No, it won't get you high. Yes, it is legal. And it's winning over millions, of all ages, with its demonstrated mental and physical benefits.
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is derived from the flower of the hemp plant, a strain of cannabis sativa related to marijuana. But don't confuse the two. Hemp from which CBD is produced is very low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive component that produces marijuana's euphoric effect.
Excitement over CBD has led to a surge in products everywhere from vape shops to gas stations to beauty salons, with an accompanying inconsistency in integrity. It is turning up in beverages, ice cream, cookies, you name it.
The flurry of attention in the news, social media, and even celebrity-backed new CBD companies, may leave you wondering where the facts start to become blurred by the hype.
Scientific evidence is growing for CBD's therapeutic benefits in everything from anxiety to chronic pain and inflammation. Few, if any, side effects are reported.
We know that CBD interacts with a network of neurotransmitters in the body called the endocannabinnoid system, or ECS. The ECS plays a key role in physiological functions, helping to regulate movement, digestion, appetite, bone health and pain sensation, among others. People who take CBD as a regular supplement report a range of benefits to their health and well-being.
CBD may be consumed orally in drops, capsules or other edible forms, or smoked. Applied as a topical, it is absorbed into the skin for relief of underlying pain. Early adopters of CBD, not surprisingly, have been athletes, like US Open champion golfer Lucas Glover, who seek peak performance without the side effects and controversy of "doping."
"With the (Medterra) CBD Rapid Cooling Cream I am ready and loose faster, and recovery is so much better after rounds," Glover says.
The best manufacturers use American-grown hemp, employ nontoxic extraction methods, and submit to independent lab testing for quality. Simple tinctures, capsules and topicals that focus on delivering quality CBD to your system as directly as possible tend to be most effective. The value of trendy CBD-infused beverages and snacks is murkier territory.
Uptown CBD sifts through the confusing array of makers to feature its recommended best: Medterra and Ananda Hemp products. If you're interested in trying CBD, these brands are a great place to start. We never have, and never will, sell vape products.