What does CBD oil feel like?
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- Does CBD make you feel good?
- Different types of CBD oil deliver different effects
- What are the side effects of CBD oil?
CBD is said by many to have a relaxing and soothing effect, but you’re not going to feel this non-intoxicating cannabinoid the same way you would THC. To explain how CBD truly feels, we need to look at how both THC and CBD interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS).
CBD is said to have a relaxing and soothing effect. The effects are much different than THC. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
The ECS is made up of endocannabinoids, receptors that cannabinoids bind to, and enzymes that break them down. While THC activates the CB1 receptors, CBD induces the opposite outcome, instead inhibiting activity in the CB1 receptors.
Aside from CB1 receptors, CBD also binds to several other targets throughout the body. For instance, this non-intoxicating cannabinoid has at least 12 sites of action in the brain and may elicit therapeutic effects by activating multiple pathways at once.
The interaction between CBD and the body may create a feeling of relaxation and improved mood. Studies and anecdotal evidence also suggest that CBD offers therapeutic value in the treatment of chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, and other ailments.
Does CBD make you feel good?
You might have heard about the various purported health benefits of this non-intoxicating cannabinoid, but how does CBD feel once it enters your system?
Many consumers and medical patients report several positive effects after taking CBD, including feelings of relaxation and calmness. But the exact feeling you’ll get from CBD is contingent on several factors, including the type of CBD product, the total CBD dosage, and individual-specific factors.
How CBD affects you depends on your body’s chemistry and the type of product you select. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Depending on the treatment or therapeutic relief you seek, the effects of CBD can vary. Different CBD products may prove more beneficial than others. For instance, CBD-infused topicals have been reported to provide relief in pain-specific areas, while a CBD oil with a 1:1 CBD-to-THC ratio could be better suited to help with falling asleep, perhaps also producing an intoxicated feeling, depending on the level of THC.
Individual-specific characteristics such as the consumer’s weight, diet, metabolism, other medications, genetics, and medical conditions, as well as the formulation and quality of the CBD product itself could all influence the amount of therapeutic value that CBD will offer.
Not only does it depend on the individual, but also their ailment or condition. Depending on the therapeutic needs, different CBD products may prove more beneficial than others.
Different types of CBD oil deliver different effects
When you stumble upon a wide selection of CBD oil products, there might not appear to be much differentiating them. However, not all CBD oil will make you feel the same. In fact, the effects of various CBD oil products can differ drastically.
Hemp-derived vs. marijuana-derived CBD oil
There are two main classifications of cannabis plants that produce CBD: hemp and marijuana. Though the CBD molecular structure is identical regardless of source, there’s a difference between the chemical makeup of hemp and marijuana plants, which can lead to CBD oil products with different effects.
Industrial hemp plants are typically grown for their fiber and seeds, and tend to be skinny and scarce in foliage. Hemp plants and hemp-derived products are considered legal under U.S. law, as long as the plant contains no more than 0.3% THC. Therefore, hemp-derived CBD oil will have little to no THC, which will prevent consumers from feeling any of the intoxicating effects that stem from this cannabinoid.
On the other hand, marijuana-derived CBD is extracted from marijuana plants that have thick, lush foliage and flowers, typically with higher levels of THC than CBD, although there are several CBD-rich cultivars on the market. Marijuana-derived CBD oil often contains much higher levels of THC than hemp-derived products, so consumers may want to brace for the effects of THC. These products are legally available on the adult-use market and in certain medical marijuana states, but remain illegal on the federal level.
Not all CBD oil will make you feel the same. There are many types of oil out there, so make sure you know where the oil in your products was sourced. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
Although the intoxicating feeling of THC might be something you wish to avoid, it’s important to note that CBD and THC have actually demonstrated a synergistic relationship when taken in tandem, a phenomenon commonly known as the “entourage effect.” For example, when CBD is consumed alongside THC, people tend to experience less of the paranoia and anxiety associated with high THC concentrations. The inclusion of other minor cannabinoids and terpenes could also contribute to the experience and to how you ultimately end up feeling.
When it comes to the purported effects of CBD oil products, we’re not only looking at hemp-derived and marijuana-derived products. The additional cannabis compounds and ingredients (or lack thereof) also play a significant role in the consumer experience. There are major differences between broad-spectrum CBD oil, full-spectrum CBD oil, and CBD isolate.
Full-spectrum CBD oil
When a CBD oil product is labeled full-spectrum, that means the plant’s original terpenes and other types of cannabinoids, including cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerol (CBG), and importantly, THC, have not been filtered out during the extraction process.
Broad spectrum CBD oil
Broad-spectrum CBD oil derived from hemp is similar to full-spectrum, as the oil contains most of the cannabinoids from its original state. However, the key difference here is the additional extraction process that filters out all traces of THC. With the THC removed, consumers don’t need to worry about encountering any feelings of being high, but can still reap the potential benefits of other minor cannabinoids and terpenes.
Another option for consumers is CBD isolate, which comes in the form of a crystalline solid or white powder. Stripped of all other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, CBD isolate is the most refined form of the non-intoxicating cannabinoid, containing upwards of 99% pure CBD. With all THC and other compounds removed, CBD isolate is the purest possible form of CBD available.
CBD isolate is the most refined form of the non-intoxicating cannabinoid, containing upwards of 99% pure CBD. Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
What are the side effects of CBD oil?
Although CBD does not produce the same adverse side effects as THC, should you be concerned about feeling or encountering any other side effects from the cannabinoid?
