Cannabidiol (CBD) has been a controversial topic around the globe. It was among the biggest trends of 2019 and still hitting millions of people all over. If you have not heard of it yet, then stayed tuned to learn about this exciting product. If you are from the U.S, you’ve likely listened to a discussion about the benefits of CBD and the confusing legal aspect of it, at least once. Hang tight, we’ll show you everything you need to know about CBD- in this comprehensive guide.
Everything You Need to Know About CBD- A Comprehensive Guide
Over the past few years, you may have seen different products made from CBD, such as gummies, CBD isolates, creams, gummies, oils, pet treats, and many others. According to recent research, it was found that about 14% of U.S citizens use CBD based products. It is a growing industry that has even caught the attention of public figures such as Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Gwyneth Paltrow, and film star Morgan Freeman. each of whom has significantly advocated for CBD.
In this article, we shall explore details about CBD from defining it, how CBD is different from THC, its legality, health benefits, and where to find it. It’s the ultimate guide that will give you a better understanding of this product, which has been a big talk all over the media.
What is CBD?
What is CBD? A 2018 report by WHO Expert Committee on Drug Dependence explains CBD as one of the natural cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant as a result of decarboxylation of cannabidiolic acid precursor. It is also extracted from hemp, rather than marijuana.
Most people perceive CBD as the medicinal part of cannabis, which “makes you well.” CBD is known to calm insomnia, relieve pain. It is the second most active ingredient in cannabis after Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD is the non-psychoactive percentage of the plant, while THC is known to cause psychoactive effects on the body.
Usually, there two main cannabis plants or two subspecies, which are marijuana and hemp. In this aspect, CBD from hemp flowers is our focus for today. Do you now understand why a cup of coffee with some CBD will not make you high? It lacks the stimulating components; thus, it does not alter your body functioning.
How does CBD work in our bodies?
CBD is known to help and treat many health conditions in our bodies, including seizures, general pain and inflammation, withdrawal symptoms, anxiety, epilepsy, and more. When consumed, it connects with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). ECS comprises of enzymes, receptors, and endocannabinoids.
According to medical research, CBD does not directly bind the CB1 and CB2 receptors but stimulates the production of our body’s endocannabinoids. Also, it slightly changes the structure of CB1 and CB2 receptors. It’s the reason this medical compound has numerous benefits on the body.
However, you may find some CBD products with some little amounts of THC of levels less than 0.03%. This should lead us to differentiate between the two components for better understanding.
What is the difference between CBD and THC?
Both CBD and THC have several common “denominators.” Both come from the cannabis plant and share a typical chemical formula. Upon getting into the endocannabinoid system in the body, they both act upon CB1 and CB2 receptors. In some cases, they even work together, and both have medical benefits. However, they still hold some dissimilarities.
One of the main differences between the two is that most CBD is extracted from hemp and some from a marijuana plant. Such CBD is usually less than 0.3%. On the other hand, THC is extracted from marijuana plants, but generally in high concentration.
As mentioned above, THC is the psychoactive component, while CBD causes no psychoactive effects on the body. THC easily binds with the receptor in the endocannabinoid system; hence it causes euphoric effects. That’s the reason why THC is more of a recreational component, while CBD is medically based components regardless of them coming from the cannabis plant.
From the legal perspective, these two components share difference more in the recent past. Depending on where you are located, you might both CBD and THC legal, and in some other jurisdiction, it’s illegal. Reflecting on the U.S, most States allow CBD and its products but highly condemn THC products, and it’s illegal. The legality of this compound is very dynamic, and laws are changing day in day. Below is a comprehensive discussion on the legality of CBD and its products.
The Legal Perspective of CBD and its Products
In most counties, cannabis is found to be illegal, while CBD is legal, yet it’s an extract of the same cannabis. In some states, this becomes a contradicting subject matter whereby some citizens some have found themselves on the wrong side of the law. On the issues of laws and regulations about CBD, it differs.
