Here’s What to Know About Cannabidiol (CBD)

Since CBD seems to be on everyone’s lips — literally — let’s run through what CBD is, what CBD does to your body, and what the health benefits are.

By Jordyn Taylor

What is CBD, or cannabidiol, that everyone’s buzzing about? If you don’t already, you’re about to see this stuff everywhere.

We’re on the edge of a CBD explosion. The U.S. market for CBD products is estimated to be worth $2.1 billion by 2020, up 700 percent from 2016; the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances; the Food and Drug Administration approved an epilepsy medication containing CBD oil for the first time, causing the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration to shift its stance — albeit very slightly — on CBD.
You can rub CBD oil on your skin or drop it under your tongue; you can eat it as a sugarcoated gummy or drink it as a Goop-approved cocktail. There’s evidence (some scientific, plenty anecdotal) that it helps with epileptic seizures, opioid addiction, PTSD, arthritis, anxiety, insomnia, nausea, chronic pain, and much more. If you believe the hype, CBD can do just about anything for your physical and mental health — and it won’t get you high as a kite.

Since CBD seems to be on everyone’s lips — literally — let’s run through what CBD is, what CBD does to your body, and whether CBD is legal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What is CBD?
The cannabis plant contains more than 100 different chemical compounds known as cannabinoids, which interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system in ways that researchers are still working toward understanding.
One of those cannabinoids is CBD, or cannabidiol (pronounced cann-a-bid-EYE-ol). CBD is non-psychoactive, which means it won’t get you high — and there’s a growing body of evidence that it has a number of health benefits.

CBD vs. THC: What’s the difference?
The main one is that CBD will not make you high. Of all those different cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, the two best known are CBD and THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol.

CBD and THC are both found in marijuana, but it’s the THC that’s responsible for weed’s mind-altering effects. THC is psychoactive; CBD is not. As long as your CBD products don’t contain THC — or contain very small amounts of it — you can reap their potential benefits without going full Pineapple Express.

What are the benefits of CBD?
There’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that CBD helps treat a variety of ailments. People are turning to oils, gummies, and other CBD food and drink products to relax at the end of a long day. Retired NFL players are using CBD to manage physical pain, debilitating headaches, and sleeplessness. Spa clients are even using CBD skin products to fight signs of aging.
We’re still in the early stages of understanding CBD’s effects on the body, but there’s already scientific evidence — some of it funded by the U.S. government — that CBD has legitimate medical benefits, too.
To name just a few: Animal research and small-scale human studies have pointed to CBD’s anti-anxiety and anti-inflammatory properties, NPR reports. A study is underway to see how CBD helps patients with PTSD and alcohol use disorder, and another is exploring how CBD might help curb drug cravings in people with opioid addiction. Cannabinoids like CBD may also be effective at treating cancer-related side effects, according to the National Institutes of Health.

CBD and epilepsy
You’ve probably come across a viral story about CBD’s seizure-fighting capabilities in patients with epilepsy.
“I have seen cases where a child who’s having hundreds of seizures a day got put on CBD and had a truly phenomenal benefit,” Dr. Orrin Devinsky, MD, director of the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center at NYU Langone Health, tells MensHealth.com — though he adds that those miracle cases happen fairly infrequently.
“We should absolutely test CBD across as many epilepsy syndromes as possible.”

Devinsky puts more weight behind the scientific advancements: In June, the FDA approved an epilepsy drug called Epidiolex, which contains a purified form of CBD oil. In controlled clinical trials, the drug was proven to reduce seizures in people with Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome — and it didn’t produce as many of the unpleasant side-effects that come with other epilepsy medications.
“It’s exciting,” Devinsky says — but he still has questions. Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome comprise “well under 5 percent” of epilepsy cases in the U.S. “What about the other 95 percent, with regard to CBD?” he asks.

Studies on CBD and epilepsy with focal seizures, for instance, showed the compound was no more effective than a placebo.
“The jury’s still out,” Devinsky says. “This is why we do science. People who think they know ahead of time are often wrong. My own view is to be humble, skeptical, and open-minded. We should absolutely test CBD across as many epilepsy syndromes as possible.”

