What Are Other Cannabinoids beyond CBD and THC?

Despite the fact that there are estimated to be over 120 total cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant, relatively little is known about the minor cannabinoids compared to THC and CBD.

While studies have shown that these two cannabinoids are largely responsible for the psychoactive and therapeutic effects of cannabis, the other cannabinoids have their own unique effects on the mind and body, and many work synergistically with the two major cannabinoids to enhance their impact. 

Many of the identified cannabinoids are very similar in structure to one another, but even slight structural differences have been known to produce a wide range of physiological effects. It is no surprise then, with all the potential benefits of the lesser-known cannabinoids, that researchers have deemed them worth examining. 

Do All Cannabinoids Work the Same Way?

The two major cannabinoids, THC and CBD, produce the majority of their effects by interacting with cannabinoid receptors in our endocannabinoid system, which has been shown to regulate functions such as cognition, pain sensation, appetite, memory, sleep, immune function, and mood.

However, some cannabinoids are able to produce physiological effects outside of the endocannabinoid system. For example, a common behavior of certain cannabinoids is to activate transient receptor potential channels (TRP channels), which influence sensations such as pain, temperature, taste, and vision. Based on this evidence, it is clear that research on cannabinoids cannot be restricted to how they interact with CB1 and CB2 receptors alone.

With all of this information in mind, let’s take a look at some of the lesser-known cannabinoids that are present in the cannabis plant, as well as the benefits they provide.

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Cannabigerol (CBG)

What is CBG?  CBG is a non-psychotropic cannabinoid that is the second most abundant in the cannabis plant, and is commonly used to stimulate appetite and treat pain and anxiety. It is interesting to note that the carboxylic acid form of CBG, cannabigerolic acid, is the precursor to all other cannabinoids, including THC, CBD, and CBC.

In the beginning of the cannabis plant’s growth, CBG makes up about 16.3% of total cannabinoid content, but this percentage drops to about 1% as the plant matures. In a manner similar to CBC, CBG does not bind to CB1 receptors, but it has an effect on the endocannabinoid system by increasing levels of anandamide in the brain. Out of all the cannabinoids, CBG has been shown to have the most potent antibacterial and antibiotic properties. Since CBG is an antagonist of CB1 receptors, it could also possibly lessen the effects of THC. 

Interesting Fact: CBG has also been used as an effective insect repellent when combined with the terpene limonene.

Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)

THCV is a cannabinoid with a structure almost identical to that of THC, but it reacts differently at a molecular level, and thus has unique physiological effects. Like THC, THCV binds to CB1 and CB2 receptors, but at lower doses, THCV can been shown to counteract some of the effects of THC, while enhancing them at higher doses.

In addition, THCV has displayed anticonvulsant, anti-anxiety, and pain-relieving properties, which make it a good potential treatment method for conditions such as epilepsy and PTSD. THCV has even shown to have antipsychotic properties, which could make it a promising solution for alleviating some of the symptoms of schizophrenia. 

Cannabidivarin (CBDV)

Cannabidivarin is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that has a variety of therapeutic benefits. It was first isolated in 1969, but little research has been performed on it since then. CBDV has been shown to have anticonvulsant and anti-epileptic effects, but instead of occurring through binding of cannabinoid receptors, they are caused by activating TRP channels.

As a result, CBDV is used to treat epilepsy without causing intoxication, and has much fewer side effects compared to common anti-epileptic drugs. CBDV is also currently undergoing clinical trials for use in glioma, type 2 diabetes, schizophrenia, and encephalopathy, so its future therapeutic applications seem rather promising.

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Cannabinol (CBN)

Cannabinol is a metabolite of THC that exhibits many immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory activities. Compared to THC, CBN is only mildly psychoactive; CBN binds selectively to CB2 receptors in the peripheral nervous system, but has minimal activity on CB1 receptors. One of the most interesting benefits of CBN is its potential as an appetite stimulant.

A study suggested that CBN can potentially increase one’s appetite, so it has promising applications for the treatment of eating disorders. Other than that, CBN has been shown to be a powerful sedative, and can also be used to relieve nausea. 

Cannabichromene (CBC)

CBC doesn’t actively bind to either CB1 or CB2 receptors, but it affects the endocannabinoid system indirectly by inhibiting the absorption of anandamide, a neurotransmitter that binds to cannabinoid receptors. CBC has shown to be more prevalent in the more psychoactive strains of cannabis, whereas higher CBD concentrations are more common in fiber-like strains used in hemp.

