The CBD boom has led to rampant innovation within the industry and a plethora of delivery methods that have become available. Choose the right one for you.
(Newswire.net — April 10, 2021) — CBD has become one of the most popular buzzwords across the world in the past few years and there has been an absolute explosion in interest. Nowhere has this boom been more prominent than in the UK.
This has inevitably led to a deluge of online CBD shops opening up. Moreover, the proliferation of CBD products and the variety of innovative delivery methods has further complicated matters for the consumer.
This article aims to sift through the mistruths and myths of the CBD industry and provide you with a factual breakdown of the most common CBD products. From CBD oils, to vapes, to transdermal CBD patches, the choices can be overwhelming. Read on to learn more about all of these and more and hopefully you will leave feeling slightly less confused and ready to try something new!
Firstly, for those who are less privy to the world of CBD, let us first establish what it is exactly.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol, more commonly as CBD, is one of the two most active components found within the cannabis plant. The second of these is THC and this is where things get slightly more complicated.
THC is a psychoactive compound, meaning that it alters the way the human brain functions. There are a number of side effects, including psychosis and paranoia, associated with THC due its psychoactive nature.
CBD, on the other hand, is a non-psychoactive compound. This means that it does not alter how we think. Moreover, it does not produce the ‘high’ often associated with cannabis in popular culture. Furthermore, research has also suggested that CBD in fact combats the psychoactive effects of THC.
There are three main types of CBD that are used in CBD products. There are slight, but important differences between each, as outlined below:
Full Spectrum CBD – Full spectrum CBD contains a wide variety of compounds found in the cannabis plant. This includes, but is not limited to: terpenes, cannabinoids, flavonoids and THC. It is important to note here that the legal limit for THC in any CBD product sold in the UK is 0.2%. This is nowhere near enough to cause any psychoactive impact, but its health benefits, such as efficient pain relief, are retained.
Broad Spectrum CBD – Broad spectrum CBD contains all of the compounds listed above, including cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids, but does not contain THC.
CBD Isolate – CBD isolate is essentially just CBD in its purest form – often crystals or powder. All of the other components mentioned above are removed during the extraction process.
It was actually the World Health Organization who lit the metaphorical blue touchpaper of the CBD industry in 2018 when they released a statement that “there is no evidence of public health related problems” associated with the use of CBD. Since then, the industry has grown exponentially, and medical research is quickly gathering pace.
This has led to rampant innovation within the world of CBD, and we will now move on to look at what this means for the consumer with such a variety of products available.
CBD oil is undoubtedly the most popular delivery method when it comes to CBD. It is the entry level product of choice for the vast majority of first-time CBD consumers.
Upon receiving a very small bottle, you may be left wondering how it came to be. CBD is combined with a carrier oil, which can be anything from MCT oil to coconut oil. This carrier oil improves the bioavailability of the CBD, which dissolves in oil but not water.
The lid of the bottle will double up as a dropper, which allows you to transfer the CBD oil both accurately and cleanly from the bottle to your mouth.
CBD oil should always be taken sublingually, under your tongue and held there for approximately 60 seconds. My people question the value of this and just swallow their CBD oil, which is a great mistake.
CBD should be held under the tongue as it is the most capillary-rich area of your mouth. This means that CBD can pass more easily into your bloodstream. Furthermore, when swallowed, and this is an issue with ingestible CBD products, your digestive system will break down the vast majority of CBD and render it useless.
One of the reasons that CBD oil is a popular entry-level product is its ease of dosing. The label of the bottle should tell you how much CBD is contained within each drop, making it easy to keep track of how much you are taking. This means that you can take as much as you require for the specific ailment that you are attempting to alleviate. In order to maximise the efficiency of the CBD oil, you should use it 3-4 times a day and for a minimum of 8 weeks.
CBD oil can also be added to food or drink in order to avoid the often-earthy taste but still experience its health benefits. It should be noted that this naturally will reduce bioavailability as the CBD oil will pass through your digestive system. This is a further reason for its popularity.
On the other hand, it can be a messy process if you are not used to taking a sublingual product, although this becomes far easier after a few uses. There are also regular stories of people not correctly closing the bottlecap and being left with an almighty mess in their bag or pocket.
