CBD, or cannabidiol, derived from the cannibis plant, is currently being studied for a myriad of health benefits including sleep disorders, inflammation, anxiety, arthritis, depression, schizophrenia, MS, neurological disorders, psychosis and seizures just to name a few. CBD oil is extracted from the marijuana plant. Absent of THC, the chemical that creates euphoria or a feeling of “high”, CBD oil is showing up online and in stores everywhere.
Hemp, a plant derivative of Cannabis, has also gained recent attention. With <0.3% THC and no documented side effects, hemp contains more than 540 phytochemicals. Phytochemicals, also referred to as phytonutrients, are found in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, beans, herbs, spices, nuts, and seeds and are classified according to their chemical structures and functional properties. Research shows that phytochemicals have the potential to boost the immune system, prevent toxic substances in foods from becoming carcinogenic, reduce inflammation, prevent DNA damage, repair damaged DNA, reduce oxidative damage to cells, slow the growth of cancer cells, promote self-destruction (apoptosis) of damaged cells, regulate hormones, help with management of diabetes and fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria, specifically, MRSA. In addition, there likely are health benefits of phytochemicals yet to be discovered.
But, is CBD and hemp oil free of dangers? How do we know the benefits are legitimate and more importantly, are the products safe and reliable?
Unfortunately, there isn’t a clear answer.
Although strong evidence supports the use of CBD and hemp products for health benefits, more research is needed to prove that benefits outweigh potential risks.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel recently recommended approval of the CBD medication Epidiolex to treat two rare forms of childhood epilepsy.
“That’s really the only area where the evidence has risen to the point where the FDA has said this is acceptable to approve a new drug,” said Timothy Welty, chair of the department of clinical sciences at Drake University’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, in Des Moines, Iowa.
For the rest of CBD’s possible uses, there is simply too little evidence to make a firm conclusion.https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/news/20180507/cbd-oil-all-the-rage-but-is-it-safe-effective#1
Sadly, there have been multiple reports of buyers using synthetic cannabinoids which resulted in nausea, vomiting, hallucinations, seizures and even loss of consciousness. These products were not sold on the streets, but in local markets. It should be noted that any products containing cannabis-derived products have not yet been proven safe or effective by the FDA. Most concerning, the FDA does not regulate CBD oil and the majority of products tested are inconsistent with their label claims.
Marcel Bonn-Miller, an adjunct assistant professor of psychology in psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine said, “It really is the Wild West. Joe Bob who starts up a CBD company could say whatever the hell he wants on a label and sell it to people.”
I look forward to future benefits to be proven. But, until the FDA is able to regulate the sell of CBD oil and its purity, I’m labeling the popularity of CBD oil a fad that I’m not quite ready to try.