CBC and THC have been shown to have a strong synergistic relationship, as CBC increases levels of THC in the brain, and THC, in turn, enhances the pharmacological effects of CBC. When used together with THC, CBC displays anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, and pain-relieving qualities. Cannabichromene is due to receive a lot more research in the near future, largely because of its relationship with THC.

Cannabichromevarin (CBCV)

CBCV is among the least-studied cannabinoids that have been identified. It was discovered in 1975, which was a little later than the more well-known cannabinoids, and not much research has been done on it since then. CBCV is very similar in structure to CBC, so many researchers estimate that it will share some of the same benefits.

Like CBC, CBCV is not psychoactive, so it can be used to provide relief for chronic pain, depression, inflammation, and insomnia without causing any intoxicating effects. CBCV has also been shown to suppress the appetite instead of stimulating it, so it could be useful for those who are trying to control their eating habits.

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What about Terpenes?

No article about cannabinoids would be complete without discussing their relationship with terpenes.  While we’ve already gone more in depth about terpenes here, it’s worth mentioning that terpenes and cannabinoids go hand in hand when consuming cannabis and cannabis derivatives such as hemp CBD products.  

When consumed together, the benefits of cannabinoids, terpenes and other natural compounds found in cannabis work synergistically to enhance the properties of one another.  This is referred to as the “entourage effect”, which means that the effects are greater than the sum of the individual parts.

Tessera Naturals products are all made with broad spectrum CBD.  This means that we start with a full spectrum whole plant extract, then remove the trace amounts of THC while leaving all of the minor cannabinoids and terpenes in tact.  Studies show that full spectrum CBD and broad spectrum CBD are much more effective than CBD isolate, which is only comprised of the CBD cannabinoid alone.

Key Takeaways

  • There are many other cannabinoids in the cannabis plant besides THC and CBD that offer their own range of therapeutic benefits.
  • Cannabinoids primarily activate receptors in the endocannabinoid system, but physiological effects can also occur through TRP channels.
  • Limited research has been done on cannabinoids other than THC and CBD, but that is certainly going to change as the medical benefits of cannabis become more apparent.
  • Many cannabinoids and terpenes act in synergy with one another to enhance their effects exponentially, which is referred to as the “entourage effect”.
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What Are Terpenes

What Are Terpenes?

Terpenes consist of over 50,000 naturally occurring aromatic chemical compounds that are present in all living species, but here we are going to focus on are those that are prevalent in fruits and flowering plants.

There are believed to be a few hundred terpene variations that are common to all plants, but the majority of terpenes are restricted to a specific plant species. Terpenes are largely responsible for giving plants and flowers their signature aromas and flavors, as well as having many therapeutic benefits.

Chemically, all terpenes are comprised of hydrocarbon units–known as isoprene units–which form chain-like sequences of five carbon molecules. The most common plant-specific terpenes are monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, diterpenes, and triterpenes, which consist of two, three, four, and six isoprene units respectively.

The size and structure of a terpene determines how water-soluble it is, as well as its volatility; the smaller a terpene, the more unstable it is. Monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes are relatively unstable, and evaporate at room temperature, which is the reason why their scents are easily noticeable.

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What Are The Benefits of Terpenes?

Terpenes have a number of distinctive scents, flavors, and health benefits, all of which are a result of their natural ecological functions. To protect themselves against disease and being fed upon by herbivores, many plants develop terpenes that are toxic to fungi, bacteria, and insects. Furthermore, terpenes serve to attract pollinators to flowers.

The smaller, more volatile terpenes are light enough to travel lengthy distances through the air, and they appeal to the olfactory receptors of many animals. Terpenes will even attract predators and alert nearby plants when a pesky herbivore breaks the skin of a leaf. So, all things considered, terpenes exert a vast influence on nature.

How Are Terpenes Used By Humans?

Throughout history, terpenes have been used for a wide variety of purposes, the most noteworthy being the role terpenes play in our consumption of food. The terpenes in herbs and spices are largely responsible for our perception of flavor.

Their pleasant scents also make them perfect for use in cosmetic products such as perfumes, oils, and lotions, and their natural toxicity allows them to be used for mouthwash, insect repellent, and disinfectants. In addition, terpenes have been used in medications designed to fight cancer and kill malarial parasites

Even though the effects of terpenes are well-documented, there is still a lot of mystery surrounding the roles of specific terpenes in plant biology. Research is continuously learning more about terpenes and uncovering more potential applications for their use. As a more extreme example, researchers are currently trying to figure out how they can use terpenes as a fuel source!

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Terpenes in Cannabis

Cannabis naturally has its own set of terpenes. In total, over 120 terpene variations are present in the cannabis plant. The different concentrations of terpenes will affect the aroma of a particular cannabis strain, but the role of terpenes doesn’t end with dictating scent. Terpenes can work synergistically with cannabinoids such as THC and CBD to target and enhance certain therapeutic effects.

