Here are a few tips to help you find the best CBD oil:
Cathy Wong is a nutritionist and wellness expert. Her work is regularly featured in media such as First For Women, Woman's World, and Natural Health.
Human studies evaluating the use of CBD in treating chronic pain are lacking. Those that do exist almost invariably include THC, making it difficult to isolate CBD’s distinct effects.
What to Look For
CBD shows promise in the treatment of anxiety disorders, suggests a 2015 review of studies in the journal Neurotherapeutics. According to the investigators, CBD demonstrated potent anxiolytic (anxiety-relieving) effects in animal research, albeit with counterintuitive results.
The findings suggest that CBD oil may be a suitable complementary therapy for people whose hypertension is complicated by stress and anxiety. However, there is no evidence that CBD oil can treat hypertension on its own or prevent hypertension in people at risk. While stress is known to complicate high blood pressure, it cannot cause hypertension.
To determine an exact dose of CBD, remember that each drop of oil equals 0.05 mL of fluid. This means that a 30-mL bottle of CBD oil will have roughly 600 drops. If the concentration of the tincture is 1,500 mg/mL, one drop would contain 2.5 mg of CBD (1,500 mg ÷ 600 drops = 2.5 mg).
CBD oil comes as full-spectrum oils or in forms that contain CBD isolates. Unlike isolates, which contain CBD only, full-spectrum oils contain a variety of compounds found naturally in the cannabis plant, including proteins, flavonoids, terpenes, and chlorophyll. Alternative practitioners believe these compounds offer more substantial health benefits, although there is no clear evidence of this.
Cannabidiol can be derived from either the hemp plant or the cannabis plant. It contains THC when derived from marijuana plants, while hemp-derived cannabidiol contains only trace amounts of the psychoactive compound.
Although complex, studies have shown some neuroprotective effects of CBD. Research comparing the brains of chronic marijuana smokers and the amount of THC and CBD on hair samples indicated that, while THC appears to have a neurotoxic effect, diminishing grey matter in areas of the brain, CBD appears to have a neuroprotective effect on the same areas of the brain.
What Is Cannabidiol (CBD)?
In contrast, “high potency” strains of marijuana that have been developed more recently have been reported to contain 16-22% of THC and less than 0.1% CBD. This might explain the recent increase in cannabis-related cases of psychosis.
Steven Gans, MD is board-certified in psychiatry and is an active supervisor, teacher, and mentor at Massachusetts General Hospital.
If you are interested in a localized application, such as to relieve skin problems or muscle inflammation, a topical product such as a cream, ointment, lotion, or salve might be preferable.