By | November 26, 2019

CBD oil may be purported to be a cure-all for whatever ails you, but there is actually some solid science behind some of its uses.

A 2015 study found CBD oil is effective in treating panic and anxiety disorders, while a 2011 study found it was helpful in decreasing subjects’ anxiety before public speaking.

Studies show CBD oil is effective in reducing pain and inflammation, making it a good alternative to opioids, which are dangerously addictive.

One of the most famous uses of CBD is in its treatment of epilepsy.


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A 2016 Israeli study showed a significant decrease in seizure activity when CBD-enriched medical cannabis was taken. Fifty-two percent of patients had a greater than 50 percent reduction of seizure activity in the study.

In 2018, the FDA approved the first-ever drug that contained a substance derived from cannabis. The drug, called Epidiolex, uses CBD to help treat two rare and severe forms of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndrome, for children two years of age or older.

Why the confusion?

The line between hemp oil and CBD oil became more blurred once hemp CBD production was legalized in the U.S.

The U.S. removed hemp from its list of controlled substances with the passing of the Farm Billin in late 2018.

Hemp is now defined by U.S. law as cannabis that has less than 0.3 percent THC, whereas previously U.S. law made no distinction between hemp and cannabis.

The Farm Bill allowed the legal creation of hemp CBD oil and opened the floodgates for new hemp products to hit store shelves.

This rush includes some companies that may be trying to take advantage of the craze and using “dubious marketing methods,” according to Haney, to mix up CBD oil and hemp oil.

One of these methods may be calling hemp oil “cannabis Sativa seed oil,” according to Ashlae Warner, the founder of the hemp CBD company, Supergood Hemp.

Sephora has a number of topical products branded “cannabis Sativa seed oil.” One has the primary label “Cannabis Facial Moisturizer” with a green color, which clearly puts it in the cannabis category.

Technically, hemp is the species cannabis Sativa, sharing the name with a type of cannabis that has uplifting effects.

However, hemp has been bred for industrial purposes and with very low amounts of THC compared to Sativa cannabis that people use to get high.

It also doesn’t help the confusion that CBD oil can be distilled with hemp oil, and in the U.S. hemp CBD oil can be sold in supermarkets where hemp oil can also be found.


How to know the difference 

In Canada, CBD oil is only allowed to be sold through legal online or physical stores, according to Haney.

To be sure you’re getting true CBD oil, make sure you buy from a legal distribution channel. Otherwise, you may not get all that is advertised, since currently there is no legal oversight for products sold outside of the legal network, according to Haney.

“What you order [from legal stores] will be produced by well-known and regulated cannabis producers, the content will be clearly labeled and the product will be associated with high levels of confidence,” he said.

Haney hopes that the illicit market for CBD products where consumers may get duped won’t be around forever.


He says that CHTA is pushing the Canadian government to take CBD off the country’s prescription drugs list and for it to be sold as a natural health product in stores.

“The current regulations seem to be supporting a very large illegal trade in CBD-related products with no purity, potency or source guarantees associated with them at all,” he said. “That represents risks to consumers who don’t know what they’re consuming when it comes from illegal sources.”


In the U.S., since the hemp CBD oil industry has been legalized federally, there are a couple of verifications you can do to make sure you’re getting real CBD oil.


Look out for a “Certificates of Analysis (CoA)” when shopping for CBD oil, which verifies that a vendor has laboratory tested its products. It should give a full breakdown of the cannabinoids present and their amounts in the product, which will allow you to verify if you have a true full-spectrum CBD product with at least two cannabinoids in it.


CoA will also show if it has been tested for contaminants such as heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, microbes such as mold, or residual solvents, which you should be careful of given hemp’s ability to catch toxins.


CBD oil can also be USDA-certified in the U.S., which means the U.S. government has given it organic certification. This requires cultivators to not use prohibited substances for at least three years.

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