In the United States, federal and state laws regarding the medical use of cannabis and cannabinoids are in conflict and have led to confusion among patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers. Currently, cannabis is legal for medical purposes in 50% of the states, and another seventeen states allow products that are high in cannabidiol (CBD) and low in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) for medical use. Many of these artisanal products are sold in dispensaries or over the internet. However, none of these products has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Understanding how federal laws apply to clinical research and practice can be challenging, and the complexity of these laws has resulted in particular confusion regarding the legal status of CBD. This paper provides an up-to-date overview (as of August 2016) of the legal aspects of cannabis and cannabidiol, including cultivation, manufacture, distribution, and use for medical purposes.
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Cannabidiol (CBD) oil has become increasingly popular as a natural way to help people try to manage pain, reduce inflammation, and cope with anxiety.* Though the number of prescriptions has risen sharply in the United States over the past 20 years, many Americans are trying to limit the number of prescribed drugs they take – instead, searching for all-natural solutions to the aches, pains, and discomfort they begin to face as they age. For many of them, CBD oil is the solution they’ve been looking for. But not all CBD oil is created equal, meaning finding the right CBD oil could just be the most important part of their journey.
While there are producers who will tell you the difference between legal and illegal CBD comes down to whether your batch is derived from marijuana or hemp—both are plants in the cannabis family, but hemp contains very little THC compared to marijuana—the truth is that even hemp isn’t legal everywhere. In Massachusetts, for example, you’re allowed to grow marijuana at home, but it’s still a crime to grow hemp.
CBD oil is similar to other products in that it is capable of being “watered down.” Some companies will try to eke out a higher profit margin by fooling their customers into thinking they’re getting more for less. It is important to pay attention to the concentration level of the CBD oil you’re buying in order to ensure you’re getting what you’re paying for. Although concentrations of CBD can vary quite a bit across the broad range of CBD products, a quality product will start off having somewhere between 250mg to 1,000mg per fluid ounce. This matters because if you were to purchase a 4 ounce bottle that contained 250mg of CBD, your concentration would be a mere 62.5 mg of CBD per ounce – hardly enough to reap the full benefits of CBD. It’s always important to look at the concentration level of the CBD you’re buying.
Industrial Hemp Oil is also from the Cannabis Sativa plant and is the same as Hemp Oil or Hemp Seed OIl. Compared to cannabis Indica, cannabis Sativa (industrial hemp variety) has a much stronger fiber. This fiber can be used in anything from rope and blankets to paper. Marijuana fiber has a low tensile strength and will break or shred easily, making it a poor fibrous plant when compared to industrial hemp. Industrial hemp has low THC levels compared to marijuana specifically cultivated for personal psychoactive use. The reason for the low THC content in hemp is that most THC is formed in resin glands on the buds and flowers of the female cannabis plant. Industrial hemp is not cultivated to produce buds, and therefore lacks the primary component that forms the marijuana high. Furthermore, industrial hemp has higher concentrations of a chemical called Cannabidiol (C B D).
As mentioned above, cannabis and hemp differ in the levels of naturally occurring THC that they contain. THC is a cannabinoid like CBD. However, its properties are very different and often antagonistic to the effects of CBD. Hemp is naturally high in CBD and low in THC; the reverse is true of cannabis. In fact, hemp contains only about 0.3% – 1.5% THC, while cannabis contains about 5% – 10% or more THC.
As a consumer, you can look at the manufacturer's website to see whether they batch-test their products, or ask them directly. You could also send a sample of your CBD oil to a testing facility yourself, something Bonn-Miller says he would do if he were trying to treat someone with a severe issue such as epilepsy. Testing can also determine whether the product contains pesticides, heavy metals, or other toxins.
There will be no brew eyes crying in the rain today as Texas legend and true American hero, the one and only Willie Hugh Nelson has announced his own line of CBD-infused coffee. That’s right, the 85-year-old country music icon known for his greener predilections has created Willie’s Remedy, a line of cannabidiol-infused products, and the first one set to be released is coffee.
Side effects of CBD include sleepiness, decreased appetite, diarrhea, fatigue, malaise, weakness, sleeping problems, and others. It does not have intoxicating effects like those caused by THC, and may have an opposing effect on disordered thinking and anxiety produced by THC. CBD has been found to interact with a variety of different biological targets, including cannabinoid receptors and other neurotransmitter receptors. The mechanism of action of CBD in terms of its psychoactive and therapeutic effects is not fully clear.
As of just recently, at least one CBD hemp oil manufacturer has developed a hemp oil product that is 100 percent THC free. After the oil is extracted from the stalks and seed of hemp plants, producers isolate CBD compounds. This process eliminates the THC and all other plant constituents, leaving pure CBD. Some manufacturers blend isolated cannabinoids with wholesome liquid oils containing fatty acids for easy administration and to help improve absorption.
^ Jump up to: a b c d Campos AC, Moreira FA, Gomes FV, Del Bel EA, Guimarães FS (December 2012). "Multiple mechanisms involved in the large-spectrum therapeutic potential of cannabidiol in psychiatric disorders". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences (Review). 367 (1607): 3364–78. doi:10.1098/rstb.2011.0389. PMC 3481531. PMID 23108553.
Here’s what we do know: The cannabis plant contains a wide variety of chemical compounds, many of which fall under the broad category of cannabinoids. There are more than 100 — exactly how many, we’re not sure. The best-known and certainly most profitable are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Both of these compounds stimulate the same receptor in the brain, called CB1, but have differing effects on the brain. Researchers aren’t totally sure why.
These products are from places like Xi’an Lyphar Biotech Co. Ltd., which doesn’t mention that it’s one of the largest CBD sellers on Alibaba on its website, let alone reveal where it’s sourcing its CBD from. There are big companies and small companies, companies that provide elaborate chemical charts and companies that have no online presence at all. There are companies that run their goods — either as raw materials or as consumer-stage final products — through lab tests. There are those that say they do but provide no information on what the labs found or which labs tested their products.
Cannabis has been used medicinally for centuries, as a sleep aid, a pain and nausea reducer, to relieve anxiety and other mood problems. In the mid-1960s, scientists identified the first cannabinoid. Since then, scientists have gone on to identify more than 80 individual cannabinoids and continue to investigate them for their potential symptom-relieving and disease-fighting abilities.
The extract known as CBD oil sold in the U.S. falls into one of two categories. Crystalline isolate exclusively contains CBD, as other cannabinoids have been removed; full spectrum oil, on the other hand, retains THC and other cannabinoids, and is only sold in states where marijuana use has been legalized. CBD oil can be consumed several different ways, including ingested capsules and food products, vaporizing, tinctures, and topical creams. The soporific effects of CBD oil are linked to its concentration; low-concentration oils will produce minimal effects, while high-concentration oils will produce strong effects.