Cannabis sativa is a plant that can come in two different forms; hemp and marijuana. Hemp is the non-psychoactive version of cannabis, while marijuana has a strong psychoactive profile.
While we’ll evaluate how healthy CBD can be, and the conclusion of this article will also apply to CBD oil, we need to be clear that CBD and CBD oil are not necessarily the same item.
CBD is a component found in the cannabis plant, and CBD oil is a finished good that uses that component as one of its main ingredients.
What is CBD oil made of?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of more than 500 components found in your average cannabis plant. CBD can be found in any of the two main types of cannabis plants discussed above.
However, CBD is found in more significant quantities within the hemp plant. Given the non-psychoactive profile of hemp, that would subsequently mean that CBD is a non-psychoactive component itself. Which it is.
By using a wide diversity of extraction methods, harvesting experts can take these large amounts of CBD from the hemp plant and use it to produce other products like CBD oil. CBD oil formulations may vary depending on the brand manufacturing the product and even on the country’s or state’s regulations surrounding cannabis-derived products.
CBD oil is usually composed of hemp or CBD extract (raw CBD). This carrier oil usually is MCT oil or hemp seed oil, and other ingredients are added for taste, consistency, or other functionalities.
Hemp or CBD extract is the raw form of the extract as it is taken from the plant. The carrier oil used makes CBD more readily available to the body once applied. The additional ingredients can be anything from specific flavorings or components like added amino acids or antioxidants.
Consumers may apply CBD oils in many different ways. They can be used as topicals, sublingual products, vaping oils, and sometimes they can even be used as an additional ingredient to your favorite recipes.
How is Cannabidiol Different from Marijuana?
As you might have assumed by now, CBD and marijuana don’t even stand on the same spectrum because one is a component of the next. While marijuana is a plant, CBD is just one of the features (known as cannabinoids) that make it up.
Some people might refer to THC (the psychoactive component in marijuana) as marijuana itself, if laxly speaking. This is a common misconception, so we might as well address it.
The difference between THC and CBD starts with their chemical structure. But the main distinction between them comes from their psychoactive profile.
THC can get you ‘high,’ while CBD cannot. However, present in the marijuana plant, the quantity of CBD found in hemp is much greater than that found in marijuana.
Is Cannabidiol legal?
All hemp growth operations and hemp-derived products were labeled federally legal across all 50-states after the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill. So yes, CBD is legal in the United States.
This doesn’t mean that CBD can be legally prescribed. There is only one CBD prescription drug that has been approved by the FDA to date. The prescription drug called Epidiolex is meant for the treatment of a rare form of seizures commonly present in patients of Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndromes.
Is CBD oil healthy for you?
CBD has been linked to a vast amount of potential health benefits. In particular, CBD is associated with the relief of symptoms related to health issues caused by anxiety, depression, skincare, sleeplessness, nausea, and many more.
5 Health Benefits of CBD Oils
The list of health benefits of CBD hemp oil can be stretched far and long. But these are the five most common reasons why people look towards CBD oil as a potential supplement.
1. Anticonvulsant [suppresses seizure activity]
2. Pain Management [makes pain more tolerable]
3. Antipsychotic [mental disorders]
4. Anxiolytic [helps cope with anxiety and depression]
5. Anti Inflammatory [reduces inflammation]
Many people decide to take CBD in vaping oils because of the fast onset this method provides. However, vaping CBD oil's health benefits may be contrasted by the potentially unhealthy results of vaporizing or smoking alone.
The health benefits listed above are not clinically proven yet. Most of the evidence is anecdotal, which is not a minor thing but is not conclusive.
Perhaps the most advanced research regarding the benefits mentioned above revolves around the anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and anticonvulsant properties of CBD. Nevertheless, results must be submitted and FDA approvals proffered before we can make any claims regarding any specific product's effectiveness.
CBD Oil: Risks and Side Effects
The primary health concern surrounding CBD is that there is only one FDA-approved medication. Consumers tend to take the substance as a supplement rather than a medicine.
Other than that:
The risks associated with CBD consumption are minimal. Side effects, on the other hand, are a bit more common. Here are some of the most common side effects caused by CBD.
2. Gastrointestinal Symptoms
The risks and side effects of CBD can typically be attributed to failing to provide the right dose. Consuming CBD itself is not considered dangerous, but it may result in any of the side effects mentioned above if the dose does not match the person's tolerance for it.
Another critical risk to bear in mind is the consumer's pre-existing conditions and other medications. If the consumer has a pre-existing condition that requires taking medication that could negatively interact with CBD in the body, this could be a reason for concern.
This is the main reason why it's so important to have safety and quality regulations on products that allow doctors to assess patient symptoms and accurately provide CBD prescriptions. Unless your doctor is allowed to provide you with a professional opinion regarding CBD consumption, you'll never be able to successfully avoid this risk and potentially come across some of the unwanted side effects listed above.
Is CBD safe?
CBD is considered a mostly safe substance. Nevertheless, the risk of a negative interaction with other substances is plausible.
This 2018 journal article studies the nature of the interaction between CBD and a popular anticoagulant medication called warfarin. Warfarin acts as a blood thinner, and CBD can interact with this medicine potentially negatively or even raise warfarin levels in the bloodstream.
CBD is considered a safe substance due to regulations combined with our growing knowledge on the subject. It is possible to run into products that don’t list every single ingredient used. This is easily avoided by shopping for CBD in authorized retailers like Hemmfy that only distribute trustworthy brands that comply with every safety standard.
How healthy a substance is can be defined by two main features- benefits and risks.
The benefits CBD promises to deliver are incredibly encouraging, and the amount of anecdotal evidence to support those claims is overwhelming. The downside is that most of the evidence we have for those benefits is not clinically proven.
On the flip side, the risks involved in taking CBD are minimal. These have to do with a low tolerance for CBD that can quickly correct with a subtle dose adjustment.
 Grayson, L., Vines, B., Nichol, K., & Szaflarski, J. P. (2018). An interaction between warfarin and cannabidiol, a case report. Epilepsy & Behavior Case Reports, 9, 10–11. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ebcr.2017.10.001