What Is CBD Oil?
The question often is asked: What is CBD Oil? Many of us have heard about the increasingly popular compound extracted from the cannabis plant, however there are still plenty of misconceptions about CannaBiDiol (CBD) oil.
With seemingly unlimited potential, is it too good to be true? Is it more hype than science?
Cannabidiol (pronounced can-nab-id-diol) is one of the many naturally occurring compounds in the cannabis plant called cannabinoids. Another, more infamous cannabinoid is THC, the ingredient in marijuana that is associated with the feeling of “being high”
CBD does not make you feel the intoxicating feeling that THC produces, although most people describe it as mind altering in that it improves symptoms of anxiety and depression.
But, it does not make you feel “high” per se.
Cannabidiol is typically extracted from the hemp plant (not the same as a marijuana plant) and naturally has 0.3% THC or less in it, which is the legal limit.
Why is CBD Such a Big Deal?
Well, there is a massive amount of research compiled about the effects of CBD oil from universities and hospitals all over the world. It has been studied in lab dishes, rats, mice, dogs and humans. These studies showed it has reduced inflammation, decreased and even eliminated seizures, reduced anxiety, reduced the symptoms of depression, slowed growth of cancer cells and successfully treated symptoms of Parkinson’s. All of the above have been claims made by researchers, doctors and scientists associated with universities and/or hospitals.
There are plenty of other ailments and disorders it has been studied to treat, but listing them would make this article much too long. You can check out our other blog on this huge amount of research here
Is it legal?
The legality is very tricky. For decades, the hemp plant was lumped in with the marijuana plant in the eyes of the law. Recently, hemp as well as CBD were removed from the controlled substances act of 1976, making it legal. But, although the hemp plant is legal the compound cannabidiol falls into a grey area. Depending on which state you live in, it may be illegal although almost every state in the USA allows it in one form or another.
See if CBD is legal in your state [coming soon]
The government defines hemp as the Cannabis Sativa L plant having 0.3% or less THC. Any cannabis plant with more than 0.3% THC is considered marijuana in the eyes of the federal government. CBD from hemp also won’t produce the psychoactive “high” that marijuana will produce. If a hemp plant has less than 0.3% THC it’s legal to grow and distribute around the USA according to Uncle Sam.
NEW: The TSA has announced that products containing cannabidiol are allowed to be brought onto commercial flights
NEW: The USPS has allowed the mailing of hemp-derived cannbidiol
Hemp is now legal in all 50 states as of Dec. 2018
So, in essence, make sure your CBD oil is made from hemp (not marijuana) and you’ll be buying legal CBD oil!
Warning: The industry is not yet regulated by the FDA. This means any manufacturer can use any manufacturing process they choose, they can include (or exclude) any ingredients they choose and not disclose these things to the consumer.
It’s incredibly important that you demand lab tests from the brand you’re buying from. If they can’t tell you what’s in it, then you’re either buying CBD oil with harmful ingredients or you’re not getting the dose of CBD you’re paying for.
How CBD is Made
Manufacturing can be done a few ways. The basic premise is this: compounds like CBD (and other ingredients) are extracted from the hemp plant in a liquid state. This liquid state is a thick oil which is then bottled in hemp seed oil or olive oil to “carry” it into the body. These are appropriately named “carrier oils” And the CBD can be diluted or concentrated in carrier oil to the dose desired. These oils are made to be taken sublingually. See our guide on how to take it properly here.
This can even be done at home. There are plenty of step-by-step recipes for homemade CBD that includes some dangerous procedures and involves flammable liquids.
Solvent Extraction and CO2 extraction are the two main ways it’s manufactured. Solvent extraction most commonly uses the ethanol or butane to dissolve the entire bud of the hemp plant into a liquid. Once the liquid is created, the solvent is boiled off and only a thick resin is left behind. Removing the ethanol and/or butane completely is difficult to do without ruining the CBD content of the plant, and so you’re left with trace amounts of the solvent in your finished product.
CO2 extraction also removes the CBD from the plant by cooling the CO2 until it is at a “supercritical” point, where it engulfs the hemp plant like a liquid, but it still maintains properties of a gas. Once the CO2 returns to a normal level, it leaves the finished product and you’re left with a clean, pure CBD oil without any residue. The CO2 is also recycled for future use.
related: How to take CBD correctly
What Is CBD Oil? The Bottom Line:
CBD has been studied for decades, found to have a huge array of medical benefits and is very safe. There are big differences in quality from brand to brand because the industry doesn’t have regulations yet. It’s very important that you have 3rd party lab tests for the CBD oil you’re consuming. Since it can be made using different processes, some of which may be harmful to you, it’s important you know exactly what you’re buying.
[sc_fs_multi_faq headline-0=”h2″ question-0=”What Is CBD?” answer-0=”Short for Cannabidiol, CBD is the main molecule found in the hemp plant. It has been researched for decades and is a known anti-convulsant, anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety and pain reliever. There is also evidence it may promote good sleep” image-0=”” headline-1=”h2″ question-1=”Is CBD Marijuana?” answer-1=”No. Although CBD as a molecule can be found in all cannabis plants, (of which marijuana is one) it’s not found in high concentrations in the marijuana plant. The hemp plant is also in the cannabis family, however it contains the highest concentrations of CBD.” image-1=”” headline-2=”h2″ question-2=”Is CBD Legal?” answer-2=”The grey area surrounding CBD confounds most attorneys. The truth is, hemp and all of its extracts (including CBD) were legalized at the federal level as long as they have less than 0.3% THC, however each state must regulate CBD individually, and so it’s on a state-by-state basis. However, only states like Idaho are enforcing their illegal stance on CBD” image-2=”” headline-3=”h2″ question-3=”Where Can I Buy CBD?” answer-3=”It’s readily available everywhere. That doesn’t mean you should buy it from your local gas station. Find an online brand or local shop that can provide lab tests to prove the purity and quality. ” image-3=”” count=”4″ html=”true” css_class=””]
About the Author
Jon Vought is one of the founders of Omnia Naturals. He’s a full-time firefighter/paramedic in south
Florida with a passion for the outdoors and learning about all things CBD.