With rising modernization, the use of cannabis and cannabis products is increasing. This trend has been greatly impacted by the legalization of marijuana in many countries across the globe. Of the various forms that cannabis is used today, one of the most popular is CBD oil, which comes in a range of qualities. Before we delve into this further, let’s take a look at what CBD oil is.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is an oil that contains cannabidiol, a Phytocannabinoid found within the cannabis plant. Typically, this consists of compound cannabidiol mixed in coconut or hemp seed oil. However, most CBD oil is not pure, in that it does not comprise solely of these two ingredients. They often contain harmful additives such as THC. Naturally, that makes for a range of CBD oils, all of varying quality. The question then arises: how do you tell if a particular CBD oil is of good quality? Read on to find out!
CBD Oil and Hemp Oil — What is the Difference?
Before we delve into CBD oil in more detail, let’s take a minute to see where the difference lies in CBD oil and hemp oil. There is often much confusion regarding these two types of oil, as CBD is itself extracted from the hemp plant.
In its most basic sense, hemp oil is used to refer to two things. The first of these is CBD rich oil that is extracted from the hemp plant, alternatively known as CBD oil. On the other hand, hemp oil also refers to hemp seed oil, which is oil derived from the seeds of the hemp plant and contains absolutely no traces of CBD. It is in this dual definition of hemp oil that the difference and confusion lies.
CBD Oil – The Types
CBD oil comes in six main variations.
- Full Spectrum: This is oil made from the whole hemp plant
- Broad Spectrum: This is oil made from the entire hemp plant with THC removed
- Isolate: This is oil made from just a particular section of the hemp plant
- Raw: This is CBD oil that has not undergone any processing after extraction. As such, it will contain impurities.
- Decarboxylated: Similar to raw CBD oil, this oil type has been decarboxylated to make the oil’s effect stronger. This is common amongst people who wish to make CBD edibles.
- Filtered: Filtered CBD oil is typically free from all impurities, including lipids, chlorophyll, and toxic substances. It usually holds a sharp gold color.
CBD Oil – Quality Measures
While CBD oil has proven to be a one of a kind supplement, it’s essential to opt for a high-quality pick. With the ever-growing industry, this can be a difficult thing to ensure. Luckily for you, there are some tell-tale signs that a good quality CBD oil carries.
Here they are:
The manufacturing process that the CBD oil undergoes makes a world of difference as to its quality. With the industry being a relatively new one, there are few real checks and balances when it comes to safety and quality control. There are several different ways CBD oil can be extracted from hemp, with some methods leading to a more quality product than others.
Firms that make use of toxic solvents such as hexane, propane, butane, and pentane for the removal process should be avoided at all costs as these are extremely harmful for human, or animal consumption. A safer alternative lies in using organic ethanol for the extraction process as this rids the oil of unwanted toxins and results in a purer end substance. Alternatively, refining CBD oil through the ‘supercritical CO2 extraction’ method also results in pure, high-grade CBD oil.
It is a good idea to read up on different company’s manufacturing processes before purchasing CBD oil. For high-quality oil, go for firms that use organic ethanol or supercritical CO2 extraction.
It is a given that the quality of your CBD oil will be a direct result of the quality of the raw materials that are used in its production. When it comes to CBD oil, the number one raw material is the hemp plant, which acts as a hyperaccumulator. What this means is that the hemp plant absorbs all substances that are in the ground where it is grown.
As a result, hemp grown on fertile soil leads to better quality CBD oil, whereas one grown on land that is abundant with heavy metals and toxic materials would make for low-grade CBD oil. Such low-grade CBD oil is often unfit for consumption, particularly by those with a weak immune system.
For safety and assurance measures, consumers should only purchase CBD oil from companies that only use hemp grown by certified farmers.
- THC Levels
THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is a substance present in both cannabis and hemp. Since THC is the substance responsible for inducing a psychoactive effect, that is, making the individual ‘high’ it is deemed unacceptable in large quantities by the majority of consumers. Although hemp packs in relatively low levels of THC it can still have undesirable effects if not handled properly. Usually, it is through processes of careless manufacturing that THC levels get distorted.
Ideally, THC levels should not exceed the 0.3% mark, with the best of the best companies ensuring a completely THC free product.
- Whole Plant Usage
When it comes to CBD oil, the best of the best is made using the entire hemp plant instead of just sections. Using the whole plant guarantees that the oil holds primary and secondary components of the hemp plant as well as CBD. These components are often in the shape of flavonoids, terpenes, and other similar cannabinoids. The inculcation of the entire hemp plant works to exaggerate the benefits that are stored within the CBD oil, making it a higher quality purchase for consumers.
Before making a purchase, it is a good idea to check the labels and read up on the CBD oil manufacturer and ascertain whether they use the whole plant in production or not. Remember, companies could use the terms whole plant and full spectrum interchangeably as they both mean the same thing.
- Third-Party Lab Results
As always, intermediary checks are a must in this industry. A standard marker of good quality CBD oil is that its producer would provide third-party lab results. What lab results essentially do is that they add a layer of assurance around the oil’s quality as it has been tested and approved by an entity with no direct interest in its profitability. While some lab tests will show positive results, others may show negative ones helping individuals decide which oil to opt for.
As a basic guideline, positive test results will show a high CBD concentration, low THC levels and an absence of impurities, toxins, and residue. Before making a purchase, it is advisable to check up on these results, which are usually available online or on the packaging.
CBD oils come in a variety of colors, ranging from a clear to dark brown shade. The color of the oil is usually an indication of its composition. Clear or lightly colored oil is likely to be an isolate or broad-spectrum whereas darker shades of gold, green and brown are made using the whole plant. However, full-spectrum plants can also hold a clear view if THC is removed from the substance.
As a general rule, individuals should opt for darker CBD oils as these are more concentrated. However, if they wish to use THC free oil, then just make sure that it is the full spectrum variety. However, it should be remembered that other factors such as the extraction method and the carrier oil type also affect the color of the CBD oil.
CBD Oil- Does Quality Really Matter?
Now that you know how to identify a good quality CBD oil, it is crucial to drive home the importance of your selection. As is given, better quality CBD oil will carry a higher price tag. Before you think about skimping out for a cheaper alternative, it is necessary to know about the repercussions.
As a first off, CBD is metabolized by the liver, and so lower-grade varieties are known to cause harm to it. Other side effects of a low-quality CBD oil are dizziness, drowsiness, dryness of the mouth, low blood pressure, diarrhea, fluctuating weight and appetite and exaggeration of existing movement related disorders.
It is evident, then, that good quality CBD oil is well worth the price.
So, there you have it; a comprehensive guide for identifying good quality CBD oil. Make sure to follow these markers carefully and use only the best of the best!