THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) is the psychoactive component of Cannabis, but as the debate rages on about the legalities and uses, there is no denying the surge in CBD oil and hemp supplements hitting the market, all with a plethora of health claims and promises.
Take a step back and take a deep breath.
There are so many unique components to this amazing plant, which scientists have just only begun to name, study, and describe the functions of. One of the first things you should know is that God wired us with an endocannabinoid system, that allows our bodies to process, utilize, and benefit from Cannabis very well. Take a moment and read through this post, I thought it was easy to understand and very informative.
The components of Cannabis come together to support the body’s homeostasis, as an adaptogen would – restoring balance. The roles these components (cannabinoids) play, that are already present in our bodies, protecting us from causing further damage to injured tissue, are truly amazing.
THC and CBD have been the most studied cannabinoids, but not far behind, making waves in the scientific community are CBG for it’s antibiotic effects, and CBN, which could be a key for treating insomnia.
You will continue to hear more and more about CB1 which is the receptor in the body that influences emotion (stress, anxiety), and CB2 that influences more peripheral action like enlisting recovery action to inflammation.
Lets circle back to CBD oil.
One of our biggest passions is knowing how to determine the best of the best when it comes to supplements. Here is what you need to know about CBD oil:
1. Isolating and extracting CBD oil, a fatty acid, from Cannabis is most often done by using butane. Butane is a solvent that leaves behind chemical residue. Some companies are now utilizing Co2 extraction, which is much cleaner, and can yield more precise extractions. The issue of clean and dirty extraction has been a topic in the herb and supplement industry for years. All herbs, including Cannabis, should be held to the same high standard for quality extractions. Ask before you buy!
2. Isolating something makes it an isolate. It takes the most studied component and pulls it away from its entourage. We have learned over the years that although there are valid uses for isolates, the more balanced and holistic approach to taking supplements is keeping it as close to the form “found in nature” as possible. Examples:
- Is Ester C good? – Sure. Is Camu Camu or Amla better? – Yes.
- Filtered lignin flax oil products are good, unfiltered are better.
Often we don’t realize that the true power of a nutrient is the synergy of the other nutrients it is surrounded by.
3. Purchasing CBD in spray or tincture form will not give you consistent dosing. Most companies don’t understand or apply the fact that different oils have different weights, so often the dose you are ingesting at the start of your bottle can be quite different than what remains at the bottom. If you are taking CBD for general health, with no expectation of relief from any health challenge you are working on, this may not be a big deal. But most people are seeking results, which will not be delivered in these forms. Also note, oils are prone to oxidation when exposed to light and air. For those reasons, a high quality capsule delivery system is probably the best.
4. Even though this is a new product to many of us, there are experts in the field who have been testing, using, and studying CBD oil for many years. There is no hard evidence to show that consuming more than 5 mg will provide you with additional benefit. Most people will achieve desired results requiring no more than 5 mgs. So don’t fall for the hype that you need 10, 20, 30, 50, or 100 mgs. If you do, it’s probably because it is an inferior product. It’s also a great way to charge you more money.
5. Ask the company you plan to purchase from where they source their plants and if they are they organic? Organic certification is available for cannabis. The best companies will work hard to acquire this certification.
6. Finally, don’t be surprised if a company you purchased CBD oil from does not exist when you go to purchase more. There have been numerous pop-up CBD companies that have not followed the production and labeling laws in place for cannabis products, and the FDA has already shut them down.
A few more things you should know.
Marijuana and hemp are both from the Cannabis plant. What you obtain from this plant depends on the growing conditions. Marijuana comes from the flowering part of the plant (abundant in THC) and requires humidity. Hemp as food – seeds, oil, and protein powder, depends on how it is farmed. Hemp as textiles and other industrial materials, yet another growing and harvesting process.
Hemp seed oil, although delicious and nutritious, is not the same as CBD oil.
Cannabis is not the the only source of cannabinoids. Echinacea, helichrysum, cloves, and black pepper are also well known sources. And some foods like chocolate and maca influence our endocannabinois system.
Photo credit: cannabis.xtgem.com