CBD products are now on shelves in local pharmacies, grocery stores and online.
Many products claim to help with a number of ailments like depression, anxiety, inflammation, and insomnia, but CBD is unregulated. So, what should consumers know before trying CBD products?
We sat down with Dr. Kent Vrana, the chair of the Department of Pharmacology at Penn State College of Medicine to discuss the increasing popularity of CBD products.
Vrana explained CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the two main constituents of medical marijuana. The other is tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC. He says the main difference between the two is that CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, so it does not cause euphoria.
We also asked Vrana to answer our questions about CBD product sales. Here are his responses:
WHAT IS CBD OIL?
“CBD oil is a misconception, it’s not an oil of CBD, it’s an oil that contains CBD.”
DOES CBD HAVE HEALTH BENEFITS?
“There are a lot of reasons to believe CBD should be beneficial. First off, we know medical marijuana has been used for millennia for medication and we’re just now starting to figure out what the molecules are in medical marijuana that are having this effect. We know that CBD has activity that decreases inflammation, it probably decreases pain so there’s reasons to believe it’s effective we just don’t have good scientific data to support that.”
IS IT SAFE TO USE CBD WITHOUT A DOCTOR’S PRESCRIPTION?
“The use of CBD without a doctor’s advice is very risky. First off, CBD, while people think it is a natural product, is a drug. The most important thing I’m worried about is CBD interfering with a normal drug your doctor is trying to use to treat your disease. They can interfere with each other so it is vitally important that you let your doctor know what you’re doing and get their blessing on it.”
WHAT SHOULD CBD BE USED FOR?
“I really can’t provide any guidance but we just don’t know enough to make firm suggestions. What my clinical colleagues are saying — if we have a problem that I’m having difficulty helping you with, with what we have now, maybe it’s not a bad idea to try CBD but we should go slowly, at low levels and see if it helps.”
WILL CBD GET YOU HIGH?
“The value in using CBD oil is, it does not have psychoactive properties. It doesn’t create euphoria. So it should not, it should not, unless it interferes with something else, have an effect on cognition.”
WILL YOU FAIL A DRUG TEST AFTER USING A CBD PRODUCT?
“Using CBD oil, you will test positive for CBD in your urine. So just as marijuana stays in your system for a long time, part of what stays in your system is CBD. THC is the same way. You will test positive for CBD. So it all depends on the employer or your legal status as to whether or not that would constitute as an “illegal activity.” We are in a very gray zone there that’s why I’m reluctant to give a black or white answer.”
CBD is sold in many forms. Consumers may see it as oil, lotion or even edibles.
Wednesday on “Daybreak”, more on the product options and which products are best to treat which ailments.
Hear from the assistant manager of Healthy Grocer, a Cumberland County store selling 40 different products on the decision to offer CBD to shoppers.
Have a question about CBD products? Want to suggest a topic for Healthy Living? Send an email to Amanda Peterson at email@example.com.