CBD: everything you need to know
CBD. It’s the THING these days. I literally see CBD products popping up all over every one of my internet searches, there’s CBD in every overpriced hipster coffee, my small, southern town just opened a CBD store?!?
This is such an interesting topic because the stigmas and views surrounding marijuana are so polarizing. It’s even more strange because you have this sect of people who are aggressively against ‘weed’ but who are beginning to feed their curiosity of this holistic, natural ‘cure-all’ that is CBD.
So, What happens when there is a new product on the market that is unregulated by the FDA (CBD is not, hence a lot of the confusion surrounding the product)? The answer is a whole lot of misinformation, low-quality product, marketing scams, and confused consumers. Lucky for you, I am here to clear up some of that confusion! I have used CBD for around 2 years now, albeit not always consistently, and have shared just enough about this experience for many people to reach out with questions. In this post, I’ll address the questions surrounding CBD that I am asked the most often and that I myself was confused about prior to outside research. I have spent some TIME compiling a healthy batch of research so that you don’t have to sweat it. Let’s go get em.
WHAT IS CBD?
(Does anyone really know?)
CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of over 113 cannabinoids that have been extracted from the hemp plant. The more widely-known sister of this compound is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that act on cannabinoid receptors in the body, causing an alteration of the endocannabinoid system via alteration of neurotransmitter release in the brain.
Basically, the body already produces cannabinoid-like chemicals that are essential for normal brain/body function and development. The introduction of hemp-derived cannabinoids such as THC and CBD causes a binding to these same receptors and induces alternative bodily and mental effects. We won’t get too into the science here, but I have linked a couple of good explanatory articles here
and here .
WILL CBD GET YOU HIGH?
NO. Absolutely not. The difference between the psychoactive (i.e. high-causing) cannabinoid THC and non-psychoactive CBD lies in the interactions within the endocannabinoid system mentioned above. THC causes a state of overactivity in the brain where there are high concentrations of cannabinoid receptors; this causes the “high” generally associated with marijuana use. Read more about this here
This excerpt from the Surgical Neurology International Journal provides a brief scientific explanation of the difference between CBD and THC in the brain:
“CBD does not elicit the same psychoactive effects as seen with Δ9-THC (i.e., users of CBD do not feel euphoric). The various psychoactive effects generally associated with Δ9-THC are attributed to activation of the CB1 cannabinoid receptor found abundantly in the brain.”
In layman’s terms, CBD’s popularity lies with the fact that many of the positive effects of traditional marijuana can still be experienced without any impairment of mental capacity in the user. We will dive into the positive effects of CBD use soon, but rest assured that you will retain full mental capacity even when dosing with CBD.
IS CBD LEGAL?
The BIG question.
Here is an excerpt from a piece by Rod Knight , an attorney who represents lawful cannabis businesses:
“CBD derived from industrial hemp is legal under federal law and the laws of most states; however, CBD derived from marijuana is illegal. CBD is not included in the list of controlled substances under the CSA or the equivalent statutes of most states. It is controlled (which, for our purposes here, means “illegal”) only when derived from marijuana. This is because marijuana is a controlled substance, and its definition includes “all parts” of the Cannabis plant except for the fibers of the mature stalks and non-germinating seeds… CBD derived from industrial hemp is lawful. Since CBD is not listed in the CSA’s schedule of controlled substances it is only controlled when derived from marijuana. Industrial hemp is a lawful exception to marijuana. CBD derived from it is also legal. Additionally, since the mature stalks of the cannabis plant are an exception to the definition of marijuana, CBD derived from them is also lawful.”
To summarize all of this admittedly confusing information, the country is a bit undecided about CBD. There are a few key things to be aware of as a consumer:
1) There is generally a strict 0.3%THC cap on CBD products when it comes to whether or not they are legal. This will not usually be an issue when purchasing CBD online or in a store located in a state without recreational marijuana use laws. However, in the event that you find yourself purchasing CBD in a state such as California where MJ is recreationally legal, it is very important to ensure that the products you acquire contain less than 0.3% THC before you attempt to travel with them.
2) Each state is slightly different and, while CBD is federally legal, it is always best to do a little research on specific state laws before attempting to travel with CBD. (In general, you will never have an issue. This extra step is mainly for piece of mind).
WHAT IS CBD GOOD FOR?
Well. Lot’s of things actually.
While it is widely known throughout the scientific and medical communities that there is MUCH research that still needs to be done in order to fully understand the true effects and benefits of CBD, the recent surge in interest has prompted increased research on the topic and the results have widely been successful and positive.
As far as common ailments go, CBD has been shown to curb anxiety, dull pain, and aid in peaceful sleep. In the cases of other, more severe ailments such as epilepsy and chronic pain, CDB has been scientifically proven to be effective. This excerpt from Harvard Medical School outlines a few of the more significant finds concerning CBD:
"...effectiveness in treating some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically don’t respond to antiseizure medications. In numerous studies, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and in some cases it was able to stop them altogether...
CBD is commonly used to address anxiety, and for patients who suffer through the misery of insomnia, studies suggest that CBD may help with both falling asleep and staying asleep.
CBD may offer an option for treating different types of chronic pain. A study from the European Journal of Pain showed, using an animal model, CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Another study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits inflammatory and neuropathic pain, two of the most difficult types of chronic pain to treat."
Recently, the FDA approved the first CBD-based drug to treat epilepsy, called Epidiolex. The American Epilepsy Society outlines the uses and benefits of the drug here .
