Cannabidiol (CBD) is a natural chemical compound derived from the Cannabis plant. You can take it as a pill, sublingually as drops under the tongue, in tea or even smoke it in vape juice form, and it’s estimated that around three hundred thousand people in the UK are already using it, whether it’s to aid their physical health, their mental health, or simply to boost their sense of wellbeing as part of a natural health routine.
In the UK, CBD products are legal to buy, sell, possess and use as long as they come from EU approved hemp strains – plants with a low level of THC (the compound that gets you high). The UK government has set the maximum level of THC in CBD products as 0.2% - low enough that they cannot function as intoxicants, only health supplements.
This means you get to enjoy the health benefits, whether it’s from tea, vaping, oils etc.
CBD and THC are the two most abundant of the many cannabinoids (active constituents) found in cannabis. Both THC and CBD interact with the body's endocannabinoid system but elicit different natural effects.
One of the key things to note is the intoxicating differences between CBD and THC. The intoxicating effect most people think of when they think of cannabis is caused by THC cannabinoids binding and interacting with the CB1 receptors in your endocannabinoid system.
CBD, however, has a stronger affinity to CB2 receptors, meaning CBD can never cause a high, no matter how much is consumed. While it has no psychoactive properties, it's able to deliver all sorts of beneficial effects that can be distributed throughout your body, relieving mental conditions like anxiety as well as muscle spasms, pain, and inflammation.
The chemical composition of CBD means it carries no psychoactive properties; there is no 'high' commonly associated with THC. See 'What’s the difference between CBD and THC?' above.
CBD oil is made by extracting CBD from the cannabis plant, then diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut or hemp seed oil. It exists completely naturally in the cannabis plant.
NO. At the molecular level, CBD is neither addictive, nor does it produce the 'stoned' effect that THC does. In fact evidence suggests that CBD could indeed be used to help combat the adverse effects of THC, such as cannabis withdrawal symptoms.
While studies are still ongoing, it's been shown that a few possible side effects of CBD are:
- Changes in appetite
- Changes in mood
- Dry mouth
CBD oil may also interact with several medications, including some types of anti-epileptic drugs.
If you're considering trying CBD oil, it's important to discuss potential side effects and adverse reactions to any medications you're on with your doctor.
Most CBD products are sold with only trace levels of THC so most consumers shouldn’t have a problem passing a drugs test.
CBD isn’t tested for in UK drug tests and most work places aren’t going to have a problem with you using it as it has no psychoactive properties.
Consumers that take full spectrum CBD products may fail a urine test for traces of THC. However, further testing such as a blood test, will show that the levels of THC from a full spectrum CBD product are not psychoactive.
However, CBD users who also use cannabis may actually show higher levels of THC for a longer period of time than when using cannabis alone.
There are many ways to extract CBD extractions from the cannabis plant. One of the most popular ways is to use CO2 as a solvent to extract the oil. This extraction process produces no residue so is considered cleaner.
Once the concentrated CBD is extracted from the plant, it must purify for a period of time, where any remaining plant particles are removed from the CBD oil. Once that process is complete, the manufacturer is left with pure CBD powder, which has trace to no levels of THC and is at a level that is 99% pure cannabidiol.
There are multiple ways to take CBD. It can be ingested orally (i.e. swallowed) via tinctures, edibles, capsules or powder. More cannabinoids are absorbed on a full stomach, so combining it with a meal is a popular choice!
CBD oil can also be taken sublingually. Capillary-rich areas underneath the tongue, along the gums and cheek are very effective at absorbing CBD directly into your bloodstream. Again, CBD absorption increases almost five-fold if the person has recently eaten.
The quickest way to get CBD circulating through your system is through inhalation, but it also is effective for the shortest period of time. CBD oil inhalation can be achieved via vape pens and dabs.
When it comes to purchasing CBD products, getting to know the brand is important. We do our part at Dayzed by taking the guess work out of it - we edit and test the brand out there so you don't have to!
Medical research continues in the space but many people choose to use it because of its pain relief, reducing anxiety and depression, and a host of other uses such as substance abuse treatment, anti-tumor effects and diabetes prevention.
Research done on the relationship between pure cannabidiol compounds and anxiety have been highly promising. Studies have found that cannabidiol could reduce symptoms of social anxiety in people with social anxiety disorder (SAD). Brain scans of participants revealed changes in blood flow to the regions of the brain linked to feelings of anxiety.
The amount of CBD you should take depends on a range of factors, including: your body weight, the condition you’re treating, your individual body chemistry, the concentration of CBD in your product.
There are a lot of variables that go into deciding how much CBD to take. Before trying CBD, be sure to talk to your doctor about an appropriate dosage and any potential risks, as well as how they would interact with any medication you are currently on.
Research suggests CBD can help:
- reduce anxiety and depression
- improve sleep
- reduce seizures in people with epilepsy
- soothe pain and inflammation
- improve heart health
- improve symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
CBD consumption could possibly help with many health conditions, talk to your doctor about what will be right for you.
Research on CBD is quickly picking up. There have been several studies (listed in this article) about CBD and its effects in terms of reducing social anxiety and its antidepressant power. It is also proving a promising treatment for other kinds of anxiety disorders, such as PTSD.
CBD absorption is dramtically increased on a full stomach, so cooking with CBD is a great idea to maximise its threaupeautic effects. It is important to have the right carrier in your meal when ingesting CBD, as it needs to be infused into a fat or oil-based ingredient before it can be used in your cooking. That means ingredients like butter, ghee, or coconut oil. See this excellent guide on CBD cooking.