Is CBD psychoactive? Many people are wondering since pro-cannabis laws came into effect. Here, a chart to learn the differences between CBD and THC. Thinking of starting a CBD-infused lifestyle? Learn everything that you need to know about CBD oil in our 2020 definitive guide here.
Key Differences to Know About CBD vs. THC
Jaime Herndon is a freelance health/medical writer with over a decade of experience writing for the public.
Verywell Health articles are reviewed by board-certified physicians and healthcare professionals. These medical reviewers confirm the content is thorough and accurate, reflecting the latest evidence-based research. Content is reviewed before publication and upon substantial updates. Learn more.
David Snyder, PharmD, BCPP, is a board-certified clinical pharmacist and psychopharmacology expert at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts.
Cannabidiol (CBD) and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are both substances that are extracted from various species of plants in the Cannabis genus. However, they are two distinct compounds with different effects. They are not the same thing.
In 2018, the Farm Bill was signed into law. It removed hemp (a variety of the Cannabis sativa plant) and derivatives of cannabis with low levels of THC (0.3% or less) from the definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act.
Read on for more information about CBD and THC, and what to keep in mind about these substances.
Kanawa_Studio / Getty Images
There are many misconceptions and much misinformation circulating. When reading about CBD and THC, it’s essential to know what various terms mean. Without knowing what different terms mean, it’s easy to get confused.
Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the naturally occurring substance in the cannabis plant that produces the “high” or the effects of marijuana.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid compound found in the cannabis plant. It does not produce a high because it does not have THC in it. It can produce relaxation or sleepiness. It has antioxidant (neutralizes destructive oxygen free radicals in cells) and anti-inflammatory properties.
|CBD vs. THC Chart|
|Source||Aerial parts of the cannabis plant (stalk, leaves, flower), can be derived from low-THC hemp.||Leaves and the flowering part of the cannabis plant|
|Psychoactive Effects||There is no high, but it can promote relaxation and reduce anxiety and depression.||Euphoria, heightened senses, changes in time perception|
|Medicinal Effects||Anti-seizure effect, pain relief, reduces inflammation||Tachycardia (increased heart rate), increased appetite|
|Legality||Technically legal federally, state legality depends on the state||Not legal federally, state legality varies by state|
|Detected on Drug Test||Cannabidiol is not detected, but if the preparation has any THC in it, that could be detected.||Yes|
Hemp vs. Marijuana
Hemp and marijuana are technically the same kind of plant—cannabis. However, hemp plants have no more than 0.3% (by dry weight) of THC. Marijuana has 5%–20% THC. Hemp cannot get you high.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a psychoactive substance is a substance that, when consumed, impacts mental processes (thinking, mood, perception, consciousness). This definition doesn’t necessarily only refer to recreational drugs—it can also include substances like nicotine or caffeine.
Synthetic vs. Natural
Synthetic CBD is made in a lab with chemical or biological ingredients. Natural CBD is taken from cannabis plants.
Both CBD and THC are cannabinoids from the plant Cannabis sativa. They both have the same chemical makeup: 21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen atoms, and two oxygen atoms. However, the arrangement of the atoms differs. The body reacts to them as two different substances.
Effects of CBD vs. THC
The effects of CBD and THC on the body are quite different. Knowing the difference between the two can help you know what to expect if you use these substances.
CBD can have many different medicinal effects, and has multiple mechanisms of action—at least 20 have been identified thus far. It has been found to:
- Mediate antiepileptic effects: It binds to a protein called GPR55 that triggers seizures.
- Mediate pain signaling and inflammation: It acts on receptors in these pathways.
- Relieve neuropathic pain and have an antidepressant effect: It acts like selective serotonin receptor inhibitors (SSRIs), which are medications used to treat depression.
- Decrease psychotic symptoms: This effect may be seen in people with schizophrenia (a mental health condition in which there is an altered perception of reality). It may have an additive effect when used with traditional antipsychotic drugs (when used together, there may be better control of hallucinations and delusions).
- Reduce anxiety symptoms
More studies are needed to evaluate CBD’s mechanisms of action and whether its effects are clinically significant consistently.
Drugs with cannabinoids (CBD and/or THC) can be helpful in treating nausea and vomiting in people undergoing cancer chemotherapy, and weight loss and loss of appetite associated with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and AIDS. They may also help with chronic pain and symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
CBD is not used as a recreational drug like marijuana is. While it can help you feel more relaxed or less anxious, it doesn’t make you “high.”
Recreationally, effects of THC can include:
- Alteration of the senses
- Alteration of your sense of time
- Mood changes
- Trouble with body movement
- Impaired memory
- Trouble thinking or problem-solving
- Hallucinations or delusions (losing touch with reality): Risk is highest when regularly using high-potency marijuana.
Industrial and Cosmetic Uses of CBD
CBD can offer relief for various conditions, including skin and cosmetic disorders such as eczema (an inflammatory skin condition) and psoriasis (an autoimmune skin condition).
The human endocannabinoid system (ECS) helps with bodily homeostasis (maintaining a steady state). It helps to maintain skin homeostasis, and when it is dysregulated (out of balance), hyper/hypopigmentation (skin patches with increased or decreased color), atopic dermatitis, hair growth or loss, itch, and acne can occur.
Because CBD has anti-inflammatory properties, it can help with disorders that cause inflammation and/or itching, like atopic dermatitis. More research needs to be done, but CBD may also help with acne because it may inhibit bacterial growth and the production of more oil-making skin cells.
Although CBD shows promise for cosmetic uses for the skin and hair, more studies need to be done to evaluate its effectiveness.
Although CBD is not a psychoactive substance, it isn’t legal in every state. In order for CBD to be legal in your state, it needs to be legal at both the federal and state levels.
While the Farm Bill legalized the production of any part of the cannabis plant with a THC concentration of 0.3% or lower, states have the final say.
CBD Legal States
Even though CBD cannot get you “high,” it is not legal in every state. While some states have no restrictions on CBD, others have legalized CBD only for medical purposes. Some regulate it depending on whether it was derived from hemp or marijuana. Others have not legalized it at all.
Laws continuously change. Before you purchase or use any CBD product, even without THC, it’s best to check your state laws. One resource to do so is the National Conference of State Legislatures, on their State Medical Cannabis Laws page.
THC Legal States
Laws regarding THC are actively changing. It is important to check the most current laws in each state. Some state laws vary in the level of THC that is legal, or for what purpose THC can be consumed.
The National Conference of State Legislatures State Medical Cannabis Laws page may be helpful, as is the state information at the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) website.
On a Drug Test
Drug tests specifically look for THC and its breakdown products. CBD should not produce a positive test.
While CBD shouldn’t show up on a drug test, some CBD products do have THC, so it may cause a positive THC result on a drug test. Many CBD products are not regulated, so you don’t know what exactly is in them or how much THC they contain.
The bottom line is that if CBD or THC is illegal in your state or is forbidden in your workplace, it’s best to not use them or limit your usage.
As with any ingested substance, there are potential side effects to both CBD and THC. Additional side effects of CBD than the ones already listed can include:
- Changes in alertness, usually drowsiness
- Gastrointestinal issues like diarrhea or lack of appetite
- Mood changes like irritability or agitation
Side effects of THC (in addition to the recreational ones) may include:
- Changes in blood pressure and heart rate
- Red eyes
- Increased risk of mood disorders
- Lung irritation with chronic usage
Types of CBD and THC
There are different types of CBD and THC. Knowing the differences can help you make a choice about which is best for you.
The types of CBD include:
- Whole plant CBD: Uses all of the hemp compounds but is usually too thick for general use
- Full spectrum CBD: Contains none of the waxes or oils from whole plant CBD, but has traces of THC
- Broad spectrum CBD: Contains no THC but has other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids
- Pure CBD (isolate): Contains only CBD, no THC, and no other compounds
The types of THC include:
- THC-a: This is the most common type of THC in cannabis, and is the precursor to the other kinds. It does not produce psychoactive effects.
