What is CBD Oil and what is it good for?
Although CBD Oil has been shown to have numerous benefits for people who suffer from a wide range of medical problems, many patients who would benefit from its use still have concerns about using it due to widely held beliefs which simply aren’t true.
Despite the fact that medical marijuana use is becoming more mainstream these days as doctors recognize the advantages of prescribing it to their qualifying patients, there is still a lack of understanding among the public at large about the nature of the drug and the way in which it works.
Some people are reluctant to try medicinal marijuana because they are afraid that it will make them high, thinking of the traditional stereotype of the classic stoner, however it is simply not the case. The chemical compound THC which causes the psychoactive reaction associated with cannabis use is only present in incredibly small amounts in medicinal marijuana, and instead, the compound CBD is prevalent. While both THC and CBD are cannabinoids, CBD oil produces no sensations of being high and instead promotes relaxation and pain relief, making it an ideal way of treating a broad spectrum of medical problems from chronic pain to anxiety. Patients who use medical marijuana will experience relief from their unpleasant symptoms but without any kind of high or unwanted side-effects.
Is CBD Oil Marijuana?
There is a lot of confusion among the public about whether CBD oil is actually marijuana or whether they are two different things.
The cannabis plant contains numerous compounds called cannabinoids of which the two best known are THC and CBD. When people think about marijuana, they tend to think of the THC compound, which is the one that produces the euphoric high, however, when it comes to medicinal marijuana it is the CBD compound which has a more important role to play. As CBD isn’t psychoactive it doesn’t alter the user’s state of mind, however, it does produce changes within their body. Since it causes no high but instead has many therapeutic advantages, CBD has been the subject of recent research by clinicians and experts and has been shown to be extremely beneficial in treating a host of conditions.
Oils which contain a high concentration of CBD are called CBD oils, however, their concentrations and usages vary. Although some of the CBD oil used for medicinal purposes is derived from marijuana, the majority of it is actually derived from hemp, which is the form of the plant which is least processed.
Although marijuana and hemp are extremely similar and may appear to the untrained eye to be identical, in fact, they are not the same thing at all. There are two strains of cannabis – Sativa and Indica, with Indica being best known for its psychoactive effects, and while hemp is part of the same species it is very different. Most of the CBD oil used for medicinal purposes today is derived from the hemp plant which can produce no euphoric effects.
How CBD works
CBD, like all Cannabinoids, attach to receptors found in the human body causing an effect to be produced. Human bodies produce some Cannabinoids naturally, and they have two Cannabinoids receptors – CB1 and CB2 receptors.
The CB1 receptors can be found all over the body, but with the strongest concentration of them being found in the brain. Those CB1 receptors inside the brain deal with the body’s movement, coordination, emotions, mood, pain, appetite, memories and cognitive abilities. THC is known to attach to those CB1 receptors. On the other hand, the CB2 receptors are most commonly found in the body’s immune system and affect the way in which the body experiences pain as well as affecting inflammation.
Although it was once believed that CBD acted on the CB2 receptors in the immune system, more recent studies appear to show that, in fact, CBD acts directly on neither of these receptors but instead appears to influence the user’s body to use more naturally produced cannabinoids of its own.
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Can CBD be legal?
The question as to whether or not CBD oil is legal is not the easiest one to answer. This is because there are two primary sources of cannabidiol. CBD can either be sourced from medical cannabis plants or, alternatively, from hemp plants grown industrially. They are both cannabis varieties, however, each has its own legal status. Also, not every state or country has the same rules and regulations regarding the legality of CBD, so the answer may vary depending on where you live. However, if we look at the two kinds of cannabidiol we can get a better idea of what is legal and what is not.
The first type of cannabidiol is derived from medicinal marijuana plants. Although these plants are specifically grown to have a high CBD content, they do contain varying levels of THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis. The CBD extracted from these plants is sold to dispensaries which are licensed to sell cannabis products and are prescribed by physicians to treat qualifying conditions in areas where the use of medical marijuana is regulated.
Although marijuana grown for medicinal purposes is specifically cultivated to have a high CBD content in order to treat a number of ailments, its THC content may vary wildly, and sometimes could be equally high as the amount of CBD it contains. This raises one of the main issues surrounding medicinal marijuana derived from the cannabis plant itself – patients may end up getting a strain of the drug with a high THC content and experiencing an unwanted high.
Also, CBD oil produced from medical marijuana plants are now legal everywhere at the present time, and in the case of the USA, you have to reside in specific states and have a doctor’s prescription in order to use these products.
