CBD has been producing a whole lot of buzz in the health community of late – but perhaps not the kind of buzz you might expect from a cannabinoid. Since you’re reading this, you’ve probably heard of CBD and its many touted benefits. From chronic pain to mental health, CBD has the potential to alleviate an astonishing number of ailments. But like many, you might be fuzzy on the details. Consider this your primer on all things CBD.
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* All CBD products offered on this site are produced in compliance with 21 U.S.C. § 802(16), 21 CFR 1308.11(d)(58 – 7350 Marijuana Extract),  and “Clarification of the New Drug Code (7350) for Marijuana Extract” published by the US Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration, Diversion Control Division https://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/schedules/marijuana/m_extract_7350.html
CBD oil is a refined oil rich in the cannabinoid molecule cannabidiol, more commonly known as CBD. Unlike it’s more infamous cousin, THC, CBD is not psychoactive, meaning it doesn’t cause the traditional high associated with cannabis. And while CBD oil can be sourced from any cannabis plant, it is commonly derived from agricultural hemp—cannabis plants bred to express less than 0.3% THC and thus have no intoxicating potential.

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Industrial hemp has low THC levels compared to marijuana specifically cultivated for personal psychoactive use. Whereas marijuana that can be smoked usually contains between five and ten percent THC, industrial hemp contains about one-tenth of that. In order to get a psychoactive effect, one would need to smoke ten or twelve hemp cigarettes over a very short period of time.
There’s also been a lot of talk lately about “microdosing” CBD. This refers to an incremental process of finding your minimum effective dose. You can do this with any concentration of CBD oil, but lower concentrations will take longer. In a 2017 article in Rolling Stone, Dr. Dustan Sulak outlines his protocol for microdosing. You can begin this process by asking yourself three questions:
Another field in which CBD is creating a buzz is in the area of mood disorders like anxiety and depression. Both conditions have been treated with a variety of medications, courtesy of Big Pharma, that have had varying levels of success. Again, the long list of side effects can be off-putting to someone who just wants to get through the day without the sweaty tension of anxiety or the gray haze of depression.
CBD, and any cannabinoid intended to be ingested, is a food supplement. With any food or vitamin supplement, it is always best to consult a physician before making a change. This is especially true if there are current prescription medications in your life. We are not physicians and cannot diagnose, treat, or cure any symptoms. It is not recommended that pregnant or breastfeeding women ingest CBD as there is simply not enough research to determine the impact to the child. With that said, all mammals can see benefits from CBD as we all have the same endocannabinoid system that cannabinoids like CBD can support.
CBD oil products are liquid drops of hemp which are taken orally. They are non-psychoactive and are available in low and high concentrations. Hemp oil tinctures are easy-to-use and offer all of the benefits associated with CBD. Hemp oil can be used sublingually via a dropper, or it can be added to your food and beverages which is why most customers have made it their go-to CBD product.
What’s more, CBD vape oils require additional equipment. In order to transform the oil into vapor, you’ll need an e-pen or vaporizer. This means an extra investment on top of the vape oil itself. I therefore recommend that, if you’re a first-time user, you try a more accessible and affordable CBD product type to make sure it’s the right supplement for you, before graduating to vape oil.
Watch Out For: Companies who won’t disclose their extraction method or utilize hydrocarbons like butane and propane. These substances are toxic in high amounts and even with proper purging, most hydrocarbon extracts contain residual solvent. Other extraction methods do not result in a full spectrum extract – meaning they were not able to extract all of the beneficial compounds from the hemp plant (i.e. you don’t get the full range of benefits).
When buying industrial hemp CBD, i.e. everything you see outside of a state-licensed dispensary, all bets are off. Because the legality of industrial hemp is in flux, companies that use hemp CBD operate in a gray market with no oversight. Nick Mosely, Chief Science Officer of a testing lab in Washington explained that “everything currently on the market for interstate CBD sales is unregulated.” And product labels can be wildly different from what's actually contained in the product. Multiple studies of CBD oil sold online have repeatedly exposed brands that misrepresent purity and CBD dosage levels.
While THC affects your brain’s endocannabinoid receptors (resulting in the high), CBD does not attach directly to the receptors. Instead, it influences your body into using its own natural supply of cannabinoids more effectively. That is to say, it can inhibit or activate compounds in the ECS, which in turn can impact the amount of pain you feel or limit inflammation in the brain and nervous system.
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In the U.S., we live in a culture where more is often perceived as being better.  And it’s easy, without even thinking about it, to apply that approach to CBD dosing. But when it comes to CBD, more is not necessarily better. In fact, for many, less CBD is more effective. One way to determine your optimal dosage is to start with a small amount of CBD for a couple weeks and then slowly increase your dosage, carefully taking note of symptoms, until you’re seeing the results you want.
This may be a good place to point out that not all CBD products are created equal. The industry is still largely unregulated, and the quality and quantity of CBD in a given product will vary wildly. Third party testing definitely helps to monitor companies’ claims, but it’s still up to you as the consumer to do your homework on the best CBD products.
The human body has an endocannabinoid system — a natural system that maintains homeostasis or balance, in the body. The endocannabinoid system has CB1 and CB2 receptors. These are found throughout the body. CB1 receptors are generally located in the central and peripheral nervous system and CB2 receptors are generally found in the brain, immune system, and gastrointestinal system. CBD binds to these receptors creating changes and effects in the body
The main difference between CBD and Hemp is that Hemp does not contain CBD. CBD and hemp oils are made from different parts of the plant and have different purposes. CBD is a compound found in industrial hemp, and we utilize a whole plant CO2 extraction that allows us to draw the CBD from the plant material and filter out unnatural substances, maximizing pure CBD concentration. While CBD is extracted from the entire plant, minus the seeds, hemp is extracted only from the seeds. Hemp oil is made from pressing hemp seeds and is used in a variety of products. Hemp-seed oil is used as a protein supplement for food, as varnish for wood and, because of its remedial properties for hair and skin, as an ingredient in lotion and soap products. You can buy hemp-seed oil online or at certain food stores, where you can learn about more ways to incorporate it into your diet and hygiene. CBD oil is generally used for medicinal purposes and has shown great promise in treating inflammation, pain, sleeping disorders and even certain types of epileptic seizures.
CBD oil is similar to other products in that it is capable of being “watered down.” Some companies will try to eke out a higher profit margin by fooling their customers into thinking they’re getting more for less. It is important to pay attention to the concentration level of the CBD oil you’re buying in order to ensure you’re getting what you’re paying for. Although concentrations of CBD can vary quite a bit across the broad range of CBD products, a quality product will start off having somewhere between 250mg to 1,000mg per fluid ounce. This matters because if you were to purchase a 4 ounce bottle that contained 250mg of CBD, your concentration would be a mere 62.5 mg of CBD per ounce – hardly enough to reap the full benefits of CBD. It’s always important to look at the concentration level of the CBD you’re buying.
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