With CBD (Cannabidiol) having its hey-day right now, the market is being flooded with a huge range of different types of CBD products. Add to that the fact that, as with everything else, not all CBD is created equal, this often leaves both novice users interested in using CBD for the first time as well as experienced users, scratching their heads.
We’re often asked how to choose a CBD product, which type of products are best for what, and how to know if a particular CBD product is safe. Here we’ve put together a quick reference guide answering these questions and more.
Types of CBD Extracts
This type of extract contains all the cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids present in the whole plant. Full-spectrum CBD extracts also contain varying amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Because of what is known as the entourage effect, full-spectrum extracts are considered by some as having the most therapeutic value.
Broad-spectrum CBD contains all the same cannabinoids, terpenes and other therapeutic compounds as full-spectrum CBD extracts, but without the THC, making it a good choice for those who want all the benefits of full-spectrum, but without the THC.
During the extraction process all other cannabinoids, terpenes and plant compounds are removed, leaving behind a CBD isolate which is roughly 99+ % pure CBD. CBD isolates are a good choice for people who are sensitive to other plant compounds, or need high/precision dosages of CBD.
Hemp Seed Oil
Hemp seed oil contains no cannabinoids and is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant. It is rich in many vitamins, minerals and essential fatty-acids, making it a good choice as a carrier medium in many CBD products.
Most Common Types of CBD Products, Uses & Administration
CBD Oils & Tinctures
CBD tinctures and oils contains a mixture of some form of CBD extract (e.g. full-spectrum, broad-spectrum or CBD isolates) and a carrier medium such as hemp oil, vegetable glycerin, medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil or in the case of tinctures, and a food-grade alcohol. Some products are also infused with natural flavors for a more enjoyable experience.
Providing long-term relief, CBD oils & tinctures are used for a wide range of issues including pain relief, anxiety, depression, sleep, PMS and menopause.
Most people use CBD oils and tinctures sublingually, meaning a few drops are administered underneath the tongue and held there for 30-60 seconds before being swallowed. However, they can also be blended in to smoothies and other types of foods.
Similar to CBD oil or tinctures, just in capsule form, CBD capsules offer the same benefits. Many people like the convenience and ease of use of CBD capsules because they are pre-measured and easy to take.
Providing long-term relief, CBD capsules are used for a wide range of issues including pain relief, anxiety, depression, sleep, PMS and menopause.
Simply swallow with water or a cold beverage as heat might destroy some of the active compounds.
CBD hemp flowers are either steeped on their own or blended with normal tea leaves or other herbs to create an herbal tea. Compared to sublingual ingestion, drinking CBD tea is slightly less effective and will take longer to provide beneficial effects but makes for relaxing, ritualistic-like self-care experience.
Providing long-term relief, CBD teas are used for a wide range of issues including pain relief, anxiety, depression, sleep, PMS and menopause.
The tea is steeped in near-boiling water for 5-7 minutes. Because the natural oils in the CBD flower aren’t water-soluble fat is usually added to improve to absorption.
Becoming increasingly popular as a daily supplement due to their ease-of-use, CBD edibles refer to foods infused with CBD. These range from chocolates to gummies to brownies and allow for a quick, fun and flavorful way to get a daily dose of CBD.
Providing long-term relief, CBD edibles are used for a wide range of issues including pain relief, anxiety, depression, sleep, PMS and menopause.
Simply enjoy like any other food or treat.
These types of products include everything from CBD balms, salves, lotions and oils to shampoos and conditioners that are infused with hemp-derived CBD oil and are applied directly to different parts of the body.
Often used as a medicinal balm, salve or cream to provide localized relief from conditions such as arthritis, sprains, and muscle aches and pains. CBD topicals can also include cosmetics and other forms of beauty products which target skin conditions such as acne, rosacea and dermatitis
CBD topicals are applied directly to the skin or hair to take advantage of the benefits of CBD and provide localized relief.
What to Look for When Buying a CBD Product
How effective and safe a CBD product is, is largely dependent on a combination of 3 things: Where it comes from, how it’s manufactured and how much CBD is really in the product. So the most important things to look for are the following:
Because hemp absorbs everything in the soil, include things like heavy metals, toxins and other nasty chemicals it is important to look for CBD products and extracts that are organically grown and come from certified US or European grown sources.
Check if the production facilities and manufacturing processes are designed to meet strict FDA guidelines for Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and that the following information is presented on the label as this is an indication that the product is FDA compliant:
- A batch number (for quality control)
- The net quantity of contents (for dosage)
- Nutrition labeling and the ingredients list (check for fillers or other unwanted substances)
- The name and place of business of the manufacturer, packer, or distributor.
3. Lab Testing
A good quality, safe CBD oil will always come with recent lab results. It is most often available on the company website but if you have trouble finding the lab results, contact their customer service department and ask for them. Definitely give products that are not third-party lab tested a skip.
DISCLAIMER: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Consult with a physician if you have a serious medical condition or use prescription medications. A doctor’s advice should always be sought before before embarking on any new treatment.