CBD or Cannabidiol is a revolutionary ingredient in health and wellness in today’s world. Having said that, CBD isn’t precisely a new-world discovery. It was an essential ingredient in traditional medicine in many parts of the world. The modern world has recently woken up to the advantages of this wonder herb and is on the path to embracing it for holistic health. The best CBD extracts in forms such as CBD oils and CBD tinctures are finding their way into households. So, what exactly is CBD, how do we benefit from it, and what are its various extracts? This article will take an in-depth look at this ingredient and how it is changing lives.
What is CBD?
CBD or Cannabidiol is one of nearly a hundred compounds or cannabinoids found in the hemp plant extract. A close cousin to the coffee plant, the hemp plant is technically known as Cannabis sativa. This plant is native to the central and west Asian countries and is nearly 10,000 years old.
The hemp plant consists of nearly a hundred different compounds, the most significant being CBD and THC. CBD or Cannabidiol renders medicinal properties to the hemp extract. THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol is the psychoactive compound and is responsible for recreational high typical of marijuana. The hemp plant contains very high amounts of THC and a negligible quantity of THC. As a result, it provides much healing and restoring properties without causing any harmful effects. For this reason, CBD is getting popular around the world.
How does CBD act as a therapeutic agent?
CBD is known to provide relief from pain, inflammation, nausea, vomiting, lack of appetite, etc. In cases where patients suffer from chronic conditions, CBD has proven to be useful. Patients going through cancer treatments such as chemotherapies can benefit from the use of CBD. Apart from these, CBD also can provide relief from stress and depression and is quite helpful in chronic conditions such as PTSD, chronic insomnia, and other related disorders.
So, how does CBD manage to do all this? The key lies in the composition of CBD, which is very similar to your body’s ECS or Endocannabinoid System. The ECS controls and maintains various systems and functions of the body such as the motor system, skeletal system, brain, digestive system, etc. By influencing the ECS, CBD can control the body’s functions such as hunger, sleep, pain, and inflammation response and improve its overall immunity.
Apart from CBD, the hemp plant extract contains various other components called terpenes, flavonoids, Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, proteins, and minerals. All these ingredients together contribute to CBD being a complete health and wellness package.
What is CBD oil? How is it made?
CBD oil is extracted from the various parts of the hemp plant, such as stalks, stems, and seeds. These parts are high in CBD content, and the resultant CBD extract is full of medicinal and therapeutic qualities.
The manufacture of CBD oil takes place in the following steps:
- Manufacturers gather all the parts of the plant required for the extraction and pulverize it into a powder, also known as mash.
- This mash then passes through a solvent. Manufacturers routinely prefer CO2 for this process since it maintains the integrity of the mash and doesn’t leave impurities during the process.
- The solvent is then separated from the mash, leaving behind the CBD extract.
- This CBD extract goes through a process known as decarboxylation. This process increases the bioavailability of CBD. This means that the moment you consume CBD, your body will quickly absorb it, and you will immediately experience the benefits and obtain instant relief from the symptoms.
While this is the most common method of producing CBD oil, other commonly used methods include steam distillation and extraction using solvents such as ethanol, butane, and propane.
CBD veterans who prefer making their own CBD products use naturally occurring solvents such as olive oil to extract CBD oil. In this method, raw hemp is subjected to decarboxylation. The resultant material is added to olive oil. The CBD oil thus extracted isn’t as pure and concentrated as the commercially manufactured product.
Types of CBD extracts:
So far, we have seen the various methods of CBD oil extraction. The CBD oils manufactured this way are of three different types. The differentiation lies in the manufacturing process and the composition of the CBD oil. Let us now take a look at three kinds of CBD oils:
- Full-spectrum CBD oil
- Broad Spectrum CBD oil
- CBD Isolate
Full-Spectrum CBD oil:
We already know that the hemp plant contains a wide range of ingredients such as CBD, Terpenes, Flavonoids, fatty acids, and various nutrients. Some manufacturers tend to include all these nutrients in the final CBD extract. The resulting product is called the full-spectrum CBD oil. These oils are extremely high in nutrient value and hold great prominence as wellness products.
Broad-Spectrum CBD Oil:
Broad-Spectrum CBD oil is similar to full-spectrum CBD oil in the sense that it contains all the components of a full spectrum oil minus the THC. Some people may be averse to using THC due to personal reasons or may be allergic to it. Such people can benefit from the use of broad-spectrum oil.
As the name suggests, CBD isolate is the purest form of CBD extract and is devoid of other nutritional ingredients as well as THC. CBD isolate has a white crystalline appearance; imagine rock salt. This ingredient acts as a starter for many CBD forms such as tinctures, gels, vapes, capsules, creams, lotions, etc.
Forms of CBD oils:
As we mentioned above, CBD oils are available in various forms.
- CBD Tinctures:
CBD oil or isolate is mixed with a carrier oil, resulting in CBD tinctures. These tinctures are the commonly used CBD products as they are easy to use and have many benefits. The most common way to use CBD tincture is to place a couple of drops under the tongue simply. In this method, the body absorbs the CBD quickly, quickly entering the bloodstream and providing immediate relief. Tinctures offer quick relief from pain and inflammation, stress, and anxiety.