- Delta 9 THC: This is responsible for producing the typical psychoactive effects of marijuana, and also helps relieve bodily tension and increases appetite.
- Delta 8 THC: This makes up less than 1% of the cannabis plant and is supposed to be half as psychoactive as delta 9.
- THCP (tetrahydrocannabiphorol): This is said to have approximately 33% more potency and strength than delta 9 but medicinal benefits are unknown.
- THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin): This is not as effective in binding to receptors. In large doses it can be psychoactive, but not in low doses.
While CBD and THC are from the same plant, the cannabis plant, they are very different. Both can increase relaxation and sleepiness, improve mood, and relieve pain, but CBD does not have the same psychoactive properties that THC does.
There are different kinds of CBD. It’s good to know what kind you are using because some may have traces of THC in them. Knowing more about CBD and THC can help you make informed decisions about what you choose to consume.
A Word From Verywell
While CBD and THC may be legal in some states, in other states there are restrictions on both. Before ordering or using these substances, it’s always a good idea to check the laws in your state about both CBD and THC.
Frequently Asked Questions
Smoking a product containing THC (like a marijuana “joint”) or vaping CBD oil can start relieving pain in a few minutes. Creams and edibles can take a bit longer, even up to a few hours for edibles, since they have to go through the digestive tract.
The effects of delta-8 THC are more potent than CBD. Whereas CBD does not get you high, delta-8 does. It is similar to delta-9, which produces the high and side effects of marijuana than it is to CBD.
Everyone’s experience with THC or CBD is different. While THC in low doses tends to reduce anxiety, THC has been shown to increase anxiety in high doses. CBD has been found to decrease anxiety at multiple doses.
It’s good to let your healthcare provider know if you use CBD or THC. They can interact with certain medications and may cause physical health issues, so your healthcare provider should know if you use these substances.
The 2022 Definitive Guide to CBD Oil + Benefits Chart
You’ve seen advertisements for anything from CBD bath bombs to CBD toothpaste . Your friends— and even your parents —have been talking about CBD.
Now you’re ready to see what all the buzz is about. Well, you’ve come to the right place.
We put together this ultimate guide to CBD oil to give you all the information you need to launch a CBD-infused lifestyle.
If you want to hop right into our top suggestion at SnackNation, then check out Vitalibis – the first CBD oil that we trust due to their certified organic farming practices.
Browse the topics below to learn the difference between full-spectrum CBD oil and CBD isolate, find out what research says about CBD, and get the tips you need to discover your perfect CBD product.
Everything You Need to Know About CBD Oil
- What is CBD Oil?
- CBD Oil With THC
- CBD Oil Without THC
Taking CBD Oil
- How Long Does it Take for CBD Oil to Work?
- CBD Oil Drug Test
- CBD Oil Uses
- CBD Oil for Pain
- CBD Oil for Anxiety
- CBD Oil for Sleep
CBD Oil For Other Ailments
CBD Product Guide
CBD Vape Oil and CBD Vape Juice
Other CBD Products
CBD Oil Reviews
CBD Terms Glossary:
- CBD (short for cannabidiol): A plant-based compound known for its calming effects. CBD comes from hemp and cannabis plants.
- Cannabis: A type of cannabis plant that contains 0.3% or more of the psychoactive compound, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
- Hemp: A type of cannabis plant that contains 0.3% or less of the psychoactive compound, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
- THC(short for tetrahydrocannabinol): A plant-based compound known for its psychoactive properties. THC comes from cannabis plants.
- Marijuana: Pieces of dried cannabis plant with high levels of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
- Psychoactive: Substances that affect the mind, mental processes, or behavior.
- Cannabinoids: Biologically active chemical compounds found in cannabis plants.
- Endocannabinoid system: A sophisticated molecular signaling system in all vertebrates that, among other things, allows us to feel the effects of cannabinoids.
- Certificates of Analysis (COA): Document that shows all the ways a product meets a list of specifications. Often created by third-party laboratories with no association to the manufacturer of the product, COAs ensure accuracy of marketing claims.
- Measurable: Verifiable. Based on empirical evidence such as numbers and data.
- Anecdotal: Unverifiable. Based on personal reports, observations, and opinions.
The information in this post is meant to be informational. We are not offering medical advice, legal guidance, or product endorsements. This information was not collected or reviewed by medical or legal professionals.
Who Would You Like To Send Swag To?
What is CBD?
The short answer: CBD is a plant-based compound known for its calming effects.
Your CBD adventures start with one fundamental question: What is CBD?
CBD —or cannabidiol if you like using words with lots of syllables—is, in the most basic terms, a chemical compound. The words “chemical” and “compound” might make you think of synthetic substances created in a laboratory, but guess what? CBD is 100% natural. In fact, it comes from a plant you’ve probably heard of before: the cannabis plant.
Some people freeze when they hear the word “cannabis.” That’s because many people use “cannabis” and “marijuana” synonymously to describe the drug that gets you high.
When we’re talking about cannabis in the context of CBD, we’re just talking about a plant that contains over 400 compounds called cannabinoids. Some cannabinoids, like tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, are psychoactive; they affect your mental processes. Many cannabinoids, including CBD, are not psychoactive.
What Does CBD Stand For?
The short answer: CBD stands for cannabidiol.
CBD stands for cannabidiol. The term spares us from trying to say and spell cannabidiol over and over again.
The “cannabis” portion of the word indicates the compound’s origin in the cannabis plant. The “diol” portion of the word indicates the two alcohols in the compound. (In this case, alcohol simply describes a molecule made of carbon (C), oxygen (O), and hydrogen (H) atoms—not a tasty adult beverage.)
Most cannabinoids have similar names . This makes it easy for us to tell they share cannabis as their mother plant.
- Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabigerol (CBG)
Does CBD Get You High?
The short answer: No.
Many people react to this statement with a healthy dose of dubiousness. Why not? It comes from the cannabis plant!
CBD alone—when it’s not paired with other compounds in the cannabis plant, such as THC—does not produce the psychoactive (mind-altering) effects we perceive as “getting high.”
Just one of the many compounds found in the cannabis plant, CBD can be isolated from the other compounds to make a product with practically no chance of triggering a high.
However, CBD products often contain some THC, which is psychoactive. Check the labels and certificates of analysis (COA) to find out if your product contains any percentage of THC.
CBD Clinical Trials
The takeaway: Keep an eye out for news of CBD clinical trials that will verify or call into question the promising health benefits many believe CBD provides.
Throughout this post, you’ll learn that many experts withhold their optimism on the benefits of CBD, pointing to a lack of evidence from controlled trials and systematic research. Promising results from CBD clinical trials would give them satisfying evidence.
Clinical trials on CBD have been relatively limited so far, but, as CBD benefit claims multiply and CBD popularity grows, we’ll likely see more trials.
If you want to see some hard data from current and completed clinical trials, then you can browse the United States National Library database of CBD clinical trials.
THC vs CBD
CBD and THC are different compounds. THC is psychoactive; it affects your mental processes (it gets you high). CBD is not psychoactive.
CBD and THC, like siblings, have a lot in common, but they also have many key differences.
Different compounds, or cannabinoids, CBD and THC both come from the same parent plant, but they interact in your body , specifically in your body’s endocannabinoid system, in different ways.
CBD and THC share a molecular structure, but they have a different arrangement of atoms. This simple difference in atomic arrangement explains why the two compounds interact with your endocannabinoid receptors in different ways and why CBD doesn’t get you high while THC does.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System?
The short answer: CBD can stay in an average person’s system for up to 5 days. However, the length of time CBD stays in any individual’s system fluctuates depending on a variety of factors, including dosage, CBD form, the person’s weight, and more.
If there’s any chance you might have to take a drug test , then, of course, you’ll wonder how long CBD stays in your system, just in case. (But for the record, if the CBD you took contains no THC or CBN, then you should be fine, even if the CBD is still in your system.)
