CBD can be great with so many amazing benefits, from helping with mood disorders, insomnia, reducing pain, inflammation and on and on. There are lots of high quality CBD products made with clean ingredients with farmers who only use organic fertilisers but unfortunately, in an unregulated market, there are others, who don't do this and that leaves us (the customers) vulnerable if we don't educate ourselves.
So we've put together 5 tips to choosing a good CBD product so you can become informed customers and know what to look for.
TIP 1: Look for whole plant, full spectrum or broad spectrum products.
Whole plant or full-spectrum means that the product contains all the cannabinoids that are naturally occurring. Research suggests that there is greater benefit to the CBD product when it works together with whole plant i.e. the full spectrum of the plant including other cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids present. This is known as the "Entourage Effect": the benefits of the whole plant work better together rather than the sum of its parts.
- Full spectrum products from the hemp plant contain less than .3% THC
- Broad spectrum products contain the same whole plant benefits without the THC.
- Isolate products, which are often sold in pharmacies in Ireland contains pure CBD and no other cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids or THC. Because plus120 believes in the whole plant approach, we do not sell isolates.
TIP 2: Check for clean ingredients
Usually, you’ll find hemp, hemp extract, or hemp oil listed as the main ingredients on the products. These are the ingredients which contain the CBD.
Natural carrier oils
CBD oils are usually mixed with other ingredients as the 'carrier oil'. At plus 120, we like natural carrier oils so look out for hemp seed oil or coconut oil/MCT oil as carriers. We believe there is no need for sweeteners, artificial flavourings or colourings. Generally, if you see lots of ingredients, that you cannot pronounce, most likely these are not pure ingredients!
Hemp oil vs. Hemp seed oil - the watch out!
One watch out to look out for is only seeing hemp seed oil and not hemp oil. This does not contain any CBD so best to avoid if you are looking for a CBD product!
TIP 3: Check how the CBD oil is made
Learn how the CBD oil was processed. The three main ways of processing CBD are CO2 extracted, solvent such as alcohol extracted and olive oil extraction.
CO2 extraction is considered to be the safest and cleanest. C02 (carbon dioxide) is a gas but when heated and converted to liquid, it works like a natural solvent.
This method is further sub-divided into three categories; supercritical, subcritical and mid-critical. Each category features varying degrees of pressure and temperature levels.
Supercritical CO2 extraction is one of the best methods for producing the cleanest CBD. It is the most expensive method to use as it requires a lot of high-tech equipment which adds to the cost of the CBD but its the one that preserves the natural compounds the best.
TIP 4: Make sure there are lab tests done on every batch
Check the website of the product being sold for lab tests which should be displayed or ring the customer support team of the product. Lab tests should be done on every batch of CBD not just once!
The cannabinoid profile
Examine the cannabinoid profile, look for CBD, THC and other cannabinoids such as CBN, CBG etc. For example, it might look something like:
If it is provided by the supplier, look for the terpene profile of the product. Terpenes play a key role on the effect of the oil. Some terpenes might promote sleep and relaxation while others will do the opposite and promote focus.
Cannabis is a bioaccumulator, which means it absorbs impurities from the soil. It's important the to make sure there are no other contaminants such as pesticides, molds or metals or residual solvents. We want the healthy benefits of CBD but not at the expense of putting nasty stuff into our body. These should also be tested for.
5. Look at verified customer reviews of the product
Theres no better way to know that your CBD product is a good one than seeing good customer reviews on it. Make sure the reviews are verified such as those