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On the other hand, a large amount of CBD oil for medicinal purposes is derived from industrial hemp plants, and when it comes to their legality it is a completely different story. Hemp oil (and CBD, its derivative) is considered by the FDA to be classed as a dietary supplement rather than as a medication as it is made from an industrial hemp plant. This means that anyone living in the USA (and in a number of other countries worldwide) requires no doctor’s prescription to legally buy and take CBD oil produced by this method. As an added bonus, Cannabidiol extracted from the industrial hemp plant has the added advantage of containing almost no THC, and therefore there is no chance of accidentally getting high since there isn’t a high enough THC content.
For anyone living in the USA, therefore, the legal status of CBD oil is pretty clear as long as you know where it has been derived. CBD derived from the industrial hemp plant is entirely legal to buy and take in any state, but if the CBD is derived from the medical marijuana plant, you must be residing in one of the states where medicinal marijuana use is legal and you must also have a valid doctor’s prescription.
Elsewhere in the world, the legal status of CBD oil is less clear. Laws change from country to country, and therefore anyone who is wondering whether or not CBD oil obtained by either method is within their country’s legal framework should contact the customs department of their country for more information. If the country’s laws permit the import of dietary supplements from the USA it is highly likely that CBD oil derived from the hemp plant is permitted too.
Types of CBD products
For those who are interested in taking CBD to treat an ongoing medical problem, there are numerous ways in which it can be taken. Manufacturers of CBD oil products have put a lot of time and effort into developing innovative ways of taking the drug that is convenient and simple for patients.
As there are so many options for consuming CBD oil, every patient should be able to find a suitable method that meets their needs and preferences. Here, we look at the many different types of CBD products so that you can be better informed about which method would work well for you.
The main seven ways of consuming CBD oil include:
- Oil Topicals
- CBD Tinctures
- Cannabis oil
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Tinctures are an extremely common way of using CBD and when compared to many other CBD oil products they are one of the purest CBD applications since no separate processing of the oil is carried out. Some manufacturers also add flavor to these tinctures so that they are more pleasant to take. It is easy to take a tincture by simply putting a couple of drops under or on the tongue. The dose can range from as little as 100 mg up to 1000 mg and therefore knowing which strength is right for you is important. Although tinctures are easy to use, they could get messy if the user happens to spill some drops during use. When using a tincture, it will be most effective if the user doesn’t swallow the liquid instantly. Ingesting as much of the oil as possible sub-bilingually is important, and by putting the drop along the cheeks and under the tongue and holding them there for as long as possible makes the tincture much more effective.
Anyone looking for the strongest dose of CBD should consider using concentrates since they have around 10 times the concentration of other CBD oil products. Even better, concentrates are a convenient choice since they can be consumed in just a few seconds, and are less messy than tinctures. On the downside, concentrates are usually not flavored, so for those who dislike the natural hemp flavor, they may not be an ideal choice. Also, as they have the shape of a syringe they may intimidate some users. Concentrates are used in the same way as a tincture, but placing it under the tongue and along the cheeks and then ingesting it slowly.
Those who are looking for the optimal convenience of use should use CBD oil capsules as this is the simplest way of adding them into the daily regime as a supplement. Easier to take than concentrates or tinctures, they offer users around 10mg to 25mg of active CBD, and since every capsule contains a measured amount of CBD oil, it is very easy to keep an eye on how much you are taking. On the other hand, if you need to tweak your dosage or increase the amount you take, pills can limit your options. Incredibly simple to take, all you need to do is swallow the appropriate number of pills with a glass of water.
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For those who are suffering from inflammation-related conditions like acne, arthritis, chronic pain, and psoriasis, CBD topical creams are an ideal solution. When buying a CBD topical, you should check to see that they use encapsulation, micellization or nanotechnology as this demonstrates that the solution is capable of carrying the CBD through the layers of the skin rather than remaining on its surface. A topical infused with CBD is used in the same way as any other body care product i.e. whenever necessary. It should be applied to any part of the body that would benefit from the pain-relieving solution.
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Although sprays are a good choice for carrying around from place to place, they are usually weaker in concentration than other kinds of CBD products. Typically, the CBD concentration in a CBD spray will range from around 1mg to 3mg. It is also harder to work out exactly how much you are taking, since using a spray is quite inconsistent. Sprays are simple to use as the user simply sprays the oil into their mouth, usually two or three times. It should be used as and when required.
Vaping or smoking CBD oil has a major advantage in that the CBD oil can get to work immediately since it enters the bloodstream instantly, rather than being ingested through the stomach like other forms of CBD which could cause inconsistent absorption and a much slower result. Smoking or vaping CBD allows the user to easily adjust how much they use, making the likelihood of overdosing infinitely smaller. To use CBD oil, users require a vaporizer, vape pen or e-cigarette. All that is required is to add the CBD oil to the vape, heat it and then breathe in the vape oil.