Studies investigating CBD’s lifespan in the body have found—in general—that the compound can stay in the blood for up to 5 days. Other studies found that CBD might stay in the urine for only 24 hours.
Just as different bodies and different circumstances affect the metabolism of food and alcohol, different circumstances and bodily characteristics affect how a body will absorb, process, and retain CBD.
So what factors are most influential to how long CBD will stay in your system?
- How you take the CBD. (Results will differ depending on whether you ingest, smoke, or vaporize your CBD.)
- Your own individual metabolism.
- What else, including food, is in your system when you take the CBD.
- How much CBD you take and how often.
What Drugs Should Not Be Taken with CBD?
The short answer:
Many drugs could interact with CBD, and it’s important to check with your doctor before you mix CBD with medications, including over-the-counter medications.
In the grand scheme of things, experts have really only scratched the surface of CBD research, experiments, and investigations. That’s why you’ll have a hard time finding a straightforward answer about what drugs you should not mix with CBD.
Experts do know that our bodies use the same set of enzymes to metabolize CBD as we use to metabolize most medications available on the market. That means there’s a chance CBD could interact with a majority of medications.
This doesn’t mean that the interactions would be catastrophic, significant, or even noticeable; it just means there’s a big chance CBD and your medication could interact and alter each other’s intended effects, leading to different outcomes in your body.
It will take years for experts to develop a more straightforward answer to this question. For now, play it safe by talking to your doctor or pharmacist before mixing CBD strains with any medications.
CBD Dosage Calculator
If you’re trying CBD for the first time, then you probably have no idea how much to take.
All the products you find have vastly different concentrations, so it’s hard to even guess what a standard dose might be.
Try to find your ideal CBD dosage by using this crowd-sourced CBD dosage calculator .
You simply plug in some information, and the calculator recommends a dosage. The tool calculates answers based on their pools of self-reported user data.
This is the perfect place to start if you’re new to CBD or if you haven’t achieved the results you were hoping for so far in your CBD adventures.
Everything You Need to Know About CBD Oil
What is CBD Oil?
The short answer:
CBD oil is simply the CBD compound infused into a carrier oil.
So we know CBD is technically a compound, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that reacts with receptors in our bodies to produce a calming effect.
Now it’s time to get into more practical questions. How do you actually get CBD into your body?
Oil is one of the most popular vessels for CBD.
CBD oil is essentially just the CBD compound infused into a carrier oil. After that infusion, the oil will have a concentration of CBD . There’s no standard concentration of CBD across CBD oils, so the potency of these products varies.
CBD oil products mimic the naturally oily plant material they’re extracted from.
Have you ever wondered why so many CBD products are CBD oils?
The CBD-rich parts of the cannabis plant are naturally resinous and oily. So when we extract the CBD from these bits, what we get is already thick and oily. It’s primed for infusions into other carrier oils.
So when you enjoy a CBD oil, you’re enjoying CBD close to its natural state.
To dive even deeper, the CBD we extract to create oils and other products come from trichomes. Some experts call trichomes “ plant hair ,” because of their growth structure and their ability to retain metabolites. (Even the word “trichomes” comes from the Greek word for “hair.”)
Naturally resinous, the CBD solvent we can extract from trichomes will vary in CBD potency, depending on the CBD present in the trichomes and also the method used to extract the CBD from the trichomes.
CBD Oil Effects
A wide range of users reports a wide range of effects when taking CBD.
So we’ve established that CBD does not get you high as its cousin, THC, does. So what does CBD do? What are the main potential effects that attract people to this trendy compound?
Before we dive in, let’s group the types of CBD benefits into two categories:
Measurable effects: These outcomes have been studied, quantified, and corroborated by multiple controlled studies and trials. These effects involve measurable factors, such as the number of seizures or blood pressure readings.
- Some measurable effects of CBD include:
- Decreased risk of heart disease
- Seizure management
Anecdotal effects: These outcomes have been reported by CBD users, but they don’t include a measurable component or they simply can’t be measured. For example, a reduction of pain is an anecdotal benefit because we have no universally accepted measurement for pain, and pain is subjective—it lives in the “eye of the beholder” so to speak.
- Some anecdotal effects of CBD include:
- Decreased anxiety.
- Mitigated addiction withdrawal symptoms
- Lessened pain
CBD Oil Benefits
CBD’s reported benefits hold promise for a variety of health issues.
People who’ve tried CBD have reported a wide range of benefits. While many effects and benefits could be considered subjective, these benefits also come along with anecdotal evidence that could be extremely compelling for anyone looking to achieve similar benefits.
- Pain management. Studies showed rats on CBD had decreased activity in brain regions associated with pain.
- Anxiety and depression reduction . One study showed that CBD can reduce anxiety in humans preparing to speak publicly. Animal studies demonstrated effects similar to antidepressants.
- Chemotherapy side effect management. CBD reduces chemotherapy-induced nausea.
- Skin clearing. A laboratory test-tube study showed that CBD might help block the production of excess skin oils and the inflammatory response that leads to acne.
- Seizure management. CBD helps reduce epileptic seizures. Heart health. Some research subjects saw a decrease in blood pressure when taking CBD, and CBD appeared to be able to reduce inflammation and cell death in patients who had already succumbed to heart disease.
What is CBD Oil Good For?
The short answer:
Seizure reduction. CBD is potentially good for a number of things, but seizure reduction is the most research-backed CBD benefit.
People anecdotally report a variety of CBD benefits . However, when it comes to benefits that most experts agree has enough measurable evidence (from systematic trials and research), epileptic seizure reduction takes the cake.
Even the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found the evidence for CBD’s seizure reducing abilities compelling enough to pursue.
The FDA’s expert panels found enough evidence to approve a CBD-based treatment for epilepsy . This particular approval made history as the first FDA acceptance of a drug made from cannabis.
What about the other purported benefits of CBD?
While many people report a range of other benefits—and there is some evidence to back them up—experts want multiple trials and multiple peer-reviewed studies to verify any claim before they start making any conclusive statements that could give patients false hope.
CBD Benefits Chart
If your head is spinning from hearing about one CBD benefit here and another there, then you need something that can give you a quick view of the full range of anecdotally reported CBD benefits. You need a CBD benefits chart.
This comprehensive chart from The Physicians’ Choice bullets out a complete list of potential CBD benefits.
As an added bonus, the chart also lists the benefits of other cannabinoids, including THC, CBN, and CBDA.
Here are some potential CBD benefit highlights from the chart:
- Antibacterial properties
- Cancer-fighting capabilities
- Pain and anxiety relief
- Seizure reduction
- Bone-boosting capabilities
- Neuron shielding abilities
- Psoriasis treatment potential
Is CBD Oil Legal?
The short answer:
CBD from industrialized hemp is federally legal. However, for your practical purposes, you need to know how hemp—and cannabis for that matter—is regulated in your state .
CBD from industrialized hemp is federally legal , but if manufacturers make claims of “therapeutic benefits,” then the product could be regulated, meaning a manufacturer could be selling and marketing legal CBD in a way that is unlawful .
Find additional information about cannabis and the legal use of CBD here.
If you’re a real policy wonk, then you might what to peruse the full texts of these relevant documents:
The Hemp Farming Act
To make things more complicated, the source of CBD could make a difference when it comes down to regulations.
- Industrialized hemp is federally legal
- Cannabis is federally illegal
- CBD can come from either hemp plants or cannabis plants
- So if you live in a state that has legalized recreational marijuana, then you’re likely in the clear no matter what.
- However, if you live in a state that does not allow marijuana, and you happen to buy CBD sourced from cannabis instead of hemp, then you could run into trouble.
The moral of the story is: know your state’s hemp and cannabis regulations. Never assume that your ability to purchase a product means it’s legal.
CBD Oil Side Effects
The takeaway: Based on current reports, CBD users could experience dry mouth, lightheadedness, drowsiness, nausea, or anxiety.
