Investigate the Exact Source of the Oil
Before you buy any CBD oil, also called CBD hemp oil, you should fully investigate the source of the oil. By "source," we mean exactly what types of hemp plants were used in the production of the oil and what were the conditions under which the plants were grown. High quality CBD oil, i.e. CBD oil that will give you the positive benefits you seek, will be extracted from "pharmaceutical grade" or "medicinal grade" hemp plants. Further, these plants will be special cultivars of hemp that are grown specifically for the harvest of oil, NOT for the harvest of hemp fiber! Unfortunately, the cheap CBD oils on the market come from cultivars of hemp that are primarily grown for industrial purposes, often referred to as "industrial hemp" because the hemp is being used for industrial purposes.
The special hemp cultivars grown for CBD oil have a very high concentration of CBD (cannabidiol) and other cannabinoids in the flowers and buds of the plants with less than 0.3 percent concentration of THC (tetrahydrocannabidiol), i.e. there's not enough THC to have a psychoactive effect. High quality CBD oil is always extracted from the flowers and buds of the plant but NEVER from the stalk. In fact, the special cultivars used to produce pharmaceutical grade CBD oil do not even have a woody enough or big enough stalk for the industrial scale harvest of hemp fiber.
Look For Full Spectrum Cannabinoids
The reason these beneficial oils are called "CBD" oil is because CBD is the most abundant cannabinoid found in the oil. It's also been the most researched cannabinoid and the one that has received the most positive press. However, a good quality CBD oil, derived holistically from the flowers and or bud of pharmaceutical grade hemp plants, will contain several more beneficial cannabinoids including CBDA, CBG, CBN, and CBGA. When several cannabinoids coexist in CBD oil, they work synergistically. On the other hand, if the CDB oil has been extracted from industrial hemp, and especially if it says "added CBD," it is not truly full spectrum, even if it contains trace amounts, i.e. negligible amounts, of the other cannabinoids. It is always a good sign if a company or website that is selling CBD oil uses the term "full spectrum," especially if they can back that up with a certificate of analysis (see below).
There's Also Terpenes To Consider
In addition to the beneficial cannabinoids found in hemp plants, there is another class of beneficial chemicals called terpenes. Just like cannabinoids, there can be more than a dozen beneficial terpenes found in full spectrum CBD oil, and they too, act in positive ways on the human body's endocannabinoid system receptors! There also appears to be a synergistic benefit between different terpines and between terpines and cannabinoids. The early research on terpenes, chemical cousins to cannabinoids, has uncovered dozens of benefits from terpenes. Luckily, if you buy a high quality CBD oil that contains a full spectrum of naturally derived cannabinoids, it will also contain a full spectrum of terpenes! However, having said this, you should note that each variety of a pharmaceutical grade hemp plant contains a slightly different profile of cannabinoids and terpenes.
Look For a Certificate of Analysis
One of the many advantages to buying your CBD oil online is you are provided with much more information on a website than could ever fit on a product label. When conducting search engine queries like, "CBD oil for sale," be sure to review the website selling these products thoroughly. If a seller is claiming they offer "full spectrum cannabinoids" derived from "medical grade" or "pharmaceutical grade" hemp plants or "high CBD" cultivars, be sure to look for a certificate of analysis to back up this claim.
Further, make sure you can actually READ the report and you actually see a variety of cannabinoids and terpenes listed. Finally, do a quick web search of the company that provided the certificate of analysis and make sure they are legitimate. SC Labs, based in Santa Cruz California, has earned the trust of CBD oil users. Thus, if this is the company that produced the certificate of analysis, and the report is readable and positive, it's a very good sign that you're dealing with a high quality CBD oil. Article about SC Labs
Buyer Beware: Ineffective Verus Outright Harmful
When you see a really low price on CBD oil, it is almost certainly a low quality CBD oil derived from industrial grade hemp. There are two major problems you can have with ingesting or smoking this cheap CBD oil. First, it will likely be ineffective or only slightly effective. No one likes to pour money down the drain so this is bad enough. However, the second problem is MUCH more serious. There is a good chance it contains toxins, sometimes in dangerous concentrations.
Industrial hemp is often grown in soil highly contaminated with dangerous toxins like heavy metals, pesticides, and chemical solvents. This is because industrial hemp has been traditionally grown for industrial purposes like creating paper, textiles, and building materials and there have never been any safeguards put in place like you would find in crops that are grown for food or other consumption. Industrial hemp was never actually intended to be used for extrapolating CBD oil that would be ingested into the human body! To make matters worse, these toxins are often more highly concentrated in the CBD oil than in the rest of the plant and this may be magnified even more by the harsher industrial process used to extract oil from industrial hemp. So, please be careful!
Choosing the right CBD oil for sale can be the difference between a "placebo" and the "real McCoy!" It can also mean the difference between gaining a tiny benefit versus a life changing benefit. Bookmark this article so you can cute through the marketing hype and use it as a checklist on what to look for when you shop for CBD oil.