Now that CBD has become so popular, growers are creating strains of the cannabis plant that are optimized for producing high amounts of this particular cannabinoid. There are tons of new strains on the market that feature a high CBD-to-THC ratio. This makes it even easier for the processing facilities to remove the CBD and turn it into an oil extract.
Hemp oil does have a number of uses and is often marketed as a cooking oil or a product that is good for moisturizing the skin. It is also used in the production of certain soaps, shampoos, and foods. It is also a basic ingredient for bio-fuel and even a more sustainable form of plastic. Hemp has been cultivated and used for roughly 10,000 years, and it definitely has useful purposes. However, a lack of cannabinoids, namely CBD, means that it has little therapeutic value.
The important thing is that you have to be SUPER careful when selecting CBD oils. Since the cannabis industry is not FDA-regulated, there have been dozens and dozens of companies trying to get away with selling very low quality (and even potentially toxic), “snake oils” that have been extracted using harsh chemical solvents like butane and hexane. Make sure you stay away from cheap products like these, as they could damage your health.
If you haven’t been bombarded with CBD marketing or raves about it from friends, get ready. This extract—which comes from either marijuana or its industrial cousin, hemp—is popping up everywhere. There are CBD capsules, tinctures, and liquids for vaping plus CBD-infused lotions, beauty products, snacks, coffee, and even vaginal suppositories. Already some 1,000 brands of CBD products are available in stores—and online in states that don’t have lenient cannabis laws. This is a tiny fraction of what’s to come: The CBD market is poised to exceed $22 billion by 2022, per the Chicago-based research firm Brightfield Group.
I have stage 4 kidney disease and struggle with congestive heart disease. My friend offered me some CBD oil and I decided what the hell, I’m 52 and dying. I stopped smoking using a JUUL vaper. I now refill my pods myself with 18% ECBlend Caranilla juice made locally in Oregon. I mix 10 drops of CBD to my refill of the Caranilla juice. I’ll keep you informed on what effects my blood tests show as I pray the oil helps pull up my renal functions.
In addition to acting on the brain, CBD influences many body processes. That’s due to the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which was discovered in the 1990s, after scientists started investigating why pot produces a high. Although much less well-known than the cardiovascular, reproductive, and respiratory systems, the ECS is critical. “The ECS helps us eat, sleep, relax, forget what we don’t need to remember, and protect our bodies from harm,” Marcu says. There are more ECS receptors in the brain than there are for opioids or serotonin, plus others in the intestines, liver, pancreas, ovaries, bone cells, and elsewhere.
To make matters more confusing, nine states (including California, Washington, and Colorado) let residents buy cannabis-based products with or without THC. Nearly two dozen other “medical marijuana states” allow the sale of cannabis, including capsules, tinctures, and other items containing CBD or THC, at licensed dispensaries to people whose doctors have certified that they have an approved condition (the list varies by state but includes chronic pain, PTSD, cancer, autism, Crohn’s disease, and multiple sclerosis). Sixteen more states legalized CBD for certain diseases.