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CBD 101

As CBD rises in popularity, you may have a few questions.
Written by the Theralogix team of Registered Dietitians
What is CBD? Where does it come from? Before trying a new CBD product, take time to gather information from trusted resources so you can make smart, safe consumer decisions.

As the popularity of cannabidiol (CBD) continues to spread across the country like wildfire, you probably have a few burning questions. What is CBD? Where does it come from? What kind of CBD products are available? What’s the difference between full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate? Will CBD make you fail a drug test? Is it safe?  

The questions go on and on. Theralogix is here to answer them.  

Welcome to CBD 101.  

What is CBD and where does it come from?  

CBD is a component of the Cannabis sativa plant. When you think of cannabis, you probably think of marijuana, which does contain some CBD. But hemp is another type of cannabis plant – it’s more commonly used for CBD products because it has higher concentrations of CBD and contains very little tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound in cannabis that makes you feel “high.” Legally, hemp must not contain more than 0.3% THC by weight.  

Hemp has been used for centuries to make rope, textiles, clothing, soap, and shampoo. And now, with the rise of CBD products, hemp oil has taken the spotlight.  

Are there different types of hemp oils?  

Hemp oil comes in three main varieties:  

  • Full-spectrum hemp oil. This type of hemp oil provides all the compounds found in hemp – CBD, terpenes, other cannabinoids, and small amounts of THC.  
  • Broad-spectrum hemp oil. This type of hemp oil is similar to full-spectrum hemp oil but usually does not contain THC.  
  • CBD isolate. These products contain only CBD and no other compounds from hemp.  

Keep in mind that hemp oil and hempseed oil are very different products. Hemp oil is extracted from CBD-rich plant parts, including the stems, flowers, and leaves. On the other hand, hempseed oil is extracted only from the seeds. While hemp seeds are a great source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, they do not contain CBD. Hempseed oil has a purpose, but if you’re looking for a product with CBD, look for hemp oil instead.  

Does CBD come in different forms?  

As CBD rises in popularity, new products hit the shelves all the time. Now, you’ll easily find hemp oil in softgels and gummies, as well as infused into topical products, like lotions, salves, and massage oils.  

Will hemp oil CBD make you fail a drug test?  

The short answer: it depends.  

Although drug tests don’t screen for CBD, they do screen for THC, which may be present in some CBD products. For example, full-spectrum hemp oil may contain small amounts of THC, which could result in a positive drug test. Depending on where you live, some CBD products may be derived from marijuana – these products likely contain higher levels of THC.  

Broad-spectrum hemp oil and CBD isolate should not contain detectable levels of THC, but inaccurate labeling of CBD products is a huge issue. One study detected THC in around 21% of CBD products tested. This makes testing and certification extremely important if you are concerned about THC content – more on that coming up.  

Is hemp oil CBD safe?  

Full-spectrum CBD products are still fairly new, but researchers have been studying CBD isolates for quite some time. Studies have demonstrated safe use of CBD, even at high doses, for up to 6 months. If you have liver concerns or take prescription drugs and are considering adding a CBD product to your routine, make sure you let your healthcare provider know.  

While low-dose hemp oil CBD products are generally safe, it’s extremely important to make sure you choose a high-quality, certified product. There are currently two organizations with programs that test and certify hemp products: NSF® International and U.S. Hemp Authority. Certification helps ensure that the actual CBD content of your product matches the label claim and that it is free of contaminants. If you’re looking for a product without THC, testing and certification can also make sure your product contains a non-detectable level of THC.  

The extraction process of hemp oil matters, too. Choose a product that uses carbon dioxide (CO2) to extract the hemp oil – this method doesn’t use harmful solvents, resulting in a pure, safe CBD product.  

You know the old saying: “Knowledge is power.” Before trying any new supplement or product, take time to gather information from trusted resources so you can make smart, safe consumer decisions. Class dismissed.  

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