It feels like cannabidiol (CBD) is in everything these days. There are CBD products available in stores in most US cities and FDA-approved medications like Epidiolex. But what about CBD medication? Are there medicines out there made with CBD? Are they even legal? Let’s answer those questions, plus a few more.
Starting with basics: what is CBD?
It is always best to start at the simplest part of something as involved as legal CBD medications. In this case, the simplest thing is defining what CBD actually is.
Cannabis plants, like hemp and marijuana, have a chemical compound in them known as cannabinoids. These are the compounds that act on the human body. There are a lot of cannabinoids out there. In fact, researchers have found over 113 of them. CBD is one of these cannabinoids.
CBD is probably the second best-known cannabinoid. The most well-known one being tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Because they are both cannabinoids, these two are often considered the same, even interchangeable. However, it is important to know that that is not true. CBD and THC are very different compounds, despite both being cannabinoids.
The biggest, and arguably most important, difference is that THC is psychoactive, but CBD is not. This means that THC creates a high. It is the compound that causes the high that is so commonly associated with Cannabis. CBD, on the other hand, does not create a high. The closest it comes to having any sort of psychoactive effect is that it may help promote a greater sense of calm.
Medical researchers have been very interested in CBD and the kinds of effects that it may have on people. As a result, there have been many studies that have been done on the cannabinoid covering a number of different areas. For example, this study found that CBD was able to help reduce the rate of diabetes in non-obese mice. Another study found the cannabinoid has an ability to help boost moods and soothe anxiety. This study found that CBD was able to help reduce inflammation, oxidative stress, and the rate of cell death caused by hydrogen peroxide.
Is CBD legal?
It is understandable to wonder about this. After, CBD is extracted from Cannabis, which has a questionable legal status. But most CBD products are legal in the United States.
This is because of the 2018 Farm Bill. This is a bill that gets reviewed and passed every five years by the United States legislature. It effects all things agriculture in the country. This includes what kind of plants farmers are allowed to grow and sell. In 2018 the Farm Bill was passed, as usual, but this time had something a little bit different. It officially made industrial hemp legal for farmers to grow and sell.
The bill lays out what exactly defines “hemp” and helps make it clear how it is different from marijuana, which is still federally illegal. Hemp, according to 2018 Farm Bill, is defined as Cannabis with less than 0.3% THC content. Meanwhile, marijuana is Cannabis with more than 0.3% THC.
This effects the CBD industry because, while hemp has low levels of THC, it has high levels of CBD. As a result, CBD manufacturers usually extract CBD from hemp, rather than marijuana. So, the legalization of hemp means that CBD products are legal as long they are derived from hemp and have less than 0.3% THC content.
So, yes, CBD is legal.
Are CBD medications legal?
Just like wondering whether CBD is legal, being concerned about the legality of CBD medications is perfectly valid. After all, medical Cannabis is not federally legal, despite being legalized in many states.
As of right now, CBD medications are like just about any kind of medication. If the manufacturer wants to sell a medication, they need to go through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER). The CDER tests the medications, not only to ensure that they do the job manufacturers claim that they do, but also to find out what kind of side effects may occur or any other information the public should know. The CDER also expects the manufacturers to do testing of their own. The manufacturers have to send in proof of their testing to show that their claims are accurate. Then if the CDER determines that the potential benefits of a medication outweigh the potential risks, then it is approved.
Above there are some studies listed, but those studies are just a few examples of the research constantly going on focused on the cannabinoid. There is still a lot of research that needs to be done on CBD before the FDA and other organizations are going to be willing to view it as completely safe. However, that does not mean that there are no FDA approved CBD medications. There are some that are still in the process of being approved.
What all of this means is that if a CBD medication has gone through the proper channels of approval, yes, it is legal. There is one particular CBD medication that is considered a big deal. It is Epidiolex. It was the first CBD medication to be approved by the FDA and offers some real help to those who need it.
What is Epidiolex and what does it do?
As mentioned above, researchers have dedicated a lot of time to studying the different potential benefits that CBD may offer people. We briefly went over some of those, but there is one area of CBD study that has led to the development of a CBD-based medication. This area of study is on the effect that CBD has on epileptic seizures.
One study wanted to look the potential antiseizure effects of CBD. The researchers tested using both invitro and vitro animal models. They simulated epileptic seizures in the test subjects then tried giving some of them CBD. The researchers found that the CBD was able to help with calming the seizures.
