What Is CBD? Definition, Benefits, Legality and Where To Buy? Things You Need To Know

What is CBD

You should have heard about CBD in one way or another. But I bet what you know won’t reach a quarter knowledge of what it can actually do for you.

Thanks to the Farm Bill, CBD got more spotlight on TV and on the internet. What you don’t know is that many studies have been conducted over the years. Ancient men even started cultivating cannabis 4000 years ago. Yes, history right there.

Many people in the United States and across the globe talk about how effective it is and how it became a “wonder” substance. But, what is CBD? What does it do to your body? Is it really safe?

This guide is your jumpstart to have a better understanding of CBD. It will help answer the questions you’ve been dying to ask. Read on and find out why people are going crazy over it.

CBD? What Does It Stand For?

CBD also know as cannabidiol, is one of the sixty cannabinoids that can be found in the Cannabis plant. It is extracted from the Cannabiswhole plant and is also considered the second richest component in it.

Among the richest substances, Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) comes in the first place. The infamous tetrahydrocannabinol is the one that gives the psychoactive effect. CBD strains may also have THC in them, but it may be from zero to 0.3%, most especially when the CBD is from the hemp plant.

Since we’re on the topic of THC it’s important that we understand the difference between the two most important cannabinoids, THC and CBD.

THC vs CBD: The Breakdown

The Structure

CBD and THC Chemical Structure

CBD and THC almost have the same chemical structure. It’s just that the 53 atoms of each substance were arranged differently.

To be precise, CBD and THC are made up of 2 oxygen, 21 carbon, and 30 hydrogen atoms. They interact with our endocannabinoid system (ECS). But it’s THC that binds with our CB1 (cannabinoid 1) receptor, which gives the euphoric sensation.

When combined, CBD can actually tone down the psychoactive effect of THC. This phenomenon is known as the entourage effect.

Wait. Do we have an endocannabinoid system in our bodies? Yes, that’s the system that helps our brain to understand how we feel all over.

Our body has endocannabinoids, which are neurotransmitters that bind the CB receptors (CB1 and CB2). The ECS helps in regulating our body and brain functions like when we experience pain sensations and mood swings.

Neat science, don’t you think?

Do They Get You High?

Now, don’t get confused. Even when CBD and THC technically come from the same plant, it does not mean that both are psychoactive. In fact, the World Health Organization 27-page pre-review report confidently discussed that abusing CBD would not cause any fatal effect.

It means that the source may be the same but the strains are different. So, to answer the question, you won’t get high even when you abuse the use of CBD.

But of course, you may experience other adverse effects like nausea. Remember, too much of something is bad enough.

If you want to learn more and dive deeper into the difference between these two cannabinoids, then we recommend you follow this guide about CBD vs THC to have a better understanding.

Followed till here? Great. Now let’s get back to the topic of CBD.

What Does CBD Do?

In comes, the hundreds of things CBD can do for you that you may not know yet. Nowadays, many people use CBD products to cure almost anything, from arthritis to PTSD.

Scientists have proven its effectiveness in lowering the attacks caused by neurological disorders. CBD can also be used as an aid to cancer-related pains. People with multiple sclerosis use it for pain management, too.

Researchers continue to discover CBD’s potential breakthrough in health. It may not be that long, though, because we can already enjoy its benefits now.

CBD Health Benefits

While at it, let’s take an in-depth look at what can CBD do for you. Here’s a list of the health benefits you could get when using CBD:

CBD for Pain Management

CBD is the most popular natural remedy for pain and swelling because of its anti-inflammatory feature. Users attribute relief from muscle and joint pains to CBD. One strong candidate as solid FDA-approved proof is the use of CBD for epileptic attacks.

CBD as Digestive Aid

People who are experiencing Irritable Bowel Syndrome can use CBD as relief from swelling. If CBD is processed in a purely organic way, it is definitely helpful in the process of digestion.

CBD for Skin Care

Scientific researches have shown that CBD can help prevent acne. It helps reduce the production of the oil secretion in the face called sebum. It has antioxidants that help the skin become healthy and glowing.

CBD for the Heart

CBD has Omega 3, which is good for the heart. This component helps in reducing the risk of having high blood pressure and other heart problems.