On the 29th December 2018, it has a big day to the American community when President Donald Trump signed the Agricultural Improvement Act, commonly known as the 2018 Farm Bill.
It was a new dawn for the Hemp farmers and CBD users. From the Act, hemp was formally removed from the Controlled Substance List. Since then, hemp and its products should be treated as a regular agricultural crop under federal law.
The U.S Department of Agriculture (DEA) is in charge of Hemp Laws at the Federal levels, while states and local governments are allowed to create their laws with approval of DEA. Also, the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the agency responsible for setting rules/regulations on CBD, and hemp-derived products can be used.
The FDA seems to have the “say” due to the Drug and Cosmetic acts. In brief, CBD and its products within the U.S is legal at the federal level but varies at the State level. In 33 states, medical marijuana is legal, and in 17 states, laws only agree to use CBD extract specifically in the form of oils of less than 0.03% level of THC for medical treatment.
Now, from a global perspective, things don’t seem very different. In Europe, countries have the power to make and interpret regulations on CBD also determine punishments. From the South America region, CBD and its products have been embraced by a large number also have the medical cannabis laws in place. In the Middle East, CBD legality varies a lot, depending on the country. In Israel, CBD is legal, while in Saudi Arabia, even the smallest quantity is illegal and may face a jail term. Finally, most African states except for South Africa, they do not have laws and policies regarding CBD or its products and still tern recreational cannabis as illegal. The legal approach to this compound is very diverse.
What are the Health Benefits of CBD?
From a historical and biological perspective, cannabis compounds and specifically the CBD have been used as medicine by humankind around the world. Ancient Greeks are said to have used cannabis to control nose bleeds and even dress wounds in their horses. For the Germans, they used it for toothaches and booted out pain during childbirth. According to scientific-based researches in today’s world, CBD has many health benefits for humankind.
Treating Anxiety and Depression
When CBD gets into the body, it has an impact on the Cannabinoid receptors in the brain. By doing so, it helps the brains chemical receptors respond better to the already serotonin, alleviating anxiety. The research concludes that it will make you calm and give you a better mood. However, it does not necessarily act as a permanent cure to this health condition.
Manages Inflammation and Pain
Among the top uses of CBD around the globe and for medical purposes is to manage relief pain. It is known to deal with chronic pain from arthritis. It will reduce inflammation effects.
Treatment of Epilepsy Seizure Disorder
On 25th June 2018, the U.S FDA approved Epidiolex CBD oral solution as a treatment of seizures as a result of epilepsy. It is a clear indication of how beneficial CBD is for such illness that other pharmaceutical drugs have failed.
CBD Improves Heart Health.
Recent studies depict that CBD has the ability to moderate artery blockage and stress, thus improving your health in the heart. Besides, it helps reduce cholesterol in your body for a fine fettle heart condition.
According to studies conducted by the American Cancer Society, CBD oils can slow the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body.
Cancer treatment often involves chemotherapy, which comes with side effects such as nausea. CBD can effectively manage nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy treatments. However, more research has to be conducted on this particular matter.
Acne is a common problem suffered by a large population around the globe. CBD can play a significant role in those experiencing acne as a result of excessive sebum production. In this case, CBD Oil prevents sebaceous gland cells from secreting too much sebum, thus reducing acne on your skin.
A Guide to Buying CBD and its Products
Before you decide to go for CBD or its products, there are certain things you ought to consider. Currently, there are hundreds of CBD products available. While the online market has dominated the industry, it’s imperative that you purchase from a reputable distributor.
The biggest challenge is to purchase natural CBD or that CBD that will not to the wrong side of the law due to the high content of THC exceeding the recommended 0.3%. Below are some of the critical things you should pay attention to while buying CBD and its products.
Check THC Levels
In most parts of the world, THC levels should not exceed 0.3%, as stated above. THC is known to cause psychoactive effects on the body. High levels of THC are not only illegal but also will make you feel high.
