the level necessary to get benefits but not effects.
There is another one which is approved as a medical device in Canada called the Resolve MD, and it’s described as “a device that assists the patient in taking control of their healthcare, utilizing technology that ensures consistent dosing and a professional experience.” I haven’t seen the one in the flesh, but again it solves the issue of administering a controlled and predictable amount, which is ideal for microdosing.
The best devices for microdosing
If you want to give microdosing a go it’s super easy, no matter which thermal extraction device is your weapon of choice. All you need to do is turn it on, take one hit, and turn it off, it’s really that simple.
If microdosing is something that you decide you’d like to make a regular part of your routine, some devices will definitely work better and make the process easier. A device that heats up quickly is a good choice, because while it’s warming up and cooling down you’re going to be losing some active ingredient, so it’s best to minimize that. You also want something that gives you a predictable first hit, if you need to puff a couple of times before it starts pumping out the extraction then it won’t be nearly as easy to control your dose. Finally, I’d go with something that has a small bowl or that will work with less than a full pack. You will get way better results by taking 10 hits from 5 freshly packed small bowls, rather than 10 hits from 1 large bowl.
If you want some device recommendations, the first setup I’d consider would be the Fury 2 or the Planet of the Vapes One. Something that’s nice and small, heats up fast, and will give you a solid hit from that first draw. I’d go with either of these over something larger like the Rogue, as the bowl in the Rogue is quite a bit bigger, so that’d be counterproductive to our purposes. Another good option is a DynaVap M and a Sneaky Pete Half-Bowl Converter. Any DynaVap with an adjust-a-bowl will work, but the M is just such a good value that it’s an easy recommendation. I find that with a Half-Bowl Converter in place, if I use a torch and avoid heating it low on the cap where heat will soak the Converter, that first hit will be nice, light and terpy. Using the tiny amount that half-bowl position allows means that you change your flower out more often and can best utilize the fresh pack.
For a desktop based device I’d recommend the Ditanium. While this is a monster heavy hitter, it also works well with a tiny little pack of flower on the screen. Because it’s powered by pure convection and you can leave it on all day, it’s perfect for loading up a tiny amount on the screen, getting a single solid hit, and then putting down to come back to later when it’s time for a top up.
I think microdosing can find a place in anyone’s regular routine. Variety is the spice of life, if you’re going for massive clouds every single time you’re missing out on a very different side of the experience. Getting to know your personal tolerance level and how much extraction it takes to get you to and not over the effect level you’re looking for is a valuable experience for any user.
Approaching a session from a microdosing perspective allows you to take a step back and assess the effects of the small amount, and then use that information to best dial your experience in moving forward. Add the situational advantages of getting the beneficial aspects of the plant without the higher level effects, and it can make much more sense in certain circumstances.
I hope you’ll give microdosing a go, thanks so much for reading and watching guys, I really appreciate it.
Keep it green, keep it sneaky!