Watch Out For: Companies that do not have test results or refuse to give them to customers. Also be wary of companies who only test one batch of finished product and then assume that all future batches will be the same – big mistake. Hemp is a product of nature and thus, no two batches will ever be identical – even in the most regulated environment. The company must provide you test results for the actual product you intend to purchase as well as the plant material used to make it – otherwise you are jeopardizing your safety and the medical efficacy of the product.
CBD isolate is derived from the hemp plant via various processes. These processes make extraction and isolation of CBD possible. Typically, the process of producing CBD isolate starts with growing hemp organically. This is not the cannabis strain that gets users high. The isolate is produced from a commercial-grade, industrial hemp. Basically, this is the cannabis that is grown to produce maximum biomass. It’s important to note that hemp is different from marijuana that is found in the streets and used by people that want to get high. However, both hemp and marijuana are technically similar plants. The only difference is that hemp has THC in low amounts and CBD in high amounts.
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. But because all these products are illegal according to the federal government, cannabis advocates are cautious. “By and large, the federal government is looking the other way,” says Paul Armentano, deputy director of the Washington, DC–based National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), but until federal laws are changed, “this administration or a future one could crack down on people who produce, manufacture, or use CBD, and the law would be on its side.”
Note: Pregnant women and lactating mothers should not use this product. Always consult a medical doctor before modifying your diet or using any new product. As with all products from BioCBD+, this product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration (FDA).
Another field in which CBD is creating a buzz is in the area of mood disorders like anxiety and depression. Both conditions have been treated with a variety of medications, courtesy of Big Pharma, that have had varying levels of success. Again, the long list of side effects can be off-putting to someone who just wants to get through the day without the sweaty tension of anxiety or the gray haze of depression.
Even if a topical contains active THC, it still won’t induce that intense “high” you’d get from smoking or ingesting cannabis. With most topicals, cannabinoids can’t breach the bloodstream; they only penetrate to the system of CB2 receptors. Transdermal patches, however, do deliver cannabinoids to the bloodstream and could have psychoactive effects with a high enough THC content.
Some manufacturers ship CBD products nationally, an illegal action which the FDA has not enforced in 2018, with CBD remaining as the subject of an FDA investigational new drug evaluation and is not considered legal as a dietary supplement or food ingredient as of November 2018. CBD is openly sold in head shops and health food stores in some states where such sales have not been explicitly legalized.
It is a strict violation of the Food and Drug Administration DSHEA guidelines to make medical claims about the efficacy of CBD products in the treatment of any medical condition or symptom. Although preliminary research has shown tremendous promise of CBD oil helping people in pretty remarkable ways, legitimate CBD companies will refrain from making any direct medical claims. Be very wary of companies that defy this guideline, because if they disregard this particular rule, what other rules are they willing to ignore?
If you don't live in a legalized state, you can typically still get CBD-infused creams. Since there's no regulation or standardized testing, your best bet is to find trustworthy brands who use creams free of toxins but with additional pain relievers like menthol, capsaicin, lemongrass, or camphor. Try Mary's Nutritionals Muscle Freeze ($70; marysnutritionals.com) or Elixinol's CBD Rescue Balm ($40; elixinol.com).
Preliminary research indicates that cannabidiol may reduce adverse effects of THC, particularly those causing intoxication and sedation, but only at high doses. Safety studies of cannabidiol showed it is well-tolerated, but may cause tiredness, diarrhea, or changes in appetite as common adverse effects. Epidiolex documentation lists sleepiness, insomnia and poor quality sleep, decreased appetite, diarrhea, and fatigue.
Every CBD product should make third-party lab results available, either online, in their packaging, or by request. At minimum, each tincture here offers lab results showing the levels of cannabinoids like CBD and THC, while others offer additional tests. The more information available to consumers the better. At the same time, we admit it isn’t always easy for newcomers to interpret these lab tests.
Having run infusion workshops in Denver for the last 3 years, I have played with several recipes. Just Add Herbals has kits that include hypoallergenic mediums that you can infuse with kief, which they give you a way to extract from cannabis. Even lower quality cannabis can be used, the key is to pay attention to the genetic you are using. Kief makes dosing easier and these kits are a simple way to infuse not just salve, but tincture, massage oil, and cooking oil as well. The salve may be ideal for folliculitis – I’d be curious to hear how it does for you.
Our reviews also include the ingredients and a description of the scent and texture of each CBD topical. We tried to remain neutral in our descriptions of each product, since each consumer’s experience is subjective. These are all high-quality CBD creams, balms and salves, but you may find you prefer one scent over another. You might love or hate menthol. Some people prefer a light texture, while other buyers are looking for CBD topicals to use in a massage.