Third-party Tested CBD
It’s recommended that CBD products are tested by a third party to confirm the label’s precision. Check if the product has a quality assurance certificate or stamp from an authorized third-party testing facility. It’s not enough for the party to test occasional batches of CBD. Be sure that the company you purchase from tests EVERY Single batch.
The best CBD is derived from hemp and contains only natural ingredients. You can confirm a particular brand CBD by looking at their website, and viewing the nutritional data of each product. A short list of ingredients is always the best.
Products should have clear labeling so that when you look at the product, you clearly understand it. Important things to focus on are the batch numbers and the dates of processing. However, in case you do not understand it, you may contact that particular company for further explanation.
Ensure the CBD product you intend to purchase is lab-tested as there is the likelihood of buying counterfeit products that have no CBD in it.
Buy from Trusted Sources
You may opt to look at the reviews of the products online and see what most customers say about that particular company and its product. Also, you may consult friends who use CBD, and they may refer you to a particular brand with the right CBD products for your needs. Also, avoid companies that take a week or more to respond to your questions.
There are three common CBD extraction methods to derive CBD from hemp. It’s advised you use CO2 extracted CBD products as this is the safest method. It maintains and preserves the purity of CBD oils. Other methods may introduce toxic solvents that might harm your health.
Sometimes, we tend to go for cheap products. In some instances, such products may be of low quality and might later affect your health negatively. Before buying any product, fix your mind on quality rather than the cost for the sake of your health.
Type of CBD to Buy
There are usually three kinds of CBD, i.e., CBD isolates, Broad Spectrum, and Full Spectrum. CBD Isolate is that one isolated from other compounds founds in the cannabis plant while the full-spectrum CBD it’s a draw out of the full profile of valuable cannabinoids and terpenes from the same plant. On the other hand, broad-spectrum stands in between the isolate and full-spectrum CBD.
How to Take CBD
Different people have different ways they opt to take their CBD depending on the form of the CBD. In many instances, CBD can come in the form of gummies, oils, soap, lotion, tinctures, edibles, joints, etc. However, we shall discuss the common ways used by most used.
Some CBDs come in the form of a spray. All you need to do is spraying on your mouth. The CBD enters your bloodstream through the membranes in your mouth.
This is the easiest way to take your tincture. You are only required to the recommended drops on your mouth. Also, it may be in the form of capsules, gummies, or edibles.
In case you are using CBD because of swelling and muscle pains, then this will suit you. In such a case, CBD is available in the form of balms, which is easily applied to the skin. In addition to balms, CBD is quite effective in lotions and oil form as well.
Some people prefer to inhale CBD in smoke form. These can be referred to as “joints”. The smoke is inhaled and absorbed through the lungs. Be aware that a study confirmed a disturbingly large range of CBD concentrations offered online contained 26% LESS CBD than what is listed on the label.
This is the last method. Nowadays, e-cigarettes have taken a new phase, and most people have embraced it. Vaping CBD has also become a trend, and it seems to work better for some people. Unfortunately, in the past two years, there has been an increase in mysterious lung illness linked to vaping.
However, the last two methods are not recommended as there are other natural ways to take Your CBD.
What is the Right Dosage of CBD?
Dosage in CBD has been an issue for many users, especially those who are not familiar with the substance. Besides, there is limited information on the exact dosage of CBD to be consumed for particular conditions.
How much should you take? Taking specific amounts of CBD depends on what affects you want to achieve in your body. Proper dosage depends on several factors including age, weight, gender, and CBD tolerance.
Here is a general guideline on how to take CBD. Most people consume between 10-50 mg of CBD per day. The easiest way to start is by taking small amounts at a mild range. If you feel the effects are not enough, then you may gradually add the dosage to get the medium range. You should start to follow the same procedure till you reach the high range depending on your health and how your body responds.
Often, less is more!