CBD for Mental Health

Researchers conducted tests to show how CBD could help people to overcome anxiety and depression. What makes it awesome is that CBD is natural, so there is no fear in having adverse side effects unlike when using synthetic medication.

CBD for Type 1 Diabetes

Studies are ongoing, but researchers found out that CBD can actually help regulate the effects of Type 1 Diabetes in a patient’s body. It may not cure the disease itself, but who knows? There’s more to CBD than what we already know anyway.

CBD as Aid for Smoking Cessation

More people, especially millennials, resort to vaping over regular smoking. Since the vapor goes through the bloodstream, you can feel the effect of CBD in your body almost immediately.

Some users have attested to the efficacy – making them quit regular smoking altogether.

CBD for Healthy Sleeping Pattern

Nowadays, many people suffer from insomnia and other sleeping problems. Causes may vary, but the usual lack of sleep is commonly associated with pain or stress. CBD helps calm down the source of pain, thus giving the user a good night’s sleep.

How to Take CBD Oil

There are various ways on how to take CBD oil. Here’s a list of the usual methods on how people take CBD:


The most recommended way of taking CBD oil is through placing drops under your tongue. You can leave the oil for a few seconds to a full minute for the nerves to absorb it.


Vaping, with the use of CBD eLiquids and vape pens, is the most popular way of taking CBD. It is also the fastest way for your body to absorb CBD. The vapors go directly to your lungs and then circulates through your bloodstream.


CBD-infused creams, lotions, salves, and topicals are one of the top choices as a remedy to muscle and joint pain. People who go through rigid physical activities every day benefit most on CBD salves.


Some may not be comfortable in taking pure CBD oil. Another option to take CBD oil is through edibles. CBD oil is mixed with natural ingredients to create capsules, gummies, candies, and even pastries.

Are There Any Side Effects?

If you plan to use CBD, you don’t need to worry about adverse side effects. CBD oil actually provides more benefits than known negative results.

There were a few reports about nausea and lightheadedness, but this is mostly caused by overdoing it. That’s why it is best to take a small amount first and gradually increase the number of drops in time.

If you are using CBD oil, then you know that it is better to use small doses than the opposite. At any rate, always ask your physician.

Is CBD Oil Safe?

If you’re going to use it as your standalone medication, you won’t have any problems with it. But if you have ongoing treatment using other medications, you better consult your physician about it. You would not want your liver to get confused with what it’s taking in, right?

Is CBD Legal?

CBD is Legal

Now let’s talk about the legal status of CBD. I’d say this is the most typical and complicated question when it comes to the subject. The passing of the Farm Bill as a federal law in the United States is one thing. But to be precise, CBD is in a gray area.

2018 Farm Bill

The Agricultural Improvement Act or the Farm Bill was approved in December 2018. It basically removed hemp under the Controlled Substances Act. With this law, hemp is no longer accounted for as an illegal substance.

Now, we need to understand this part well. The law is dependent on the source. That’s why the product must be from hemp and not from marijuana for it to be considered legal.

You see, hemp and marijuana are under the Cannabis Sativa L family. If the end product has 0.3% of THC or less, then it’s from hemp. If it contains more than 0.3%, then that’s from marijuana.

The federal mandate allows the manufacturing and selling of products from hemp with extremely low THC. The maximum allowable amount of THC should only be 0.3%.

However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is yet to release regulation when it comes to CBD intake. Brands had just taken the initiative to include dosage recommendations on their labels.

Even so, FDA now checks CBD products like any products in the market. Only that, they no longer see hemp as illegal.

That explains how the federal law sees it. But it still differs per state.

State Mandates

According to the Farm Bill, CBD with zero THC is legal to all 50 states. But of course, not all states can just adopt the new law. They would need to review their own mandates and see if the change would violate some of their policies.

Sixteen states in the US actually allow selling hemp-infused products explicitly. These states are called the “Friendliest States,” which include New York, Utah, Wisconsin, Colorado, and Illinois

Meanwhile, the “Friendly States” are those which exempt hemp cultivated according to the Farm Bill regulation. The seven states include North Dakota, Kansas, Hawaii, New Mexico, Montana, Oklahoma, and District of Columbia.