Finally, many people dislike the fact that CBD oil remains in your system until excretion, so if you are experiencing a reaction or do not like the feeling, there is little you can do but wait for it to pass.
However, this is not the case with one of the slightly newer CBD products on the market – transdermal CBD patches.
Transdermal CBD Patches
Transdermal CBD patches are quickly becoming the go to alternative when it comes to CBD oil. They act in a similar fashion to nicotine patches, delivering CBD slowly and steadily into the user’s bloodstream across a 24-hour period.
CBD patches should be placed on a flat, dry, venous area of the body such as the inside of one’s wrist or the top of one’s arm. CBD is then diffused through the skin membrane, aided by microneedling technology, to ensure that it reaches the bloodstream.
There are two major boons when it comes to choosing CBD patches as your delivery method of choice.
The first of these is the slow and steady nature of delivery. The vast majority of CBD products need to be taken multiple times a day in order for them to have the desired effect. This is of considerable benefit to users suffering with persistent chronic pain conditions, such as arthritis, or those who are trying to achieve a better night of sleep. Not only does this help with consistent alleviation of certain ailments, it is also far more convenient than CBD oil or CBD capsules.
CBD capsules are the second most popular form of CBD delivery method. The concept is fairly straightforward – they are simply capsules containing CBD oil (and sometimes other cannabinoids and terpenes, depending on the type of CBD).
While there are obvious issues with the bioavailability of CBD capsules (approximately 15%), due to the role that the digestive system plays in their passing through the body, there are a number of reasons why one may choose them regardless.
Firstly, they are incredibly easy to consume, unlike CBD oils. You can take them as you would any other form of health supplement, by swallowing with water. Furthermore, this also provides a degree of discretion to those who require it.
Travel is another major reason why many people opt for CBD capsules over alternative delivery methods. For those who live their lives constantly on the go, a tub of capsules is far easier and safer to transport than a bottle of oil which has the potential to cause an almighty mess.
Finally, many users enjoy the absence of taste that comes with CBD capsules, particularly in comparison to the earthy taste of CBD oil. This can also be particularly unpleasant first thing in the morning.
Topical CBD Products
Strictly speaking, this is more of an umbrella term for any CBD product that is applied directly to the skin. This can range from CBD balms, to body butters and moisturisers.
Topical CBD products combine aesthetic and therapeutic benefits in order to provide localised relief, while also improving the appearance of the user’s skin.
Topical CBD is not designed to reach the bloodstream, but instead interact with the endocannabinoids receptors that are found in the skin. This serves to reduce inflammation of the skin and in joints and muscles local to this area.
There are a number of reasons why one may opt for topical CBD products over ingestible or sublingual alternatives.
Firstly, CBD is an excellent antioxidant. This means it can fight the damaging effects of ‘free radicals’ that harm skin cells and proteins. Free radicals can include pollution, alcohol, smoke and fatty foods that we are all exposed to on a regular basis. There is also growing evidence that CBD possesses anti-aging properties.
CBD is also a well-known anti-inflammatory. This means it is excellent at combating swelling, pain or irritation. Consequently, topical CBD products are an excellent option for relieving symptoms of eczema and psoriasis.
CBD is also an effective skin conditioning agent, meaning that it prevents human sebocytes from creating excess sebum, which is a cause of many common skin problems such as acne and dermatitis.
One of the major drawbacks of topical CBD products is the requirement to constantly reapply once the previous application has worn off. That said, its efficacy in combating such a range of skin issues mean that this is a small price to pay.
Hopefully after reading this article, you are far more aware of the pros and cons of the plethora of CBD products currently available to consumers.
It should not be the question of ‘what is the best CBD product’, but rather ‘what can CBD do for me’? There is no ‘best’ product. The right product for you is the one that fits in with your lifestyle while providing effective relief for the ailments that you are impacted by.
Before leaving, it is imperative to note that you should always seek an independent third-party lab report before buying from any online CBD shop, or physical shop. Not only does this ensure the quality of the CBD is up to scratch, but this should also confirm the absence of harmful additives such as pesticides or heavy metals. Any legitimate CBD retailer will have such documents to hand, you just have to request them.
On a final note, go out and explore! CBD can produce wonderfully life-changing results for so many people, so persist and find the product that suits you. Remember to persevere for at least 8 weeks, as CBD builds up in your body over time.