HOW DO I KNOW MY CBD DOSE?
One of the many good things about CBD is that it is a very mild compound that is generally impossible to overdose on. The main problem that I have encountered is a tendency to underdose. The exact recommended dosage for CDB has not been 100% decided upon, but there is are general guidelines for determining an appropriate dose.
Generally, it is recommended to take 1-6mg of CBD for every 10lbs of body weight, depending on pain/anxiety levels. A helpful example of this is provided by medium.com:
"For example, 20MG-33MG would be a great starting dosage for a 200 lb patient, while 15MG-25MG would be best for another who weighs 150 lb."
The site also provides this helpful table:
When applying CBD tincture, I have found it most effective to hold your dose under your tongue for 30 seconds to a minute before swallowing.
MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WITH CBD
It’s a good one.
As I mentioned before, I have used CBD for over two years at this point. I first sought out CBD as a solution to the overwhelming anxiety that I began to experience once I entered college. I’m fairly certain that anxiety is in my genes; it is something that many beautiful women in my family struggle with and it hit me HARD when I was around 18 years old. It was on a trip to San Francisco that I decided to invest in some really good quality (read: pricey) CBD tincture. I won’t lie, I didn’t really know how to effectively use this stuff. It was so expensive that I was only using tiny doses at a time and the dosings were few and far between. It wasn’t until I partnered with Savage CBD (shop the site through this link and use the discount code GOGETEM at checkout) and received a few of their products that I began to really see the benefits of CBD in my body.
First and foremost, I am SAVED by CBD when it comes time for my period. I always struggle with severe cramping or the first day of my cycle, like to the point of not being able to get out of bed for hours at a time. I have found that full dropper of the Savage CBD Lemon-Lime Tincture under my tongue first thing in the morning literally eliminates all cramping within 5 minutes. No lie, it is like a miracle every time (especially since things like Midol don’t seem to do the trick). I traveled with this tincture and was able to have fully active and fun days when I would otherwise have been laid up in bed in my hostel.
As for my anxiety, I will not say that CBD has been a cure-all for my symptoms. It has, however, assisted me greatly in my journey to reduced anxiety. Recently, a combination of CBD tincture, occasional use of my Savage CBD vaporizers throughout the day, and a supplement regimen that I will describe in a later post have allowed me to feel much more in control of my anxiety. I combine these things with physical activity and a productive, organized routine to manage my anxiety completely naturally. The main thing I will say here is that consistency is KEY. I often fail to take my CBD dosage at regular intervals and therefore I believe that I only reap some of the potential benefits of the product. I will be posting an update on my progress once I settle into a post-travel routine (I have been backpacking Europe for the past 2.5 months).
WHERE SHOULD I PURCHASE CBD?
Let’s address one thing quickly, before we go any farther with this question. The place where we all go to buy everything is Amazon, right? Well there’s this thing about the Amazon algorithm: coming up with zero results is not possible, even when there are zero results that match your search. For example, this is what an Amazon search for “CBD oil” looks like:
Notice anything funny? Nothing actually says CBD. Because CBD is not allowed for sale on Amazon (here is the link to the Amazon Prohibited List ).
Unfortunately, many people do not realize the difference between Hemp Oil (a natural source of healthy fats that has no therapeutic effect) and CBD Oil.
As CBD is new in its popularity on the market, it is not regulated by the FDA, leaving purchasing digression up to the consumer. This can prove to be very tricky, as most of us are not equipped to sort through BS products or predict which companies are not honest about what is in their products. I have found that a significant amount of research that includes personal testimonies and unpaid reviews of well-established brands is the best path to take.
Hi. That’s me, right now. Happy to have you here.
So, here is how I purchase safe, high-quality, and effective CBD.
(While I do receive a small commission from my links, my opinions were formed before any code was provided and I only recommend products that truly work for me. Working to bring honesty back into promotions here.)
My favorite tincture of the moment is the Savage CBD Lemon-Lime Tincture. As I mentioned above, this has SAVED me on my cycle and provides relief for tight, sore muscles. I also base my anxiety-control routine on this product.
My favorite ways to enjoy this tincture are directly underneath my tongue (it tastes like lemon candy) and dropped into a cup of herbal tea.
I have so enjoyed my Savage CBD vaporizer pens for an anxiety ally throughout the day. They are discreetly tiny, require zero charging, and have such a pleasantly mild taste and smell. I carry these with me to top up on my dosage throughout the day. If vaporizing isn’t your vibe, the tincture bottle is the perfect size to slide into a purse and carry with you throughout the day.
For direct application to areas of tension or pain, the Savage CBD Lavender Lotion is SUCH a gem.
Use the discount code GOGETEM at Checkout to receive a 15% discount on Savage products.
Another company that I have the absolute pleasure of working with is NuLeaf Naturals.
When shopping through the link above, use the discount code gogetem for 15% off your order.
I love the whole vibe of this company and the simplicity of their products is beautiful. They have high-quality tinctures in a variety of sizes. This is definitely the best option for anyone overwhelmed by options or disinterested in flavored oils. The Nuleaf website is very streamlined and clear-cut, featuring a high-quality product and only requiring customers to decide between sizes. Where the Savage Tinctures have a very yummy, almost candy-like flavor, the NuLeaf Tincture has a very mild, earthy flavor.
Wow. Did ya get all that??
Kidding. But I do hope this post clears up some of the confusion and misinformation surrounding CBD. If you're finishing up this post and have further questions, do not hesitate to reach out to ya girl @ firstname.lastname@example.org.