Combining terpenes with cannabinoids has resulted in a promising range of potential applications for therapeutic use, from treating acne, to fighting cancer. Let’s examine the benefits and characteristics of the most common terpenes found in cannabis.


b-Caryophyllene is typically the most abundant terpene present in a cannabis product. It is also prominent in plants and spices such as cinnamon, black pepper, and rosemary, so it has a spicy, pepper-like scent.

Since it selectively binds to CB2 receptors in the body, it is most potent as a pain reliever and anti-inflammatory agent, but it has a variety of additional uses. For example, studies have shown that b-Caryophyllene is effective in treating drug and alcohol addiction when used synergistically with CBD. When combined with THC, it can provide relief for depression and anxiety disorders. b-Caryophyllene has even been shown to relieve the itchiness caused by contact dermatitis.


Pinene is the most commonly encountered terpene in nature, and has a vast amount of medicinal applications. As suggested by its name, pinene has an aroma reminiscent of pine needles, conifers, and sage. It is known to be anti-inflammatory, can serve as an insect repellent, and can even be used to relieve the symptoms of osteoarthritis. In addition, pinene has been shown to be effective in treating antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria.

Another interesting benefit is that low doses of pinene can make breathing easier, so it can be soothing for people with conditions such as asthma. Pinene has also been shown to help counteract the short-term memory loss experienced with THC intoxication.


Linalool is a terpene that’s well-known for having powerful sedative properties, which were first observed during the use of lavender in traditional aromatherapy. The soothing effects of linalool can be useful in treating stress, anxiety, and depression. In particular, linalool has been used in conjunction with CBD to treat psychosis and social anxiety disorder. Furthermore, when paired with THC, it can be used as a local anaesthetic that’s comparable to procaine or menthol. Linalool naturally occurs in plants and spices such as lavender, coriander, and birch trees.

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Limonene is the second most commonly occurring terpene in nature, and is present in the rinds of all citrus fruits. Studies have demonstrated that limonene increases dopamine and serotonin levels in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex, making it a powerful antidepressant, anxiety reliever, and mood elevator.

Limonene has also been shown to be effective in treating a number of cancers, including breast cancer, skin cancer, prostate cancer, and other tumorous growths. Furthermore, limonene has proved to be very anti-bacterial and anti-fungal, so it is commonly paired with CBD to use in acne treatments.


Myrcene is common in highly aromatic plants such as sweet basil, bay leaves, lemongrass, hops, wild thyme, as well as tropical fruits. It can be used to alleviate chronic pain, anxiety, and inflammation. Furthermore, myrcene is often utilized for its soothing properties. It is commonly used to prevent muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis patients, and can also be a potent sleeping aid. Myrcene has even been used to treat sleep disorders by adding it to CBD/THC extracts. Studies have shown that myrcene could also intensify the effects of THC.

Terpenes and the “Entourage Effect”

Terpenes play a key part in the synergistic relationship between the naturally occurring compounds found in cannabis.  CBD and THC as well as 100+ other cannabinoids have their many benefits, but when combined with terpenes, they amplify one another and provide overall therapeutic benefits that are greater than their individual parts.  Consuming full spectrum or broad spectrum hemp extract will lead to a much greater therapeutic effect, over consuming an isolated CBD product, or an isolated terpene product alone.

All Tessera Naturals products are made with broad spectrum Hemp extract. This means that besides CBD, our products contain the full spectrum of beneficial cannabinoids, terpenes and amino acids in hemp (except THC). 

Key Takeaways

  • Terpenes have a significant role in governing nature, and are also a major factor of human life.
  • Terpenes are present in all plants life, and their properties help the plant adapt to its ecological niche.
  • Terpenes are responsible for a plant’s aroma, flavor, and they have various therapeutic effects.
  • The most common terpenes in cannabis include; b-Caryophyllene, Pinene, Linalool, Limonene and Myrcene.
  • Not only are terpenes responsible for the scent of cannabis, but they can also be used synergistically with other terpenes and cannabinoids to produce a desired “entourage effect”.

What is the Entourage Effect?

CBD and The Entourage Effect

CBD is slowly becoming a household name in the natural treatment world for its management of various ailments ranging from chronic pain to anxiety. Little wonder it is fast becoming legalized in numerous countries making it available everywhere from spas, beauty parlors and coffee shops. Its growing availability in various forms like tinctures, capsules and lotions makes it easy to consume and use as well.

