Cannabidiol (CBD) has become massive as-of-late, the little cannabinoid that could. And it’s no surprise, considering all it can do. CBD was originally just another cannabinoid, THC’s lesser-known sister, but then we found out about all its medical benefits. Because you can use CBD for anything from pain, to nausea, to anxiety, to seizures, to skin disorders, hardly a day goes by now where you complain about a physical or mental malady and someone doesn’t respond “Well, have you tried CBD?”
CBD is a cannabinoid, which means it’s a chemical very structurally similar to endocannabinoids, transmitters naturally found in your endocannabinoid system (ECS), which was only even discovered in the 1990s. The ECS is responsible for maintaining homeostasis, or balance, in your body. The ECS regulates plenty of factors, like appetite, pain response, mood, sleep, and anxiety. Many cannabinoids, including CBD, also lower the seizure threshold, proving helpful for those who suffer from Epilepsy or similar complaints.
As its popularity increases, more and more products have been made available to reap CBD’s benefits. These can range anywhere from the raw hemp flower you can smoke to lotions and creams you can rub onto your skin. And with so many options, it’s easy to find yourself overwhelmed. Here at Silver Owl, we believe it’s important to give people as much education as possible so they can find the right product to bring CBD into their lives.
Here are a few things to consider when choosing your CBD products:
- Dose: Everybody is different, and so, some people need higher doses than others to feel the effects as strongly. You will definitely notice that higher doses kick in faster and have a more pronounced effect. Fortunately, CBD is virtually impossible to overdose on, so the only thing that will hurt if you take too much is your wallet. But it’s a matter of trial-and-error, finding a dose that gives you all the effects you’re looking for. If you took, for example, 1000mg of CBD a day, you would certainly experience the effects of CBD, and you wouldn’t get sick from taking so much, but you very well might feel just fine on 60mg instead. Experiment with dosage until you find what works best for you!
- Concentration: So, if dose is how much CBD you’re taking in one go, concentration is how much CBD is in the entire jar or bottle you buy. For example, we have tinctures starting at 250mg for the bottle up to 5000 total milligrams. The concentration determines how many doses you can get out of your product. At a 33mg/day dose, a 1000mg tincture might last a month, but a 5000 will last 5x as long. Concentration is usually listed in mg, such as with our tinctures or creams, but is also sometimes listed as a percentage, mostly for products such as hemp flower.
- Full-spectrum vs. Isolate: We have both full-spectrum and isolate products. Full-spectrum products are made with the whole hemp plant, locking in terpenes and other cannabinoids. Hemp-based full-spectrum CBD products may contain up to .3% THC, which is not enough to get you high, but can build up and eventually lead to problems with drug tests, while isolate products are made with CBD which has been extracted down to a white powder form which has little flavor and can be easily vaporized by itself or added to a myriad of products and foods to give them a kick of CBD. The benefit to full-spectrum is that many people find the presence of other cannabinoids helps the CBD “kick in” faster and more efficiently, meaning you don’t need as much to get an effect. The benefits to isolate are that you never have to worry about popping positive for THC, and it can be used so many different ways.
- Route of Administration: How you take your CBD makes a massive difference in how it works. Smoking or vaporizing, for example, hits you almost immediately, but it also wears off the quickest. Oral, eating your CBD, takes the longest to kick in, but effects will last much longer. Rubbing it onto your skin hits fairly quickly, but it has area-specific effects, not systemic, meaning it will help with your swollen ankle, but it won’t touch your anxiety. One of the most efficient and increasingly popular methods is sublingual, under the tongue. Tinctures are absorbed by the blood vessels in your mouth, so they bypass digestion, making them kick in faster and with less of the CBD being destroyed before it can affect you.
- Source: Some sources of CBD are purer and more potent than others. CBD is usually extracted from hemp, even though it’s also found in cannabis, because hemp has a naturally much higher cannabidiol content. Any decent, reputable company will tell you where they got their hemp, and most companies, including Silver Owl, have their CBD tested by a third party for quality and purity and make those results available to the consumer. These tests make sure there isn’t more than that .3% THC (or 0% in isolate products), as well as finding contaminants like pesticides and heavy metals. Don’t cut corners; if your CBD product simply says “hemp oil” (this in particular, because 1000mg of hemp oil just means they took a gram-worth of oil from the hemp plant, not a full gram of cannabidiol) or “CBD” and doesn’t tell you where they got it, it’s probably not the best product you can find.
- Extraction: Finally, how the CBD is extracted matters, as well. Some companies save money by using solvents like butane or propane to extract their CBD. This works, but it leaves the product a little less pure than it could be. They can also extract it into oil such as coconut oil, which is plenty clean, but also somewhat inefficient. We believe in using CO2 extraction under high pressure, which maintains the purity and helps us get the most out of it.
With so many things to consider, it might be a matter of trial-and-error to find what works best for you. Maybe you want instant, full-spectrum action, in which case, you should try smoking flower. Maybe you want a solid 8+ hours of effect on a single dose, and tinctures are the most efficient way for you to achieve that. Maybe your hands are the only parts of your body that bother you and you just want to rub some lotion onto your achy knuckles. Everybody has their own preference, and many folks combine methods to get the best results.
Here at Silver Owl, we aim to bring the wonders of cannabidiol to all those who benefit from it, by offering a wide variety of high-quality products at reasonable prices. Whether you already have experience with CBD or you’re completely new to it, we hope we can help you find your next go-to!