There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding cannabidiol — the popular wellness supplement better known as CBD. It’s a type of cannabis product, which means it comes with a lot of baggage.
CBD has been long overshadowed by its famous cousin marijuana, but they’re very distinct even though the two are related. Let’s dig into some background and context and answer some questions you may have about CBD.
Where Does CBD Come From?
CBD is a component found in all cannabis plants. It’s one of only a few active compounds, along with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive component of marijuana.
THC molecules and CBD molecules have the same molecular formula but a different structure, meaning they are chemically related but fundamentally different. That’s why THC will cause a high (with some potential for health benefits), while CBD has supportive physiological benefits without mind-altering effects.
- There are three main cannabis varieties: Sativa, Indica, and Ruderalis.
- The first two can be classified as marijuana, while the latter may be classified as hemp, suited for industrial purposes.
- In general, Sativa is high in THC and low in CBD;
- Indica has higher CBD levels and lowers THC;
- Hemp has negligible THC amounts, but American hemp farmers can grow it for harvestable CBD content.
Does CBD Oil Have THC in It?
There are two answers here. Generally speaking, across America, CBD oil comes from hemp plants. They can contain up to 0.3% THC content.
Some don’t have that much, but less reputable CBD vendors might exceed that threshold. You should always try to buy CBD that’s been third party tested. At Pure Relief, you can find individual lab results for each product.
In states where marijuana is legal, CBD oil may certainly have THC in it. It would depend on whether it was derived from hemp or derived marijuana. You’d be likely to find CBD with THC at a physical dispensary; most CBD sold online comes from hemp and is low in THC.
Is CBD With THC Legal?
The 2018 version of the Farm Bill — annual agricultural legislature — declassified hemp and hemp-derived products as a banned substance. So, if you’ve got hemp CBD and there’s less than 0.3% of THC, it’s federally legal.
CBD with high levels of THC is only legal, where marijuana is legal.
Will CBD Make Me Fail a Drug Test?
Mostly no. Taking CBD isn’t likely to trigger a positive when testing for marijuana. The tests look for THC, and the amounts in CBD are below the threshold for testing.
- However, with regular longtime usage, you may accumulate excess THC in your body.
- It’s still unlikely you would accumulate so much that you’d test positive, but it is something to consider. Don’t worry — there are still options for you, and we’ll look at them below.
- An employer can still test for CBD, specifically, if they want to. The tests do exist. Just like testing for prescription opioids, legality isn’t always the concern.
- But since CBD isn’t illegal, mind-altering, or particularly sedative (a concern in operating machinery, for example), most employers won’t spend time and money adding it to their drug panel.
Can You Buy Non-THC CBD Oil?
Absolutely! There are three types of CBD: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate. Two of these varieties are THC-free.
- Full-spectrum CBD is extracted from the plant and pretty much left intact. All of the compounds found in cannabis (plant-based compounds called terpenes and cannabis-specific compounds called cannabinoids) will be present, including that 0.3% THC.
- Broad-spectrum CBD removes the THC content but leaves in a few other terpenes and cannabinoids. The specific ones vary, so you need to check the lab results, but you’ll need a cannabinoid chart to interpret them!
- CBD isolate is precisely what it sounds like. Just CBD, isolated from everything else.
CBD Without THC: Is It Effective?
You may be wondering if medical marijuana has both CBD and THC in it, and it works — is CBD effective If you take THC out?
- Whether the CBD is full, broad, or isolated, there isn’t enough THC in it to create a tangible effect. Full-spectrum still won’t be analogous to high-CBD weed. However, CBD and THC both bind to our bodies’ cannabinoid receptors to produce similar positive effects.
- What is true is that the presence of other cannabinoids amplifies CBD’s effects. They all have semi-unique functions, and when they work together, they work more effectively. This is called the entourage effect.
- THC in CBD can be helpful, but it’s not necessary. Broad-spectrum attempts to split the difference. At Pure Relief, there’s a little something for everyone to try. We offer potent full-spectrum CBD oils and tasty THC-free gummies.
Can You Smoke CBD?
Another difference between weed and CBD is that everyone knows you usually smoke weed, but CBD usually comes in oil or gummy form. But yes, you can smoke CBD, too!
- Because the hemp itself contains a lot of CBD and only a little THC, you can use the whole plant.
- Hemp flower is used to make joints, and at Pure Relief, we offer raw hemp flower you can roll yourself. If you’re more of an e-cig person, look for vape cartridges and disposable pens for smoking CBD oil — never try smoking CBD oil out of a non-smokable tincture.
- The benefits of smoking CBD are also unique versus oil and edibles. It’s a highly effective method because inhalation gets CBD into your bloodstream more quickly.
- Not only will it take effect more quickly, but the same amount will be more potent inhaled than eaten. When you consume CBD orally, some of it is metabolized through digestion before it ever gets into your blood.
Are There THC Oils?
You may have heard CBD oil casually called weed oil once or twice. It doesn’t take a giant mental leap to figure out why someone might make that mistake.
But that’s never the appropriate term because yes, THC oil also exists.
- Compared to the booming cannabidiol industry, THC oil is like a niche product. As we just discussed, people love smoking their weed and not consuming it as an oil. But you could probably bake some killer edibles with it.
- It’s only going to be available where marijuana is legal, but just like CBD with high THC levels, you’ll likely be able to find it at dedicated cannabis dispensaries.
We hope you now have a better understanding of the often misunderstood CBD. This was only a small sampling of some common questions. And we didn’t even start to touch on the benefits of CBD. So, if you’re still looking for more information, check out the Pure Relief blog, and if you’re looking for more products, head over to the Pure Relief shop.