We’re no stranger to the medicinal benefits of cannabis, and neither are the 35 million Americans who regularly smoke weed. But not everyone has access to marijuana, and not everyone wants to get high. This is where CBD oil enters the picture as an alternative, yet beneficial, cannabis plant extract.
Whether you’re lucky enough to reside in a state with fully legalized marijuana, or you live in an area where cannabis products are rarely mentioned, you can find the best CBD oil to help you feel a little better, and live a more healthy lifestyle.
What is CBD Oil?
If you’re not familiar with CBD, here’s a quick rundown of what it is: CBD (short for cannabidiol) is a cannabinoid found in cannabis plants that has a lot of therapeutic potential. It’s most often extracted from hemp plants instead of marijuana, which leads to a very different end product.
When a person smokes weed, THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol) is the plant compound that causes mind-altering effects. THC is a cannabinoid similar to CBD, but with one primary difference—CBD doesn’t get you high. Alternatively, CBD promotes balance of many internal systems and can even combat some of the negative effects of THC.
However, smokable hemp still isn’t widely accepted, which is why CBD oil is all the rage these days. CBD oils are made by extracting CBD and other plant compounds from the hemp plant, and then infusing them into a carrier oil (like MCT oil or hemp seed oil), or in an alcohol solution to create a CBD tincture.
Full Spectrum vs. Broad Spectrum vs. CBD Isolate
When it comes to CBD products, there are three different types of hemp extracts to choose from. Full spectrum hemp includes a wide range of cannabinoids, terpenes, and other plant compounds, which many believe allows these products to work the best since they elicit the entourage effect. Simply put, full spectrum CBD oils allow various plant parts to work together for more benefits than when CBD works alone, as in a CBD isolate.
However, some people prefer pure CBD oils made with isolate since they are THC free, and consumers find comfort in knowing exactly what part of the cannabis plant they are putting into their body. Full spectrum and CBD isolate are polar opposites, but in between these separate ends of the hemp spectrum lies broad spectrum CBD, which contains some additional cannabinoids but has been distilled to remove all traces of THC.
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s dive into the products.
5 Best CBD Oils On the Market
Even if you aren’t a cannabis enthusiast, you can still benefit (and even enjoy) taking CBD oil. Here you can find the top five hemp oils for cannabis connoisseurs and CBD newcomers alike.
NuLeaf specializes in creating highly potent CBD oils that contain the same CBD concentration across all of their products. Each bottle has roughly 50mg of CBD per mL, and they are made from 100% organic hemp plants grown in Colorado. The only downside is the taste, which is very earthy, but the effects make it worthwhile.
Price: Starts at $38.50
Are you new to CBD and not sure where to start? Well Seabedee is here to help. This brand offers a variety of products, including some with condition-specific formulas to promote calming or sleep. They are a great brand for beginners because they offer terpene-rich tinctures that allow you to experience the full effects of CBD to know if it’s right for you.
Price: Starts at $57.95; available at seabedee.org
If THC isn’t your thing, there’s no better brand than cbdMD that offers high-quality broad spectrum CBD oils that are completely THC free, and made from Kentucky hemp. There’s also plenty of options to suite your taste palette (since they offer 4 different flavoring options) and your CBD needs (as they have a range of potencies available).
Price: Starts at $29.99; available at cbdMD.com
No matter what you’re in the CBD market for, CBDistillery has a wide variety of CBD oil formulas and strengths at very affordable prices. They offer both full spectrum and pure CBD isolate tinctures for a THC free option, and this CBD company is well-known within the hemp industry as a trusted brand that stands out thanks to their prices.
Price: Starts at $20.00; cbdistillery.com
If you want to up the ante on your CBD game, Spruce is the brand to help you do it. They offer some of the strongest CBD oils on the market that contain 2,400 mg of CBD in total (or 80 mg per serving). Customers love Spruce CBD products for pain relief, and you’d be hard pressed to find another brand with the same commitment to quality and service.
Price: Starts at $89.00; available at takespruce.com
What’s CBD oil good for?
CBD hemp extracts work through the endocannabinoid system, or the ECS, which helps our bodies maintain homeostasis. This system is home to thousands of cannabinoid receptors that are stimulated by CBD. There are plenty of wellness advantages to using CBD oil, but some of the most common health benefits include:
- Reduced anxiety and stress
- Relief from chronic pain and inflammation
- Improvements in sleep duration and quality
- Regulation and balance of bodily functions
- Promotes calm and focus
While it’s clear that there are several benefits of CBD products, the vast majority of available information on cannabidiol and its effects on the body come to us from personal experience and anecdotal accounts. However, some scientific studies actively demonstrate the therapeutic potential of CBD, and more recent research is being conducted to further expand our knowledge and understanding of this cannabinoid and how it helps us.
Side Effects of CBD
With all its many benefits, there are few adverse effects of CBD oil products, most of which are considered rare. Although in some cases, CBD may cause drowsiness, changes in appetite, or dry mouth. These are mild side effects, and can be best avoided by applying the right CBD oil dosage, since taking too much is more likely to cause negative reactions.
Does CBD show up on a drug test?
One question that many people have when it comes to CBD products is how they might affect a drug screening. The good news is that the vast majority of drug tests are searching for THC only, which means that CBD isolate and broad spectrum products should not change your drug test results. Full spectrum CBD oils on the other hand can contain up to 0.3% THC (as per the legal limit). While this is only a trace amount of THC, most people prefer to stay on the safe side when it comes to drug screenings and opt for THC-free CBD products.
How to Take CBD Oil
Taking a CBD oil tincture is easy enough, and there are a few different ways to use it. The most common and fast-acting application method is to use the dropper to apply the CBD oil sublingually (below the tongue), hold it in place for 30 to 60 seconds, and then swallow. This allows the cannabinoids to absorb into the bloodstream more quickly, and also over time as the body continues to digest the CBD oil.
Alternatively, you can opt to immediately swallow the CBD oil or incorporate it into foods or beverages (such as smoothies, tea, salad dressings, etc). Just keep in mind that this may delay its effects since the digestive tract has to do all the work before any CBD makes it into your bloodstream.
Is CBD oil legal? And Safe?
Unlike marijuana and other psychoactive cannabis plant extracts, CBD oil is legal across the United States as long as it does not exceed the 0.3% THC levels as outlined in the 2018 Farm Bill.
When it comes to safety, third-party testing is an essential element when assessing products to find those that are truly of the highest quality. These lab reports not only test for the appropriate phytocannabinoid composition, but they also ensure that the CBD extract is free of unwanted chemicals like pesticides, heavy metals and solvents that are sometimes left behind after the farming and cultivation practices.
Why Quality Matters
CBD oil is widely popular, and the industry is flooded with new CBD brands, flashy marketing tactics, and misinformation. On top of all that, the FDA has yet to evaluate these products, leaving companies unsupervised when manufacturing and selling their CBD products.
Consumers often find themselves sifting through brand after brand, and never really knowing what’s a good product. That’s why we’ve highlighted the best CBD oils on the market today, to save you the trouble of having to wonder whether or not you bought a product that was really as good as it claimed. Instead, you can feel confident in knowing that the CBD brands verified in this review are made with high-quality CBD extract that has been third-party lab tested and complies with regulations outlined in the 2018 Farm Bill.
If you’re still not sure whether or not CBD oil is right for you, you can always opt to learn more about CBD, its benefits, as well as other products like CBD-infused gummies, lotions, and much more. Additionally, we recommend consulting with your doctor if you take prescription medications or have a serious medical condition before adding CBD oil into your wellness regimen.