There is nothing more popular than CBD in the world of wellness at this time! The market is currently exploding with new and new products being introduced every day as a part of what is referred to as ‘Green Boom’. One can find everything from CBD-infused protein powders to bath bombs and more at different corners of the internet. And you need not look for a dispensary because buying CBD products online is legal and convenient.
Buying CBD with Care
While there are numerous CBD-infused health and wellness products available for purchase, one should be really careful because it is an emerging industry and thus unregulated. Similar to dietary supplements, the FDA does not regulate the making and sale of CBD products and this is why brands are not compelled to follow any strict rules when it comes to making, labeling and selling their productions.
Buy from Genuine Brands
Getting to know a brand is really important in the world of cannabis. There are many companies supporting this requirement by being transparent and providing the info customers look for. A major differentiator when it comes to purchasing safe and reliable CBD is knowing the brand. Do some research about the CBD company and see what information they are making available on their website about the ingredients and processing. Some of the best CBD brands don’t just sell a random isolate infused into a beauty product but provide info about where the hemp comes from and how it can benefit the customers.
Look for the Certificate of Analysis
Labeling does not mean anything unless a lab report supports it. When it comes to finding a trustworthy CBD brand, make sure you buy from only a company that provides a Certificate of Analysis. The tiny file proves that the product you are considering is tested by a third-party, independent lab. You will need the batch number of the product to get the COA as these products are made in batches. Look for the following in these reports –
Potency: Does the product contain any CBD? If yes, how much? Check the COA to find the ‘total CBD’ or ‘total cannabinoids’. Potency is a measure of the level of cannabinoids in the product. If the brand claims the product has 200mg CBD, it should match on the COA.
Pesticides: Check whether the hemp was grown in soil with pesticides. See if they entered the product. Also, check if the CBD was extracted using solvents and if they are in the product. You can request test results to ensure that the product is free of any heavy metals, toxins, contaminants, etc. Each CBD brand should not just do in-house testing but also use third-party lab tests to ensure that the product has the appropriate concentration of CBD and is free of any pesticides, contaminants and residual solvents. You can check the ‘microbiological testing’ area of the COA to ensure that the hemp used for making your CBD product was free from any mold or bacteria.
Safety: Though hundreds of new companies emerge every day, it is vital to look for a CBD brand which has been in the industry for a few years now. It is important to check that the company is third-party GMP certified and they are manufacturing in an FDA-approved facility. These are some of the things you should check before buying a product.
Purchase Domestically Cultivated Hemp
You should try and find out the origin of the hemp used in the CBD product. Hemp, when cultivated, can absorb everything from the soil including pesticides, toxins, metals and other things. This is why it is important that you ensure the hemp is grown only with the use of proper farming practices in a tested soil free of any toxins. You should look for CBD products made out of American-grown hemp as they are usually safer as compared to hemp grown elsewhere.
Prefer CO2-Extraction Method
Apart from the lab reports to check for pesticides, the method of cultivation and other tests, you would also want to know how the CBD was extracted. CO2 extraction is the most preferred method because it is non-toxic. Butane and ethanol-based extraction processes can leave chemicals in the product. You can find this info in the COA.
Consider Broad or Full Spectrum Over Isolate
Full spectrum hemp contains a lot of beneficial compounds in addition to CBD and they work together to enhance the positive effects of CBD. Isolate is not as effective as broad-spectrum hemp which is balanced. Research shows that pure CBD is not as effective at treating pain and inflammation as full-spectrum extract. This does not mean isolates are not good but it is better to consider something that delivers a more complete extract. And even an isolate is more effective as compared to aspirin for relief from a wide range of health conditions.
Avoid Hemp Seed Oil
Hemp seed oil is different from CBD oil as CBD is not derived from the seed of the hemp plant as the compound is not present in the seed. You should be aware that hemp seed oil is marketed as CBD oil at big stores. If you search for CBD oil, you see a lot of options for hemp seed oil. This product is not bad; it contains nutrition and omega-3s but there is hardly any CBD.
Know Your Resources
Any company you purchase from should offer a customer support team to provide you detailed information about the products and answer any questions you might have. They should be able to deliver test results for the product you are interested in and should provide general knowledge on CBD and its benefits. You can either communicate directly with the brand or use other resources to learn about new products and brands and educate yourself.