While research has found that CBD has a much better side effect profile compared with most other drugs, a large dose of CBD can still have potentially adverse effects on the user. A 2017 study published in Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research concluded that while CBD had a “favorable safety profile,” there were side effects reported by participants, including tiredness, diarrhea, and changes in appetite or weight.
In addition, CBD may cause other side effects in some individuals, including nausea and irritability. Dr. Peter Grinspoon, a primary care physician at Massachusetts General Hospital and contributor to the Harvard Health Blog, discussed these potential side effects in a 2018 post, writing, “Side effects of CBD include nausea, fatigue and irritability. A significant safety concern with CBD is that it is primarily marketed and sold as a supplement, not a medication. Currently, the FDA does not regulate the safety and purity of dietary supplements.”
For this reason, it is vital to consult with your physician before beginning a regimen of CBD products, including CBD oil. Be sure to discuss any current prescription medications and possible drug interactions prior to starting CBD.
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I Took CBD Oil for Two Weeks Straight, and Here’s How It Made Me Feel
CBD is the major, non-psychoactive cannabinoid complex from the cannabis plant that offers significant health benefits. I’ve explored these benefits via skin-care products, body wash, and in my workout recovery routine—but I’ve yet to take it internally, which many say is the most direct way to absorb it.
Taking CBD oil has been studied to have pain-relieving, inflammatory-fighting, and anxiety-reducing prowess, so ingesting it on the reg seems as though it might not be the worst idea in the world. “A daily dose of CBD will rebalance imbalances within the body and, depending on the specific individual, the benefits manifest themselves differently,” explains Emily Heitman, co-founder, COO and CMO of Leef Organics. “As a regulator and a modulator, CBD acts in a dynamic and comprehensive fashion to get to the root of individual issues. I believe it should be part of everyone’s daily routine for maintenance and preventative support.”
As for how it actually makes you feel, it’s more of a subtle effect. “CBD is used and repurposed by your body in the way you need it most, so the feeling by each individual tends to be a bit different,” says Heitman. “However, I think everyone feels relief and balance from daily use of CBD.”
“If you have pain or anxiety, once the effects of CBD start setting in, it’s almost like it’s whisked away and it’s not there anymore.” —Drew Todd
Drew Todd, co-founder of new CBD brand Feals, notes that taking CBD oil is more about what you don’t feel. “The way we describe taking CBD is that it’s not about what you feel, but it’s more about what you don’t feel,” he says. “If you have pain or anxiety, once the effects of CBD start setting in, it’s almost like it’s whisked away and it’s not there anymore.” But it’s not about totally changing your current state: “It’s not about getting high or really feeling any psychoactive effects; it’s more about melting away whatever’s getting in your way of living well, so that you can focus on living your life.”
Now, obviously, everyone is different, and it’s important to remember that you should check with your doctor before introducing something new into your regimen. But given its cred, I was ready to give it a go. Here’s what happened when I did.
1. I slept better
I began taking a full dropper of Feals (around 30 mg of CBD) before I went to bed by holding it under my tongue for 30 seconds—which Todd and most all CBD brands recommend as the fastest way for your body to absorb the ingredient. Within roughly 15 minutes, I felt a comforting, warm sense of calm wash over me that was deeper than when I take melatonin. Over the next half hour or so of watching TV, I became increasingly tired and proceeded to fall fast asleep and woke up feeling rested in a way that some sleep supplements don’t allow me to (which FWIW, a small study has shown). So yes, it’s now a steady part of my nighttime regimen.
2. I became less stressed-out
I hate to admit this, but I’m a very stress-prone person. I’ve gotta hit several deadlines each day, survive a number of meetings, and juggle a work life, a romantic relationship, and very dear friendships (in other words: I’m like every other person). In the past, though, I’ve let all of this pressure get to me, and could almost feel coritsol surging in my body. However, I found that taking CBD oil regularly has eased this stress (something it’s scientifically proven to do), and I’m able to get through my day without feeling as though the completion of my to-do list is set to the tune of major stress.
3. I was able to focus more
On a related note, I’m also able to focus better when I’m at work. That’s likely due to CBD oil’s proven effects at relieving anxiety, which therefore results in a clear mind that’s better able to cross things off of my to-do list. Before trying out the ingredient, I’ve often felt overly anxious at work when I have a lot going on at once—but taking CBD regularly (and honestly probably wrapping my head around my to-do list in a healthy way) has allowed me to think more rationally about what’s on my plate, rather than sit and freak out about it.
4. My muscles were less sore
I’ve used CBD oil topically to relieve sore running legs, but didn’t realize that ingesting the wellness ingredient can have a similar effect. Studies have shown, though, that taking CBD has anti-inflammatory benefits, and muscle pain is a sort of inflammation, so I’ve found it to help. As someone who works out almost daily, my legs are almost always sore. I traded my CBD topical oil for the kind you ingest, and still felt a very subtle perk of muscle pain relief. The CBD oil helps my body repair itself in recovery mode, fighting that newfound inflammation from my hardcore workouts and allowing me to do it again the next day without feeling like my legs are made out of cement.
After ingesting CBD oil for two weeks straight, I’m now a true believer in the wellness ingredient’s superstar prowess. Its calming effects are so legit, but my fave perk of all is that I get better sleep. Nowadays I’m taking CBD right before I brush my teeth at night, and you know what? I’m now a better-rested, more calm person—who just so happens to be on the CBD train.
To be clear: Hemp oil vs CBD oil are very different things. But in terms of the buzzy ingredient, these are the 6 best CBD products that experts love.
Many people wonder about the buzzy wellness ingredient: How does CBD oil make you feel? One editor tries it out and experiences a lot of health benefits.