After two decades of experience in the hemp industry, Paul Benhaim founded Elixinol – ostensibly, as the company’s website states, to “[manufacture] and [provide] the highest-quality CBD oil and hemp extracts in the world.” And so that CBD oil users can be assured of that quality, Elixinol extensively tests its extracts and provides certificates of analysis for its products that are available to view at a click. The manufacturer’s wares have even received a “stamp of approval” from The Realm of Caring Foundation, a Colorado-based non-profit and advocate for cannabinoid therapy research and education. Those wanting to assess Elixinol’s extracts for themselves can choose from its range of oral tinctures – with potencies of 300 mg, 600 mg and 3,600 mg – as well as topical balms and capsules. Plus, the company gives 5 percent of the proceeds from every sale to charity – so buyers may not only feel good after their purchases, but they’ll do some good, too.
Transparency: Fab’s website features third-party lab results for most products. They only have a lab test for one of their tinctures though (which shows results for cannabinoid potency, as well as contaminants like pesticides). Customer service pointed out that the same CBD oil is used for all their products, but since potencies do vary, we appreciate companies that show potency testing for all products.
CBD Fx is another USA company that emphasizes the use of MCT oil for maximizing the bioavailability of the CBD compound to cells throughout the body. In layman’s terms, this basically means their goal is to create a highly efficient and effective tincture that bypasses metabolic breakdown processes in the digestive system. They’re also big into vape pens, CBD vaping and CBD concentrates (waxes, powders, crystal isolates etc), so they tend to appeal a lot to the younger population as well as older folks like me who need CBD oil basically just to get out of bed in the morning.
Our bodies are thought to produce endocannabinoids by the billions every day. “We always thought the ‘runner’s high’ was due to the release of dopamine and endorphins. But now we know the euphoria is also from an endocannabinoid called anandamide,” its name derived from the Sanskrit word for bliss, says Joseph Maroon, MD, clinical professor and vice chairman of neurosurgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. We produce these natural chemicals all day, but they fade quickly because enzymes pop up to destroy them. That’s where CBD comes in: By blocking these enzymes, CBD allows the beneficial compounds to linger.
Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is a phyto-cannabinoid found in cannabis plants. However, it does not cause the same psychoactive effects as other naturally occurring cannabinoids (such as tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC). CBD induces feelings of sleepiness and tranquility, making it suitable for insomnia and other sleep disorders; CBD can be used to alleviate symptoms of epilepsy, diabetes, and anxiety disorders, as well. Legality is an issue for some; all 50 states have laws governing the sale, possession, and use of CBD, and they vary significantly (see the table below for a full analysis).
The interest and preference for botanical remedies such as CBD oil over harsh pharmaceuticals are growing rapidly. You can read scientific research on the promise of CBD Oil at NCBI. While North America is taking the lead legalizing cannabis and hemp the rest of the world is starting to question their stance on prohibition because of the undeniable benefits. While all talk about plant-based remedies may seem very new, using cannabis/hemp tinctures as a holistic remedy is a generations-old tradition. It was very common to use cbd tinctures of cannabis oil in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. We are enjoying a renaissance in ancestral health where we are open again to remedies that were all but forgotten about in the mad race to make medicines a pill offered by a faceless often unaccountable corporation.
Koi CBD probably should be higher up on this list given their popularity, but since they’re geared more towards vaping and CBD vape oils, and I have never really used them too much. People who do use them everyday though say that they’ve got the best flavors of any CBD vape oil on the market, and I can say personally that their CBD gummies and spearmint CBD oil work decently as well. I would recommend Koi CBD if you’re big into vaping and have yet to find a CBD vape oil that you like, and/or if you’re looking for a reputable brand that sells high quality oral CBD tinctures as well as edibles and vape products – might as well order everything in one place.
Plus CBD Oil has spent a great deal of effort into getting their products in retail stores across the country. In fact, they’ve been featured by many local news outlets and there’s a good chance you’ve seen some of their oils at places like vape/smoke shops, headshops, and even health food stores. Generally brick-and-mortar shops like these sell very low quality “hempseed” products, but Plus CBD is definitely one of the exceptions. Also, they’ve got a “CBD Deals” page where you can browse their latest sales, specials, and online promotions.
Los Angeles-based PureKana stresses that it extracts the CBD oil for its products from hemp plants that have been cultivated without the use of herbicides, pesticides or other agro-industrial chemicals that may impact upon crops. What’s more, the company states, no solvents go into the extraction process other than carbon dioxide. And to further put potential customers’ minds at rest, PureKana presents the results of third-party testing of its CBD oil tincture on its website – a welcome nod to transparency. That tincture can be found in the company’s own blend of CBD oil drops – the three varieties of which have elicited highly complimentary reviews from users – as well as its capsules and cooling topical ointment. Meanwhile, for anyone with a sweet tooth, PureKana’s CBD isolate-containing gummy bears may just do the trick.
But even though it's infiltrating pretty much every corner of the wellness world (hi, vegan CBD brownies!) many people still find CBD a little confusing—especially when it comes to figuring out the right way to use it and how to make sure the stuff you're buying is, you know, actually legit. Below, we asked experts to answer the most pressing questions about CBD.
High potency CBD oils are ideal for those seeking a powerful, therapeutic effect. However, many companies only offer CBD oil in low to moderate potencies. Our pick for the highest potency CBD oil is Sabaidee’s Mega Good Vibes 2500mg+ CBD oil. At 88.33mg of CBD per serving, this is one of the most potent CBD oils on the market. And at $0.08 per mg of CBD, it is also reasonably priced. One 30mL bottle packs 2,500 mg of high-quality, full-spectrum, peppermint-flavored CBD oil.
