Many people interested in CBD delay purchasing their first product. Some feel a little overwhelmed by the large assortment. Others wait because they find the industry-related jargon a bit confusing or think they don't know enough about CBD to make an informed purchasing decision. We get it! There's a lot of information to unravel.
That's why we're dedicating this informative guide to first-time CBD users. You'll learn what CBD is, how it works, and why so many people use hemp-derived CBD products. You'll also find information about THC-free options and discover which products are popular with first-time CBD users.
CBD Sources: Clarifying the Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana
CBD is the commonly used abbreviation for cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating plant element found in the stalks, stems, and flowers of cannabis plants. There are two potential sources, marijuana and hemp. CBD products sourced from marijuana are typically sold in cannabis dispensaries.
Most CBD products sold in retail stores, specialty shops, and online are made with hemp extracts. Hemp plants produce large amounts of CBD, but only trace amounts of THC, the plant element that causes the psychoactive effects of marijuana. Since hemp CBD does not contain enough THC to cause intoxication, hemp-derived products are available to nearly everyone interested in CBD's health and wellness potential.
How CBD Works: Harnessing the Potential of ECS Support
With the rapid rise in popularity, many people assume CBD is a relatively recent discovery. But it's not. Researchers have been investigating the cannabinoid's therapeutic potential for decades. Yet, they could never quite explain how a single plant element appeared to be beneficial for so many seemingly unrelated health and wellness concerns.
That changed in the early 1990s when cannabis research eventually led to the discovery of a previously unknown regulatory system responsible for nearly every essential bodily function, the endocannabinoid system (ECS). There are three main components, the messengers made as needed in the body (endocannabinoids), their corresponding receptors (CB1 and CB2), and the metabolic enzymes that break down the endocannabinoids once their message is delivered.
Today, researchers believe the primary role of ECS function is to support the processes of homeostasis, the balance all living organisms must maintain for survival. That's where CBD fits into the ECS equation. Current studies suggest CBD helps support ECS function by interacting with ECS receptors throughout the body and brain. The impact depends on which processes are restored to balance through endocannabinoid system support. Just a few of the many processes regulated by ECS function include:
- Moods and emotions
- Perception of pleasure and pain
- Reproductive processes
- Muscle movement
- Stress responses
- Sleep and sleep cycles
- Memory and learning
- Immune system function
Cannabinoid Profiles: Selecting a Profile Helps Refine Your Search
The best CBD products are sourced from naturally cultivated hemp, crops grown without potentially harmful pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides. Once mature crops are harvested, the oil is extracted and distilled. Since CBD can be ingested, absorbed through the skin, or inhaled, the cannabinoid-rich oil is used to make a wide range of appealing products.
While browsing your options, you'll soon discover several types of CBD. Each has a unique cannabinoid profile. Once you understand the differences between the following options, you'll have a much easier time refining your search:
Full-Spectrum Hemp-Derived CBD
Selecting products made with full-spectrum extract gives you all the additional cannabinoids, plant-terpenes, flavonoids, and other plant-sourced nutrients produced by the plant, including the trace amounts of THC. Many CBD users prefer full-spectrum products because of the way the additional cannabinoids and terpenes amplify the impact of each plant element. Cannabis researchers call this phenomenon an "entourage effect."
Broad-Spectrum CBD Products
Broad-spectrum CBD gives you many of the same additional cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids as full-spectrum extracts. But there's one major difference. The THC is removed or reduced to non-detectable levels during extraction and processing. Broad-spectrum products are popular with CBD users interested in the benefits-maximizing potential of an "entourage effect" but concerned about ingesting THC.
Products Made with CBD Isolate Powders
Products made with CBD isolate are also THC-Free. Once the oil is extracted, a process called winterization removes the plant oils, fatty acids, additional cannabinoids, and other unwanted plant components. All that remains once processing is complete is a white powder that is nearly 100% cannabidiol. The powder is flavorless and odorless, so it can be used to add CBD to edibles without impacting the flavor.
CBD Products Featuring Minor Cannabinoids
CBD is just one of many cannabinoids in full-spectrum extracts. You'll also find trace amounts of more than 100 others. Several are shown to have intriguing properties of their own. With advances in extraction technology, innovative manufacturers are expanding their inventories with CBD products enhanced with cannabinoid isolates selected for a specific purpose. Current studies suggest CBG (cannabigerol) enhances CBDs potency, while CBN (cannabinol) promotes relaxation and restful sleep.
Selecting a Product Type: Popular Options for First-Time Users
There are many ways to experience the health and wellness potential of CBD. Some CBD users look for versatile products they can use in several ways, while others value simplicity and convenience. Since there's no single product that appeals to every CBD user, you'll want to start with something that fits your needs and your lifestyle. The following product descriptions could help nudge you in the right direction:
CBD Oil Tinctures
Hemp-derived CBD tinctures are made with plant extracts and a carrier oil. Since the cannabinoid is fat-soluble, the carrier oil helps improve bioavailability. You can use your tincture to add CBD to foods and beverages or make your own CBD topical by adding the tincture to a cream or lotion. But many tincture enthusiasts prefer using CBD sublingually. It's easy. Just hold the tincture under your tongue for 10-20 seconds before swallowing to give the cannabinoids time to absorb into your bloodstream.
CBD Capsules and Edibles
CBD capsules (and softgels) are convenient, portable, and often favored by CBD users who don't want to deal with measuring serving sizes or counting drops. CBD candies, gummies, chocolates, and other edibles are flavorful and delicious. Many people using CBD for the first time like the idea of eating candy with health and wellness potential. Plus, it's easy to adjust servings sizes according to individual needs.
Topical CBD Products
CBD molecules are small enough to penetrate the surface of your skin. Once absorbed, the cannabinoid interacts with the ECS receptors in tissues far below the surface. Topical creams, lotions, sports balms, and bath bombs are popular with CBD users looking for targeted relief in a specific area of their body. They're also favored by people interested in the many potential skin benefits. Topicals can be used on their own or to supplement the impact of any other CBD product you enjoy.
CBD Pre-Rolls and Vape Products
Inhaling CBD is the fastest, most efficient way to experience the full potential of CBD. The cannabinoid enters your bloodstream through your lungs rather than being processed through your digestive system. Most CBD users report noticeable effects within minutes of smoking or vaping. It can take an hour or two for edibles and capsules to deliver results. However, you will find the effects don't last nearly as long, so many smokers and vapers use their products throughout the day.
Are You Ready to Try Hemp-Derived CBD?
CBD is not a treatment, preventative, or cure for any known health concerns. Yet, it's easy to find numerous reports suggesting the cannabinoid has significant analgesic, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, and anxiolytic properties. That likely explains why you'll find so many product reviews and user testimonials suggesting CBD helps with pain and stiffness, relaxation, better sleep, and more. However, every CBD user is unique.
When you're reviewing serving size suggestions on product labels, keep in mind that an amount of CBD that works well for someone else could be significantly more or considerably less than the amount that's right for you. When using CBD for the first time, consider starting with a very small amount. Then increase your serving sizes gradually at a pace you're comfortable with until you achieve the results you're looking for. Some CBD users increase with each dose; others wait a week or more to give their system time to adjust and adapt. The choice is yours.
The quality of the products you choose will also impact your overall experience. For a diverse assortment of products from some of the most reputable brands in the CBD industry, visit Have A Nice Day CBD. If you have a health condition or take medication, please discuss your interest in hemp-derived CBD with your health care provider before committing to a product. Cannabinoids can interact with prescription and over-the-counter medications.