In order to account for the low CBD content of these hemp plants, manufacturers have to process large volumes of raw material at a time, with the idea of extracting just enough CBD so that they can label their product as a “CBD oil.” While this method is fine in theory, what ultimately ends up happening (unless the manufacturer’s extraction methods are state of the art), is that traces of chemicals cane end up being left over in the final product. These chemicals can potentially contain harsh solvents such as butane, hexane, and propylene glycol, which has been known to break down into carcinogenic (cancer-causing) compounds like formaldehyde and acetaldehyde.
If you’re looking to try the purest CBD oil product around, you can’t go wrong with this Blue Label High-CBD Hemp Oil by Herbal Renewals. This one isn’t for beginners. Make no mistake, this is strong stuff. You will only need the size of a grain of rice taken once or twice daily (the equivalent of roughly 4.1 milligrams of CBD) to feel the desired effects. With that kind of serving size, the three-gram tube will last you a few months of daily use, giving you plenty of CBD goodness. This product is also available in one-gram and ten-gram tubes, along with a six-pack of ten-gram tubes.
While researchers are calling for more robust studies on the role of CBD on mood disorders, there is promising research that points to CBD’s role as an anxiolytic – which means it has anti-anxiety effects. Another study showed CBD to have antidepressant effects comparable to those of the prescription antidepressant Imipramine. We noted above that CBD increases levels of glutamate and serotonin – and it’s these same neurotransmitters that play a crucial role in mood regulation.
CBD in all forms has enormous potential. Doctors are excited, the wellness community is excited, and I personally slather hemp CBD on my face to keep eczema at bay and put dropperfuls under my tongue to deal with anxiety. But, like all things marketed as panaceas, be skeptical and do your research before buying. If you’re interested trying CBD, always talk to your doctor first (particularly if you’re on other medication, which can interact with the cannabinoid). Start with a small dose and work your way up
Is it full-spectrum? Full-spectrum is the use of the whole hemp plant vs. an isolate which extracts the CBD from the plant. Using marketing terms like “pure” and “all natural,” isolates are sometimes not hemp at all and synthesized in a lab. While the efficacy of full-spectrum is debated in the scientific community, anecdotes and a study in Israel favor full-spectrum. In addition to potential benefits, there’s another reason you should be buying the whole plant: contamination. Chen notes that isolates are harder to trace back to origin and can be straight-up fake. Overseas lab-made isolates are cheaper than domestic versions, making the potential for contamination high. Utah recently grappled with synthetic CBD when 52 people became sick from an isolate. While isolates can be legitimate (FDA-approved Epiliodex is an isolate), you’re going to have to spend more time researching the brand’s products and practices. Put it this way, if you could get your vitamin C from Sunny D or fresh squeezed OJ, which would you prefer?
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Some companies will hide under a cloak of darkness that the Internet can provide, but it’s a pretty good sign if the company lists an honest-to-goodness phone number you can use to reach real people. The companies with inferior products will often be very difficult to reach. Before ordering, try to reach out to the company. If someone picks up the phone or gets back to you in a timely manner, you’ve probably found a company that not only takes accountability seriously, but cares about their customers and the quality of their products.
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