HugsCBD reminds us that CBD, a young product from a young industry, has enjoyed fewer tests and research studies than nearly any prescription or over-the-counter medication. (After all, those laundry lists of possible side-effects that make you panic and give you a headache come from years of research and observation!)
Here are some of the CBD side effects that have been reported so far. These are all side effects some people have experienced. There’s no guarantee you will feel any of these effects or that you won’t feel effects that aren’t on this list.
Common short-term side effects:
- Dry mouth
Common long-term effects:
CBD will need to be on the market for several years before we have a comprehensive list of long-term consequences.
- Dental issues . This relates to the short-term side effects of dry mouth. Moisture protects your teeth and gums, so a dry mouth leaves people more susceptible to cavities and gum problems.
- Increased liver enzymes . Whether this effect grows ultimately into a net positive or a net negative remains to be seen.
CBD Oil Research
When it comes to what the research indicates definitively, or nearly definitively, on CBD, experts say, “the jury is still out.”
The headline of this Northwestern Medicine post sums up the research conducted to date on CBD perfectly: “Promising, But Not Yet Proven.”
The post includes expert opinions and commentary from researchers and medical practitioners, the people in the front lines who observe CBD’s effects in laboratories and on patients. The experts aren’t sold on CBD’s benefits, saying that in most cases, “the jury is still out.”
Experts agree that CBD’s use against seizures has satisfactory evidence, but they want consumers to remember that the general idea that CBD is “broadly beneficial” is a bit of a myth. They don’t want to call anything a cure-all until more evidence supports the claim.
So what can we get excited about now? Get excited about the future, but as you read about health claims (which you’ll probably see more and more of as CBD grows more popular), look for the evidence before you make any assumptions.
CBD Oil vs Hemp Oil
If consuming CBD is your ultimate goal, then read the labels of all the products you purchase.
Products called “CBD oil” and products called “hemp oil” might be nearly the same when it comes to CBD content, but they can also be radically different depending on their plant components, their plant sources, and the ways they were produced.
Consumers can expect to be confused by terms like “CBD,” “hemp,” and “marijuana.” All these terms have multiple meanings and can be used in popular but incorrect ways, which only adds to the confusion.
The root of the matter lies in the plant sources. CBD is found in both hemp plants and cannabis plants. Hemp and cannabis are like identical twins in the plant world : they look and smell almost exactly the same, so they’re hard for people to distinguish.
As the experts at Phys Org put it, “ Cannabis plants with 0.3 percent or less of THC are hemp. Cannabis plants with more than 0.3 percent THC are marijuana.”
What does this mean for CBD products? Here’s a little cheat sheet based on information from Medical News Today :
- CBD oil = hemp or cannabis stalks, leaves, and flowers. CBD oil will always include CBD. (Of course!)
- Hemp oil or hemp seed oil = hemp or cannabis seeds. These products may or may not include CBD.
CBD Oil With THC
In locations where recreational marijuana is legal, consumers can enjoy CBD oil and products that contain some percentage of THC if they want a mild high without some of the negative effects of THC.
Leafly has the necessary details for anyone hoping to blend their CBD with some THC.
The basic breakdowns of CBD and THC combinations can be summarized in three basic “configurations.”
- High THC and low CBD (Leafly says products that are 10-30% THC and contain only a little CBD fall into this category.)
- Balanced amounts of THC and CBD (Leafly says products that are 5-15% of both THC and CBD fall into this category.)
- High CBD and low THC (Leafly says products that are 5-20% CBD and 5% or less of THC fall into this category.)
High CBD products work best for consumers who don’t want to get the euphoric high THC provides or for consumers who have a particular sensitivity to THC.
CBD Oil Without THC
When you’re browsing for CBD oil, check to see if the product has a third-party lab report and certificate of analysis (COA) that verifies the product contains no THC.
CBD oil with no detectable THC will provide only the purported calming effects of CBD without any of the “high” that comes along with THC.
These products work well for people who can’t consume any THC due to their jobs.
CBDoilusers.com has pre-screened some THC-free products (including oils, vape juices, and gummies) to save you research time. Their recommended brands include:
Taking CBD Oil
How to Take CBD Oil
The short answer:
It depends on what you want the CBD to do.
Foria has a complete set of suggestions for determining how to take CBD to achieve the effect you want. Here are some prompts based on their post to help you figure out how you should take CBD:
- What do you want to get out of your CBD? (Pain relief, stress relief, or creativity?)
- How fast do you need the CBD to work?
- Foria advises using inhaled CBD products (like vaporizers) to get quick relief and oral products to get relief throughout the day.
- As you experiment with CBD, pay attention to the effects and document your dosages. If you’re new, start with a low dose and slowly add more.
- The CBD percentages listed on labels don’t translate to literal absorption for every person. The percentage of CBD in a product is how much you might absorb if your body processes the product perfectly, which it probably won’t.
- Check all the instructions on the label of your product. Many of them include tips for optimal absorption.
CBD Oil Dosage
The United States Food and Drug Administration has not yet established dosage recommendations on CBD.
If you’re new to CBD, then your best bet is to ask your doctor where to start and experiment from there.
CBD affects different people differently, kind of like how caffeine affects people differently.
If you drink coffee, then you’ve probably noticed that caffeine impacts you differently than it impacts your friends and co-workers. Maybe your hand starts shaking halfway through your first cup while your friend is still yawning through her second cup.
And it’s not just your baseline chemical makeup and bodyweight that can impact how CBD affects you. Your reaction can change from day to day depending on what kind of food you’ve eaten or how much sleep you’ve had.
Don’t worry—with some experimentation and observation, you’ll soon know how CBD affects you.
Healthline recommends asking your doctor where to start. If that’s not an option, then you can go with one of the most popular starting doses: 20 – 40 mg per day.
Scale up or down in increments of 5 mg per day until you achieve the desired effect. Keep a diary or log so you remember how much CBD you took and how it affected you.
This crowd-sourced CBD dosage calculator can also help you do your own research.
How Long Does It Take for CBD Oil to Work?
The short answer:
It depends on your body chemistry, how much you take, what form you take it in, where it was sourced, and more.
An expert quoted in this Well + Good article puts it perfectly when she says CBD “isn’t one-size-fits-all.”
When you ask how long it takes CBD to work, what you’re really asking is: How long will it take my body to absorb the CBD?
Absorption and effects should occur simultaneously.
Here are the main factors that affect your absorption:
- The form of your CBD.CBD edibles will likely affect you more slowly as your body has to break down some food to get to the CBD. CBD tinctures will likely be quicker to impact you.
- The quality of your CBD. Full-spectrum CBD oils retain the full range of compounds that provide blissful CBD feelings. You should also check products for third-party lab reports and certificates of analysis (COA) that verify exactly what you’re getting in your product.
- Dosage. The more CBD you consume, the faster you’ll feel the effects.
- Your body weight and body chemistry. Be mindful as you try CBD and start figuring out how fast it usually works for you.
CBD Oil Drug Test
CBD alone will not trigger a false-positive drug test for THC.
Researchers did a test to confirm that CBD doesn’t show up on some of the most popular screening tests used to detect THC.
However, cannabinol (CBN) did trigger a positive test, and of course, products with some THC triggered a positive test as well.
CBD products do not yet have to pass federal regulations before they go on sale, but consumers can rely on third-party lab tests to make sure they’re getting pure CBD without any CBN or THC.
CBD users can also rest assured that most positive drug tests trigger confirmation screenings, especially if someone disputes a false positive.
These more complex confirmation tests can see the difference between CBN and CBD, and will only pose problems if the CBD product also contained THC.
CBD Oil Drug Interactions
Always, always check with your doctor about potential CBD and drug interactions.
We know too little about CBD so far for anyone to be sure how it might react with the vast number of prescription and over-the-counter drugs available today.
Your doctor or your pharmacist will best know how CBD might interact with the other drugs you’re taking.
If you want to do your independent research, then check out the Drugs.com comprehensive list of drugs known to interact with cannabis.