Is CBD legal?
As of June 2018, the DEA still classified marijuana and its extracts — including CBD — as Schedule I substances, meaning CBD was banned by the feds. But when the FDA approved Epidiolex, the epilepsy medication that contains CBD, it initiated a 90-day window for the DEA to finally adjust its stance on cannabis.

In September, the DEA announced its decision: It would place Epidiolex in schedule 5 of the Controlled Substances Act — the least restrictive classification. Some experts thought the DEA might reschedule CBD entirely, according to Business Insider.

“DEA will continue to support sound and scientific research that promotes legitimate therapeutic uses for FDA-approved constituent components of cannabis, consistent with federal law,” acting DEA administrator Uttam Dhillon said in a press release. “DEA is committed to continuing to work with our federal partners to seek ways to make the process for research more efficient and effective.”

What does that mean for other CBD products?
Unless it’s Epidiolex, your CBD product is still classified as a Schedule I substance, which means it’s banned by the feds. But as for state law, it depends on where you live and where your CBD came from: marijuana or hemp.
If your CBD comes from a plant that’s legal in your state, then you’re in the clear. (NORML has a helpful interactive map for cannabis laws by state.) The good news is, industrial hemp is legal nationwide — so if you want to be safe, choose a CBD product sourced from that.

4 thoughts on “Here’s What to Know About Cannabidiol (CBD)

  • October 18, 2018 at 12:39 pm
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    WOW,,,, THIS SOUNDS GREAT !!!! and with all the alleged benefits for improved health and mental cognition, we should mandate it be added to the City Water we drink. Then as we incrementally consume the CBD, then we should then see a huge improvement to all human behavior as it repairs us of all our simple or chronic conditions, or from our zealous opinionated thinking, which seems to indwell all of us according to mans best friend the psychiatrist. It also should be put into all bottled water and every libation we consume. Just Imagine, no more allusions, illusions, delusions, or confusions. We will all be sublimely enlightened, our eyes and mind, wide open to a perfect state of idyllic happiness content with all love and gratitude as our brains are washed from our mental transgressions, and we give all thanks to the inspiration of CBD ! We will now transcend for another 1000 years of Holistic Nirvana !
    WOW,,, every politician should be using this daily, “double dose”!
    Ummm,,, Yummy! Fill my glass, Pleeze! (o)-(o) A merry heart does good like a medicine.

    Reply
  • December 18, 2018 at 10:07 pm
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    What about anyone who has to submit to mandatory drug testing to maintain their job? Does CBD Oil show up in a standard drug screen?

    Reply
  • January 15, 2020 at 12:00 pm
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    Good morning

    I hope this email finds you well. I would like to contribute a CBD edibles article to your site blacksourcemedia.com. It would be great if you could add my details to the bio along with a link to cbdlifemag.com.

    Here it is!

    The Ultimate CBD Edibles Guide

    Also known as cannabinoids, CBD refers to hemp content contained in the cannabis plant. Along with other cannabinoids, CBD takes the lion share of the cannabis herb. People can use cannabinoids in various ways when it is extracted from the cannabis herb, but this depends on what it contains. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and CBD are the famous cannabinoids, and each has different effects.

    The Difference between THC and CBD

    THC edibles differ from CBD edibles in a few ways. First, CBD edibles are legal according to federal law. However, CBD edibles may sometimes contain low traces of THC, but it should not exceed 0.3 percent, which is the required threshold. Contrary, THC is known for its high effect, which people often associate with cannabis sativa, a plant species under the family of cannabis plants. Another plant species under this family is hemp. CBD doesn’t induce the body and high mind-altering effects that are associated with THC. Instead, CBD extracts are obtained from the hemp herb, which is legal in many states. You can either vape, take orally, or put CBD topically. The exciting thing is that CBD doesn’t come with the psychotropic effect that THC is known for. The impact of THC on the mind and body are quite different, and state and federal law prohibits growing in many places. Though a few countries have already legalized the THC aspect for recreational purposes, many states are still yet to approve it.

