Mark Twain once said, “There are lies, damned lies and statistics.”
That quote could have been written about the many CBD Myths that are circulated in the press and social media. Here are the facts!
~ CBD is “pot” and will get you high! Myth! CBD oil is from the hemp plant, NOT from it’s cousin the “marijuana” plant. Why is this important? Hemp is bred to increase the quality and concentration of the Cannabidiols (CBD), terpenes, and other useful bioflavonoids instead of the psychoactive THC molecule.
~ CBD is GOOD, THC is BAD! Myth! Both are useful, but for most, even a “pure” CBD oil can have tremendous health benefits as a daily supplement. THC has many potential advantages, but I would like to stick with the more mainstream CBD products.
~ CBD is illegal! Myth! Hemp-derived CBD with less than 0.3 mg% is legal to purchase and use in all 50 states.*
~ Isolates of Cannabidiol (CBD in its purest form) are better than “Full-Spectrum” CBD products. Myth! Many of the terpenes and bioflavonoids that accompany CBD in a full-spectrum product provide an amazing, rich, and healthful plant-derived supplement that an isolate cannot deliver.
~ CBD is safe in children! Truth! Studies of children given even high dose CBD oil (with THC even) show no appreciable toxicity in several clinical studies. The relatively small serving sizes in CBD products are exceedingly safe (again, you must be certain that the manufacturer of your product has reliable and independently verified analysis of contents before trusting it with your child). Although it is a supplement, I would discuss the use of the product with a CBD literate health care provider. Be aware, though, most health care providers may not know as much as you do after reading this post. We have a long way to go in Medicine before embracing naturopathic and holistic alternatives as the rule and not the exception.
~ More CBD is better! Myth! Actually, in many ways, smaller servings can achieve many of the positive health results as high-dose oils. Each individual may have different needs and deficiencies and using a premium product may be a more affordable value than you think.
~ CBD is toxic! Myth! A review of 132 studies showed an incredible safety profile, even at high doses.***
~ I will test positive on drug tests for marijuana! Myth! “Pure” CBD products contain no measurable THC, the psychoactive component tested in drug screens. Further, the 0.3mg% products have such small amounts that they are nearly impossible to measure with modern screens. One caveat though, you must know and trust the product you are using! It’s wild in the CBD space and there are no guarantees that what is labeled on the bottle is what you are actually getting in reality.
~ CBD has been clinically proven to support the reduction of anxiety, depression, social anxiety, autism, ADHD/OCD, and mood disorders. Truth! Though more research is needed to fine tune the use of CBD in many pathologies, it is clearly of significant benefit in the studies to date. Long term data has constantly shown safety in the chronic use of these products, even in children.** ***
~ CBD can support many natural and healthy functions in the body! Truth! Inflammation, digestive health, anxiety, sleep disorders, mood stabilization, enhanced immunity, and cosmetic benefits can be supported naturally and safely by regularly supplementing with CBD products, especially the full-spectrum compounds.
~ All CBD products are the same! BIG MYTH! This is the important take away here! I think we can agree that CBD based health supplements are going to be transformational in our health and wellness quests, but caveat emptor (let the buyer beware)!
Clearly, with all the thousands of products representing the CBD movement, there are all sorts of incentives to cut corners, misrepresent the product, and even commit outright fraud! So, as I have warned before, quality and trust in your product are essential. Only do business with reputable companies, companies that can show independently validated tests insuring purity, concentration, and quality. Hemp is a plant that is extremely good at “bioaccumulation.” What this means is the plant will concentrate both the good components in soil, but also toxins and pollutants. Plants grown in many parts of the country may have been exposed to fields which previously grew crops like tobacco, GMO corn, soy, wheat, etc. These crops can leave toxic residues like nicatinamides, dioxins, chemical fertilizers, pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides in the soil just waiting for the hemp plant to concentrate in the same plant tissues in which you are deriving your CBD products.
Further, how the product is produced is critically important. Many companies try to reduce costs by cutting corners on extracting the oils from the plant. Premium and quality oils are manufactured using expensive extraction techniques that eliminate any residual solvents, heavy metals, toxins, or THC in the “pure” labeled compounds. Earl Mindell gives a useful outline of how to judge a quality CBD product in his book, Healing With Hemp CBD Oil: A Simple Guide to Using Powerful and Proven Health Benefits of CBD, Oct 17, 2017, by Earl Mindell (highly recommended).
“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.” ~ Mark Twain
* So is CBD legal? If we’re talking about hemp-derived CBD, then the answer is yes. Now, the keyword here is “hemp-derived.” Because CBD from hemp has no psychoactive effects, the purchase, sales, or possession of hemp CBD products are completely legal in all 50 States. Because hemp is sometimes confused with the marijuana plant, there is still some stigma towards hemp-derived CBD, but from a legal perspective, hemp-derived CBD is completely legal and enjoys the rights of any other legal product.
**The comprehensive review of 132 original studies by Bergamaschi et al. describes the safety profile of CBD, mentioning several properties: catalepsy is not induced and physiological parameters are not altered (heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature). Moreover, psychological and psychomotor functions are not adversely affected. The same holds true for gastrointestinal transit, food intake, and absence of toxicity for nontransformed cells. Chronic use and high doses of up to 1500 mg per day have been repeatedly shown to be well tolerated by humans.
***This review could substantiate and expand the findings of Bergamashi et al. about CBD favorable safety profile,” Kerstin and Franjo after building on studies showing the safety profile since the original 2012 Bergamashi review.
~ Stephen O’Connor, Emergency Services at Memorial Hospital and Health Care Center, CBD-Rich Hemp Oil Educator and Entrepreneur