Because CBD is an active ingredient in the cannabis plant, cannabidiol, or CBD, has a negative stigma associated with it. Both the research on CBD and the market for CBD are expanding though the legal status of CBD products varies from state to state. Because the FDA does not control most CBD products, you should always consult a medical professional before you consume CBD.
What is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol, the chemical compound from the Cannabis sativa plant. Marijuana and hemp are two varieties of this plant, and CBD is derived from hemp. Hemp has very low levels of THC compared to marijuana. THC is a major active ingredient in marijuana and is the compound responsible for producing the mind-altering state of feeling high. CBD is the non-psychoactive part of the plant, so taking it will not result in feeling high. When taking CBD, you will not feel sedated or altered in any way.
The only FDA-approved CBD medication today is Epidiolex, which is used to treat certain types of epilepsy. However, research has shown that CBD oil can be used for a variety of medical reasons. Medical CBD has been shown to help with the following:
· Pain management
· Anxiety and depression
· Neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
· Cardiovascular disease
How to Safely Consume CBD
Depending on your goal and why you decide to take CBD, there are several options for consumption.
For people who do not want to ingest CBD, a topical ointment may be appealing. CBD creams, balms, salves, or oils can be applied to muscles, joints, ligaments, and even skin. Studies have shown that CBD creams applied topically can lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Topicals can provide concentrated relief to a particular area.
Edibles take a bit longer to work but last up to four or five hours. Edibles can be consumed as a capsule, gummy, tablet, or baked good. Edibles can mask any “weedy” taste of CBD. Because many edibles contain sugar and preservatives, some people opt for a sublingual tincture, which is absorbed under the tongue. Because sublingual products do not pass through the digestive tract, more of the CBD is preserved, and you will feel the results more quickly than if eaten.
Vape pens, also known as cartridges, are another way to consume CBD. This is a faster means of delivery, and the effect usually wears off more quickly as well, in about two hours. Vaping allows the CBD to go directly into the bloodstream and takes effect in 10 minutes or less. However, vaping can cause negative health effects and expose you to carcinogens.
Tinctures are made from CBD oil dissolved in alcohol. The dose can be easily adjusted by increasing or decreasing the number of drops taken. To use a tincture, you generally use a dropper-full of oil and place it under the tongue for one minute, then swallow. This allows the CBD oil to absorb directly in the bloodstream.
If you do not like the taste of CBD oil or tinctures, beverages are another option for consuming CBD. CBD-infused beverages include everything from water, kombucha, to cold brew coffee. The process of making a CBD beverage depends upon the product, but generally, the product is created as normal then infused with CBD.
CBD for pets is another common use for CBD. Pets can consume CBD through tasty treats, chewables, and through the use of tinctures. There is also a line of topical applications for pets. Pets can enjoy the same benefits of CBD as humans!
No matter how you take CBD, there are a few things to be on the lookout for:
· Products made with full or broad-spectrum oil. These types of products are less processed and will help you get the full scope of health benefits.
· Products that are lab-tested. Since CBD products are not all regulated by the FDA, it is important that the product is tested by a third party before you put it in your body.
· Products that are organic, U.S.-grown. Cannabis grown in the U.S. is subject to agricultural regulations and cannot contain more than 0.3% THC.
Although the CBD market is growing very quickly, research into the benefits, side effects and usages of CBD is growing as well. Always talk to a medical professional before trying any CBD product to ensure that it will not interfere with any of your current medications. A medical professional can also help you with determining the correct dose of CBD. There are many ways to take CBD, but there is no one right way. It’s important to try different methods and discover what works best for you.