Testing for CBD as Part of a Potency Test
Thanks to a sharp rise in popularity, CBD is gaining steady momentum in the health and wellness world, as is the need for labs who test CBD products.
CBD is a chemical compound known as a cannabinoid. It is one of over 100 such compounds found in the cannabis, or marijuana plant. The acronym CBD stands for cannabidiol (can-na-bid-i-ol) and is found in hemp plants.
Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) the main psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis , CBD is not psychoactive; meaning it does not cause an elevated sensation in the brain.
The human body and CBD
The endocannabinoid system (ECS), is a specialized system in the human body, which helps regulate things like appetite, pain, sleep and immune system response. Endocannabinoids are produced by the body and act like transmitters that bind to the cannabinoid receptors in the nervous system. CBD has been shown to help reduce chronic pain by affecting the activity of the endocannabinoid receptor, thus reducing inflammation. CBD is linked to the ability to act on the receptors in the brain for serotonin, which is the neurotransmitter that regulates mood and social behavior. This has made CBD a popular choice for people seeking relief from pain or other symptoms without the mind-altering effects of marijuana.
CBD then and now
Surprisingly, CBD is not a new discovery. CBD was discovered in 1940 as one of the 113 cannabinoids that have been identified. CBD accounts for nearly 40% of the plant’s extract. In 2018, clinical research included studies of cognition, pain, movement disorders and anxiety. Thanks to the lack of THC, today CBD is considered safe for adults as well as children.
How is cbd made?
To isolate the CBD compound, the oil extracted from a marijuana plant needs to be distilled after it is extracted. This process is called Winterization. Winterization is the process of removing the unwanted elements extracted in the oil. This would include fats, lipids, and waxes. Winterization is only necessary when the oil is extracted at high pressure or high temperature. This is because intense extraction pulls everything from the plant, including some unwanted material. The end result is oil similar to crude oil, which needs refining.
The process of refining cbd.
Once the oil has been extracted, it is combined with 200 proof alcohol and mixed vigorously. The mixture is placed in a state of deep freeze. The mixture has a cloudy appearance and is then ready to be filtered. Filtering can be done with filter paper and an extraction jar or with a piece of equipment called a Buchner Funnel. Once refined to satisfaction, and unwanted elements removed, the alcohol can then be removed using heat. The extraction is warmed and as it is warmed, the alcohol evaporates because the boiling point of alcohol is lower than that of oil.
The CBD distillation / isolation process.
To isolate CBD, the oil goes through a process called Short Path Distillation. Similar to Winterization, the extract is heated and each compound separated, as there are various boiling points to each. Isolating each compound allows for each to be used separately.
The value of lab testing cbd.
A great number of consumers are purchasing products containing CBD. There are regulations now. It is not enough to see CBD on the label, companies should provide test results from outside labs confirming CBD content and quality. To be told how much CBD a product contains, or to be sure it contains no psychoactive THC, is essential to consumer consumption.
What CBD CAN DO FOR YOU?
CBD has become a remedy for many ailments, such as pain. Research shows a significant drop in inflammation and pain when topical gels containing CBD is used. CBD oil is also used for arthritis pain relief.
According to the World Health Organization, anxiety is the largest contributor to disability worldwide and depression is ranked sixth. These two disorders are typically treated with pharmaceutical drugs, which have known side effects such as drowsiness, insomnia, headache, sexual dysfunction, and agitation. More importantly, benzodiazepines prescribed for these conditions can be addictive and can lead to abuse.
Thanks to its ability to reduce inflammation, CBD oil has been used to successfully treat acne, a skin condition that affects nearly 10% of the population. Acne is thought to be caused by several factors including, overproduction of sebum, an oily secretion, and inflammation. CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties may help in reducing the production of sebum.
CBD has also been shown to have neuroprotective properties and may be helpful to those with neurological disorders. It has been shown to improve life-quality and sleep for those with Parkinson’s Disease. CBD may decrease in inflammation to help prevent the neurodegeneration that is linked to Alzheimer’s Disease as well as possibly preventing the cognitive decline for those predisposed to the disease. One study found that CBD oil helped reduce seizure activity in children with epilepsy disorder.
Research has shown CBD may also be beneficial to the heart and circulatory system and may help lower blood pressure. High blood pressure is linked to a number of health conditions such as stroke, metabolic syndrome and heart attack.
There is much still that must be learned about CBD and it’s efficacy and safety. Testing is showing that CBD may prove to be a powerful, natural, treatment for many of today’s health issues.
Yes, CBD can be purchased legally according to the federal government as long as it does not contain greater than 3% THC. Several states have put consumer restrictions on CBD, including needing a prescription to purchase CBD in some states.
CBD is found in many products, including skincare products. Thanks to having anti-inflammatory properties, it has been reported to be helpful to the skin.
Studies have shown that CBD does not interfere with a normal sleep cycle. In fact, many users feel it helps achieve a better night’s sleep.
Yes, not only can CBD help reduce anxiety, but it has also been shown to help reduce symptoms that have been associated with a wide range of psychological conditions. CBD is used to treat both post-traumatic stress disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.
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