From eye cream to undergarments, CBD is popping up everywhere these days. But for something so widely available, it can be challenging to figure out how and why to best use CBD. To help, we are taking it back to the basics this week and discussing some of the first steps to take when choosing a CBD product.
- Decide what you need CBD for - It may seem like CBD is being touted as a cure-all and maybe it is. Until Federal regulations evolve and allow for objective cannabis research, we will not know the full range of cannabis’ benefits. Still, the experts have some advice, and researching your condition to find the recommended formulation of cannabinoids and terpenes beforehand can help set expectations and point you in the right direction as you start your search. Project CBD's Medical Condition library is a great online resource for the latest CBD research and information around specific symptoms.
- Form factor- The way you consume CBD will help determine how it makes you feel. For fast-acting relief, inhaling CBD or using a sublingual tincture may be most effective as the benefits can be felt throughout the body within minutes and last for 1-3 hours. On the other hand, digesting CBD edibles or soft gels take longer for the body to absorb into your system and will stay in your system longer. Edibles usually have an onset time of 1-2 hours and effects can last up to 8 hours. Topical applications are good for targeted relief, but studies show minimal benefit outside of the area it is applied so best for treatment surface level conditions. For more information on our product form factors and the different ways to use Care By Design see Care By Design’s Cannabis Applications post.
- Dose-It's a good thing that CBD is non-psychoactive because finding your dose can take time. Everyone’s body processes cannabis differently so finding what works best for your specific needs is important. Look for products that contain full spectrum CBD and other minor cannabinoids. For Care By Design drops start with ½ - 1 ml and for soft gels start with 1 soft gel. Note how you feel after a few hours. It may be helpful to use a journal to record changes in mood, sleep, relief of symptoms, etc. Try the same or similar doses for several days, as CBD has a cumulative benefit and studies show that CBD’s effects build with regular and prolonged use.
- Ingredients- Not all CBD is created equal. Full-spectrum CBD has shown to be most effective as it mimics the composition of the cannabis plant. This creates what is known as the entourage effect, the idea that the sum of cannabis’ compounds is greater than that of the individual parts. Care By Design uses full spectrum oil and complimentary ingredients like MCT oil which aid the body’s absorption of cannabinoids as well as terpenes that create scientifically proven sensory effects. The alternative to full-spectrum oil is typically CBD isolate, synthetic terpenes, or over processed oil with minimal cannabinoid and terpene content. Avoid products with synthetic flavorings and additives as these are often filler ingredients with no medicinal benefit.
- Sourcing - Location, location, location. Where and how the plants are grown is key to efficacy. Imported CBD has little regulatory oversight or transparency into production conditions. Because regulations and standards vary by state and country, we recommend CBD grown and manufactured in the United States, ideally in states with legalized cannabis like California and Colorado because established markets have more stringent regulations and better infrastructure in place to assess product safety and quality. As an added benefit, you’ll likely be buying a product from a proven and trustworthy company whose products have withstood time and gained customer trust and approval.