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Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are active compounds that derive from the Cannabis sativa plant. THC causes the “high” that people often associate with cannabis.

This article discusses various types of CBD oils, additional ingredients they may contain, and a range of products a person can consider when looking for THC-free CBD oils.

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When making a CBD oil, manufacturers can isolate CBD from other cannabinoids and mix it with an oil. By doing this, they can produce CBD oil that does not contain THC.

This article describes CBD oil and the effects of CBD. It also provides a list of THC-free CBD oils that a person may wish to try.

Is CBD legal? The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the legal definition of cannabis in the Controlled Substances Act. This made some hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3% THC federally legal. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3% THC still fall under the legal definition of cannabis, making them federally illegal but legal under some state laws. Individuals should check state laws, especially when traveling. People should also keep in mind that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved nonprescription CBD products, and some products may be inaccurately labeled.

CBD oil is a product that is appearing more frequently in an array of products, including:

  • shampoo
  • soaps
  • makeup
  • salves
  • face creams

To make CBD oil, a manufacturer takes the CBD compound from the Cannabis sativa plant. They then dilute it in a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, avocado oil, palm oil, or sunflower oil. This process creates a diluted form of CBD that companies can then add to products.

For more information and resources on CBD and CBD products, please visit our dedicated hub.

The cannabis plant contains more than 100 cannabinoids. Depending on the type of CBD oil that a person purchases, it may contain CBD and other cannabinoids or cannabis plant compounds. These may include:

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

THC is the chemical that people often associate with the psychological effects, or high, of cannabis. Although some CBD oils may contain up to 0.3% THC, this small amount is unlikely to affect a person. There are also many CBD products available that have no trace of THC.

Learn more about CBD and THC here.

Cannabichromene (CBC)

CBC is one of the most common cannabinoids in the Cannabis sativa plant. As with CBD, it does not cause a feeling of being high.

Terpenes

Terpenes are aromatic oils that provide the Cannabis sativa plant with its smell and taste. These compounds are abundant in the cannabis plant, but they are also present in many other plants, including fruits and herbs.

Cannabigerol (CBG)

CBG is another one of the more common cannabinoids in the Cannabis sativa plant. All cannabinoids start as CBG and later synthesize into different types of cannabinoids.

Cannabinol (CBN)

CBN is a similar cannabinoid to CBD. However, CBN forms due to an oxidization process in the plant, in which exposure to heat and light turns THC into CBN. Like CBD, CBN is unlikely to make a person feel “high.”

Learn more about CBD and CBN here.

Before purchasing THC-free CBD oils, a person may wish to consider the advantages and disadvantages.

Some advantages of THC-free CBD oils include:

  • No high: THC is the compound in cannabis that produces euphoria, or a high. Even though THC levels in CBD are often 0.3% or less, some users still report feeling high. THC-free products should eliminate such reactions.
  • Drug testing: CBD isolates are less likely to contain traces of THC that may show up on a drug test.
  • Process of elimination: While using THC-free CBD products, a person can determine whether the CBD alone is suitable for their needs, as they do not contain any other active ingredients.

However, some disadvantages of these products include:

  • No entourage effect: THC and CBD are just two of the many compounds found in cannabis. The term “entourage effect” describes the way interactions between these compounds enhance the health benefits of CBD. THC-free CBD oils are made from CBD isolates, which means they cannot provide users with the potential benefits of other compounds.
  • Lack of scientific evidence: Proponents of CBD claim that it can treat many health conditions. However, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), more scientific research needs to verify these claims.

THC-free CBD may be more suitable than other forms of CBD for certain people.

THC-free CBD is more unlikely to show up on drug tests, as it does not contain any THC. THC is the compound in CBD that causes euphoria and shows up on most drug tests.

Additionally, THC-free CBD products often have a lower amount of CBD per dose than products with broad or full-spectrum CBD. A lower dose may be more beneficial for people who are just starting to use CBD products, as they can begin with smaller amounts of CBD and increase as necessary.

However, a person should discuss taking any CBD products with a healthcare professional. A doctor can advise people if the product is likely to interact with any medication and inform them about any potential risks.

There are three different types of CBD oils, and the key distinction between them is that they contain different amounts of cannabinoids. The types are:

  • Broad-spectrum: This type of CBD oil will typically contain all the cannabinoids in the plant except THC. However, some products may have trace quantities of THC.
  • Full-spectrum: This term means that the oil contains all the cannabinoids and terpenes that occur naturally in the cannabis plant, including trace amounts of THC.
  • CBD isolate: Of the three oils, isolated CBD is the purest. Products that contain isolated CBD contain no other cannabinoids.

Learn about CBD dosages here.

The body of research specifically exploring CBD oil is still small. However, scientific research on the effects of CBD can suggest what potential benefits the oil might offer.