Another study was aimed to look specifically at the anti-convulsant effects that CBD may have, as convulsions are a common side effect of seizures. The researchers used animal models focusing on the temporal lobes and simulated seizures within them. The test subjects that were given the CBD saw few severe seizures.
Finally, this study compiled all of the research up to that point (in 2014) that had been done on CBD and epilepsy and analyzed what it could mean for the medical use of the cannabinoid. The researchers found that the studies so far were very positive towards the idea the CBD may be able to help keep seizures under control.
As you can see these studies are very promising and the ones above are only a few examples of the numerous studies out there. This area has been looked at so thoroughly that it is not surprising that an epilepsy medication has come from them. This medication is called Epidiolex. It has been designed to help keep seizures caused by epilepsy and Dravet syndrome under control. It was made for use by just about anyone with a few exceptions. For example, there have not been any tests on how it effects children under the age of two years. It is also not recommended for use by pregnant women.
Overall, Epidiolex does not have many negative side effects. However, there is warning that it could cause issues with the liver. People who use Epidiolex are warned to watch for signs of this. They generally include a change in appetite, nausea, and a yellowing of the eyes. Beyond that, Epidiolex appears to be a great option for those who struggle with epilepsy and Dravet syndrome.
How else can you take CBD?
As most CBD medications are still in the process of being approved by the FDA, there are many people who would like to take CBD but cannot be prescribe a CBD medication yet. So, what options do they have to take the cannabinoid?
They have plenty of options. CBD extract is easy to make into a number of different products. As a result, there are many products for those interested in taking CBD to choose from. Most of them are products you take orally, but there are also topicals. These are things like cremes and lotions. Basically, they are any CBD product that you rub on your skin. Topicals offer a more localized effect. That means that the CBD is not likely to affect much beyond the area that it is placed.
There are numerous oral CBD products. They range from oils to foods. They tend to be the preferred version of CBD as they are more likely to provide a more overall effect than topicals. However, they also have their disadvantages. For example, CBD oils and tinctures are a great way to take CBD, but some people find that despite the flavoring often included in the mixture, they still do not like the taste. Many either do not mind the flavor or do not notice it, because CBD tinctures and oils are very popular. If you are not aware, they are CBD extract that has been mixed with a carrier oil, like palm oil. You can either place the drops directly into your mouth or mix them with food or drink.
Other CBD oral products include capsules and tablets, and edibles. The capsules and tablets are similar to pills, but with some key differences. Soft gel capsules and more flexible and easier to swallow. They also tend to start working faster than regular pills. Tablets tend to be pills that dissolve in your mouth, negating the need to swallow them. This makes both of these options ideal for those who struggle with swallowing pills.
Edibles are exactly what they sound like. They are CBD products that you eat. There are CBD edibles in the form of most kinds of food. You can find CBD candies and CBD pasta. You can also find CBD drinks like soda and sparkling water. Edibles are very popular because they are easy to take and taste good, but they do have a disadvantage. They sometimes take a while to start working. This is because the food (or drink) needs to digest for the CBD to enter the system and start its work.
There are some potential side effects associated with CBD. They are things like gastrointestinal upset and fatigue. They are not overly serious, but they are not very fun to deal with. These side effects are normally associated with taking more CBD than your body can handle. So, to avoid them it is best to try and figure out what is the right amount of CBD for you. This process takes some time, as you need to start the amount of CBD low and see how it sits with you, gradually increasing the amount that you take. It also will not be the same for everyone because we all experience CBD a little differently. Some require more or less of the cannabinoid than others. Once you find the amount that gives you the effect that you are looking for without negative side effects, you can stop the experiment.
CBD medication is something that is still very new. As a result, there are not many out there. However, that does not mean that they are not legal. As long as the medications go through the proper approval process with the FDA they are just as legal as any other medication.
Do you have more questions about CBD? Are you just curious about CBD in general? Are you looking for some high-quality CBD products? If you can answer yes to any of these questions, then you are on the right site. This article is just one of a multitude articles on our site covering just about any question you may have about CBD. On the Panacea Life Sciences site, you can also find high-quality CBD products for just about anyone, even your dog and your horse. If you still have questions that our articles have not answered or just some comments to share you can contact us on our site or by emailing [email protected]