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CBD Lab Results: Do They Matter?

By April 3, 2019 April 5th, 2019 Health & Wellness

It’s important to understand the composition of your CBD so you know you’re getting the best possible product. The lab reports for a CBD formula should be available to access for any product on the market and will show the cannabinoid content profile and other details. Learn how to read CBD lab reports so you can ensure the quality of the product you’re receiving.

What is CBD?

Before diving into the lab test, let’s discuss CBD on a broader scale to establish an understanding of the compound. Cannabidiol, or CBD, is just one of the over 100 different chemical compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which is mostly found in marijuana, CBD is commonly derived from a particular cannabis plant called hemp. There are key differences between CBD and THC, so it’s important to understand where each cannabinoid comes from and how it affects the body:

  • THC – This type of cannabinoid comes mainly from the marijuana plant, which is grown specifically for its high concentration of THC. Growing and selling marijuana in the United States is currently illegal under federal law, however, several U.S. states and many countries around the world have passed legislation legalizing the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana. THC is a psychoactive drug which causes the brain to release dopamine, making you feel “high.”
  • CBD – This type of cannabinoid in today’s market is mostly derived from the hemp plant, and is what we include in all of our BioCBD+ products. Hemp has a long history of being cultivated primarily for its strong fibers, which are used to produce clothing, rope, and even early forms of paper. Relative to marijuana, hemp contains high concentrations of CBD and very trace amounts of THC, so most CBD is produced from hemp plants. Derived from hemp, CBD is legal now in the United States, following the passing of the Farm Bill in 2018.

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

CBD functions by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). While the ECS isn’t well understood by most people, it plays a very critical role in your body and overall well being.

Throughout your entire body and in major organs, cannabinoid receptors of the ECS help promote homeostasis and ensure your organs work in harmony with one another. In addition to the receptors, the body also makes its own cannabinoid-like chemicals, called endocannabinoids, which regulate many bodily functions. CBD acts as another type of cannabinoid in the body, known as a phytocannabinoid if derived from the cannabis plant, and thus interacts both indirectly and directly with the endocannabinoid receptors in the system as well to promote homeostasis in the body.

Why You Should Look Closely at CBD Products

The explosion of the cannabidiol market in recent years means that product containing CBD can be found just about anywhere, from online retailers to grocery stores, to coffee shops and cafes. While an increase in access can be positive, there are also plenty of companies making false claims about the ingredients, concentrations, and safety of their products.

For example, a recent study conducted at Virginia Commonwealth University found dextromethorphan – a highly-addictive substance found in cough syrup – and synthetic cannabinoids known as spice or K-2 – which can cause paranoia, hallucinations, and even kidney failure or heart attack – in one company’s CBD products. The company’s website stated that their products contained no synthetic ingredients and were 100% natural.

Another study at Johns Hopkins University found that many CBD oils, tinctures, and vape liquids often both overstated or understated the concentrations of different ingredients. Of the 84 samples tested, only 26 contained the amount of CBD claimed on the product labels. In 18 of the products, there was enough THC to cause impairment, and a quarter also had less CBD than advertised. Other tests conducted by the FDA found no traces of CBD in several CBD products. 22 have companies received a warning letter over the past 3 years from the FDA for reasons such as these.  

Understanding CBD Lab Results

Now that we know why it’s critical to confirm the ingredients and concentrations in CBD products, next we need to understand just how to do that. Any reputable company selling products containing CBD should provide CBD lab testing results conducted by an independent third party.

When reviewing test results, you’ll first want to look for the cannabinoid content profile, which tells you the variety of cannabinoids found in the product and at what concentrations. This will help you determine the purity of the CBD formula. Take note of:

  • The spectrum of a product, by observing the presence of measured cannabinoids and whether the extract is CBD Isolate or contains other cannabinoids.
  • The concentration of a product by observing the ratio of measured cannabinoids to the carrier (usually oil).

Next, you’ll want to pay attention to the profile of the CBD terpenes, which includes the types of terpenes, or aromatic compounds, found in the product. There are over 100 different types of terpenes potentially found in hemp, all of which may help alleviate certain symptoms. These are typically measured in parts per million (PPM). The terpenes will also provide a stronger idea of the specific composition of the CBD formula and the potential effects.  

Finally, the report should include the results of testing for unwanted or harmful ingredients and contaminants in the CBD oil. This could include contaminants such as heavy metals, pesticides, mycotoxins (toxins produced by mushrooms), and residual solvents.

Closing Thoughts

Just like any new product, it’s important to stay knowledgeable about what you’re introducing into your home and body. With the CBD industry growing at an exponential pace, consumers have many different options when it comes to choosing CBD oil providers. Harnessing data from the results of CBD labs can help ensure that you’re purchasing quality products from a reputable and safe supplier. BioCBD+ offers a variety of CBD products and holds the quality of every product to the highest standards. We publish all lab reports on our Certificate of Analysis page to ensure our customers know they’re getting the best products possible.

BioCBD+ respects and appreciates the hard work the FDA does, and the disclosure below is required by  The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act.

FDA Disclosure:

The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from healthcare practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product.

Sources:

  1. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/marijuana-use-and-its-effects#1
  2. https://www.leafly.com/news/industry/tests-of-cbd-oils-reveal-three-surprise-chemicals-one-big-problem
  3. https://www.consumerreports.org/marijuana/what-is-cbd-what-to-know-about-this-cannabis-product/
  4. https://bigskybotanicals.com/education/how-to-read-cbd-lab-reports/

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James Sol Radina

About James Sol Radina

As CEO and Co-Founder of BioCBD Plus™, James Sol Radina brings years of experience and accumulated expertise from the CBD industry. His interest originated in early 2014, when James embarked on a major filmmaking project to travel and study CBD around the world. Together with a team of filmmakers, he sought out to interview top doctors, scientists, and researchers about CBD, which, at the time, was relatively lesser known, but was starting a buzz in the market. After seeing first-hand the results that CBD had in the patients and experts they filmed, James was “all in!” and his business pursuits began. James started BioCBD Plus™ in 2015, with the goal to fill a niche void that existed in the CBD industry. With the knowledge he gained through his study of CBD, combined with new scientific research, he created the world’s first water-soluble, 100% BioAvailable CBD. The proprietary formula is whole-plant based and more easily absorbable by the body than other CBD products on the market, and the company’s product suite has continued to expand following its demonstrated success. The strength of James’ passion for CBD is matched by his dedication to volunteer service. He incorporated a strong socially responsible model to BioCBD Plus™, which supports The Veterans Discount Program and other programs through donations of CBD products to those who cannot afford them. Since the start of the company, James has also continued to be the inspirational energy behind the company’s beliefs and marketing strategy, which are driven by his commitment to spreading the science-based truth about CBD and bringing the healing benefits of the product to as many people as possible.

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