CBD is available on the high street and online and has exploded in popularity. But it’s important to know how it works and the best way to take it before you buy.
It interacts with your body’s endocannabinoid system which is responsible for maintaining vital functions such as sleep, hunger and pain. But unlike THC (the psychoactive component of marijuana) it won’t make you feel high.
What is CBD oil?
CBD is a compound found in cannabis with potential health benefits. Extensive scientific research and anecdotes have highlighted that it may offer benefits for a wide range of conditions, from reducing stress to improving sleep quality.
CBD oil is a mixture of hemp extract and a carrier oil. It can be found in Holland & Barrett and other high street stores, with different strengths available depending on your needs.
The strength of CBD products is indicated on the packaging in milligrams or percentages – it’s important to check this to ensure you get what you want from your product. You should also consult a healthcare professional about the right CBD dosage for you.
CBD oil can be sourced from a variety of plants, including hemp, cannabis sativa L or ‘hemp’, and the Home Office regulates cultivation to ensure that the plant has low levels of THC. As such, it is legal to sell and use in the UK.
Is it safe?
CBD (cannabidiol) is a natural chemical compound that is becoming increasingly popular as a health supplement. It is thought to have multiple health benefits and is derived from the cannabis plant. It is different from tetrahydrocannabinol, the component of the cannabis plant that is responsible for the ‘high’ associated with marijuana, and has no psychoactive effects.
CBD oil is not known to be addictive or to cause any significant side-effects, although it can interact with a number of medications in some people and some individuals may react differently to various strengths of the product. Different brands of CBD oil use different carrier oils, flavours, additives and other ingredients so it is important to always check the label for these details.
Most large health food stores stock ‘pure’ CBD oil but it is classed as a ‘food supplement’ rather than a’medicinal product’ and so isn’t regulated by the MHRA. This means that there is no guarantee that the products actually contain the ‘active ingredients’ on the label, and may also be contaminated with pesticides and other chemicals.
Is it legal?
CBD is legal to use, but there are specific regulations that manufacturers must follow. This includes what it can contain and how it can be marketed. CBD is a natural compound that interacts with your endocannabinoid system, which controls many vital functions like mood, sleep and pain relief. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the component in marijuana that gets you high, CBD is non-psychoactive.
CBD products are now available in high street stores and online. The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) considers it safe to take provided it does not contain more than 0.20% THC, the BBC reports.
However, you should check whether CBD can interfere with any prescription or over-the-counter medicines that you are taking. This is because it can affect how your body absorbs other substances, such as fatty acids, antibiotics and statins. This is particularly important if you are on certain anti-coagulants, antidepressants or antifungals.
How do I take CBD oil?
Whether taken orally or applied topically, CBD can be absorbed through the skin. Ingestion via capsules, gummies or oil usually delivers results within one to three hours. The exact amount to take depends on body mass, internal chemistry and desired effects. Ideally, you should start with a small dose and increase the daily amount gradually over a few weeks.
When taking CBD orally, ensure that the percentage of cannabidiol and total content per volume are clearly stated on the product label. This helps with calculating dosage and works out the cost per milligram, especially for tinctures.
The best way to take CBD oil is sublingually, by placing the drops under the tongue and holding it there for a minute or two before swallowing. Tinctures often come with a pipette dispenser that makes this easy and precise to do. However, you can also squirt the CBD oil into your mouth with a spray bottle and some products have a built-in syringe.CBD Oil UK