CBD, or cannabidiol, refers to a substance present in the cannabis species of plants. Evidence suggests that CBD may provide many health benefits. As such, CBD products are available in a variety of forms, such as oils and pills.

CBD is a cannabinoid, which refers to a group of substances present in the cannabis plant. These substances may have a beneficial impact on health.

They elicit these effects by interacting with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This refers to a complex biological system that regulates many key bodily functions.

CBD is one of many different cannabinoids and unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it lacks the euphoric effects that many people may associate with cannabis. As such, there is growing interest in CBD products.

CBD is available in many different forms, including oil and pill forms. They offer similar benefits to each other as well as risks. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of CBD oil and pills, and what to consider when purchasing these products.

Is CBD legal?The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the legal definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. This made some hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3 percent THC federally legal. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3 percent THC still fall under the legal definition of marijuana, making them federally illegal but legal under some state laws. Be sure to check state laws, especially when traveling. Also, keep in mind that the FDA has not approved nonprescription CBD products, and some products may be inaccurately labeled.

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CBD is an active compound found in cannabis plants. Though present in cannabis, it is not responsible for the euphoria that a person may experience when using cannabis for medicinal or recreational purposes.

Manufacturers of CBD products can obtain CBD from hemp and non-hemp plants. Hemp plants refer to a class of cannabis Sativa that contains no more than 0.3% THC. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulates the production of industrial hemp.

Amongst other potential health benefits, evidence suggests that CBD could help with:

CBD pills or capsules typically contain CBD oil in an easy-to-swallow form. They follow an oral delivery method, where a person ingests a drug to enable it to perform its effect.

The dose and amount of CBD found in pills will vary greatly between companies and products. A person should follow all recommendations from a doctor and instructions on the packaging to avoid potential overdose.

Some evidence suggests that CBD may help with symptoms such as:

  • pain
  • inflammation
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • overall poor well-being

Some potential benefits of a CBD pill include:

  • ease and convenience to take
  • readily available through online or in-person stores
  • multiple doses available
  • may help with pain, anxiety, or other health concerns

CBD oil typically comes in a bottle. A person can use the oil as:

  • an additive to foods
  • a topical agent rubbed into the skin
  • as a spray under the tongue
  • a liquid oral supplement

CBD oil may be beneficial for people who want to rub the oil directly onto painful or sore muscles or joints. A person can also take it orally for a more systemic approach. It may help with pain and inflammation.

Dosing will vary greatly between products. A person should follow any instructions from a doctor or found on the packaging to ensure they get the proper dose and help prevent potential adverse effects.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), CBD is generally safe when a person uses it appropriately.

However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) notes that more research is necessary about the potential adverse effects and long-term safety of using CBD-containing products.

Due to different regulations, this can include potential concerns of the potency of CBD in different consumer products. Some side effects may include:

  • interference with other medications
  • liver damage
  • changes in mood
  • drowsiness or sleepiness
  • diarrhea
  • changes in appetite

People interested in trying products containing CBD may want to also consider:

  • how to take or use the product
  • overall convenience
  • reputation of the brand or company selling the product
  • available flavors

Currently, the FDA has only approved one medication that contains CBD. Epidiolex is a prescription drug that can help with the treatment of seizures. As other CBD products do not have approval, they may not undergo regulation by the FDA.

As such, people should be aware of unsubstantiated claims and that some products may contain other ingredients, such as THC, pesticides, heavy metals, bacteria, or fungi.

As such, it is advisable that a person purchases CBD products from a reputable source and discusses taking CBD with their healthcare professional.

Finally, a person should consider the legality of CBD products in their state. Typically, CBD products use CBD from hemp plants.

According to the 2018 Farm Bill, the United States no longer includes hemp in the legal definition of cannabis in the Controlled Substances Act.

This means that CBD products that use hemp oil containing less than 0.3% THC are federally legal. However, it is important to note that any CBD products containing more than 0.3% THC still fall under the legal definition of cannabis.

At present, there is no federal law allowing the legal use of medical cannabis. This means it is illegal to use or prescribe medical cannabis in any state that does not have laws allowing people to do so.

Many states in North America have passed legislation that may allow some use of medical cannabis. However, each state has its own rulings, which are regularly changing. As such, it is advisable for a person considering any CBD or THC products to check their local laws.

CBD pills and oils represent two different ways that people can use CBD. Both formulations may offer different benefits depending on the intended use. For example, people can use oils in a variety of different ways, while pills may offer a more convenient option.

Evidence suggests that CBD is generally safe, tolerable, and may possess a variety of therapeutic uses. However, researchers are still investigating dosages and potential long-term effects.

As such, if considering any CBD products, a person should first talk with a healthcare professional to discuss safety and ensure that CBD does not interact with any medications they are currently taking.