What to Bear in Mind when Buying your First CBD Product

by Simy Wandering Turtle

The benefits of CBD products are being discovered as attitudes towards cannabis slowly change. One of the major selling points of CBD oil is that it is non-psychoactive. It is now being used for many therapeutic purposes. If you want to try out CBD oil but do not know much about it, you need to equip yourself with some information first.

It can be difficult to know what to look for and to find a trusted provider. There is still a lack of regulation and transparency and some producers use misleading or deceptive advertising, counting on your ignorance to sell their products.

What do Products contain?

CBD (cannabidiol) is a compound that accounts for as much as 40% of a cannabis extract. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol ) is the psychoactive part of the plant that creates the “high”. People often have difficulty believing that cannabis can be used for a wide variety of medical applications because of the fact that it has been illegal for so long and used mainly for recreational purposes.

The illegal status of cannabis also means that few research studies have been done, although those that have taken place have shown positive results. Anecdotal evidence about the use of CBD oil, on the other hand, is overwhelmingly positive. Therapeutic products containing only CBD, a ratio of CBD to THC, or a full range of compounds are available today.

CBD-only products drew extensive coverage in the U.S. media when a certain strain of cannabis was processed into CBD oil and used to treat a child with epilepsy. This lead to several states adopting CBD-only laws. Some concern exists that products containing only CBD are not as effective due to the ‘entourage’ effect which is thought to occur when multiple cannabinoids are used together.

How do these products work?

Most of the cannabinoid receptors are found in the central nervous system. The rest are found in various other systems in the body such as the digestive tract. The whole network of receptors is called the endocannabinoid system and Cannabinoids are keys that can unlock these receptors. When they are unlocked, they release proteins necessary for immune balance, neuroprotective functions, recovery from stress and energy balance.

Cannabinoids can have a positive effect on pain, appetite, sleep functions, memory, mood and immune system functioning. From the studies that have been done, CBD oil seems to be effective when treating conditions like migraines and epilepsy. Further studies must be done to prove its many other therapeutic benefits.

What to consider when choosing a CBD product. How is it extracted?

Some companies use cheap methods involving toxic solvents like propane and butane. Supercritical extraction uses carbon dioxide to preserve and maintain the purity of the oil. Complex equipment and expertise are needed in this process where carbon dioxide is used under high pressure and at very low temperatures. Products extracted in this way are more expensive but provide a quality product, rich with cannabinoids.

What is its Strength?

The strength of a product is measured by the concentration of CBD oil in the product and the percentage volume of cannabidiol in the product. The percentage volume is usually found on the label. Many companies will list the mg dosage of the CBD oil without giving the strength of actual active CBD.

Reputable companies will list the active CBD found in their products. CBD products that offer four or more parts of CBD to one part of THC have been found by many users to give the most relief.

Where is it Sourced?

Where and how it was grown as well as the strain of cannabis used all affect the final product. The plant easily absorbs contaminants from the soil while it grows. If the CBD oil is extracted from hemp, it may contain chemical fertilizers and pesticides. If you buy a product made from hemp, it should only be bought from a trusted industrial hemp producer.

Reputable companies will have laboratory results from accredited laboratories using globally accepted methods to ensure extracts are free from heavy metals, pesticide, and microbiological contaminants.

How bioavailable is the CBD?

Some products claiming to contain CBD have been tested and found to contain zero percent. Delivery under the tongue or rectally is thought to have the highest bioavailability, although some people swear by vaping. If you are using CBD capsules, bioavailability can be improved by eating some kind of fat like full-fat yogurt.

What has been added?

Purity level depends on what other ingredients are added. Some products contain solvents, artificial coloring, sweeteners, and preservatives.

Different types of CBD products

CBD oils are so diverse and versatile – they each have their advantages and disadvantages. As CBD oil is available in various forms, making a choice can be quite daunting for someone buying for the first time. The main question for you to ask is “which product is best for my needs?” The only way you’ll ever know for sure what works for you is to try out different options.

Tinctures and sprays: CBD tinctures come in a variety of strengths. An advantage of a tincture is that users can decrease or increase dosage easily. Tinctures are readily absorbed by the body as they are administered under the tongue. The advantage of a spray is that it is portable and discreet.

Capsules: The advantage of using capsules is that you can easily keep track of your intake and they are very convenient to use.

Gum: With a CBD chewing gum, you can chew it whenever and wherever you like. But it is difficult to adjust serving size because concentration is dependent on the size of the gum. It’s usually recommended to use a tincture as well as the gum.

Topicals: Topical CBD comes in the form of balms, creams, and lotions. They are used to rub on specific areas with inflammation, pain or stiffness. They are slow to act because they are absorbed through the skin and are more expensive than other products.

Oils: The purest products are found in oil form and they can be highly concentrated. Beginners may find the pure oils rather strong, to begin with.

Where can I find CBD products?

There are many ways of buying CBD products. You can purchase them online, from dispensaries or from herbalists. One of the important questions people ask about CBD oil is whether it is legal to buy it. The CBD oil extracted from hemp is completely legal. If it’s extracted from cannabis, the legality is trickier to determine as this depends on state laws.

An online store: Many products are sold online which is a quick and convenient way to buy. You have a variety of products to choose from and you can compare prices. You can also do some research about the reputation of a supplier and read reviews. Reputable companies make sure products are tested to ensure safety and quality.

Dispensaries: CBD products are found in many dispensaries today that operate under the health and safety standards of the state. When buying hemp-based CBD oil, you can buy it freely but if you what to buy CBD oil obtained from cannabis, you will need certification from a doctor. If you live in a state where medical marijuana is legal, this does not apply. When buying from a dispensary, find out as much as you can about a particular product before buying.

Today more reputable companies are offering safe, reliable and effective CBD products due to the increasing demand. However, there are still several suppliers who do not offer transparency and only want make profits. You need to make sure that you obtain your products from a reliable and reputable company that is prepared to disclose any information you request.

SOURCES:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3442177/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22729452

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28861484