CBD is short for Cannabidiol. CBD is one of many different compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound, meaning it does not get a user “high”. However, its legality is still a gray area because it is derived from the cannabis plant which produces Marijuana, still considered illegal in many states.
Cannabinoids, such as CBD, are active compounds produced by cannabis plants. There are over 100 chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant. These are considered the most beneficial aspect of the plant. Cannabinoids are found in both plants and the human body. The cannabinoids found in the human body interact with our Endocannabinoid system which promotes homeostasis. Homeostasis is essentially a balancing of the cells, cells that interact with our endocrine system. Our Endocannabinoid System's main purpose of the maintain homeostasis. If these systems function in harmony and are well balanced our health can improve
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is another cannabinoid responsible for causing the high a user can get. The more THC you consume the more you will notice changes in your thinking and awareness.
The CBD compound can be derived from both the Hemp and Marijuana plant. The bottom line is, there is no difference on the molecular level. However, it's important to understand that under the Agricultural Act of 2018 (aka 2018 Farm Bill) passed by Congress, only CBD from Hemp is legal at the Federal level. The Act did not legalize CBD derived from Marijuana even though its essentially the same compound. States have moved to legalize Marijuana and CBD in unique ways. This is where is gets confusing for many sellers and consumers because each State has different standards and most are different from the Federal standard. For example, only CBD derived from Hemp with .3% or less THC is legal in Texas right in line with the Federal standard. However, in Oregon medicinal marijuana and recreational marijuana are both legal as long as the user meets the minimum age requirement.
To stay legally compliant with Federal law, CBD from Hemp must meet standards set forth in the Act and contain no more than .3% THC. Marijuana derived CBD with 0% THC is still illegal at the Federal level. For the purposes of the rest of this guide, we will refer to Hemp derived CBD unless we specifically mention marijuana.
Hemp and Marijuana are both varieties of the cannabis plant, Cannabis Sativa. Thats why there is so much confusion surrounding the terms and explanations you find out there. The difference in defining them can be simplified in a number of ways. For the purpose of selecting a CBD product that is legal, we will focus on the defining them by the amount of THC in the them. A cannabis sativa variety is considered hemp if it contains .3% or less of THC, while it is considered marijuana if it contains any THC level over .3%.
Well that depends on the species and part of the plant. Here is the quick and easy breakdown:
|Contains an average of about 17% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the psychoactive compound that makes a person feel “high”.||Hemp extract must contain less than 0.3% THC to be sold legally. The THC can range from 0% to .3% depending on the processing and generally the outcome intended. For example, a manufacturer may intend to remove all THC while retaining all the beneficial compounds in the plant. The THC will test as zero, but it does not mean the product is made from Hemp seeds.||0% THC|
|Often less than 0.15% CBD||Averages at least 12%–18% CBD||Have no more than trace amounts of CBD|
|Cannabis has medicinal and therapeutic uses for chronic pain, mental health, and illnesses.||Stalks of the hemp plant can produce clothing, rope, paper, fuel, home insulation, and much more. And now, topicals and edibles. And that's why you are here, most likely.||Seeds are cold-pressed for oil production; the oil can be used in cooking (as in hempseed milk and granola), beauty products, and even paint.|
Credit: Healthline.org (December 2019)
CBD is not directly regulated by the USDA or FDA, at least not yet. However, they're slowly but surely moving in that direction. Currently, the USDA's regulation of THC through the 2018 Farm Bill is the first step, discussed above under "Is there a relationship between Hemp and CBD?" . As for the FDA, they have already approved a seizure drug called Epidolex containing CBD, and continues to explore avenues for CBD to be made available and lawfully marketed. Manufacturing of CBD is not currently subject to review but some reputable companies already meet Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards and have obtained the GMP certification already in place for food, drugs, and cosmetics regulated by the FDA. Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) is a system for ensuring that products are consistently produced and controlled according to quality standards. It is designed to minimize the risks involved in any pharmaceutical production that cannot be eliminated through testing the final product.
You may wonder why CBD oil comes with labels such as a full spectrum, broad spectrum, or isolate. That’s because they provide slightly different compounds that can be easily identified. Full spectrum oil contains not only CBD but other cannabinoids including up to 0.3 percent THC. Broad spectrum oil also contains other cannabinoids, but it has been processed in such a way as to remove all THC. Lastly, isolates are products that contain only CBD, so no THC, terpenes, or other cannabinoids.
Yes. However, you will want to choose a Broad Spectrum formula because it still has the beneficial compounds found in the plant but with zero THC. An Isolate will contain zero THC but often without the beneficial compounds. A reputable company will provide independent test results to prove the product contains 0.00% THC.
Although this is not required at this time, you'll want that reassurance from a company willing to offer it versus a company who cannot or will not make the effort. If the results of you CBD lab test are not certified by an independent third party lab, then maybe reconsider purchasing products from that seller. The lab should be independent from the owner, meaning owned and operated by a third-party entity who has no identity of interest in the seller's business organization. This is important to avoid any potential effort to collaborate on information and data in the reports provided to the consumer. It's simply a good business practice and shows everything is as labeled and advertised.
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