You may have seen CBD hemp oil at your local medical marijuana dispensary. It’s sold as a liquid by itself and in the form of CBD candies and salves. Cannabidiol or CBD seems to have many beneficial properties. If you decide to try it, you may have some questions: how is CBD hemp oil made? Are there side effects to watch for? What are the best ways to use it safely?
Know what CBD hemp oil is
Hemp oil is common in health food stores. Many people cook with it or take a supplement. It’s in food, soap, cosmetics, paper, cloth and construction materials. It is also one of the most cost-efficient and sustainable biofuels. Cannabidiol is a compound in hemp oil, like THC. Unlike THC it won’t get you high. It can actually counter some of THC’s less desired effects.
Know where it comes from
Hemp oil comes from marijuana plants grown differently from those intended for cannabis. Be sure your CBD hemp oil has an organic source. Commercial hemp is grown on industrial farms where the soil has toxic waste and heavy metals. In fact, one of the purposes of growing hemp is to clean and purify soil. You don’t want to use an extract from these plants.
Know CBD’s reported benefits
CBD hemp oil may help to relieve pain and anxiety. For some people it’s a good sleep aid. There’s some evidence that it prevents epileptic seizures. Because it has omega-3 fatty acids, it’s good for your hair and skin.
Know how to use it
Look carefully at any CBD hemp oil product and notice the amount of CBD. Ask the bud tenders to explain how a particular product is supposed to work, and how other patients have described its effects. Medical marijuana is all about feedback. Until you know how these products affect you, use tiny amounts at first and gradually increase them.
Watch for side effects
CBD hemp oil side effects are rare, but if you’ve never used it before, take tiny amounts until you know how it affects you, especially if you have IBS. Hemp oil can cause intestinal cramping and diarrhea.
It may still get you high
Some people are sensitive to traces of THC in CBD. If you do feel “high”, it doesn’t mean you can’t use it, but consult your doctor. Be sure to tell the bud tenders at your dispensary about your experience. They may be able to recommend a different CBD product for you to try.
Don’t get it hot
Hemp oil can be used for cooking, but only at low temperatures or as an ingredient in non-cooked foods. Heating causes it to produce liver-damaging peroxides.
Hemp oil is a known anticoagulant and can prevent blood clots. If you are on blood thinning medication now, talk to your doctor before taking CBD.
Don’t expect a cure-all
Science is in the early stages of CBD study. However, there’s no denying that many people experience relief, and the anecdotal evidence points to more than a placebo effect.
Following the amazing story of Charlotte’s Web, some wild claims have been made for CBD curing autism. It doesn’t, but some autistic people report that CBD slows sensory input to levels that they can tolerate. If you are autistic and want to test CBD’s effects, start with a very small dose and keep a log.