Research looking at CBD has found that it might have the following benefits:

  • Anti-inflammatory: Research in rats highlights that CBD can reduce inflammation associated with arthritis.
  • Reducing anxiety: CBD may help decrease symptoms of anxiety.
  • Sleeping: A 2017 review concludes that medium and high doses of CBD can have a sedating effect, potentially helping people who experience difficulty falling asleep.
  • Reducing acne: CBD may suppress the growth of sebocytes — cells that secrete sebum, which can contribute to the development of pimples.
  • Pain: Older research suggests that cannabinoids have an analgesic potential, meaning that they may be useful in treating pain.

Learn more about the benefits of CBD oil here.

Even though scientific research exploring the effects of CBD in humans is increasing, much more is still necessary, as undiscovered short-term and long-term side effects may exist.

In rare cases, CBD oil may cause an allergic reaction. If a person starts using CBD oil and experiences the following symptoms, they should discontinue their use of the product and seek emergency medical attention:

  • swelling of the throat, lips, or mouth
  • itching in the mouth
  • difficulty swallowing or breathing

Learn more about the effects and potential side effects of CBD oil here.

How we chose

Medical News Today chooses products that meet the following criteria:

  • Ingredients: MNT chooses products containing safe and high quality ingredients that are clearly labeled. They should also confirm they are free from pesticides, heavy metals, and mold.
  • Dosage: MNT chooses products that must clearly state the CBD dosage.
  • Serving size: MNT selects products in which manufacturers recommend a dosage.
  • Third-party labs: MNT chooses products that must undergo third-party testing for contaminants by an ISO 17025-compliant laboratory.

Available certificate of analysis:MNT chooses companies that demonstrate transparency and share a product’s certificate of analysis (COA) following receipt of its third-party lab results.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Many CBD oils are available on the market. Below are three options available to purchase online.

Learn more about buying CBD products here.

Best for a lower dose of CBD: CBDistillery THC-free Pure CBD Oil Tincture — 500 mg

This product comes in various strengths, from 8–167 milligrams (mg). A person may wish to seek advice from a healthcare professional on a suitable dosage.

The company suggests that a person takes 1 milliliter (ml) orally and holds it under their tongue for 15–20 seconds before swallowing.

The product only contains two ingredients: fractionated coconut oil (MCT) and cannabidiol (CBD) from hemp extract.

A person can view this product’s COA on the website.

Use code “MNT20” for 20% off.

Best for aiding sleep: Charlotte’s Web THC Free CBD Oil — 25mg

This mint chocolate-flavored broad-spectrum CBD oil contains approximately 25 mg of CBD per ml.

Charlotte’s Web says that this product may help ease stress, manage inflammation, and aid sleep.

The company recommends using this product daily. The product’s dropper has markings that describe different dosages.

Charlotte’s Web uses hemp grown in the United States. The product contains fractionated coconut oil and flavorings in addition to CBD.

A person can view all of Charlotte’s Web’s COAs on the website.

Use code “HEALTH20” for 20% off.

Best for vegans: Joy Organics Unflavoured Organic CBD Tincture

This vegan, broad-spectrum product comes in four different strengths. The manufacturer recommends using the product once a day.

This product only has two ingredients: organic extra-virgin olive oil and organic phytocannabinoid-rich hemp extract.

Joy Organics states that people can also add this product to food, drink, or bath products. Each bottle contains 30 servings.

A person can view this product’s COA online.

Use code “healthcbd” for 15% off.

To find a THC-free CBD oil that meets their needs, people should consider their CBD tolerance. People who are just starting to use CBD might prefer a product with a lower dosage.

People should only purchase CBD products with a COA from an independent third party. A COA determines that the ingredients in the product are what the manufacturer claims and checks that there are no impurities.

Below are some common questions about THC-free CBD oils.

Can full spectrum CBD be THC-free?

Full-spectrum CBD contains all the plant compounds found in the cannabis plant, including THC.

Broad-spectrum CBD contains most plant compounds except THC. However, broad-spectrum CBD products may contain trace amounts of this compound.

People should carefully read COAs and the ingredients list of any products that claim to be full-spectrum and THC-free. It is unlikely that full-spectrum CBD products do not contain any THC.

Can THC-free CBD help relieve anxiety symptoms?

There is little scientific evidence on whether THC-free CBD can help relieve anxiety symptoms.

A 2020 review of studies suggests that CBD may be a promising therapy to manage anxiety disorders. However, the authors note the need for more studies in this area.

How much CBD should I take?

There is no scientifically recognized dosage of CBD that is effective for everyone.

People should start at the lowest possible dose their chosen product offers. If necessary, a person can then gradually increase the amount of CBD.

CBD oil may offer a range of benefits, including improving sleep, reducing acne, and relieving pain. For personal reasons, a person may not wish to use a CBD oil that contains THC.

CBD oil manufacturers can isolate CBD from THC to create a THC-free product. They may also choose to isolate CBD from the other cannabinoids in the cannabis plant to produce a product containing only CBD.