A lot of people have used and testified to the efficacy of hemp CBD products but you may be among the numerous fans of CBD who are still confused about the most effective forms, how much to take and how best to use it

First, A Brief Overview of CBD 

Cannabinoids are chemical compounds occurring naturally in our body’s endocannabinoid system. Cannabinoids also are found in certain plants, and are capable of interacting with the cannabinoid receptors within the body.

CBD (or Cannabidiol) is one of the numerous (100+) cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant along with other beneficial compounds like terpenes and amino acids.  THC is another well known cannabinoid found in cannabis.

What Is The Difference Between CBD and THC?

The basic difference between CBD and THC is the ability of THC to make you high because it contains psychoactive elements while CBD doesn’t. 

There are two types of Cannabinoid receptors in our bodies, which are part of our endocannabinoid system. THC usually interacts with the CB1 receptors in our bodies that can elicit that feeling of ‘euphoria’, as well as effect pain tolerance. On the other hand, CBD interacts mostly with the CB2 receptors that illicit immune responses, reduce pain and inflammation and control sleep patterns and appetite.

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How CBD Works With Our Endocannabinoid System (ECS)

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is an important network of receptors that allows us to connect with our immune system, nervous system and organs. According to research, the ECS responds to the body’s endocannabinoids produced within the body, as well as phytocannabinoids from plants like cannabis.

When CBD is introduced into the body, it can then help diminish certain symptoms. It does this by indirectly interacting on the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the different parts of the body. When CBD stimulates our ECS, it promotes homeostasis (balance) and reduces pain sensation and inflammation, regulates mood disorders and helps a host of many other symptoms.

So What Is The Entourage Effect

Research has shown that when medical substances from plants are taken in their whole and natural state, they tend to be more potent. The entourage effect is in action when the numerous components of the cannabis plant act in synergy on the body to maximize their healing effects. This is as opposed to the milder effect of using them solo, or isolated.

It is like bringing different individuals together to form a team for a project. Each team member will bring his/her expertise to make the project a success. With the cannabis plant compounds, there is a multiplier effect. The combination of the various natural compounds produces a more effective and stronger solution when they work together. We are not confined to the sum of each part but more so the amplification of the different components.

In essence, the most effective cannabis therapies use a combination of compounds, mostly full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD, for an enhanced medicinal experience. This is often preferable over using a CBD isolate. For example, CBD restrains the influence of THC on the body while terpenes in cannabis will add to the effects and as well as determining the taste and smell of the cannabis strain.

Poor quality control and inconsistency of botanical extracts however pose challenges to the entourage effect.

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Full Spectrum CBD vs. Broad Spectrum CBD vs. CBD Isolate 

As mentioned above, you may have come across these “spectrum” terms on CBD product packaging, but many consumers may not understand the differences.

Simply put, CBD isolate is a single molecule product containing only CBD. It is the purest form of the compound extracted from the plant and does not contain any other natural compounds of the plant. Its advantage lies in the availability of high concentration of the CBD per serving. It allows users experience full benefits of CBD but lacks the entourage effect.

Full-spectrum CBD is an extract that contains all the active naturally-occurring phytochemicals from hemp like CBD, THC (negligible amount), terpenes, amino acids and so on. They synergistically work together to produce the entourage effect. Even though full-spectrum CBD is considered non-psychoactive, a consistent user may feel slight sedation effects and may also test positive in a drug test.

Broad spectrum CBD, on the other hand, is made up of all the components similar to full spectrum CBD, but minus THC. Broad spectrum CBD also produce the entourage effect but without the chance of any THC entering the system.

While each CBD spectrum has its pros and cons, we feel that broad-spectrum CBD is the best of both worlds, sort of between a full-spectrum CBD and CBD isolate. All Tessera Naturals products are made using the highest quality broad spectrum CBD from organically grown USA hemp. We conduct 3rd party lab testing in order to ensure potency of CBD and other cannabinoids and terpenes, as well as confirming our hemp oil is THC free.

Key Takeaways

  • CBD and THC are just two of the 100+ cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, along with other beneficial compounds like minor cannabinoids, terpenes and amino acids.
  • CBD and other cannabinoids found in cannabis can interact with our endocannabinoid system to promote homeostasis and healing efforts.
  • The many compounds in cannabis (cannabinoids, terpenes, amino acids) work synergistically and amplify the benefits of one another when consumed together.
  • Full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD produce the entourage effect, while CBD isolate does not.
  • Broad spectrum CBD is a good choice for those interested in the entourage effect, but do not wish to consume any THC.

CBD Extraction Methods Explained

How is CBD Extracted From Hemp?

