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Is CBD legal? The answer is... it depends on where it comes from. CBD that comes from hemp is legal; CBD extracted from plants that qualify as marijuana is not (based on the current definition by the federal government and the DEA).
However, CBD extracted from marijuana may be legal under state law. See your individual state laws for further information.
CBD oil is oil derived from high-CBD, low-THC (psychoactive tetrahydrocannabinol) hemp. The cannabidiol content of CBD oil varies greatly because manufacturers use a wide array of different hemp plants and preparation techniques.
CBD is an abreviation for cannabidiol (pronouned can-a-bid-i-ol), a naturally occurring phytocannabinoid found in the plant genus Cannabis Sativa L. Discovered in 1940, CBD is one of 113 identified cannabinoids in cannabis plants, and accounts for up to 40% of the plant's extract. Cannabidiol is non-psychoactive, meaning it does not get you 'high'.
Clinical research on CBD includes studies on anxiety, cognition, movement disorders, and pain.
There's a seemingly endless array of options available for the CBD aficionado. But, what's the best, most effective way to use CBD? Well, for CBD to work, your body must first absorb it (meaning it must enter the bloodstream). Your method of ingestion will greatly affect the uptake, distribution, and elimination of the CBD in your body, thus determining how effective your cannabinoid therapy will be in helping you.
Inhalation is an effective method of delivery because the body absorbs it quickly this way. Effects are near immediate, making it a good option for anyone needing pain relief now instead of hours later.
Oral intake (ingestion via mouth) is the most common method of taking CBD. Despite being the easiest method of administering cannabidiol, it is not particularly efficient at absorbing CBD and can take up to three (3) hours to work. After all, it must first go through the digestive tract, then to the hepatic portal system, then into the liver.
Sublingual administration (holding it under the tongue for a couple minutes before swallowing) is another popular choice. This allows the mucus membranes to absorb the CBD oil, bypassing the digestive system altogether. Because no enzymes break down the molecules, CBD is able to enter the bloodstream faster than ingestion.
Topically applied (rubbing cream or oil into the skin), the CBD will never reach your bloodstream. The skin does not absorb cannabinoids very well, so for topical products to work, you have to apply them very liberally, using lotions and balms that contain very high levels of CBD. The only topical CBD product that actually can penetrate the skin and enter the bloodstream are transdermal CBD patches.
Other ways to consume CBD include rectal insertion (suppositories) and intravenous (injected into a vein) administration. Both methods send CBD quickly into the bloodstream. You can also intake CBD via smoke hemp (0.3% or less of the psychoactive compound THC).
Different types of drug tests have different detection thresholds, but the type you're most likely to encounter is the "pee test." To pass a urine drug test, the amount of THC in your body must be below 50 ng/mL. That's the cutoff recommended federally by the National Institutes of Health and clinically by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which helps set industry standards for lab certifications.
To hit 50 ng/mL of THC, you'd probably have to consume upwards of 2,000 mg of CBD products that contain 0.3% or less of THC, which is much higher than the average person is likely to take. Even in clinical trials and research studies, people are usually only administered 100-800mg/day.
So you're in the clear, right? Not quite. There are two ways you could hit that 50 ng/mL mark.
First, THC is fat-soluble, so when you ingest it -- especially via edibles or a drop of oil under the tongue -- it's absorbed along with other fats and can be stored in your body's fatty tissue.
Depending on how much CBD (and thus THC), you consume, how often you consume it, your body weight and your diet, it's possible for THC to accumulate in your body in as little as four to six days and trigger a positive drug test. Research has found that THC can be detectable in your system for up to 30 days, but it's usually only present in heavy cannabis users after the first week.
While the information here suggests CBD won't make anyone fail a drug test, there's no way to guarantee it. The only way to ensure you will pass a drug test is to abstain from using any sort of CBD product.