Drugs have shown to have major or clinically significant reactions include:
So while the information we have now is currently sparse, the list will continue to grow as we do more research.
CBD Oil Uses
Research and trials tell us that CBD, when used to treat seizures, in the form of a prescription drug, Epidiolex, is safe and effective.
Most experts endorse the usage of CBD to combat epileptic seizures. There’s even an FDA-approved drug for this use.)
For all other usages and benefits, medical practitioners are waiting for more research before they say anything conclusive.
That said, many people are already using CBD in a variety of forms for a variety of ailments.
- Forms of CBD use include oil, vapor, massage oils, topical lotions and patches, edibles, capsules, and more.
- Reasons cited for CBD use include pain management, stress reduction, sleep improvement, and more.
CBD Oil for Pain
What we know so far suggests CBD may decrease feelings of pain, but we still have a lot left to learn.
While experts caution that we know too little about CBD so far to make absolute claims, they do point out strong evidence supporting the claim that CBD might be used in the future to manage chronic pain.
For example, one review of existing literature examined multiple trials and studies and found that CBD can treat chronic pain.
On top of that, a separate study also found CBD to be effective for treating chronic pain and reducing inflammation.
Subjects didn’t seem to need a higher dosage of CBD as time passed. This contrasts to other painkillers that people eventually build a tolerance to, leading to increased dosages and dangerous addictions.
So if CBD turns out to be effective for pain management, it could help fight the opioid epidemic, but at present, those hopes are merely conjecture.
CBD Oil for Anxiety
Research has shown that a CBD stick can achieve a measurable reduction in anxiety.
In some studies , CBD lessened the behavioral signs of anxiety, which include avoidance, mood swings, and jumpiness.
Other studies show that CBD lessened the physical signs of anxiety, which include sweaty palms, dizziness, racing heart, and chest pain.
These studies show promise for CBD’s use in a range of anxiety disorders, including generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Experts hope CBD may be used alone to treat anxiety disorders or to enhance the benefits of other traditional therapies and medications.
CBD Oil for Sleep
Study evidence and personal reports suggest that CBD may help people fall asleep and get more sleep.
According to the experts quoted in this HuffPost article , CBD’s apparent ability to aid sleep correlates with its ability to decrease anxiety and calm people down.
Scientifically speaking, CBD achieves these effects by interacting with two receptors in your brain:
- GABA: Promotes relaxation and cracks down on overactive brains
- Serotonin: Regulates mood and anxiety
Both of these anxiety-inhibiting effects can open doors to dreamland if the subject’s insomnia stems from anxiety, worrying, and restlessness.
People who’ve had success with CBD and sleep report drifting calmly to sleep and waking up without the grogginess sometimes associated with other sleep aids.
CBD for Pets
Currently limited evidence suggests CBD is safe for pets.
Cnet got the CBD-pet scoop from veterinarian and CBD expert Stephanie McGrath.
As CBD pet products grew more and more trendy over the past few years, Stephanie found herself fielding lots of questions. Unfortunately, she didn’t have answers, and she couldn’t find answers in any existing literature. So she decided to find answers by doing her own research.
Here are some of the most interesting things she found out:
- CBD oil outperformed edibles and creams when it came to achieving the highest (and longest-lasting) concentration of CBD in the blood.
- Current evidence suggests CBD is safe for dogs.
- Stay in the clear by selecting products that come with a certificate of analysis (COA) from a third-party laboratory.
- Keep your eyes open for research updates.
CBD Oil for Dogs
When trying CBD on your pup, talk to your own personal veterinarian, shop smart, and watch for side effects.
AKC’s Chief Veterinary Officer has all the details concerned dog parents need to know before giving their pups CBD.
No formal, systematic studies have been conducted for the effects of CBD on dogs, but experts guess that CBD will have similar effects on dogs as it does on humans.
In fact, the list of possible benefits for dogs are almost identical to the list of possible benefits for humans:
And the list of possible side effects are also in line with what we’ve seen in humans:
- Lower blood pressure
- Dry mouth
When shopping for dog CBD, this vet recommends:
- Checking third-party lab reports for quality and contamination alerts
- Finding organic products made without pesticides or solvents
- Favoring liquid products to achieve the best effects
CBD Oil for Cats
What we know about CBD oil for cats is almost identical to what we know about CBD for dogs.
When trying CBD on your kitty, talk to your own personal veterinarian, shop smart, and watch for side effects.
No in-depth studies have been conducted to formally evaluate the effects CBD has on cats or to determine CBD’s safety for cats
Experts have also not seen anything to suggest CBD is unsafe for cats, and most experts generally recognize CBD as safe for cats.
Pet owners should not let their guards down about all cannabis products. Cannabis plants have been shown to be toxic to cats.
The potential benefits are, again, similar to the potential benefits for humans:
When shopping for cat CBD be sure to:
- Check third-party lab reports for quality and contamination alerts
- Find organic products without pesticides or solvents
- Favor liquid products to achieve the best effects
CBD Oil For Other Ailments
CBD Oil for Migraines
CBD may help reduce migraine pain, but more research is needed, and it’s important to consult your doctor before pursuing a treatment regimen.
If you choose to try CBD to decrease your migraine pain, then be sure you’re getting the pure stuff.
One doctor who happens to be an expert on headaches says CBD could make a good migraine treatment because it works locally and doesn’t lead to intoxication.
As is the case with CBD and many other ailments, the studies on CBD and migraines are so limited, most experts decline to make any official recommendations.
This headache expert also suggests checking the products you’re browsing for purity. You want CBD with no THC or contaminants. So diligently check the lab reports and certificate of analysis (COA) and opt for brands you trust.
- Shop CBD oils [Jump to most potent CBD section]
CBD Oil for Depression
It’s possible that CBD may help with feelings of depression, but scientists need to conduct more controlled trials before we can truly say there is sufficient evidence to make that claim.
While a few studies have generated compelling support for CBD’s potential to treat some ailments, depression is not one of them.
Experts have not ruled out the idea that CBD might be used to treat depression, but they don’t yet have enough evidence to get truly excited.
The good news is that they’re looking into it. The growing popularity of CBD has inspired research and clinical trials around the globe. With luck, we’ll have more solid answers soon.
- Shop CBD oils [Jump to most potent CBD section]
CBD Oil for Cancer
Evidence and clinical trials suggest that cannabinoids may mitigate cancer-related side effects.
Good news! Even the experts at the National Institutes of Health believe they have enough evidence to say that cannabinoids may mitigate cancer-related side effects.
This evidence covers cannabinoids in general, not CBD specifically, and it certainly doesn’t include the kind of CBD oil you might buy at the store. In fact, CBD alone may inhibit some of the enzymes that metabolize anticancer therapies and actually decrease their effectiveness.
The evidence does cover the cannabinoids dronabinol and nabilone. These compounds have been found effective at decreasing nausea and vomiting induced by chemotherapy and have even been approved by the FDA for this purpose.
- Shop CBD good [Jump to CBD food section]
CBD Oil for ADHD
Only anecdotal claims, and no scientific evidence, suggest CBD may be used to treat the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) / Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD).
Some people have reported that CBD helps their ADHD or ADD, but physicians and researchers say there is no scientific evidence to support a positive correlation between CBD and ADHD or ADD.
In CBD Oil for ADHD? New Research On This Popular Natural Treatment , ADDitude quoted a variety of experts. Here’s the gist of what they have to say:
- Zero evidence (published data or clinical trial results) provide evidence that CBD should be used to treat ADHD.
- Zero evidence suggests it would even be safe to use CBD to treat ADHD.
- No literature suggests what CBD dosage would even be appropriate for treating ADHD.
- While many people say CBD has helped with their ADHD, hearsay has never been a sound basis for medical recommendations.
- Shop CBD gum [Jump to CBD gum section]
CBD Oil for Seizures
Experts have studied CBD’s impact on seizures for years, and a diverse portfolio of evidence—including laboratory reports, subject reports, and clinical trials—demonstrate that CBD can control seizures.