Edibles are another popular way of taking CBD oil. These are food products such as cakes, sweets or cookies which have been infused with the oil and represent an easy and enjoyable way of taking the drug. The big problem with edibles, however, is that often it is difficult to monitor your consumption.
There are also some other ways of taking CBD oil, for example in the form of gel pens, CBD gums, and CBD patches, although these are less popular.
If you are wondering which is the right method for you, you will need to do some research of your own. Decide which method you feel most comfortable with and find out more about the reliable brands that you can trust. When first starting out with taking CBD oil, you may find it simpler to start with capsules or edibles as these are the methods which are easiest to take, and then you can try out other types like concentrates or tinctures to see which is the right fit for your lifestyle.
Benefits of CBD
Although some people still have concerns about using CBD oil, in fact, the medical profession are starting to realize the importance that it can have in treating a host of medical problems. Research has been carried out on many of the properties of CBD oil and there is no clinical evidence which points towards CBD’s use as an anti-inflammatory, pain-reliever and anti-anxiety treatment. Some of the numerous health benefits of CBD include:
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CBD has been shown in some tests to have an anti-tumor effect which could be beneficial in improving current treatments. In studies on cervical cancer cells, CBD was shown to successfully stop the cells from multiplying and spreading while it was shown to kill tumor cells in cases of colon cancer and leukemia. It is believed that CBD could be a promising tool when used in combination with existing prostate and breast cancer treatments as it may be able to improve the way in which conventional drugs work while also reducing pain.
Autoimmune and Anti-Inflammatory Treatments
CBD is known to be an anti-inflammatory which makes it extremely useful in treating a range of inflammation-related conditions such as arthritis which cause ongoing pain for the sufferer. As CBD can also suppress Th17 dominance, it can assist in the treatment of some autoimmune diseases like lupus.
Protection From Neurodegenerative Disorders
CBD oil has been found to prevent the toxic effects of the neurotransmitter glutamate as well as the radical oxygen species in the brain which helps to prevent the death of brain cells which results in neurodegenerative conditions like Parkinson’s Disease and Alzheimer’s. Antioxidants have been found to be very helpful in the protection of brain cells, and since CBD’s antioxidant activity is higher than that in Vitamins E or C, it may be beneficial in protecting the brain from the effects of reduced blood flow.
Relief of MS Symptoms
Patients who suffer from multiple sclerosis may suffer from a host of unpleasant symptoms including urinary incontinence, muscle spasms, sleep problems, and pain. CBD oil has been shown to be effective in relieving these unwanted symptoms.
Therapy for Schizophrenia
CBD has been shown to have very similar effects as the standard antipsychotic drugs which are given to patients which schizophrenia, however, they have far fewer side effects, making them a good choice for treatment.
Those who suffer from treatment-resistant epilepsy may have given up hope of ever finding a way of reducing the number of seizures they experience, however when studies were carried out with a group of children suffering from this condition, over 80% of their parents reported that their child had far fewer seizures when taking CBD.
Unlike many standard pharmaceutical drugs for anxiety which can be addictive and produce unwanted side-effects, CBD is known to reduce mild to moderate anxiety, OCD, GAD, PTSD and panic disorder. Cannabidiol CBD oil has other medical benefits which reduce anxiety greatly in many mental health patients.
Those who have chronic pain often find that they have to take a cocktail of prescription drugs to keep their symptoms at bay, and these can be addictive and have unwanted side effects. CBD oil has been shown to decrease neuropathic pain and inflammatory-related pain and could be useful I treating cancer, MS, rheumatoid arthritis and postoperative pain. Cannabis oils are definitely real alternative medicine.
Arthritis is a long-term problem suffered by many older people, although it is sometimes a problem for younger people too. CBD has an anti-inflammatory effect which can relieve joint swelling and pain while decreasing disease progression and joint destruction. Patients who take CBD to combat arthritis have considerably less pain and better quality of sleep.
Appetite And Nausea
CBD is known to reduce the sensation of nausea and can increase the appetite, making it an especially effective treatment for chemotherapy patients who struggle to eat after their treatment. By binding to the cannabinoid receptors in the human body, CBD oil increases hunger and encourages the sufferer to eat, meaning it is also useful in treating eating disorders.
Lowering the Incidence of Diabetes
Diabetes is becoming a prevalent problem in society today, however CBD oil has been shown to significantly reduce the development of type II diabetes by inhibiting and delaying the destruction of the pancreatic cells which produce insulin.