The tricky part is that there's some evidence suggesting CBD works best for pain when combined with a little THC, says Dr. Danesh. "Depending on what type of pain you have, you might be able to do just CBD, but sometimes you need CBD and THC." This makes accessing a product that will actually help you more difficult due to different regulations in each state. In New York, where Dr. Danesh practices, for example, CBD is available over the counter. But as soon as you add THC, you need a prescription.
Not all CBD is created equally. Some tinctures are created with little regard to overall consumer safety, and may contain harmful chemicals and pesticides. Other CBD products have been shown to differ from what the label says, either with way more cannabidiol, or way less. In some cases, the THC content was elevated above the federal legal limit for hemp extracts.
San Francisco’s Johnny Apple CBD assures customers that it only uses organic, non-GMO hemp plants for its CBD extract. In addition, the company declares, it’s put the time and effort into ensuring the genetic quality of the raw material. Perhaps that rigorous process has helped Johnny Apple CBD in securing the often-superlative reviews given to its products, which have in total earned the company an “excellent” TrustSpot rating. Those duly tempted to purchase from the producer can take their pick from CBD oil blends specially formulated to encourage either tranquility, happiness or clear-headedness. Also available are a wax designed for dabbers, a cocoa butter “calm balm” and 99 percent-pure CBD in crystals – the finer variety of which, Johnny Apple CBD explains, is entirely suitable for adding to baked goods.
There are very few known adverse side effects of CBD. According to this study, CBD is “a major non-psychotropic constituent of cannabis, has multiple pharmacological actions, including anxiolytic, antipsychotic, antiemetic, and anti-inflammatory properties. But if you are looking for a high from CBD, you will not get that because CBD has no psychoactive effects. Do speak with your physician if you are concerned about drug interactions.
The human body also produces cannabinoids, known as endocannabinoids, in a bodily system known as the endocannabinoid system (or ECS). The ECS promotes homeostasis by regulating a wide range of functions, including motor skills, mood, appetite, and sleep. As we age, our ECS produces fewer endocannabinoids; they may also decrease due to physical injury or disease. Replenishing depleted endocannabinoids with phytocannabinoids like CBD can help restore balance to the body.
Green Gorilla marks itself out by simply blending its flagship line of CBD oils with organically produced extra virgin olive oil – and nothing else. And, as the company states, there’s a benefit to this beyond assuring the product’s purity. In particular, olive oil “has synergistic effects in combination with CBD,” and according to Green Gorilla’s website, it’s “also able to deliver the CBD to the parts of [the] body that need it most.” The products are certainly affordable, too: its 150 mg pure CBD oil comes in at $25.99, for instance, making it a smart choice for new users. And anyone still uncertain about the potential effects of Green Gorilla’s products may have their questions answered by the convenient “science” section of the manufacturer’s website, which neatly explains the difference between THC – the cannabinoid that makes people “high” – and CBD.
CBD is a chemical found in marijuana. CBD doesn't contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient found in marijuana that produces a high. The usual CBD formulation is oil, but CBD is also sold as an extract, a vaporized liquid and an oil-based capsule. Food, drinks and beauty products are among the many CBD-infused products available online.
It’s also important to select CBD oil products based on your concentration preferences. Some forms of CBD oil – such as vapors and tinctures – normally have higher-than-average concentrations, whereas sprays and topicals tend to have lower concentrations. Remember: higher concentration means more pronounced effects, but not necessarily mean higher quality.
You’ve probably seen PureKana listed on several other “best CBD oils” lists, and it’s for good reason; in our experience (along with maybe a couple of other close competitors), they offer the best overall value in terms of potency, price, customer service, and most importantly, effectiveness. In fact, if I wasn’t continuously trying out new stuff and dedicated to reviewing every single hemp product on the market in an effort to reveal the absolute best CBD oil, I would probably use them exclusively for my lower back pain. Likewise, my partner has said several times that the 600 mg Vanilla tincture is one of his favorites for helping him sleep through the night.
Chronic Pain: The body’s ECS plays a role in alleviating and managing pain, so CBD oil can work as a supplement for individuals with medical conditions that cause chronic pain, such as arthritis and multiple sclerosis. CBD oil also increases levels of adenosine in the brain; adenosine is a neurotransmitter that aids cardiovascular function and eases painful inflammation.
Nearly every expert Health spoke to agreed that your CBD products should be tested by a third party to confirm the label's accuracy. This is a real concern in the industry—take the 2017 Journal of the American Medical Association study, for example, which tested 84 CBD products and found that 26% contained lower doses than stated on the bottle. Look for a quality assurance stamp or certificate of analysis from a third party (aka not the actual brand) or check the retailer's website if you don't see it on the product's label.
“Buying from a reputable manufacturer is crucial, because it matters how the plant is cultivated and processed,” Dr. Maroon says. One clue that a company is cutting corners: too low a cost. Good CBD is pricey—a bottle of high-quality capsules is sold in Cohen’s office for $140. But for many, it’s worth the money. Roth spent $60 on her tiny bottle. But when her energy returned the day she started taking CBD, she decided that was a small price to pay.
Another point worth clarifying is the difference between hemp seed oil (or hemp oil) and CBD oil. There’s confusion on this point for the very good reason that both CBD oil and hemp seed oil are extracted from the industrial hemp plant. But there’s a big difference between the 2. Hemp seed oil has been pressed from hemp seed, and it’s great for a lot of things — it’s good for you, tastes great, and can be used in soap, paint — even as biodiesel fuel.