You can also apply tinctures on external cuts and wounds. The antibiotic and anti-inflammatory properties of CBD help in quick wound healing. CBD tinctures also find a place in beauty products and cosmetic products.
- CBD capsules:
CBD oil capsules are another common way of consuming CBD. These capsules are a convenient way of taking CBD as they come pre-dosed. Some people may not like the earthy taste of CBD. For such people, capsules are a convenient way of getting the ingredient into the body.
Capsules take time to digest and absorb into the body and hence take more time to work. These CBD forms are perfect for those suffering from chronic conditions since the healing effects stay longer. To know more about CBD Capsules read this article: Live It Up in 2021 with CBD Capsules
- CBD Vapes:
Vaping is getting popular, especially with today’s youth. With vaping or vaporizing, you will inhale the CBD vapors through a vaping device that will heat up the oil and release fumes. CBD vaping is safer than smoking since it doesn’t affect the lungs.
- CBD creams and lotions:
CBD oil has many anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. It works effectively against skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, cracked lips, under-eye bags, and circles. The moisturizing properties of CBD oil keep your skin hydrated and plump. With a combination of the above properties, your skin stays younger for longer. Many cosmetic companies are jumping into the CBD bandwagon and releasing CBD products.
You can find CBD as a component in moisturizers, lotions, under-eye creams, and anti-aging products too. For a DIY cream or lotion, you can add a drop or two of CBD to your everyday cosmetics before applying them.
What are some CBD Oil Benefits?
As we discussed earlier, CBD oil is quite popular due to the array of benefits it offers users. Let us look at some of the CBD oil benefits:
CBD oil acts for pain and inflammation:
The analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties help in relieving pain and inflammation, especially in chronic conditions. CBD oil is perfect for those looking at alternative therapies to get relief from their conditions.
CBD oil improves appetite:
The cannabinoids present in CBD stimulate the hunger center in the brain by working with the ECS system. As a result, it helps improve appetite. This works well, specifically for those going through cancer-related treatments such as radiation and chemotherapy. These therapies can kill the hunger and create an aversion for food. CBD oil is of great help in such conditions. It is also a good alternative therapy for those suffering from eating disorders.
CBD oil reduces nausea and vomiting:
Many therapies and medications can cause nausea and vomiting as side effects. By working in tandem with the ECS system, CBD oil improves nausea and vomiting symptoms and provides relief to the patients.
CBD oil has anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties:
Due to these properties, CBD can effectively cure and provide relief from various bacterial and viral infections such as Urinary tract infections.
CBD oil protects the skin:
It can lock in moisture because it is used in many moisturizing creams and lotions. CBD oil also displays anti-aging properties and prevents sun and UV damage. It prevents the lips from getting chapped and dried up. As a result of all these benefits, today, you can find many cosmetic giants adding CBD lines to their range of skincare products.
You can also buy wellness products such as CBD-infused aromatherapy oils, soaps, bath bombs, etc.
CBD oil prevents skin conditions:
CBD for Acne, rosacea, chapped lips, etc., are some of the conditions that can be troubling and debilitating. OTC creams and medications do not always help with these. CBD creams and chapsticks have proven effective in fighting these conditions.
As we have seen, CBD oils provide a range of medical and protective benefits.
Whether you have a chronic skin condition or are just looking to improve your general health, CBD oil proves to be a safe and effective ingredient helping you achieve your goals.
Unfortunately, CBD gets a bad rap for being an unsafe ingredient. This is because most people confuse the hemp plant with the marijuana plant. Being cousins, both exhibit similar chemical compositions, but the compounds’ arrangement brings a lot of difference to their behavior and functionality.
The main difference between hemp and marijuana lies in the amounts of THC and CBD. The hemp plant extract has a high amount of CBD and extremely negligible amounts of THC. In fact, to be legal, many Governments require THC levels to be less than 0.3% for CBD to be legal.
Marijuana, on the other hand, contains extremely high levels of THC and negligible amounts of CBD. THC is a psychoactive ingredient and is responsible for causing the recreational high typical of marijuana.
CBD or hemp and marijuana are totally different and must not be used interchangeably. Most states and countries also legally allow the use of CBD for medicinal and therapeutic purposes.
Having said that, it is totally up to the user to make sure that they are responsible when using CBD. A few simple steps can go a long way in ensuring that the user doesn’t experience any unnecessary effects when using CBD oils.
What care should I take when using CBD oil?
Always buy CBD from the best source. Whether you are scouting for the best CBD extract or the best CBD oil, look for reputed brands backed by great reviews and ratings. Cheaper and lesser-known brands may not stick to the quantities mentioned on the label. This can pose problems later.
Read the label carefully. A good understanding and analysis of the ingredients will help you understand whether the product is right for you. Also, beware of any precautions, warnings, and side effects mentioned on the label.
Consult an expert or a medical practitioner before starting CBD. They will analyze your health and history and let you know if CBD oil is right for you. They will also let you know if it will interact with any of your medications which can happen with any therapeutic ingredient.
Dose responsibly. Start out small and gradually build on dosage till you get the required effects. Stick to the ideal dosage.
To sum up, the best CBD extracts can be life-changing and bring significant improvement to your health and wellness when used the right way and from the right sources. CBD oil, one of the common forms of consuming CBD, has many therapeutic benefits. A little care and research before starting will ensure that you enjoy CBD oil benefits to the fullest.