What CBD Oil Isn’t

There is still a considerable amount of confusion surrounding CBD oil despite—or, perhaps, because of—its recent popularity. Below, you’ll find a little guidance to help you find your way.

CBD oil isn’t a “drug”, so it isn’t regulated by the FDA. The single exception is a CBD- containing medicine called Epidiolex, which is sold by prescription and only for a particular type of seizure in human patients. This means that the FDA has evaluated the CBD in Epidiolex, pronouncing it safe (for humans) and capable of helping with that specific condition. All the rest of the CBD on your drugstore shelf is made in numerous different processing plants, by numerous different entities who all have just one thing in common: there is no one overseeing their work. That means it isn’t necessarily pure, and it isn’t necessarily present at the advertised concentration (or at all). No one is there to ensure product uniformity or quality except the court of public opinion. If you want to try this stuff, you’ll need to do your own detective work finding out which brands seem reliable. If you want the FDA to do your detective work for you, CBD will have to be reclassified as a drug—and the price is going to go up.

CBD oil isn’t going to bring on a “high”. That’s THC. Both of these chemicals are found in Cannabis plants; however, the two compounds don’t have a lot in common. THC products are manufactured from plant varieties that specialize in THC. There is lots of money in growing this type of plant, because of the fun factor… but these plants and products are also subject to much closer scrutiny by lawmakers and judges. CBD products, on the other hand, cannot legally contain any significant amount of THC, so they are often derived from the hemp plant. Hemp is technically a Cannabis, but one that is virtually incapable of producing THC—therefore, never invited to parties.

CBD oil isn’t (especially) illegal. Up until recently, CBD was treated just the same as its THC sibling. Federal law was adjusted in 2018 to embrace hemp crops, and, by extension, CBD products that are made from this plant. Hemp crops have numerous very practical uses. They grow readily and are particularly easy on the environment, so this made good sense. Despite this federal action, however, three states are still experiencing high anxiety about CBD. Definitely check your local particulars before you go to make a purchase. Always best to be informed.

CBD oil isn’t a cure-all. Always be skeptical. But be more skeptical when you’re told that a single compound can help you with your skin, nerves, digestion, heart muscle, fingernails, and the peeling paint on your garage. Remember when they told you that coconut oil could cure anything?

CBD oil isn’t totally safe. There is increasing evidence to show that it can interact with other medications, increasing their levels in the patient’s blood stream. If you are going to experiment with CBD, seek out some medical advice and ask specifically about drug interactions.

Dr. M.S. Regan