Florida, Delaware, Texas, and Washington are some of the states that do not have existing mandates related to hemp but may consider exceptions. On the other hand, California, Ohio, Arizona, and Wyoming are some of the states that have some reservations.

CBD from Hemp Vs CBD from Marijuana

By now, you surely get the gist of it. However, it’s understandable that you’d get confused with the source.

Yes, you can get CBD from hemp AND marijuana. Given that some states have concerns (most probably you are thinking of the same thing now), let’s find out what’s the difference between Hemp CBD and Marijuana CBD.

CBD from Hemp CBD from Marijuana
Comes from hemp seeds and stalks Comes from marijuana flowers
Contains around 3.5% of CBD Contains up to 20% CBD or higher
Has zero to 0.3% of THC Balanced with more than 0.3% of THC
Legal in all 50 states Considered in a few states
Method of extraction: Pressed Method of extraction: Varies
Bred with various strains for medical purposes Synergized with THC, Terpenes and other flavonoids
(entourage effect)

Where Can I Find CBD Oil?

You can find the top CBD brands online. Some manufacturers even offer good deals, free shipping, and discounts.

I strongly suggest that you check the following when choosing the right brand:

Where did it come from?

When I buy things, I make sure that I know its source. Apply the same principle when choosing CBD products. To get the best quality, make sure that the source offers premium hemp plants.

I also check if it’s grown organically. You surely would not like to intake unknown chemicals that could pose a risk to your health, right?

Some hemp plants are grown outside of the United States. If the manufacturers tell you that they get it somewhere else, just make sure that they explain how it was grown and if they were genetically enhanced or not.

Though for me, I like it when the plants are grown in the US. This way, I know that it strictly follows the Farm Bill provisions. You are aware of how it was processed and that the proof is available on the manufacturer’s website.

What process does it undergo?

There are four known ways on how to extract CBD:

  • CO2 Method – This is the most common process of CBD extraction. The most highly effective method is the supercritical CO2 extraction, in which the plant goes through a series of procedures to get the purest CBD oil form. This process uses machines to extract CBD.
  • Dry Ice Method – Dry ice covers the broken hemp to get the resins from the plant after three minutes. The combination is then placed in a bucket and shaken off to separate the resin. The shaking part is quite critical because if it’s done incorrectly, you would not get good quality. This needs manual labor.
  • Olive Oil Method – Plants are dried up and decarboxylated, then heated up to 140◦C. After 30 minutes, it is mixed with olive oil and is heated once again at 100◦C for one to two hours. This is the cheapest way to get oil, though the quality may not be as desired.
  • Solvent Method – Solvent is added to the plant to strip away the substances from it. It is then heated up until the CBD oil is extracted. This method may pose a risk because the solvent is not healthy for human consumption.

I personally prefer products that underwent the CO2 extraction process. It may be meticulous, but I am sure of the quality I’d get.

Is it safe?

The best way to find out is by checking the results of the manufacturers’ third-party lab testing. This should be readily available on their website. The more it is “exposed,” the more confident the manufacturers about the quality of their products.

Does it have good product reviews?

You can also do a little research on the product. There are tons of websites that provide product reviews that could help you with your buying decision. You can break it down with the Top Lists or individual product reviews.

Consequently, consider reading client testimonials. The best source of information is the ones that actually use the product. If it works for others, there’s a high chance that it would suit you as well.

How much does it cost?

Honestly, if the product is way too cheap, I doubt its efficacy. Remember, you want to get high-grade pure CBD here.

If the price is too low, I believe that it includes other chemicals that may not sit well on you. Your health is your investment, so make sure that you only get the best of everything.

On the other hand, if you think that the product is way over the top, check out the possible reasons. Sometimes, we tend to overlook things like the potency (3000 mg products are really expensive). You may want to buy the one with 750 mg to start with.

Your Health Comes First

CBD is an all-natural component that you may want to consider as a regular health supplement. Now that you know a few things about CBD, create your own checklist before buying the product.

Always take note of how your body would react to it and that the main goal is to make you become a healthy person. At the end of the day, your health is your priority.

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