Much like kale and crystals once took the health world by storm, CBD has become the wellness product of the moment, and everyone from fitness gurus and health-conscious moms to active retirees are interested in giving it a try. Not sure where to start? Confused about what exactly CBD is, and how much you should use? You’ve come to the right place. We’ve got the answers to your biggest CBD questions.
CBD is short for cannabidiol, which is one of approximately 100 natural chemical compounds called cannabinoids (confusing much?) found in the cannabis plant. Tetrahydrocannabinol — more commonly known as THC — is another cannabinoid you’ve probably heard of.
You got it. Unlike THC, CBD has no psychotoxic properties. It won’t make you feel euphoric, give you dry eyes, have you reaching for a late-night snack, or make you collapse into a fit of giggles. In other words: CBD won’t make you feel intoxicated or otherwise impaired.
It’s only natural that many first-time users think CBD will have the same effects as marijuana, which is also derived from the cannabis plant, but that’s not something you need to worry about.
Picture a family tree. At the top, there’s the cannabis plant, of which there are two main classifications: marijuana and hemp. Both are made up of CBD and THC, but the amounts of these compounds vary drastically in each plant. Marijuana products typically contain more than 20% THC (the psychotoxic compound), whereas hemp-based products contain less than 0.3% THC. When buying CBD, look for oils and tinctures that have been derived from hemp, and keep these ratios in mind when testing different doses.
Every body is different, and each individual will react differently to CBD. Determining which dose is right for you depends on a few factors: why you’re using it, your preferred method, the additional ingredients in your products, and your individual biochemistry and metabolism. Whether you’re trying CBD for the first time or testing out a new format, the best approach you can take is to do your research, be mindful of your desired effects, and then start low and go slow to find the amount that works for you.
First, let’s be clear on what CBD does not do: appropriate doses will not make you feel intoxicated. Rather, by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system, CBD may simply evoke a feeling of calmness.
The endocannabinoid system plays a role in maintaining homeostasis — the state of equilibrium that our bodies try to operate in. This system is made up of molecules (or endocannabinoids) that our bodies produce on their own and is said to aid digestion, motor control, sleep, and other functions.
When cannabinoids, like CBD, enter the system, they behave in much the same way as our bodies’ naturally occurring endocannabinoids. Essentially, CBD makes the body feel as if it’s producing a higher volume of healthy molecules, which helps to minimize our fight-or-flight tendencies, and signals that we’re safe and it’s okay to relax.
More and more people are incorporating CBD into their everyday wellness practices as a means of promoting rest and relaxation, achieving a sense of calm, and improving their overall wellbeing. The fact that CBD is plant-based, doesn’t alter our consciousness (like marijuana), and may not have the same side effects as prescription and over-the-counter drugs is a big draw.
Different forms of CBD will deliver results at different speeds, and linger for different lengths of time. For example, when taking CBD sublingually it can enter the body in as little as 15 minutes, but will be metabolized faster than a version that enters the digestive system (e.g. capsules).
With so many forms available, it’s easy to find something that works with your individual systems and routines: tinctures, capsules, gummies, topical creams, oils, bath bombs, cocktails, lube…the list goes on. Remember to take your time and experiment with different forms and doses to find out what’s best for you — no matter how experienced you are with cannabis or other CBD products.
If you’re curious about CBD and its benefits, research is the best place to start. And from there, you can start to incorporate it into your morning routine or evening wind down. Our curated CBD collection — comprised of only the highest-quality, most trusted brands — is made with ingredients that help you live better, every day.
Not intended as medical advice. Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition. If you have specific healthcare concerns or questions about the products displayed, please contact your licensed healthcare professional for advice.