There is also still a small risk of THC getting into the system, even from hemp seeds, which normally contain no THC. The THC could be present as a result of contamination with other plant matter. The results of a 2017 study show that some commercial brands of food-grade hemp seeds can have a THC concentration that is as much as 1,250 percent higher than the legal limit.
Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is a natural plant-based oil that contains phyto (plant) chemicals called cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are “feel good” molecules naturally made by the body when we are feeling relaxed and secure or involved in something that makes us happy, like hugging someone we care about or sitting down to a meal we are looking forward to. Cannabinoids are also released when we sleep well and exercise. Cannabinoids bind to little docking stations in our bodies called cannabinoid receptors that help stimulate those feel good responses. Discovered in 1992, the main cannabinoid molecule is called anandamide, which is translated from the Sanskrit as "bliss molecule."
People claim that cannabis oil can be used to treat a wide range of conditions, though evidence to back up these claims is often lacking. For example, according to Medical News Today, people use cannabis oil for conditions ranging from pain to acne; some even claim the oil can cure diseases like Alzheimer's and cancer. (But again, there is no clinical evidence to support these claims.)
Whereas marijuana contains both THC and CBD, hemp contains almost exclusively CBD — THC occurs only in very trace amounts. Remember, though, that there are many varieties of marijuana and hemp plants, and their concentrations of THC and CBD vary. Those with high THC are used primarily for recreational use; plants with low or no THC and high CBD are best for medicinal use. Only cannabis with less than 0.3% THC can be legally classified as hemp.
As for phytocannabinoid-rich hemp oil, due to the presence of the hemp plant’s cannabinoids there are many additional uses and benefits with practically zero side effects. The most common use of this type of hemp oil is for chronic pain management, but many people also use it to treat some symptoms of cancer, among other diseases and conditions. Even the Food and Drug Administration recently approved a new CBD-based prescription medication.
As for extraction methods, remember that vapor distillation and CO2 extraction are preferred. These methods yield a full-spectrum CBD product, which will likely be more costly than a CBD isolate because it’s significantly more beneficial. Alcohol extraction is a cheaper method that pulls a more narrow spectrum of plant chemicals and higher levels of chlorophyll, which doesn’t taste great and also takes up space where more CBD could be. Lipid-based extractions will likely fall in the middle price-wise.
The mosaic of laws that govern CBD legality across the globe varies just as much as the legislation across the US. Generally, CBD extract is legal in most countries, but what makes it illegal is where and what it’s extracted from. Most Group of 20 (G20) countries allow CBD extracted from industrial hemp, but not CBD extracted from whole-plant marijuana. Note, however, the differences between the two. Legislation regarding international travel with CBD also varies among countries. For the foreseeable future, the best practice would be to search online, or contact the respective embassies or consulates, before traveling to determine whether your CBD is safe and legal.
Answering the question “what is CBD oil” would be incomplete without mentioning the many CBD oil benefits. In addition to positively affecting the endocannabinoid system, CBD has been the focus of more than 23,000 published studies about cannabinoids in relation to various medical indications including anxiety, epilepsy, inflammation, cancer and chronic pain to name few. You can even find CBD for pets that is specially formulated to safely allow your pets to experience the natural benefits of CBD. For a more comprehensive look at these and other studies, visit our medical research and education page. Stay up-to-date on the latest developments in CBD and cannabis in our medical marijuana news section.
^ "Fats and fatty acids contents per 100 g (click for "more details") example: avocado oil; user can search for other oils". Nutritiondata.com, Conde Nast for the USDA National Nutrient Database, Standard Release 21. 2014. Retrieved 7 September 2017. Values from Nutritiondata.com (SR 21) may need to be reconciled with most recent release from the USDA SR 28 as of Sept 2017.
Cannabis made another leap forward in 1964 when Israeli scientist Dr. Raphael Mechoulam identified the structure of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. This discovery earned him godfather status of modern cannabis. This particular discovery allowed science to understand THC’s nature as a psychoactive compound in cannabis as well as CBD’s non-intoxicating but vastly therapeutic benefits.
Before you pick an oil to use, it's important to assess the needs of your recipe. If you're trying to fry something, you'll want to opt for an oil with a neutral flavor and a high smoke point. If you aren't sure what a smoke point is, Elizabeth Ann Shaw, M.S., R.D.N., C.L.T., explains that it's simply the point at which an oil begins to smoke and become ineffective. Oils with high smoke points are typically those that are more refined, because their heat-sensitive impurities are often removed through chemical processing, bleaching, filtering, or high-temperature heating. A high smoke point is typically one above 375 degrees F, as that's the temperature you usually fry at.
Cannabis sales have been illegal since the 1970 Controlled Substances Act was passed, with the only exceptions being the products made from the "mature stalk" and "sterilized seed" of the hemp plant, which could still be sold since they contained little to no psychoactive components. Even today, federal law has not changed its stance on cannabis. On the state level, however, things have changed dramatically. As of this writing, there are 30 states that have legalized the sale of cannabis in some form, whether that be medicinally or recreationally. Because federal law continues to outlaw the production and sales of cannabis aside from the CBD oil and hemp seed oil from hemp plants, it is illegal for states that have legalized cannabis to sell products across state borders.
A study done in Spain of about 7,500 men and women at high risk of heart disease found that people who were advised to consume a Mediterranean-diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or mixed nuts had a lower rate of heart attack, stroke and death from heart-related causes, compared with people who were advised only to follow a generally low-fat diet. These findings appeared in 2013 in The New England Journal of Medicine.
Still, as the saying goes, absence of evidence isn’t necessarily evidence of absence, and there’s a reason we don’t have a ton of solid research on CBDs yet — “to study it, we need a good source, ” said Ziva Cooper, who is an associate professor at Columbia University and was on the National Academies committee. CBD is hard to get because it’s still technically a Schedule I drug, which limits its availability, Cooper said.
Of all these, which is the healthiest oil? First, you need to decide what you mean by “healthy.” Some of the biggest and best studies have focused on heart disease—a leading cause of diet-related illness and death in developed countries. More than 17 million people die of cardiovascular disease globally. (See also What Is Cardiovascular Disease? It’s Actually Dozens of Disorders.)
Prolonged use is not associated with an increased risk of side effects. In research studies, up to 1500 mg of purified CBD per day has been used to address various medical illnesses without reported harmful effects including changes in heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, electrolyte balance, gastrointestinal function, psychomotor functions, or sleep cycles.
There's also the question of CBD's legality – something that's a lot grayer than the black-and-white picture most companies paint. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration considers CBD, like all cannabinoids, a schedule 1 drug. That means it's just as illegal as heroin and ecstasy. Meanwhile, hemp – a variety of the cannabis plant regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture – is legal , so long as its THC content is negligibly low. But because the agriculture department doesn't test for CBD – only THC – in hemp, more companies are getting away with selling products they say contain CBD, says Sara Jane Ward, an assistant professor of pharmacology at the Temple University Lewis Katz School of Medicine who's been studying CBD in rodent models for more than 10 years. Needless to say, the legality of CBD is "very confusing and very gray," she says.
Whereas Michigan already had medical weed legalized to make for a quicker route to starting full legislation, these states don't yet have an operational system in place. North Dakota and West Virginia also still are not operational yet, nor in Louisiana or Arkansas. Ohio is also behind schedule, having been unable to meet their goal of having operational dispensaries two years after voting for legalization. And until those are operational, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy ruled that any CBD products not sold in dispensaries licensed by the state's program are illegal.
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