Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, has become a popular item in the past few years. There are currently a variety of CBD companies offering an array of products.
The diverse selection is excellent for consumers for two reasons. First, more competition means that companies will have to review their pricing to remain attractive to customers in an ever-growing industry. Secondly, more variety means more choice, which is a boon to those searching for what may work for their unique needs. However, there is a downside to too much choice.
For many people, especially those buying CBD for the first time, the sheer quantity of available products can be overwhelming. Even once they have found a reputable brand, there are usually multiple strengths and forms to consider.
So, how do consumers know what type of CBD product is best? This article will not only answer this question, but it will also examine the emerging CBD market.
How to Find the Best CBD Product for You
There are many different things to consider when buying CBD. Despite the growing popularity of CBD, the industry is still unregulated, which means companies may operate without having to adhere to a set of standards. Companies can publish misleading information on their websites or use potentially dangerous extraction techniques.
How can consumers know that they are choosing a product that is safe and may provide some benefits? When thinking of which CBD product to buy, there are a few critical considerations consumers must keep in mind. These include extraction techniques, the type of CBD used, testing procedures, and where a company sources its product.
How Was the CBD Extracted?
There are many different ways of extracting CBD, including carbon dioxide (CO2), olive oil, dry ice, and solvents. CO2 extraction is currently considered the gold standard as it is safe, effective, and delivers a pure end product free from contaminants.
Does the CBD Come from Hemp?
Manufacturers can extract CBD from cannabis or industrial hemp. Although industrial hemp is a type of cannabis, it is unique in that it only produces trace amounts of THC. THC is the compound responsible for the intoxicating effects of marijuana.
If the CBD comes from marijuana, it could contain higher THC than oil extracted from hemp. Although it still may not be enough to produce intoxicating effects, it could cause a problem if marijuana is not legal in the area where a consumer resides. Even if they do live in a legalized state, they could get in trouble for carrying CBD extracted from marijuana across state lines.
CBD from hemp, on the other hand, should contain less than 0.3% THC. This type of CBD is available in many areas of the country. However, consumers should research the laws in any area where they will be traveling or living.
Is It Full-Spectrum CBD or an Isolate?
Another important decision when it comes to buying CBD is whether to choose full-spectrum oil or CBD isolates. The difference is that while CBD isolate contains CBD and CBD alone, full-spectrum products contain a whole range of other compounds produced by the hemp plant. This includes other cannabinoids (including trace amounts of THC) and other beneficial ingredients such as terpenes and flavonoids.
Many believe that full-spectrum products are more effective due to a phenomenon known as the entourage effect.
The entourage effect describes how hemp compounds work together to provide more significant benefits than any compound taken alone. However, those seeking work or employed in occupations where drug testing is mandatory may still have to exercise caution.
Anyone consuming CBD may run the risk of having even trace amounts of THC in their system. In this case, a CBD isolate may be more practical.
Has the CBD Undergone Third-Party Lab Testing?
Third-party lab testing is a crucial way of identifying whether a CBD oil contains the amount of cannabidiol (and other cannabinoids) that the manufacturer says it does and ensures it is free from harmful contaminants.
Any reputable company should publish third-party lab reports on their website or make them available upon request. This demonstrates confidence in their CBD products and should help to reassure consumers regarding the brand’s overall quality.
Different types of CBD Products: The Pros and Cons
So, once a consumer has found a brand that they are happy with, how should they proceed? Well, there is a vast array of different CBD products on the market, and it can be challenging to know where to begin.
However, comparing how each CBD form works with a daily routine and lifestyle is a starting point. Other factors include what each CBD method offers.
Oils and tinctures are the traditional way to take CBD. A few drops are placed under the tongue, which dissolves for around 90 seconds before swallowing.
The main advantage of this is that part of the CBD is absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the gums, where it can bypass the digestive system and therefore have greater bioavailability than edibles or capsules. CBD oil users can also adapt the amount they consume with ease.
The major downside of CBD oil is the taste. Many people dislike CBD’s natural taste, although companies have combatted this issue by providing products with other flavors such as mint or citrus. It can also be challenging to get an accurate dose when using droppers or sprays.
CBD capsules are CBD oil in a capsule form. The real advantage of CBD capsules is that they are convenient and easy to take. Consumers can carry them anywhere and get a fixed amount every time.
CBD capsules’ disadvantage is that they need to pass through the digestive tract before entering the bloodstream. This reduces bioavailability, meaning that most people do not benefit from the full dose of CBD, and it will be slower to take effect.
CBD edibles come in many different forms, including gummies, chocolates, brownies, and many others. Individuals can buy ready-made edibles to get a guaranteed amount per serving, or even try to make their own.
While edibles offer a convenient and tasty way to benefit from CBD, like capsules, people need to consume and digest them first. Another potential downside of CBD edibles is that they often contain a lot of sugar, which poses both inflammatory and other health risks.
CBD topicals include creams, ointments, and muscle rubs, and they are a great way to get cannabidiol to a particular area quickly. Commonly used for pain or skin conditions, CBD topicals offer targeted relief without losing potency due to digestion.
The disadvantage of CBD topicals is that they will only be useful in the areas where they are applied, so users will not receive any systemic benefits.
CBD Vape Oils
CBD users can also vape this compound. Vaping is one of the most effective methods of consumption in terms of increasing bioavailability.
However, the idea of vaping is off-putting for many people, and the long-term effects of vape oils on lung health are still unclear.
To summarize, here are the major pros and cons of each type of CBD product:
In addition to these popular forms, there is a wide range of other CBD products available. These include CBD infused beverages, CBD massage oil, CBD suppositories, and even CBD pet treats, to name just a few.
Choosing the Right CBD Dosage
Once a person has selected a high-quality CBD brand and decided which form is best, the final hurdle is dosage. Unfortunately, the issue is not clear-cut as CBD dosing is a very individual matter.
How much cannabidiol a person may need will depend on several factors, including medical conditions, the severity of symptoms, body weight, and what condition they are trying to address.
The best way a CBD user can determine the right amount of CBD is to start with the minimum and gradually increase it until they find the right balance. By increasing the daily measurements gradually, CBD users may reduce their risk of developing side effects and avoid wasting time and money.
Choosing the right CBD product can be confusing, but it is worthwhile. If a consumer fails to put enough thought into the decision-making process, they could end up with an ineffective product, or worse still, one that causes more harm than good.
Hopefully, this article has succeeded in making the CBD shopping experience more straightforward. However, anyone choosing to use CBD to alleviate any symptoms should always consult with a physician. A physician can confirm if CBD is a suitable option for mitigating symptoms in conjunction with any therapies.