can you take cbd oil for metal poisoning

Is Your Marijuana Vaporizer Leaching Toxic Heavy Metals? It’s Possible, Study Claims

The great vaporizer-lung crisis of late 2019, in which at least 68 people died and 2,807 were sickened with “e-cigarette, or vaping product use associated lung injury,” or EVALI, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention classified the acute lung ailments developed after using cannabis or tobacco vaporizers, was great news for marijuana legalization.

Although “the exact causes of the outbreak… are likely to remain uncertain,” as esteemed medical journal The Lancet observed in 2020, the culprit most often blamed was vitamin E acetate, a viscous additive normally found in food that was discovered coating lung tissue in victims—used in this instance to dilute marijuana oil (in the same way someone might “cut” cocaine).

And although at least one dedicated anti-marijuana legalization group repeatedly claimed—very falsely, as it turned out—that several people were sickened with EVALI after using products purchased from legal cannabis dispensaries, nearly all reported cases came from states with no legal cannabis. Any problems stemming from cannabis vaporizer use, in other words, was an illicit market problem.

That may have been so with EVALI, but vaporizer pens are not risk-free. According to recently published research, the vaporizer devices themselves have the potential to poison users with heavy metals, leached into cannabis vapor during the heating process and inhaled directly into users’ lungs.

A typical cannabis vaporizer cartridge.

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In legal states with testing requirements, cannabis oil is tested for impurities including microbial contamination as well as the “big four” of toxic heavy metals: arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and lead.

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But the oil isn’t what end users are consuming—they breathe in a mixture of aerosols that can include elements of the vaporizer device itself, which can include of heavy metals including chromium and nickel.

Studies of e-cigarettes and nicotine-vaporizing devices have turned up higher levels of heavy metals in users’ blood than cigarette smokers, but so far, little research has been conducted to see if the same holds true for cannabis vaporizers.

And “[a]t the high voltage and temperature settings of standard [vaporizer] devices, dissolved metals or even fine metallic particles from the heating coil or the liquid could have the potential to be inhaled into the consumer’s lungs,” according to findings from a team of researchers at Medicine Creek Analytics, a licensed cannabis testing laboratory in Fife, Washington, recently published online ahead of a future print date in the peer reviewed journal Chemical Research in Toxicology.

“Results indicate that chromium, copper, nickel, as well as smaller amounts of lead, manganese, and tin migrate into the cannabis oil and inhaled vapor phase, resulting in a possible acute intake of an amount of inhaled metals above the regulatory standard of multiple governmental bodies,” they added, noting that smoke and vapor from cannabis flower and cannabis concentrate did not produce the same results, indicating that the vape pens’ heating devices were to blame.

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The researchers obtained 13 different brands of vaporizer cartridges from a legal retailer in Washington state. Six were all “510-thread,” the most common size of vape pen on the market; another seven had “various styles of cartridge and battery systems.”

Researchers plugged the pens into a power source connected to a wall socket and used a “smoking machine” to mimic a human’s breathing action and draw out the resulting aerosols. A total of “50 puffs” worth of aerosol were drawn from each cartridge, and the aerosols were then analyzed using a plasma mass spectrometer.

Researchers reported detecting “measurable levels” of chromium, nickel and copper—three metals known to be in the heating elements and coils of vaporizer pens—in the resulting aerosols. Metals seemed to leach over time at ambient and elevated temperatures as well as during the heating process.

“The results suggest that the cartridge devices themselves are leaching metals and potentially at higher rates when the components are heated,” the researchers wrote, who noted that the cartridges “generally did not emit metals from the big four” of arsenic, cadmium, mercury, and lead.

That means that the still potentially harmful aerosol would pass all legal cannabis states’ testing regulations—which in turn means that states’ safety standards need to be re-assessed, the authors concluded.

Interestingly, adding terpenes—the chemical compounds found in plants that give cannabis strains their distinct taste and aroma—seemed to ameliorate the metal leaching.

Why that is, they did not say. Nor could they determine whether there was a level of added terpenes that seemed to be protective.

Since studies of e-cigarettes revealed heavy metal uptake, similar findings from structurally similar cannabis vaporizer devices shouldn’t be too surprising. And though government regulatory agencies have pulled vaporizer products from shelves for higher than allowed levels of lead found in vaporizer hardware and components, there aren’t yet reports of medical complications directly tied to heavy metal contamination in the literature.

Even so, the results suggest that cannabis vaporizers aren’t always the “safer” option their advocates often claim.

Cannabis farms with heavy metals in soil could be creating toxic products

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. ( – Cannabis, regardless of what product it’s in, may be harmful to use — depending on where it’s coming from. Researchers at Penn State said cannabis’ ability to absorb metals from soil make it possible for these relatively safe products to expose users to toxic chemicals.

Study authors note that the ability to absorb heavy metals from soil make cannabis plants a useful crop in areas with contaminated grounds. However, these toxins may still be present when cannabis farmers turn the plants into products for consumption.

“Heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, cadmium and chromium, are known to be carcinogenic,” said Louis Bengyella, assistant research professor of plant science from Penn State, in a university release. “The heavy-metal content of cannabis is not regulated; therefore, consumers could unknowingly be exposed to these toxic metals. This is bad news for anyone who uses cannabis but is particularly problematic for cancer patients who use medical marijuana to treat the nausea and pain associated with their treatments.”

The research team wrote a new meta-analysis on past studies looking into heavy-metal contamination in cannabis.

Their results show some cannabis strains are more effective in absorbing metals and other pollutants from soil, water, or air. The downside of this is cannabis farmers breeding these strains are unknowingly putting their customers at high risk for poisoning.

Unique characteristics seen in these cannabis strains include long stem length, fast growth, high root and leaf surface area, high photosynthetic activity, and little dependence on nutrients for survival. Heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and chromium are able to move from the soil through the stalk and spread into the leaves and flowers of the plant. The heavy metals can then leave the plant through hairlike structures on flowers called trichomes.

Trichromes are important for storing CBD oil and have the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) needed for marijuana products.

Researchers explain that heavy metals within cannabis have a link to multiple health problems because they rarely metabolize and can build up in specific areas of the human body. The reactive oxygen species and free radicals produced by heavy metals can damage your enzymes, proteins, lipid, and nucleic acids. They can also increase the risk of cancer and neurological problems.

“Cannabis consumed in combustive form represents the greatest danger to human health, as analysis of heavy metals in the smoke of cannabis revealed the presence of selenium, mercury, cadmium, lead, chromium, nickel and arsenic,” Dr. Bengyella adds. “It is disturbing to realize that the cannabis products being used by consumers, especially cancer patients, may be causing unnecessary harm to their bodies.”

To reduce the risk of heavy metals in cannabis plants, the researchers suggest avoiding the cultivation of cannabis plants near industrial areas. Farmers should also conduct air quality tests on the site before production and use a soil pH test to check for contaminated soil.

Are There Heavy Metals Inside Your Cannabidiol Oil?

Cannabidiol oil, also known as CBD oil, is made from the some Cannabis Oils or hemp plant. It is classified as a cannabinoid, visit thecannabisradar for more information.

Hemp Plants and Cannabis Plants

Cannabis plants and Hemp plants are not the same. The main difference between them is that the production of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in hemp is very little, in comparison to the significantly large amounts produced by the cannabis plant.

Cannabis plants produce varying amounts of CBD, depending on the plant species.

Hemp Plants and Cannabis Plants Are Good Bioremediators

Cannabis and hemp plants are very unique. They can absorb toxins up from the soil in the area where they are grown. Hemp is extremely good at bioremediation. Following Ukraine’s Chernobyl nuclear explosion, it was grown in the area to extract the radioactive waste in the soil, and later, it was disposed of.

CBD Oil Is Beneficial to Health

CBD has revolutionized the health system in recent years. It can be taken in different forms, including CBD gummies and CBD oil. It is effective for treating inflammations, anxiety, pain, and many diseases.

However, CBD oil is only effective if it is pure and uncontaminated with heavy metals.

Research Your CBD Oil Before Purchase

Before you purchase your CBD oil, it is advisable to check where the original plant was grown. If it was planted on land that is contaminated, your CBD oil is most likely contaminated with heavy metals too. Although this does not mean that your CBD oil is definitely radioactive, there may be a risk of heavy metals or pesticides being found in your product.

In some farms, there are heavy metals inside the nutrients given to the hemp or cannabis plants. These heavy metals are not always fully flushed out before the plants are harvested.

Heavy metals include lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium, nickel, thallium, and chromium. They are very toxic to the body and brain, even when present only in trace amounts. People with neurological, chronic, and autoimmune diseases are even more sensitive to its detrimental effects, and its effects are believed to last long.

The effects of poisoning from heavy metals include confusion, loss of memory, vomiting and nausea, unexplainable weight loss, seizures, and tremors. Long-term effects include neuropathy, fibromyalgia, amongst others.

How to know if heavy metals are present in your CBD oil?

Don’t be content with not doing thorough research before you purchase your CBD oil. Even if the packaging says otherwise or says that the hemp was grown indoors, do further research for your safety and peace of mind.

You can also ask for a Certificate of Analysis or COA from the distributor of CBD oil. This analysis certifies that the product has undergone tests including the presence of heavy metal in the product.


The importance of researching CBD oil or cannabis and hemp products, in general, cannot be overemphasized.

Apart from making sure it does not contain heavy metals, research to ensure that it does not contain pesticides or other harmful solvents as well.

Do not be sidetracked by the attractive flavors or beautiful packaging – ask questions, do thorough online research, and be mindful of what goes into your body.

The effects of heavy metals, poisonous solvents, and pesticides on the body are too severe to be carefree about your CBD oil.