Of all the ailments people hope CBD might help, seizures are one of the most studied. Even better, the evidence gleaned from these studies is compelling.
Most experts agree that the evidence is strong enough to say CBD can help control seizures of patients with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS).
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has even approved an oral CBD solution EPIDIOLEX ® for the treatment of seizures.
- Shop CBD capsules [Jump to CBD capsules section]
CBD Oil for Diabetes
Some studies suggest CBD may benefit people with diabetes, specifically by targeting the inflammation associated with diabetes.
Experts hope CBD may help pre-diabetes patients because of the compound’s anti-inflammatory effects, which have been demonstrated in studies of rats.
Inflammation, they explain, often co-manifests with insulin resistance, which can progress into type 2 diabetes. So CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects might be able to halt or slow the progression toward diabetes.
There’s also evidence that CBD when used with other compounds, might decrease blood sugar and insulin resistance in patients who have already progressed to diabetes. So diabetic patients might be able to take CBD to reduce the symptoms of their disorder.
- Shop CBD capsules [Jump to CBD capsules section]
CBD Oil for Autism Spectrum Disorder
Studies of children with autism spectrum disorder show encouraging, but not conclusive, evidence that CBD might alleviate symptoms.
CBD could alleviate the symptoms and effects of autism spectrum disorder.
A few encouraging studies , all focused on children, suggest CBD might alleviate the following autism spectrum disorder symptoms:
- Self-injurious behavior
In addition to alleviating symptoms, CBD may have also helped the studied children communicate and sleep better.
Better yet, the researchers only observed a few negative side-effects, including sleepiness and appetite changes.
While more research needs to be done before we can get truly excited, we can definitely call the observations made so far “encouraging.”
- Shop CBD gummies [Jump to CBD gummies section]
CBD Oil for Weight Loss
Some evidence suggests CBD might help with weight loss, but we need to do more research.
This Medical News Today article covers the evidence we do have to support that CBD may help weight loss. Here are some of the key things we know so far about this correlation:
- CBD may encourage molecules in the body to block off receptors associated with appetite, receptors that obese people typically have more of.
- CBD may help your body convert the most dangerous fat cells into healthier fat cells.
- CBD might help your body burn fat.
All this evidence comes from limited studies or user-reports, so it’s definitely not time to call CBD a weight-loss miracle cure. CBD will affect everyone differently; some people find that it makes them hungrier.
- Shop CBD supplements [Jump to CBD supplements section]
CBD for Inflammation
Inflammation could be the second most studied CBD benefit, coming in behind seizures. And guess what? The evidence we have so far suggests CBD does reduce inflammation.
According to one study published in Future Medical Chemistry , the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD have been observed both in test tubes and in living subjects. All results suggest CBD has the ability to regulate the immune system and ultimately reduce the body’s inflammatory response to foreign invaders.
CBD has been shown to inhibit different inflammatory pathways in different diseases, including those associated with autoimmune disorders:
- Multiple sclerosis
- Rheumatoid arthritis
As chronic inflammation is associated with the development of some cancers, CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects lead researchers to believe the compound could help slow down tumor growth.
- Shop CBD supplements [Jump to CBD supplements section]
CBD Dosage for Inflammation
As the FDA does not regulate the sale of CBD, experts have recognized the need to conduct controlled trials that may lead to standardized dosage recommendations.
Studies on CBD dosage produce results that are as varied as individual study subjects. Experts can only hope to isolate trends they may build on to get to standardized recommendations.
Current studies suggest transmucosal dosage forms might achieve the best CBD effects. These dosage forms include any administration where the drug is delivered through a mucous membrane. These forms include:
- Nasal sprays
- Eye drops
- Below-the-tongue tinctures
These dosage forms prove most effective as they avoid the absorption limitations that spring up when users must metabolize something to absorb their CBD.
Dosage delivery via nanotechnology shows promise for future applications.
CBD Oil for Arthritis
There’s promising, but not conclusive, evidence that CBD can alleviate the pain of arthritis.
CBD’s theoretical potential for arthritis goes back to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Rheumatoid arthritis patients experience a lot of inflammation as their immune system essentially attacks the body.
If CBD can regulate the immune system and limit the inflammatory response, then patients who use CBD may feel less pain in their joints.
While no scientific evidence has shown these effects will actually happen, the basis for optimism is solid.
One trial did show that a combination of CBD and THC in an oral spray relieved arthritis pain, but it’s hard to say which compound achieved which effects.
- Shop CBD oils [Jump to most potent CBD section]
CBD Oil for Fibromyalgia
While little evidence currently supports that CBD may benefit fibromyalgia patients, there are a few compelling reasons to get excited about the possibilities.
So in the face of little scientific evidence, why do some people feel optimistic that CBD can make a viable fibromyalgia treatment ?
Here are some reasons to hope:
- CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects could reduce the pain of fibromyalgia.
- CBD might inhibit the activity of brain cells that lead to sensitivity in the central nervous system and ultimately pain.
- CBD could help with migraines and irritable bowel syndrome often associated with fibromyalgia.
- Many people with fibromyalgia have reported they believe CBD relieved their symptoms.
- Shop CBD oils [Jump to most potent CBD section]
CBD Product Guide
Best CBD Oil
Not all CBD oils are created equally. Smart shopping strategies and a list of trusted brands will help you get the best possible product.
We used the information in this Healthy Moms Healthy Babies (HMHB) post to pull out tips for finding the best of the best CBD oil.
- Check hemp sources and favor locally sourced brands with lab reports.
- Hemp absorbs more from the soil than many other crops. So if there are contaminants or metals in your hemp’s soil, then you could be consuming dangerous substances along with your CBD product.
Here are some of the brands HMHB has vetted for hemp sources, purity, and overall quality:
Pure CBD Oil
Pure CBD oil contains no additives or chemicals.
What is pure CBD oil, you ask? It’s CBD oil without any additives or chemicals or other ingredients that could affect the delivery of CBD into your body.
How do you know if you’re getting truly pure CBD oil? You guessed it! You check the third-party lab report and certificate of analysis (COA) that come along with your product. If the product doesn’t include this, then it’s probably not a good sign for the CBD’s purity.
Check out this CBDfx guide to reading lab reports to start analyzing your products like a professional.
Full-Spectrum CBD Oil
Full-spectrum CBD oils will include the full spectrum of cannabinoids available in cannabis plants. People often compare full-spectrum oils with CBD isolate, which as the name suggests, contains CBD isolated from other cannabinoids.
Since CBD oil includes the full spectrum of cannabinoids, it can produce what experts call an “entourage effect,” where multiple compounds work together to create more intense and possibly more beneficial effects than each compound could have individually.
According to the Street , benefits of full-spectrum CBD oil include:
- It has longer-lasting effects
- It’s usually natural, without pesticides or chemicals
- It’s usually more potent, as it includes a full range of cannabinoids
Organic CBD Oil
Organic in terms of CBD oil means the same thing it means in terms of other crops. To qualify as organic , the product must not have been grown or produced with:
- Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)
- Synthetic fertilizers
- Sewage sludge
- Ionizing radiation
Organic CBD oils are especially popular with people hoping to get creative in the kitchen with their CBD .
According to Plant People , many consumers choose organic CBD oil to:
- Avoid pesticides, which could trigger allergies and may be bad for the environment
- Avoid potentially toxic chemicals and additives
Organic CBD oils accommodate users who typically purchase organic products. Why should their CBD be any different?
Most Potent CBD Oil
The most potent CBD oils, in terms of price per milligram (mg) of CBD, cost about $0.04 per mg.
According to Herbonaut, CBD is more potent when taken together with other hemp-derived compounds. We pulled out the most potent CBD oils per price from some of Rave Review’s picks for the best CBD oils.
$0.04 per milligram CBD oils:
$0.05 per milligram CBD oils:
$0.07 per milligram CBD oils:
$0.08 per milligram CBD oils:
$0.09 per milligram CBD oils:
$0.10 per milligram CBD oils:
Where to Buy CBD Oil
The websites of trusted brands may be the best places to find CBD oil. On these websites, you can read third-party lab reports and all the key product details in the privacy of your own home.
