Cannabidiol (CBD) oil has become all the rage lately, but is it effective? And is it safe? First, what is CBD oil? CBD is a cannabinoid (a class of diverse chemical compounds) found in the cannabis plant, commonly known as marijuana. It’s extracted from the plant and made into oil form. CBD oil does not cause intoxication because it doesn’t contain the chemical tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which causes marijuana’s “high.”
The Definition of CBD Oil
A WebMD article states research suggests that cannabinoids can help reduce anxiety, reduce inflammation and relieve pain, control nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy, kill cancer cells and slow tumor growth, relax tight muscles in people with MS and stimulate appetite and improve weight gain in people with cancer and AIDS. Marijuana is used medically for some and is legal in more than half of U.S. states. Much research is still being done to study cannabinoids further and find more evidence of its benefits.
For those that are looking for benefits that traditional marijuana may offer, consider this. CBD oil is appealing because it can offer these benefits without the “high” of marijuana. People see it as natural alternative to other prescription drugs. An article on Healthline goes over seven benefits and uses for CBD oil. And also touches upon its side effects. It doesn’t seem to have any major ones, most commonly fatigue, diarrhea and loss of appetite. CBD can interact with certain medications though, so it’s imperative to consult a doctor before use.
Problems with CBD Oil
There may be evidence that it can be beneficial for people with certain conditions. But a big problem with CBD oil is that it’s produced without any regulation. Which means quality can vary widely. According to a 2017 study, almost half of CBD products contained either too little or too much CBD. And some even contained THC, making it hard to trust what’s on a label. The FDA has approved only one CBD-based drug, and it’s used to treat two rare types of epilepsy. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome. It’s called Epidiolex, and it’s approved for adults and kids over age 2. If you’re using it for anything other than that, you’re on your own when it comes to ensuring you’re purchasing from a reputable and reliable source.
CBD Oil Legalities
A Forbes article highlights some recent crackdowns on CBD across the country because of findings of mislabeled, contaminated and fraudulent products. States are pushing for the FDA and other authorities to introduce a framework of standards, procedures and testing protocols for CBD and CBD products. CBD products are not required to go through mandatory testing. Consumers could be putting themselves at risk with some of the products on the market. The product you purchase could have an unintended effect, depending on the reason you’re taking it. Because it may not be labeled properly, or it may contain ingredients it shouldn’t. Yes, there are premium products out there, but even those are not required to go through testing.
Bottom line, if you’re thinking about using CBD oil for any reason, it’s always wise to check with your doctor first.