Factors to Consider When Buying CBD
Cannabidiol (known as CBD) has certainly been making its mark in the health and medical spheres, with demand continuing to increase every day, and for good reason. Factors to consider when buying CBD oil-infused products will be described best in the following article. It is very important to really consider these factors when buying CBD products.
Ongoing studies continue to uncover potential medical benefits of CBD, including its ability to relieve pain and inflammation and alleviate anxiety, among other things. And along with this increase in demand for CBD also comes an influx of new CBD manufacturers that are seemingly popping up on a regular basis.
Given the plethora of CBD companies to purchase CBD products from, it can be overwhelming to choose which manufacturer to buy from. And considering the fact that most CBD products are designed to be ingested, you certainly want to make sure that the product you’re consuming is a safe and high-quality one.
Before you buy and consume CBD products, be sure to consider the following six factors first.
Sourced From Marijuana or Hemp?
Is the CBD in the product that you’re buying derived from hemp or marijuana? The answer to this question will determine if there is any tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the product you intend to consume.
While hemp and marijuana are often consumed interchangeably when talking about cannabis, they’re slightly different. The main difference between the two is in the concentration of THC.
While marijuana plants can have high concentrations of THC as much as 30%, hemp generally has THC concentrations that are so low that they are virtually non-existent.
If you’re looking for a CBD product that does not induce any mind-altering effects then you’d be better off with a hemp-derived CBD product.
Further, if you live in a state where marijuana is still considered illegal, buying hemp-extract CBD products may be your safest bet. In the US, cannabis plants with more than 0.3% THC are considered illegal on a federal level.
The Source of the Cannabis Plant
Not only should you identify whether the CBD is extracted from hemp or marijuana, you should also determine where the plant was sourced from and grown. Like many other types of plants, cannabis will absorb anything from the soil, air, and water.
As such, the quality of the growing environment is important to develop high-quality plants. A reputable cannabis farmer will grow their plants with limited toxins, chemicals, and pesticides. Look for organically-grown cannabis that can be traced back to a reliable grower.
How CBD Gets Extracted From The Plant Source
In order to draw out the CBD from the cannabis plant, it must be extracted using a specific process. When it comes to extracting cannabinoids from the cannabis plant, several different methods may be employed, some of which are better than others.
It’s helpful to understand which extraction method was used to isolate the CBD in the product that you intend to consume, as certain methods may leave behind solvents and other impurities that you may not necessarily want in the CBD product you purchase.
It’s best to consume a product that is free of such impurities in order to ensure a high-quality product that doesn’t cause any unwanted side effects. Common extraction methods of CBD include:
Solvent Extraction Method
With this method, ethanol or alcohol may be used to extract the CBD. This is among the most effective methods and involves dissolving the plant waxes.
It’s a quick method of extracting CBD and other cannabinoids, but also tends to extract other components, including terpenes, which give CBD products a bitter taste, however, these beneficial terpenes are essential to bringing out the healing properties associated with CBD.
The solvent extraction process involves soaking the solvent of choice in the flowers and plant trimmings, stripping the material of the CBD.
The subsequent evaporation process then leaves the concentrated cannabinoids in oil form.
The residual solvent or 200 proof alcohol left behind is less than 300ppm, the legal limit from state and federal health authorities is 5000ppm, well below the limits safe for human consumption.
This is our preferred method of extraction as it allows for a true full spectrum extraction that brings all the beneficial cannabinoids and terpenes into solution, offering a balanced and safe oil to consume.
Olive Oil Extraction Process
This is an easy and cost-effective method to extract CBD and involves decarboxylating (or heating) raw plant materials to a specific temperature for a certain amount of time in order to allow the chemicals in the plant to activate .
The plant material and olive oil are mixed and heated again, which is when the CBD is extracted.
Since the olive oil isn’t evaporated, the extract is not as concentrated as the other extraction methods.
Further, the product does not have as long of a shelf life, which can be an issue for many consumers.
CO2 Extraction Method
This method is considered the least effective as it tends to produce lower quality CBD products. The result is fewer cannabinoids and almost no terpenes are in the finished extract.
With the CO2 extraction method, an extraction machine with three chambers is used.
The first chamber holds pressurized CO2, the second contains dried plant material and the third chamber separates the end product.
CO2 is pumped from one chamber to the next to extract the cannabinoids and in the final chamber, the CO2 rises to the top, leaving behind the extract at the bottom and isolating it from the CO2.
The Concentration of CBD in Product
One of the more important factors to consider when buying CBD oil is the concentration of the CBD.
The cannabinoid is typically mixed with a base oil such as olive oil or coconut oil. CBD oil products tend to come in bottles that range from 10mL to 20mL, but you may be able to find smaller or larger bottles.
While it’s helpful to know the overall weight of the product, it’s the actual CBD concentration that you should be looking at.
Reputable CBD manufacturers will detail the amount of CBD that is in each bottle or serving on the label.
For instance, one 30mL bottle of CBD oil may have 500mg of CBD, while another may have as much as 1,500mg CBD or more in the same size bottle.
Before buying CBD oil, read the label and find out exactly how much of the cannabinoid is in each drop
Whether the CBD is an Isolate or Full-Spectrum
Is the CBD you’re consuming an isolate or full-spectrum? Different people have different opinions on whether CBD isolates are better than full-spectrum, and vice versa. CBD isolates simply mean that the product only contains CBD and no other cannabinoids, such as THC.
These products are made by isolating CBD from cannabis extract when it is drawn out of the plant.
Full-spectrum CBD, on the other hand, is made with extracts that have all (or almost all) of the compounds in the cannabis plant, including CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids that are not as well-known, such as cannabinol (CBN), cannabichromene (CBC), or cannabigerol (CBG), among others.
Full-spectrum CBD may also include all the plant’s flavonoids, terpenes, and other compounds found in the plant.
CBD isolates are popular because many consumers like the idea of using pure CBD and isolating it and its effects from any other compounds, particularly THC.
But full-spectrum CBD is often considered superior because it is able to take advantage of the medical benefits of all the compounds of the cannabis plant. It is also believed that when all of the cannabis plant’s compounds are consumed simultaneously, they have a synergistic effect that is more powerful than each of the compounds’ effects combined.
This is knowns as the “entourage effect” and occurs when cannabis compounds behave synergistically to take advantage of the overall effects of the plant, this is a very important factor to consider when buying CBD oil.
Third-Party Lab Results Should Be Provided
It’s important that CBD products are tested to ensure that they offer the appropriate potency and are void of any potentially harmful impurities. But rather than the CBD manufacturers testing their own products, reputable ones should have their products tested by independent labs that have no affiliation with the company.
That way there is no bias about the CBD product in question, which gives consumers more assurance that the test results provided are accurate and truthful.
Third-party lab results can come with CBD products and are important for consumers to look over. Third-party labs will examine the CBD to make sure that it meets quality standards. They’ll test for things such as the presence of contaminants (including microbial, physical contaminants, and chemicals) and potency (concentration of CBD versus other cannabinoids, including THC).
You want to make sure that the product you are consuming is precisely what you believe it is, and third-party lab test results can give you this vital information.
Whatever the reason for wanting to try CBD, it’s important to obtain a product that is of the highest quality and comes from a reliable and reputable manufacturer.
Doing your due diligence is a must, no matter what type of product you decide to consume. We hope that pointing out the various factors to consider when buying CBD oil has been helpful.
When it comes to buying CBD products, there are certain criteria that the product should meet, and it would be in your best interests to take a bit of time to check all the boxes to make sure that the CBD product you inevitably choose is the best one for you.