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With all the recent buzz, more and more people are turning to CBD as a holistic treatment and replacement to prescription medication. But cannabidiol isn’t sold like a bottle of pills, so the uses, directions, and side effects are not always available on the side of the bottle. Potential cannabidiol users turn to other sources to do their homework on the all natural supplement.
Most often you will find good reviews, but occasionally someone experiences adverse side effects after using CBD products. The question is: Are these side effects a result of the cannabidiol itself or just the result of user error? The answer isn’t so straightforward.
According to most scientific research, the side effects related to cannabidiol are mild. More severe side effects could be a result of misuse, interactions with current medications, or synthetic additives in your CBD products.
One Reddit user, millo31, described his unpleasant experience in detail. After trying a friend’s vape, he found the effects to be the opposite of what he had hoped. The vape didn’t contain pure CBD oil, but instead was a mixture of a “CBD additive” and vape oil.
He reported feeling “high,” but not the relaxing high many people associate with cannabis. He went on to explain that this high feeling was intense, resulting in visuals, loss of motor control, back and neck aches, and a slew of other undesirable side effects.
His experience led him straight to the internet, where he looked for answers concerning the additive. After a quick Google search he found a news report. This news report showed that other teens in his area had ended up hospitalized from the same product. Fortunately for millo31, his terrifying trip only lasted about 15 minutes before he was feeling back to normal. The entire experience left him pretty shaken up, which probably explains his cautionary Reddit post title “STAY AWAY FROM GREEN MIST ‘CBD’ ADDITIVE.”
These results are not what users are seeking when they look to CBD to treat their arthritis, anxiety, pain, and other chronic conditions. Scrolling through the thread confirmed what you may suspect: Green Mist CBD Additive is a synthetic product. These synthetic products are lab cultivated versions of the cannabinoids naturally found in the cannabis plant, but they often have very different effects.
Although these products are not regulated by the FDA (therefore the company is not required to divulge this information) a little digging confirmed that the product has caused quite the uprise in Madison, Mississippi. The company’s website doesn’t have a single ingredient list in sight, and just 5 months after the Reddit thread was created, these “CBD” products have been removed from the site entirely.
CBD (the real kind, not synthetic) has been increasingly popular in recent years, with many people turning to it as their first choice for managing a variety of health conditions, and sometimes even as a replacement for prescription medications. Before you make the jump to cannabidiol, do the research and speak with your doctor to cover all of your bases. You should look at the potential benefits, dosing methods and sizes, additives, purities, and, of course, the risks involved with taking CBD.
Before hopping straight to cannabidiol, you should take a look at its source. Cannabis has been stigmatized for decades, but the basis for this stigma against the all-natural plant is mostly based on misunderstanding and fear mongering. Claims of death due to cannabis consumption have been debunked, and over the years many studies have uncovered hundreds of medicinal uses for the plant.
In 2017, Drugs of Abuse, published by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) stated that there have been no confirmed reports of death linked to an overdose of marijuana.
Some people frown upon marijuana use because of the associated “high,” which many people consider to be much less debilitating than the effects of alcohol. Marijuana does contain THC, a cannabinoid known for its psychoactive effects. As with any recreational substance, cannabis should be used responsibly.
It should be noted that people are turning to CBD specifically because it does not cause any psychoactive effects. There is no high associated with cannabidiol, and the cannabinoid still carries many of the medicinal properties associated with the cannabis plant. As a result, many people choose cannabidiol over traditional medical marijuana. CBD that is extracted directly from a variety of the cannabis plant and contains no additives is thought to be just as safe as cannabis itself.
There are many different cannabidiol products on the market, each with different additive, purity, and potency factors. Unfortunately, some companies have leaned toward cashing in on the CBD market by providing lower quality products that may have synthetic additives, which is what led to millo31’s cautionary tale on Reddit.
Other types of CBD products may not be low in quality, but do contain other naturally occurring compounds besides cannabidiol. It is important to note that in many cases the negative side effects could be related to any one of these additives, and is less likely to be related strictly to cannabidiol.
The best way to avoid these side effects (or at least be able to pinpoint the cause if they happen to you) is to look for a company that provides total transparency about their product. Even though CBD is not regulated by the FDA, legitimate CBD manufacturers pay for a third-party laboratory to run tests on their products. These tests generally look at the quality of the CBD oil and provide information regarding potency, cannabinoid and terpene profiles, and purity.
When purchasing a CBD product, you should have full access to a list of ingredients and any third-party test results. If you are unsure or think that you may be sensitive to any of these products, you should look for a product with higher purity. Avoid any synthetic additives and understand that any other additive (including natural additives) may have its own set of risks unrelated to cannabidiol.
There is still much research to be done concerning the side effects of CBD. This makes it difficult to give any definite answers. When you delve into the world of online reviews, you will find lots of positive responses about the healthful benefits of CBD. Every so often, though, you will see a complaint or warning of adverse side effects. Generally, these side effects are mild and usually have a simple resolve.
To help you make an educated decision for your health, below is a list the most commonly reported side effects related to CBD. These are some of the common experiences of others users or pulled from relevant studies that may explain what caused these side effects and how to avoid them.
A look at some of the most recent studies regarding the safety of cannabidiol helps support these side effects. A study titled An Update on Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Data and Relevant Animal Studies pulls information from several studies over the years. The conclusion shows that in patients using CBD to treat epilepsy and psychotic disorders the most common side effects were diarrhea, loss of appetite, weight changes, and tiredness. Overall, the general safety profile of cannabidiol was confirmed.
Most of the evidence suggests that cannabidiol products are just as safe as their source and that adverse side effects are generally related to improper dosing, other drug interactions, or nasty additives. There is a lack of medical evidence confirming any serious side effects and many studies that consistently suggest its wide range of health benefits. As a result, more and more doctors and medical and health institutions are supporting widespread use of CBD.
If you are considering trying CBD or have noticed any strange or adverse reactions from your dose, consult your doctor. He or she will be able to help you pinpoint the problem, adjust your dose as needed, or recommend other options if CBD is not right for you.