    CBD edibles are associated with energy and mood uplift. Edibles such as CBD cookies and chocolates are known for relieving stress and a variety of ailments. CBD edibles are a viable option for people with chronic conditions, where constant use of pain killers can impact their health negatively. It isn’t associated with the addictive qualities that various pharmaceuticals, such as THC contains, and it can even be used as a remedy for someone addicted to THC. Research has so far found little side effects of CBD edibles, and the benefits of its medicinal purposes are unmatched. In essence, CBD edibles are a natural option to relieve a set of mind and body-altering ailments.

    What are the Uses of CBD Edibles?

    You can use CBD edibles for various reasons. One way is that it has been used as a remedy to ailments such as inflammation, epilepsy, nerve pain, chronic pain, depression, symptoms of anxiety, and insomnia. Whether it is in the form of edible, vape as an oil, or take it topically as a lotion, CBD can be administered in different ways. CBD edibles are available in a wide range of form, including cooking oils, baked goods, and gummies. The popularity and rise of CBD continue to grow as people enjoy its benefits.

    How Can Someone Enjoy CBD Edibles?

    There are a set of different options for administering CBD edibles. It can be taken in the form of baked goods, capsules, pill, oils, or gummies. CBD edibles are safe for humans and pet purposes. Here are a few ways of taking CBD edibles.

    CBD Capsules and Pills

    Capsules and pills are similar to taking prescription drugs, and it is a great route to consider if you have no issue with CBD edibles. CBD pills and capsules intake occurs in the same fashion as with capsule and medication vitamins. Just take the tablet or pill orally and give it time for its effects to manifest.

    CBD Gummies

    Taking CBD in the form of gummies is one of the best ways to enjoy CBD edibles. Plenty of CBD gummies flavors are available, and some are reminiscent of the candy that you grew up enjoying.

    CBD Cooing Oil

    Not all CBD oils are taken through vaping. Some come in the form of oil, where users can put a few drops in the mouth and consume them orally. Others are in the form of cooking oil, which people can use for cooking sweet dishes and savory.

    CBD Edibles for Pets

    CBD Oil For Cats

    Injecting puppies and kittens with CBD hardly comes to our thoughts. However, recent studies have found that CBD edibles can improve the health of dogs and cats immensely. That’s because animals have the same endocannabinoid system like the one found in humans, and binding it with CBD edibles can help relieve anxiety and pain in animals as well. Pet owners whose dogs have been ailing for a while should consider administering CBD oil to help alleviate the pain and speed up recovery.

    CBD Oil For Dogs

    Of course, we crave for baked cakes, and CBD cookies come in that form. Get treats such as brownies and cookies to take your CBD experience to another level.

    Tips for taking CBD Edibles

    There are a few tricks to keep in mind when taking CBD edibles.

    Beginners should start with a low dosage to assess how their bodies will react to it.

    Then try to increase the dosage slowly as you monitor your body’s response.

    Take time to research the oil or edible that you buy and confirm its potency and purity level. Keep off any CBD that has traces of THC, and shop around to find the best CBD for you.

    Give the CBD time to work after having a heavy meal.

    How to Choose the Right CBD Product or Edible?

    Finding the right CBD edible is all about needs and preferences. It is up to the users to decide how quickly they would want the effects of their edibles to manifest. For example, CBD taken in an edible form can take longer to kick in because it depends on the kind of food and your digestion, but its effects are quicker when it is taken as a pill. It is up to you as well to determine whether you want something with fewer calories and sugary such as cookies and gummies. Another thing to consider when shopping for CBD is that the dosages of some edibles are higher than others. First, find out about whatever ailment you are trying to alleviate before picking your edibles. Some edibles or dosages work better for anxiety than others, while others are ideal for chronic issues and muscular pain. CBD lotions, Salve, and Cream are other options for taking CBD. You can apply Salve and Cream on a swollen or injured body part for alleviating pain. Though this is an alternative to utilizing CBD in edibles, capsules, and vaping, it still bears fruits when applied as stipulated. It is an option that users can use daily to alleviate chronic pain and handle stretch marks that are ailing them. Researching the available CBD products and which works the best for you can enable you to make the right decision for whatever CBD product or edible you would want to use.