Promoting Heart Health
CBD use can dilate the arteries and protect the blood vessels from damage, helping to regulate heart rhythms and reduce the damage from blocked blood vessels in the brain and heart.
CBD oil can be used in dementia patients to help reduce agitation and aggression which are side effects of Alzheimers disease.
With increasing numbers of people suffering from depression, it is good news that CBD has an anti-depressant effect and produces swift and long-lasting results which are comparable in effectiveness to one of the most common tricyclic medications current prescribed by doctors.
Inflammatory Bowel Conditions
As CBD can reduce inflammation it could be helpful in preventing colitis and relieving the symptoms of inflammatory bowel conditions including diarrhea, stomach pain, and a reduced appetite.
Reduction in Dyskinesia
Patients who suffer from the involuntary movements associated with dyskinesia may find that their symptoms are greatly reduced by taking CBD oil as it can decrease the number of key enzymes which cause the condition.
Patients who are struggling to sleep can take CBD before bedtime to achieve a better quality of sleep.
Substance Use Disorders
Those who are addicted to heroin and morphine could find that CBD is a useful therapy for treating their substance use disorder since it reduces the rewarding effects of the drugs. It can also help smokers to quit the habit since research has shown that by inhaling cannabidiol for a week, smokers can cut the number of tobacco cigarettes they smoke by around 40% without any extra nicotine cravings.
As CBD is an anti-inflammatory, it can be helpful in treating skin conditions. CBD is capable of decreasing lipid synthesis as well as the proliferation of the sebaceous glands, and therefore it can work well as an acne treatment. As it also reduces the rate of skin cell growth, it could also potentially treat psoriasis. The effect of CBD as an anti-inflammatory is remarkable.
Glaucoma is a painful condition caused by increased pressure in the eye. If left untreated it can lead to sight loss, however CBD oil can reduce the inflammation which causes the pressure, helping to reduce the pain associated with the condition.
Apart from being able to specifically treat all of the above conditions, hemp derived CBD oil is also generally beneficial as a dietary supplement for general health and well-being, even in those who are otherwise healthy.
As it promotes restful sleep, a CBD supplement can ensure that the user is able to get a full night of sleep for better energy and cognitive function. As we are all living much more stressful lives these days, a daily CBD oil supplement can help to reduce the anxiety associated with modern lifestyles and help the user to cope with daily life in a much better way. CBD can also boost energy levels, helping the user to get more out of their day and can even help to protect the organs from the harm which can be caused by excess alcohol consumption.
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Forms of CBD
Although CBD is a single compound, it is available in a number of forms. Some of the more common forms include:
The dried herb form of CBD is a popular choice for those who favor vaping. Believed to be one of the best-tasting ways of consuming the substance, it requires a dry herb vaporizer which operates at a lower heat to cook the herbs and release their healthful properties.
CBD oil is also popular thanks to its versatility. While it can be vaped in a concentrates vaporizer, it can also be added to foodstuffs and consumed that way, or in the form of a tincture which is applied under the tongue. Some CBD oils are flavored to make them taste better.
Depending on which solvent is used to extract the CBD oil, a sticky substance – wax – can be produced. Wax can also be vaped or dabbed and is very efficient as well as simpler to manipulate due to its sticky consistency.
Dosing with CBD
When it comes to dosing with CBD oil, it can be difficult to know the amount to take if you are new to the drug. If you aren’t certain about the precise amount you should take and how often you should take it, it is highly recommended that you always start with a low dose to see the kind of effect that you are likely to experience and then, if necessary take a little more. If you take too much in the first place, you could find that you have an unpleasant experience.
Dosing With CBD Dry Herbs
If you are either smoking or vaping dry herbs, it is quite easy to control the amount that you consume since the effects will be felt quickly. Usually, you will need around 0.25 grams over the course of a day when you first start using CBD dry herbs but you can work up to using 1 gram. You can easily assess the effect that it will have on you when you take one puff and wait to see how you feel before you take another.
Dosing With Edibles
Although edibles are an easy and convenient way of consuming CBD oil, it can be much harder to work out the amount which you are consuming. When you eat foods that are infused with CBD you will find that it takes a longer time before you will feel any effect – usually between 30 minutes and 2 hours since the oil has to pass through the digestive tract of the body before taking any effect. Someone who is new to taking CBD oil may end up taking too much as they feel that the first amount that they took isn’t working properly and take extra. It is therefore recommended that those who are new to CBD edibles start with around 1 to 5 mg and work up to taking a standard dose which is 10 mg. Users should always be patient, waiting until the full effect has kicked in before taking any more.
