I recently sat down to be interviewed by The Telegraph. The journalist explained the article would clear up some of the confusion around CBD. During her research she had found CBD Hummus, beauty product, sweets, chocolate, mints and even gym classes that purported to pump the cannabidiol into the atmosphere whilst you work out. Couple that with a growing number of tinctures and capsules with differing strengths and measurements and its understandable that confusion reigns. CBD has fast become considered a ‘wellness trend’ and this can make it even harder for the consumer to understand the product. The eventual article featured in The Telegraph magazine posed the question was CBD a 'Cure all or dangerous fad'? In truth its neither of those things but it does help to understand some basic criteria and standards when it comes to the product.
The first confusing part of choosing a product are the differing strengths. This isn’t helped by the two ways in which CBD is measured in the marketplace using both mg and %. We state the quantity of CBD in our products using mg which makes sense given the extract is weighed in this way. This makes the amount of cannabidiol you are purchasing easy to check.
There should be two measurements to look for.
Capsules will have a mg of CBD per capsule and per container. The per capsule measurement is simple. It tells you how much CBD you will ingest in a single capsule. The larger number tells you how much CBD you are purchasing overall. A simple equation is the mg per capsule x the number of capsules per jar.
Two things to note:
If you take 40mg of CBD per day you could buy the 5mg capsules and take 8 daily. But it makes better sense to purchase the 10mg or 20mg capsules and take 2-4 instead. It is better value and you have less capsules to worry about.
If you are new to CBD or take lower doses of the product the lower mg of CBD per capsule is better. Particularly if you haven’t tried CBD before as a low initial dose is recommended. This way you can gauge how your body reacts to the compound before working up to your ideal dose.
The liquid sublingual spray will tell you the mg of CBD on the bottle. We also state the amount of CBD per spray on the website. Again, the above guideline of dosage applies. If you are new to CBD start on the lowest number of sprays to determine your individual sensitivity and needs. The endocannabinoid system is as unique as your fingerprint. Whilst 'overdosing' isn't an issue in physiological terms the CBD you are buying won't be contributing any more above your ideal dose.
Capsules and liquids Which to choose?
In terms of bioavailability taking the CBD liquid sublingually will give you the largest amount of the compound in your blood stream. This is due to the oil being fat soluble and your body consisting of predominantly water. The sublingual gland under the tongue absorbs the CBD liquid directly into the bloodstream, bypassing the digestive system.
By holding the CBD oil under the tongue for a few minutes you will absorb more than the equivalent amount taken in a capsule. The % difference has not been precisely determined. That said, we find the capsules to be the more popular product due to convenience. We blend the CBD oil with MCT to ensure maximum bioavailability. In addition, nobody has stated that the capsule dosages feel ineffective. The feedback is very good.
The sublingual spray may also work faster. As a rough estimate, 15-20 minutes as opposed to 20-30 minutes with a capsule. It is worth considering that if you are buying the CBD for performance anxiety or panic attacks the oil will work faster at the point it is needed. The capsule may take longer to achieve the desired effect.
Taste is also a factor. Our Tonic liquid spray is CBD oil blended with MCT oil which is very mild and palatable. If you choose the Entourage or Dutch oil sprays they are blended with olive oil and the taste is much stronger. If you know that bitter or strong medicines/supplements are a problem it is better to opt for a capsule.
Ease of use is also a consideration. Putting capsules in your bag for dosage during the day is relatively simple whereas administrating the spray under the tongue is more complex at work or in social situations. There is also an increased risk of leakage although we have moved from a dropper pipette to a spray for its increased reliability.
What to look for in your CBD?
There are a few considerations when purchasing your CBD. Here is a simple checklist of things to note before you buy:
- How is your CBD oil extracted? It is important to check that the oil is CO2 extracted without the use of solvents. This method uses warm air to extract oil from the cannabis flowers with no chemicals. I recently attended an industry CBD and Hemp Expo and listened to a large American manufacturer talk about their production process. They felt that using ethanol in extraction is preferable but there was always solvent in the product afterwards. Whilst this company removes the nasty by-product their due diligence and production process was excellent. Can you be sure that all solvent extracted CBD oil has been treated in the same way? The only way to know for sure is to buy CO2 extracted product.
- Is your oil tested in a laboratory? It is important to have full traceability in the product you are purchasing. Look to see whether the CBD company offers or displays lab testing. We have certification for every individual product batch we sell. This can be accessed via the CBD oil collection page on the website.
- Is it a full spectrum oil? Some companies sell tablets that are CBD isolate. This is just the single cannabinoid, cannabidiol (CBD). It is generally thought that cannabinoids work better together so look for full spectrum products that contain more of the plants compounds than just CBD. There are over 100 different cannabinoids in the Cannabis Sativa L plant and we consider the synergy between those compounds enhance any beneficial effects on the endocannabinoid system. All of our oil is a complete spectrum extraction.
- Be wary of companies that make outlandish medical claims! I have seen lots of blatant medical claims that contravene the FSA’s regulatory guidelines regarding CBD. If a company is constantly telling you CBD cures cancer give them a wide berth. They care about taking your money more than giving you good and substantiated advice. Larger American organisations are also network marketing their product through home sellers (much like Avon or Forever living). Again, be wary of whom you are asking advice. Are they looking to hit targets and make sales or is there a genuine expertise and customer care present?
- Be wary of cheap product. As with anything you ingest the price can reflect quality. In the case of CBD its important to be sensible when considering this equation. To extract and process a good quality product is not cheap. If you are choosing based on cost alone please do also reflect on the points mentioned above and not just price.
- Trade association membership is a good indicator of the CBD company and their product. Green Goddess is a member of Cannabis Professionals which is the UK Trade body. To become a member our products, marketing and trading standards were evaluated. We are continually monitored to ensure high quality standards in all areas of our business conduct. This means accountability which is very good for the consumer.