    How CBD Edibles Work

    You first have to understand how the endocannabinoid system in the human body works to know how the effects of CBD edibles kick in. Also known as ECS, the endocannabinoid system is a biological system within the human body, and it comprises of lipid-based neurotransmitters. Its role is to bind to the receptors of cannabinoids that are scattered throughout the central nervous system. The endocannabinoid system produces cannabinoids to regulate different aspects of the nervous system as well as inflammation in human beings. It can help regulate ailments, epilepsy, and pain. Cannabinoids occur in our bodies naturally, but boosting our organs with an external cannabinoid from CBD edibles can increase the positive effects within the endocannabinoid system. The role of the endocannabinoid system isn’t only to respond to internal cannabinoids, but the external cannabinoids as well. Response to external cannabinoids that come in the form of CBD edibles can help mediate inflammation and chronic pain. Science and different studies back up the benefits of CBD edibles, and it is one of the few available natural remedies.

    Edibles vs. Vaping CBD

    CBD products are also available for use in vaporizers, but that depends on personal preferences. Some people prefer smoking while others use to take their CBD products in vape pens. Others may want to control their CBD intake by smoking instead of taking in the form of edibles. Taking CBD products in vape pens allows the effects to hit in a little quicker than taking them in the form of edibles. Vaping is a viable option for someone who would not want to wait for minutes or hours for the effects of CBD to kick in after eating. However, both edibles and vaping are discreet in a way, and the CBD will have the same results as long as the dosage remains the same.

    Incredible Benefits of CBD Edibles

    Long-Lasting Relief

    CBD edibles have several benefits over gummies and CBD inhaled with vape pens. It can take a while for CBD edibles to take effect, but the results can last longer than vaping or smoking. CBD edibles combine the active compound of cannabinoids with other foodstuffs for better results. The digestive system releases CBD slowly as digestion takes place. The results might take longer to manifest, but they are long-lasting.

    Non-Psychotropic Effects

    Of course, CBD is a compound of the cannabis sativa plant, but many people are surprised to find out that its psychotropic effects aren’t as high as THC. Instead, it offers users a sense of alerted energy and mellow mood uplift. Given its long-lasting nature, cookies and brownies infused with CBD can provide prolonged relief from everyday stressors and mild pains. It is an excellent option for anyone who would want to enjoy the effects of cannabis without any side effects.

    Easy to Make

    Though some prefer making infused cooking oils and cannabutter, CBD edibles such as brownies and cookies are simple to make. You can even add CBD extracts to baked and cooked foods for an antioxidant boost. However, note that the effects of isolated CBD are less effective compared to the cannabis plant. You can now find CBD crystals made with isolated and purified CBD online and in access points. CBD edibles are easy to dose and can give a user more control over their CBD intake.

    Less Risk of Lung Irritation

    Vape pens have become popular than ever, but their long-term implication is still yet to be determined. Thinning agents such as polyethylene and propylene glycol are also present in many vape pens. Research suggests that heating these thinning agents to temperatures above 224℃ can produce toxic carcinogens. Vape pens that don’t contain these thinning agents are available, but CBD edibles are an excellent option to avoid poisonous compounds.

    General Remedy

    Researchers suggest that care physicians can use CBD in medicine. Several CBD-infused drugs have already proved successful in treating ailments, epilepsy, and pain in clinical trials. CBD doesn’t benefit people with chronic conditions only, but anyone else who consume it as well. However, it may not work well for people with ailments related to first-aid. Research has found that some CBD edibles work the same as over-the-counter remedies, and their side effects aren’t as harsh as some of the pharmaceutical drugs.

    Discreet

    Some CBD forms are impractical or cumbersome. You could be using a large vape pen, and pulling it out in public may sometimes not be convenient. People who would want to boost their focus during the workday or relieve pain during a long flight can consider bringing with them a CBD gummy.

    Available Online

    Online availability is another benefit of CBD edibles. Though regulations on CBD products are little strict, online CBD vendors across the United States can sell their products online and ship them anywhere. You can also find CBD products in a handful of European nations. Those edibles that are sold online are derived from the hemp plant. People often refer to cannabis when discussing a variety of plants that can produce THC. The hemp plant was used for seed and fiber, but it is now being applied to low-THC and high-CBD cannabis cultivars. Any cannabis with as low as 0.3 percent THC, which is the required threshold is considered hemp in the United States. Hemp products sold online contain less than 0.3 percent THC.

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