Online shopping for CBD makes doing your research easy!
Get started on the CBD product websites featured on Huffpost’s list of best CBD products of 2019. These brands offer a range of products and forms of CBD.
CBD Oil Prices
CBD oil prices range from alarmingly low to incredibly high. Experts recommend looking at the following factors to determine if you’re paying a fair price:
- Farming practices
- Labor breakdowns
- Marketing, including websites, packaging, and labels
- Testing, preferably completed by a third-party laboratory
- Potency, or CBD per dollar
- Brand’s shipping and distribution footprint
Here’s more information on each of the factors you should consider when deciding how much to pay for CBD:
Remember that creating a quality product can be expensive, so don’t always opt for the most budget-friendly product. It could be less of a bargain if you’re not getting the CBD purity you want.
- Farming practices. High-quality products grown locally and organically will likely cost more than some imported products.
- Marketing, including websites, packaging, and labels. Especially compare these factors to farming and testing practices. Is the company sinking all its money into fancy packaging and neglecting to pay for organic farming techniques and proper testing?
- Testing, preferably completed by a third-party laboratory. Certificates of analysis from these labs are crucial to determining CBD quality, and laboratories don’t typically test for free.
- Potency, or CBD per dollar
- Brand’s shipping and distribution footprint . A high-quality product that only ships locally may be able to charge less than a product of similar quality that has a wider shipping range.
Here’s a selection of the most-loved CBD gummies out there:
By the time you drink your CBD water, it may have already lost its CBD content, especially if it comes in a clear bottle.
According to this Forbes post, low levels of CBD are usually rendered ineffective and destabilized when exposed to light. As CBD water typically comes in clear bottles that receive a lot of light exposure, the CBD it contains may have been reduced to nearly nothing by the time you purchase it or maybe by the time it reaches the store.
A CBD water sold in dark, opaque bottles may be legit. See if the product description explains how the water was created and packaged to maintain CBD integrity.
CBD candy is growing in popularity because it’s a discreet and incredibly enjoyable way to consume CBD.
PureKana , who makes their own CBD candies, touts the following advantages of CBD candy:
- Candy’s sweet flavors mask the sometimes disagreeable flavor of CBD oil.
- Candy is discreet; you can easily pop some in your mouth without revealing that you’re taking anything other than sugar.
- Candy is easy. You just eat it. You don’t have to worry about holding a product under your tongue for a specified amount of time.
- Candy is easy to tote around with you everywhere.
CBD syrup makes a mild, flavorful alternative to CBD oil.
Never tried CBD syrup? No problem! It’s easy to add to water, beverages, teas, fruit, and anything else you want to put a CBD drizzle on. Plus, CBD syrups taste amazing!
CBD syrup is more of a culinary product than CBD oil. The syrups come infused with CBD and usually have their own unique flavor profile that might be as attractive to you as the CBD content.
A versatile CBD product, CBD syrups enable a lot of culinary experimentation. Some people have made delightful pancakes with CBD syrup, crafted flavorful cocktails, and concocted frozen CBD pops.
If CBD syrup sounds like something you might be interested in, then check out CBDBreaker’s roundup of the best CBD syrups.
Chocolate lovers might find happiness in CBD chocolates.
If you like chocolate alone, then you’ll love the euphoric combination of CBD and chocolate.
Chocolate by itself has been known to make people feel euphoric. CBD alone makes some people feel happy and relaxed. Combine chocolate and CBD for a delicious treat that comes along with a dose of bliss. Talk about a satisfying dessert!
CBD chocolates accommodate a range of chocolate lovers, from those who love the darkest of the dark to those who like novelty flavors, like peanut butter and jelly.
The foodies at BonAppetit have a list of their CBD chocolate picks if you’re interested in trying a rich CBD dessert.
It may be counterintuitive to think CBD chewing gum could be effective since you don’t swallow the gum, but if the product is manufactured correctly, it can be more effective than some products you consume .
In CBD Chewing Gum: Practical or Total Gimmick? , the experts at Marijuana Break explain how CBD gum could be more effective than edibles.
Any CBD product you consume has to move through your digestive system before it hits your bloodstream. (This is when you’ll feel the effects of the CBD.)
Your body will metabolize a bit of the CBD as it makes its way through your system. You will not absorb or feel the effects of the metabolized portion; you’ll only feel the effects of the CBD that makes it to your bloodstream.
If you take your time in swallowing your saliva as you chew, then the CBD will get to your bloodstream through the sublingual (below-the-tongue) pathway, and you’ll feel its effects more powerfully.
CBD honey makes another sweet alternative to CBD oils.
Honey alone, especially raw, organic honey, provides a wealth of health benefits thanks to its natural enzymes and antioxidants.
Combining honey with CBD might be a healthy, bliss-inducing way to consume the compound.
Here are some reasons, according to Popsugar , that more people are turning to CBD honey to get a CBD fix.
- It’s delicious. Almost no strange flavors from CBD oil can cut through the sweetness of honey.
- It’s versatile. You can add it to hot beverages, eat it with food, enjoy it by the spoonful, and more. Basically, you can consume CBD honey in all the same ways you consume regular honey.
- It’s a good alternative to refined sugars, and the CBD is an added benefit.
If you want to feel any CBD effects with your CBD food, then be sure to check the dosage.
One Atlantic contributor explains that it’s hard to get a CBD buzz from food because many of the products just don’t contain enough CBD.
CBD is trendy, and production is thriving. However, some manufacturers add just enough CBD to their products so they can call them CBD products, but the items contain as little as 2 mg of CBD, which is probably not enough CBD to produce any effects.
So read the labels, and if you really want to get the benefits from CBD, then maybe try a different type of product.
CBD Vape Oil and CBD Vape Juice
Vape oil and vape juice differ in a few key ways . Vape oils usually have a viscosity similar to a culinary oil. Vape juices will usually be much more liquidy than vape oils.
Each product should only be used in an appropriately designed vaporizer.
- Vape oils may be used with oil vaporizers. These vaporizers container metal plates designed to heat the oil.
- Vape juices may be used with e-liquid vaporizers. These vaporizers have coils and wicks, but no plates.
CBD Vape Juice
Know what you’re looking for when shopping for vape juice. In the absence of federal regulations, it’s up to consumers to set their own standards and hold brands to them.
The experts at Leafly have some advice for consumers to take into account when shopping for CBD vape juice. Here’s the quick take on what you should favor when vape shopping:
- Oils and juices that appear the same throughout, without separation or color mixing
- Clear oils and juices
- Oils and juices that come along with lab test results
- Oils and juices that include CBD from local, organic, and responsible sources
CBD Vape Oil
Many aspects of CBD vaping aren’t intuitive. Do your research to make sure you’re vaping correctly.
Here are some vaping tips from the experts at Vaping 360 .
- Know your vaporizer and the kinds of oils and products it can accommodate.
- Start slowly and wait for the effects to kick in before you vape more.
- Make sure brands you buy have lab reports to confirm a lack of contaminants, including THC (if you’re trying to avoid that).
- Find an appropriate starting dose for your body weight.
Vaping 360 Recommends:
CBD Oil Vape
Read labels carefully to make sure the CBD oil you are interested in is suitable for vaping. Many CBD oils are designed for oral consumption and should never be used in vaporizing devices.
Consider if you really want to vape CBD oil or if you’re looking for CBD vape juice.
According to Vaping360 , many people casually say vaping “CBD oil” when they really mean “CBD vape juice.” These vaping experts recommend watching for the following keywords when looking for products that allow you to safely vaporize CBD oil:
- CBD oil vape pens
- CBD oil cartridges
- CBD oil pods
Don’t try to use CBD oil that was made for oral consumption in your vaporizer. This could damage your health and your vaporizing device.
