Feb. 17. 2016
Written By:
McKel (Hill) Kooienga
McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

Founder of Nutrition Stripped® and the Mindful Nutrition Method™

The lowdown you’ve been looking for on CBD oil. What it is, how to use it, and my best recommendations. 

The so-called mood-boosting CBD (cannabidiol) oil has been popping up in everything from food products to supplements, lotions, and more.

So what exactly is CBD oil, what are its benefits, and how do you use it? Let’s talk about the basics of CBD and learn how you can incorporate CBD oil into your routine, or not.

What Is CBD?

Let’s break it down — CBD is a phytocannabinoid derived from two varieties of the cannabis Sativa plant: hemp and marijuana. The main difference between the two is that the CBD oil in hemp comes from the large stalks and bark of the plant and has very little traces of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive chemical that causes a “high” feeling or mind-altering effects. It’s also worth noting that hemp has much greater CBD content than marijuana.

CBD oil from hemp has less than .3 percent of THC, so there’s no psychoactive component. On the other hand, CBD oil from marijuana comes from the buds and the flowering parts of the plant and has much larger amounts of THC.

CBD oil from hemp is different from hemp seed oil, which is mainly used for cooking, so don’t be fooled into thinking you’re buying CBD when the label says hemp seed oil. When shopping for CBD, you want to look for an organic, full-spectrum oil from hemp. Unlike other CBD oils out there, organic, full-spectrum varieties contain phytonutrients, essential fatty acids, flavonoids, and antioxidants from the whole hemp plant that work together to enhance the effects of CBD. This is what’s known as the “entourage effect.”

Should I Use CBD Oil?

CBD oil from marijuana is only legal in certain states, whereas CBD oil from hemp is legal across the U.S. and can be grown and shipped anywhere. Consult your doctor first to see if CBD is right for you and to ensure that it plays nicely with any medications or other supplements you’re already taking.

Dr. Taz Bhatia, a board-certified integrative medicine physician, says, “CBD can prolong metabolization of drugs in our system, especially those metabolized by the liver. This may actually work to help reduce drug dosing, but we still need to be mindful when patients are taking certain medications.” Dr. Bhatia says CBD can affect the following medications, so be sure to speak to your doctor before you consider using CBD: Blood thinners; antipsychotic medications for bipolar disease, schizophrenia, and autism; cholesterol and blood pressure medications; medications for gastrointestinal reflux and ulcers; and epilepsy and seizure medications. 

Health Benefits of CBD Oil

Why is the health and wellness community talking about and using CBD?

CBD oil is gaining in popularity in the health and wellness world as a way to reduce anxiety and depression, support a healthy heart, alleviate chronic pain, as well as treat common symptoms related to certain disease states. Some supplements also couple it with melatonin to help you sleep better.

As the research continues to grow about the effects and benefits of CBD, we can paint a better picture of how to incorporate it into our daily routines and use it for specific medical purposes.

Here’s what we know so far!

It May Help Improve Arthritis

CBD can help eliminate the inflammation that’s associated with arthritis. (1) People living with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis have used CBD oil to help treat chronic pain. You can apply CBD oil or cream to areas where you need pain relief.

CBD May Help With Anxiety 

Taking CBD may help anxiety, anxiety-induced insomnia, and social anxiety disorder. (2)(3)(4) If you suffer from insomnia or anxiety, CBD oil may help you sleep better at night.

Studies have shown cases of people who suffer from PTSD and severe anxiety benefiting from the sleep-inducing effects of CBD oil. You can add a drop of CBD oil to your cup of tea or bedtime smoothie.

It Could Improve Chronic Pain

CBD may lower chronic pain and reduce inflammation by interacting with neurotransmitters. (5)(6)(7)(8) While most studies on the effect of CBD on neurotransmitters were done on rats, research suggests that sensorial and affective dimensions of pain can be toned down by CBD.

It May Improve Or Reduce The Incidence Of Disease

CBD may be a promising treatment for intractable epilepsy. (9) In a study, five Israeli children with epilepsy were given medical CBD oil to help reduce the frequency of their seizures. Not only did the CBD oil help them decrease the rate of seizures, but they also saw an improvement in their communication and motor skills as well as sleep.

It has also shown anti-cancer properties and may help fight cancer cells from forming as well as serve as a therapeutic agent for leukemia. (10)(11)  Studies suggest that CBD can inhibit the progression and growth of breast cancer cells, but more research in humans is needed to confirm its abilities.

CBD has also shown promise as support for a healthy heart, as well as beneficial effects on diabetes. (13) CBD’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects can help promote vasorelaxation, which means reducing the tension in blood vessel walls.

CBD Can Help With Nausea

CBD has shown anti-nausea effects. (12) While this study was done on rats, it shows how CBD can potentially be used to reduce nausea and vomiting.

Where Can You Buy CBD Oil?

You can find CBD from hemp online or in health food stores. CBD Oil is available as a powder or oil and can be made into a skincare cream or gel for topical application. Additionally, it can be taken as a capsule or sprayed directly onto the tongue. (1) Some food products, like chocolates and gummies, also include CBD. If this is your first time using CBD oil, use the oil dropper so you can easily adjust the dose.

Some people may find that a full dose can make them sleepy or tired. If you experience this, go with half the dosage. CBD in supplements is also another great option, especially if you don’t like the taste of the oil. Oftentimes, you’ll see CBD supplements come with turmeric or vitamins to help you reap other nutritional benefits.

Our Recommendations For Purchasing CBD Oil 

It’s important to seek out brands with good-quality ingredients that you can trust. Kyoto Botanicals is a whole-plant hemp extract combined with simple ingredients found in nature — their CBD is a full-spectrum hemp extract that is never spiked with CBD isolate. It uses organic Coconut MCT oil made from coconuts, not palm oil. Plus, it also uses organic essential oils instead of flavorings to give flavor with benefits.*

Additionally, we love that they own and operate their own manufacturing facility. This means they have control over every step of the mixing and bottling process. They also have every batch of their products third-party lab tested to verify quality, and their cartons are made from 80% post-consumer waste paper blended with 30% hemp fibers.

Kyoto Botanicals was generous enough to offer the Nutrition Stripped community a discount code for their products! To receive 25% off of your purchase, use code, ‘NUTRITIONSTRIPPEDat checkout

Are There Side Effects of CBD?

There is limited research on the long-term effects of CBD. If you see any unwanted side effects, stop taking it immediately and see your doctor. Remember, CBD oil is just a supplement to a healthy lifestyle. You can also reap anti-inflammatory, stress-reducing benefits by following a whole-food diet. 

The Bottom Line 

Research has shown that CBD oil can be a great contributing factor to a well-rounded, whole-food diet. With its many proposed health benefits and ease of use, it’s worth giving it a go and consulting your doctor when applicable.  

Do You Want To Start Experiencing More Balance With Your Eating Habits Today?

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Be sure to download our free balanced eating guide that brings you through the Foundational Five so you understand not only what components you need, but also why they’re important for your health and why this way of eating is helpful for creating balanced eating habits. 

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This is a sponsored post and we’re proud to partner with Kyoto Botanicals, a brand we use and recommend. All opinions are our own. *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.