Dosage Guide for Tinctures And Sprays
If you decide to take your CBD in the form of a spray or tincture, you will enjoy a quicker effect that when consuming edibles, with the effects being noticed within around 15 to 45 minutes. Beginners are recommended to start with just a couple of drops of the tincture or a single spray under the tongue. Although some droppers have a marker to show the correct dosage amount, others don’t so you need to be sparing in the first instance. When using either a spray or a tincture you should wait for it to be absorbed inside the mouth instead of swallowing the liquid instantly.
When you first take CBD oil you will need to realize that if you have recently eaten you may need to take a little more to feel the effects since a full stomach can make the difference between swift relief and a poor result.
How CBD Oil is made
When making CBD oil, the first stage is to grow and harvest the plants which have a high concentration of CBD. These will either be CBD dominant cannabis plants or hemp. After harvesting, there are a number of extraction solvents which may be used for separating and collecting the compounds and oils from the seeds and stalks. The best method is the supercritical CO2 process since this is an FDA approved method. The solvent is pushed through the plant material to extract the essential oils, CBD, lipids and other beneficial compounds before being removed from the product. Although standards of testing do vary between different brands, ideally the CBD oil will be examined for the reliability of its cannabinoid content and for its safety before it is released forsake. An experienced technician should test for any contamination, damage or degradation to ensure that buyers only purchase reliable and safe CBD oil. The majority of CBD oils undergo a process of decarboxylation, which is a heating process to transform the cannabinoids into an easily usable form which can interact immediately with the cannabinoid receptors in the body.
Choosing CBD Oils
While CBD oils are becoming more available, both in stores and online, at the moment this is a burgeoning industry with very little in the way of regulation or transparency. Some producers, therefore, use misleading and deceptive marketing and not every brand is a reputable one. Quality control in the CBD oil industry can be hit and miss, so if you are buying CBD oil, there are a few things you should look out for to make sure you are getting an effective, good quality product.
To obtain an oil that is rich in CBD you need the best extraction process to have been utilized. Always avoid choosing an oil which was extracted using a hydrocarbon method or ethanol since these can either be dangerous or less potent. The best extraction process is Supercritical CO2 extraction, so check for this on the label. Other safe methods use coconut oil or olive oil, as neither of these will contaminate the product.
The quality of the CBD oil will depend on its source – how and where it was grown. You must check that the hemp used was grown in food grade conditions to be guaranteed a high-quality product. Organic hemp is the best possible source, especially if it is grown in Europe since it must then also abide by the strict organic standards imposed by the EU.
The CBD oil product should also have been independently tested by an accredited laboratory which adopts globally accepted methods of analysis to ensure that it is free from any contaminants, heavy metals or pesticides. In order to be certain that you are buying a safe and reputable product, you should always check the product’s website for official laboratory testing information. Any quality product will have this information clearly displayed so that you can have proof that no potentially harmful contaminants remain or chemicals were used in its manufacture.
You should check the label of your chosen product to see how much CBD it contains. The range is likely to be around 10% to 26%, and if the concentration is lower then it is unlikely that you will be able to gain the full healing benefit of the oil. If you are new to taking CBD oil, it would be best to start out with the lower end of the concentration to see the kind of effects that you experience before trying a higher concentration.
Although we often prefer to buy the cheapest product on the market, it’s important to bear in mind that you get what you pay for, especially when it comes to CBD oil. If a product is incredibly cheap, the chances are that it won’t work very well. A large amount of hemp is needed for the process of extraction and refinement in order to produce a good quality CBD oil, and therefore the more concentrated and pure an oil is, the more expensive it will probably be. Choose a reputable company’s products as this will ensure that you can trust the quality, and never settle for a lower quality product simply to save money as it will turn out to be a false economy.
There are a few other things to keep in mind when choosing a CBD oil for your own use. Firstly, the format that you would prefer to use – whether you prefer the idea of edibles, vaping, a tincture, spray or capsule, and whether you would like to try a flavored product rather than a natural-tasting one.
Hopefully, this guide to the CBD in medical marijuana will have helped you to learn more about the facts behind this beneficial substance. Far from being a dangerous drug, it is actually a highly beneficial product which is now being widely prescribed by doctors and which has been shown in numerous studies to be safe for use and to produce effective results in treating a host of medical conditions. If you feel that you could benefit from taking CBD oil, hopefully, this article will have persuaded you that you have nothing to fear from trying this treatment and you may have everything to gain. There are very few potential side effects cannabidiol cbd oil.
For more information on Vaping please visit our article on the Top 5 vaporizers of 2017 or check out our LED grow light reviews.
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