How Safe and Beneficial Are CBD Supplements?

How Safe and Beneficial Are CBD Supplements?
  • Dr. Taylor Wallace
  • August 4, 2020

CBD – An introduction

CBD or “cannabidiol” is a popular natural remedy touted for many health-promoting effects.  The compound is one of more than 100 cannabinoids found in the cannabis or marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa.  It is also found in the hemp plant… a close cousin to marijuana.  Unlike THC or “tetrahydrocannabinol” its non-psychoactive.  

Effects on human health

If you surf around on Amazon or walk into a natural products store… chances are you’ve seen to plenty of marketing messages about the health benefits of CBD.  The American craze shows no signs of losing any momentum.  Nor do online supplement marketers when it comes to providing you with that miracle solution.  I will admit despite a plethora clinical evidence that CBD did seem to help reduce the severity psychosis my Dad experienced after being diagnosed with an atypical Parkinson’s disease.  

Most people report using over-the-counter CBD supplements to address issues such as anxiety and pain, among others.  Animal studies generally support these findings that still need to be confirmed in humans.  A fair amount of human studies support that CBD can help relieve common aches and pains.  A recent landmark clinical intervention in the Journal of Dietary Supplements showed daily supplementation of hemp-derived CBD (15 mg) for 6-weeks resulted in improvements in stress response, HDL-cholesterol, and sleep quality and quantity.  

Safety

Nearly 500 years ago, Swiss physician and chemist Paracelsus expressed the basic principle of toxicology: “All things are poison, and nothing is without poison; only the dose makes a thing not a poison.”  In other words, don’t go overboard.  Though there is much to be learned about the efficacy of CBD, it does seem to be safe at reasonable doses.  The same study in the Journal of Dietary Supplements mentioned above is the most convincing evidence to date that levels at or below 15 mg of CBD per day are safe.  How the compound interacts with common medications (aside from blood thinners) is relatively unknown.  

Side effects

Uncommon reported side effects of CBD products include fatigue, drowsiness, reduced appetite, dry mouth, and diarrhea.

Recommended CBD products

Due to the large number of adulterated and misbranded products online and in stores, I’m going to break away from my policy of not recommending specific brands.  CV Sciences has a brand called +PlusCBD that is of great quality.  I’m sure there are many other quality products out there… but they get my recommendation for investing in human studies that attest to the safety and efficacy of their product.

Additional information

U.S. Food and Drug Administration – What you need to know (and what we’re working to find out) about products containing cannabis or cannabis-derived compounds, including CBD.

Special issue on cannabidiol in the Journal of Dietary Supplements.

One thought on “How Safe and Beneficial Are CBD Supplements?

  1. Curious. Aside from high blood pressure, I have osteoarthritis. Badly. I was at the health food store and wanted to get CBD oil. I asked for assistance. The girl asked if I was on any meds (blood pressure, yes). She said “OH NO!!! YOU CAN’T TAKE THIS!!!!” Aside from fear. . .I was shocked, because it’s a natural way to assist osteoarthritis I would think. SHOCKED! So, I want to still like to try. Will go in again. Is it safe with beta blocker and losartan? Maybe a tea, or low dose?

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