CBD Oil Vape Pen Starter Kit
Discreet and sometimes disposable, vape pens provide an excellent way to try vaping CBD.
Vape pens: You can put them in your pocket, they don’t take up much room, and they usually require less upfront investment and knowledge that other forms of CBD, so they’re perfect for people who just want to try out vaping CBD.
Several companies have even designed starter kits to make your CBD vaping experiments as easy as possible.
You can choose from refillable pens and disposable pens.
- Disposable pens are ideal for people who think they may just want to experiment once.
- Refillable pens are best for people who know they might want to vape repeatedly.
CBD Vape Additive
CBD vape additives, often called e-liquids or e-juices on online stores, pair with CBD vape juices to enhance the flavors and effects of the vaping experience.
E-liquids and e-juices may or may not contain any of their own CBD.
These additives are best for experienced “vapers” who know how their devices work, what products work in their devices, and what they want to achieve.
This collection of vape additives has something for everyone. Here’s a shortlist of the selections:
Other CBD Products
Products labeled CBD isolates contain only the CBD from the cannabis plant. They do not contain other cannabinoids as full-spectrum CBD oils do.
According to Pure Kana , these are the key reasons someone might want to choose CBD isolate over full-spectrum CBD oil:
- CBD isolate is CBD in its purest form
- CBD isolate comes along with no risk of consuming THC, so it’s a good option for people with THC sensitivities or those worried about drug testing
- CBD isolate has no flavor, so it’s good for people who want to cook with CBD or just hate the taste of some CBD oils
CBD capsules provide an easy and fuss-free way to try CBD. They leave little chance of user error.
Some forms of CBD require users to measure out dosages or keep oils under their tongue for a satisfactory length of time. CBD capsules avoid all that. You just pop one in your mouth, and that’s it.
Many CBD capsules enter supplement territory as they might contain other beneficial botanicals or fatty acids.
For example, Charlotte’s Web makes a CBD capsule that includes phytocannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and essential fatty acids.
CBD capsules are perfect for busy, on-the-go people who just want to get a little dose of CBD and then be on their way. They don’t want consuming CBD to be an “experience.”
- Charlotte’s Web CBD Capsules
- Veritas Farms CBD Capsules
CBD lotions and body products probably won’t give you a CBD buzz, but the compound’s anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants might give you glowing skin.
We’ve already discussed CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties. These properties are the same reason CBD might benefit your skin in lotion form. You just apply a topical lotion to an inflamed area and observe the effects.
Some reports even suggest CBD could slow the production of oil, a compelling prospect if you have blemish-prone skin. While we are still learning more about the benefits of CBD to your skin, these positive reports show clear signs that it should be considered in your guide to healthy skin.
If lotions and beauty products interest you, then check out this CBD product roundup from the lifestyle aficionados at Allure.
CBD patches are designed to provide pain relief on a specific area of your body.
Some people seem to love their topical patches . The transdermal patches deliver CBD through the skin, so the effects should manifest quickly.
This might sound strange, but if heat patches and topical cooling creams relieve pain, then why not CBD patches?
- Trio Hemp Oil Topical Pain Patch (Hemp Only; no CBD)
- What reviewers say: Effective in relieving painful shoulder tension
- What reviewers say: Effective at managing pain
Hemp seeds make an effective way to grow hemp crops that will eventually produce CBD, but you have to really know how to plant the seeds.
Expert farmers in this Ag Professional article provide just a glimpse of how complicated growing hemp can be. Just some of the factors you would need to consider include:
- Planting seeds at the right depth
- Planting seeds at the right soil and surface area density
- Getting the timing right
The moral: Large-scale hemp farming is probably not accessible for people with no existing planting experience. Casual hemp growers can see this Morning Chores post on hemp growing to get an idea of how complicated growing hemp can be, even on a small scale.
A transdermal application of CBD simply means you absorb the compound through your skin.
Taking CBD through the skin might seem weird, but it actually has a variety of benefits as demonstrated by this study originally published in the European Journal of Pain .
Here’s a selection of noted benefits:
- Avoids degradation of CBD through metabolism (When you eat CBD, you have to metabolize it before it hits your bloodstream, and that process can reduce the potency.)
- Reduces inflammation in applied areas
- Reduces symptoms of pain
- Comes along with few observed side effects
Taken together, the main revelations of this study suggest transdermal CBD might help alleviate pain from arthritis and other conditions.
CBD sprays typically deliver low doses of CBD that are ideal for beginners.
Ideal for beginners and casual CBD users, CBD sprays deliver low doses through a mechanistic spray function that controls the amount of liquid you get with each spray. (Users don’t have to measure or pour anything.)
Reminiscent of Binaca breath freshening sprays, CBD sprays are fast and discreet. One quick pump is all you need, so you can get your CBD fix while keeping your habit on the down-low if that’s a concern to you.
CBD sprays come in flavored and unflavored versions to suit a variety of tastes. Plus, it’s easy to add to your dosage. Just count your sprays and continue until you achieve the effects you want.
CBD supplements may help you build on CBD’s effects to achieve other benefits.
CBD supplements, like this one from Plant People , usually combine CBD with other healthy natural ingredients to build on and maximize the benefits of CBD.
- This Stay Sharp supplement features herbal nootropics and adaptogens, and as the product’s name suggests, all the ingredients work together to help your brain achieve optimal function.
- Ingredients include bacopa monerri leaf extract and cordyceps extract.
- Ingredients include ashwagandha and Schisandra berry.
The capsules are also easy to transport, so you can take them with you everywhere.
CBD ointments make good options for people looking for pain relief in specific areas.
CBD ointments, like patches and other transdermal products, enter your body through the skin. They don’t risk the degradation or variation of CBD content that comes along with CBD edibles.
Ointments deliver CBD and its anti-inflammatory properties straight to the source of pain to achieve, with hope, fast and effective relief.
Tuck.com selected a roundup of their favorite CBD ointments and salves. Here are the brands featured:
Most CBD ointments will also contain other natural ingredients that provide even more benefits.
All in all, CBD ointments make a delightful and less invasive alternative to unhealthy pain killers.
CBD Massage Oil
The ultimate relaxing activity (message) meets the ultimate relaxing compound (CBD).
We all know massages can relax the mind and ease sore and tight muscles, so what happens when we add CBD to the mix?
The expert quoted in this Well + Good article explains why people might feel enhanced effects. CBD’s topical anti-inflammatory characteristics travel through the skin. When applied onto skin and muscles that have already been worked into relaxation by massage, CBD can turn up the volume on the benefits and sensations.
Also, since topical CBD affects only a single area, people probably won’t experience as much of the drowsiness, hunger, or sleepiness some feel when taking oral versions. (We wouldn’t want people falling asleep on their massage tables, after all.)
CBD Oil Drops
You can call any CBD oil that comes with a dropper “CBD oil drops.”
CBD oil drops aren’t like gumdrops or lemon drops or anything like that. CBD drops just label a method for delivering the dosage to your mouth, one dropper at a time.
Droppers make CBD oil dosage easy to measure, so you know how much you’re getting and how much works for you. Most products will list how much of one dropper you should take, full vs. half, etc.
Curious about CBD oil drops? Try PlusCBD™ Oil Drops , available in a variety of concentrations and flavors that go perfectly in smoothies and shakes and so much more.
CBD Oil Pills
CBD pills, often called CBD capsules, are easy to take and sometimes include other beneficial herbs and compounds.
- You get a controlled dosage without measuring and eyeballing. Simply swallow the capsule. You don’t have to worry about measuring into a dropper or following below-the-tongue instructions.
- They’re easy to transport.
- They’re fast to use.
- They’re discreet to pop at any time.
- They’re flavorless (ideal for people who gag when they take CBD oil)
CBD capsules look and feel a lot like any other multivitamin or supplement, so they’re comforting for people who feel strange about ingesting oils and tinctures.
- Modern Nature Relieved
We’d love to hear your thoughts about CBD Oil in the comments below… What has been your experience?