The most effective CBD products are tested throughout each stage of the production process to ensure they are both uncontaminated and of a quality consistent with the parameters set by the manufacturer.
CBD or cannabidiol is the second most active ingredient in cannabis. It is derived from the hemp plant, which is a cousin of the marijuana plant. There are hundreds of components in these plants, but CBD is one that does not cause a “high” by itself.
The Word Heath Organisation has reported that in humans, CBD shows no effects that indicate any potential of abuse or dependence. They also state that there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of CBD.
There are 3 types of CBD; full spectrum, broad spectrum and CBD isolate.
- Full Spectrum: As with broad spectrum, this type of CBD contains many different cannabinoids and terpenes that are left in CBD oil formulations to provide the entourage effect. Full spectrum CBD products, unlike broad spectrum CBD products, contain trace amounts of THC (< 0.2 %).
- Broad Spectrum: Broad spectrum CBD products have a similar molecular make up as full spectrum. However, broad spectrum does not contain the psychoactive compound THC so you won’t get the ‘high.’
- CBD Isolate: A form of CBD that is not mixed with anything else. Effectively, CBD on its own.
Type of Oil: Labels on quality products will clearly state that the product is CBD oil, either Broad Spectrum, Full Spectrum or Isolate. Do not be misled by offerings that have hemp seeds, hempseed oil or cannabis sativa seed oil. They must have cannabidiol or hemp extract on the label for it to be an actual CBD product. It’s also worth noting that CBD Oil’s tend to include a carrier oil to help the absorption rate of the body. It tends to be different types of food oils, like MCT oil, grapeseed oil or olive oil.
COA: You can check the quality of a CBD product by looking through their certificates of analyses (COA). Companies selling a legitimate product will often have these on their website where you can view every product to find out what’s in them, what they’ve been tested for and their cannabinoid profiles. Certificates of analyses mean that a product has been through rigorous testing by a third-party laboratory ie. tested by a lab that doesn’t have any financial involvement in the product. Some products will have QR codes on their labels that when scanned will take you to the COA. If the COA of a product is not available, then you can always get in touch with the company themselves and ask them to provide one.
Some COAs can be quite complexed but there are 2 factors that consumers want to identify: labelling accuracy and cannabinoid profile:
- Labelling accuracy: You want to double check that the CBD and THC concentrations on the COA match what’s stated on the product label.
- Cannabinoid profile: There should be a list of other cannabinoids and compounds such as cannabinol (CBN) and cannabigerol (CBG).
- Other analyses: There should also be a pesticide, mycotoxin and heavy-metal analyses on the COA so you can determine whether there are any contaminants and if there are any, is it safe enough for ingestion. If it is safe to ingest then the column on the COA will say “pass.”
Ultimately, you have several options when it comes to purchasing reputable CBD products. You can find CBD oils, topicals and edibles online from a variety of different companies. Amazon does not facilitate the sale of CBD products on their site, only hemp seed products that don’t include CBD.
Before you purchase CBD, it would be a good idea to consult your physician as it may interact with certain over-the-counter drugs, dietary supplements, and prescription medications. Some side effects include fatigue, diarrhoea, changes in appetite and changes in weight. However, it is important to note that people consume CBD every day without an issue and often, side effects are a result of the consumer taking an amount that is far above the recommended dosage for their size and weight.
Please note that CBD companies in the UK are legally not allowed to make bold claims about the benefits that the product will have. If a seller is making these claims, then they’re not adhering to regulation. Therefore, it is important to do your own research into CBD to ensure that you gain a sound understanding of what it is used for. Furthermore, when trying a new CBD product, take a small dosage and gradually increase your intake to gain a full impression of the product and its capabilities (it is recommended that you use it for at least a week as it builds up in your body over time).