So, what is CBD?
The CBD market is booming! This organic plant-based compound’s popularity continues to soar as research continually discovers new and exciting potential applications. If you are considering or have been recommended cannabidiol but have a few questions first, you have come to the right place. In this introductory guide, we answer one of the most general inquiries in the industry: “What is CBD?”
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, most famously referred to as CBD, is an organic plant-based compound naturally secreted by both hemp and cannabis. Unlike its more well-known counterpart, THC (delta-nine-tetrahydrocannabinol), CBD does not induce euphoric, intoxication-like symptoms. Instead, CBD is widely studied for its therapeutic effect and potential health applications.
Potential CBD Benefits
Since 1980, researchers have attempted to unlock the therapeutic potential of CBD. Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, a pioneer in cannabis study, was the first to analyze cannabidiol’s effect in eight epileptic patients. As a result, half of the participants remained nearly seizure-free, and three patients demonstrated notable improvement. Perhaps more importantly, researchers noted that “All patients and volunteers tolerated CBD very well, and no signs of toxicity or serious side effects were detected on examination.” 
These results would ultimately fuel demand for more in-depth studies for various conditions and disorders. Experts remain enthusiastic regarding CBD as a potential novel treatment for the following conditions and disorders:
- Anxiety & depression 
- Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy 
- Chronic pain & inflammation 
- Diabetes 
- Epileptic & non-epileptic seizures 
- Gastrointestinal (GI) issues 
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) 
While these studies yielded encouraging results, much more research is necessary to establish definitive proof. Always consult with a healthcare professional before adding CBD as a part of your daily health regimen.
How Does CBD Work?
The potential therapeutic effect of cannabidiol is accredited to its complex interactions with our endocannabinoid system (ECS). An endogenous network composed of endocannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors, the ECS is a crucial component of our biology, tasked with establishing and maintaining health. Cannabinoids such as CBD and THC mimic the endocannabinoids already produced naturally within our bodies to achieve a host of potential therapeutic effects.
Is CBD Safe?
Due to several long-lived and far-reaching stereotypes associated with the cannabis plant (some of which still exist to this day), many misconceptions continue to perpetuate. Perhaps the most common is the claim that CBD is dangerous and poses many adverse health effects. We turn to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) to debunk this claim.
In November of 2017, the WHO stated that “CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.” The international disclosure continues to say that CBD “…does not appear to have abuse potential or cause harm.” Furthermore, in both animal and controlled human studies, no physical dependence on cannabidiol has been identified. 
CBD Product Types
In the year 2020, there are myriad ways to administer cannabidiol. Below we discuss some of the most popular ways to consume your daily dose of CBD.
- Tinctures: This oil-based format is designed to be administered either sublingually (under the tongue) or buccally (against the inner cheek). To achieve optimal results, allow adequate time for the oil to set and absorb into the bloodstream (at least 30-45 seconds) before swallowing.
- Edibles: CBD-infused edibles (or drinkables) are arguably the most delicious consumption method. While the onset of effects takes comparatively longer (up to two hours), edibles offer the most prolonged results.
- Flower: Certain cannabis strains are cultivated to have a higher CBD to THC ratio. Hemp flower additionally contains a higher concentration of CBD and virtually no THC content.
- Vape: Another oil-based application method, vaping is achieved by heating the compound to the point of vaporization with a handheld vaping device. The cooling vapor is inhaled and enters the bloodstream via the respiratory system.
- Topicals: CBD-infused topicals, such as lotions, balms, creams, and body butter, are designed to be applied and absorbed via the skin. CBD topicals are ideal for localized symptom relief.
Before You Buy!
Before venturing into the CBD market, it is crucial to verify the following qualities of any given product:
- Third-party lab test results
- Quality ingredients
- Consumer reviews
We hope this introductory guide has proven insightful. Happy dosing!