While it may not seem important, the different methods of how CBD oil is extracted from hemp can produce highly different end products and have different impacts on your health. It’s important to ask about and understand how different companies extract their CBD oil from hemp.

The growing awareness of the benefits of CBD oil has helped it become extremely popular in the past few years. CBD is produced and manufactured into edibles, oils, and topical creams — all of which offer their specific ways of aiding people.

What is CBD Extract?

CBD, also known as cannabidiol, has become the most highly debated and sought-after component from the cannabis plant in recent years. It has become known worldwide for its many beneficial qualities which range from helping people deal with mental illness to helping cancer patients deal with nausea (a common side effect from chemotherapy treatment). It has been trusted by many for centuries and is currently in an uphill battle with some political parties who assume that CBD oil is just like its cousin THC. Luckily, research is proving them wrong. 

Besides understanding the different methods of extracting CBD from hemp, you’ll want to take into consideration the differences between full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolates.  More on that later.

As ties between the FDA and CBD companies continue to develop, you will also want to take into consideration which CBD extracts fall in and out of legal lines.  For example, CBD can be extracted from either hemp or marijuana, but only hemp-derived CBD is legal under the 2018 farm bill.  Marijuana and its derivatives remain federally illegal.

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Why Do We Need To Extract CBD?

The reason why you want to extract CBD is to separate the cannabinoid and make a concentrated form that is consumable for humans.  

Chewing on raw cannabis is not only unpleasant, but it will not have the same desired effect as a concentrated extract.  In order for the cannabinoids in cannabis to be effective, they must be decarboxylated (applying heat).

Drying cannabis will cause partial decarboxylation, and smoking/vaping it will instantaneously decarboxylate the cannabinoids, making them absorbable through inhalation.

Ingesting cannabinoids on the other hand, through oils, capsules and edibles, require decarboxylation in order for our bodies to take advantage of them through digestion.

Also, cannabis in its raw herbal form can host a wide variety of microbes which can present a health risk if not properly extracted and purified. The extraction process eliminates these and also removes undesirable compounds such as plant waxes and lipids, which might be harmful for our health.

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Start with Organic USA Hemp

The entire process starts with finding a rich CBD plant source to extract from. Tessera Naturals understands that, which is why we use organically grown hemp from the USA for our process.  

It is important to be mindful of where your chosen company extracts their CBD oil from as some hemp sources can be contaminated with toxic chemicals such as pesticides, or contain a bevy of undesirable chemicals or heavy metals.

Proper extractions also make sure that nearly all of the desirable components in the plant are maintained.  

Three Common Methods to Extract CBD

Extraction methods vary by their end result health profiles and their impact on the environment.  Most companies use the following three methods of extracting CBD.

1. Solvent

Solvent extraction involves the use of ethanol, butane, propane, isopropyl, or alcohol to extract the CBD. It is one of the least expensive options and is also fast and easy to do. It is also one of the most dangerous due to the highly flammable contents of the liquids. 

This method dissolves the plant waxes which themselves hold quite a few nutrients. It extracts not only the cannabinoids but also the chlorophyll — which gives some products a bitter taste. 

To begin the liquid solvent process, flowers and plant trimmings are put into a container. Then the solvent is soaked or run through the material, stripping it of the cannabinoids. Then the evaporation process leaves the concentrated cannabinoids in an oil form.

Besides being an extremely dangerous process, the downside is that the solvent residue can be toxic if they are not completely eliminated during the evaporation step. Some studies have found traces of naphtha hydrocarbons or petroleum residue in CBD products that have been extracted using solvents.

2. Olive Oil

The olive oil extraction process is the oldest method of extracting CBD. Many CBD lovers attest to it being the best. It is the safest method, doesn’t cost a lot, and it’s simple to do.

The process begins with the raw plant materials being decarboxylated (heated) to the desired temperature for a specific amount of time so that the chemicals in the plant are activated. Olive oil and the plant material are combined and heated again. This is when the cannabinoids are extracted. The olive oil isn’t evaporated, so the resulting extract isn’t as concentrated as the other methods. The dosage the consumer takes will have to compensate for this as well.

The issue with olive oil extraction arises with its highly perishable nature. It must be kept in a cool, dark area and therefore doesn’t work well for the needs of many CBD producers and consumers.

3. CO2 Extraction

As CBD companies have begun to flourish internationally, the CO2 method of extracting CBD has become the most advanced and advised way of completing the process. It is quite an investment as it is the most expensive and complex of the methods, but if done successfully, it makes a potent, safe and chlorophyll-free extraction. (Yummy!) 

The only downfall to this CO2 extraction process is that it’s a big investment for CBD producers and demands that they dig deep into their pockets.  Many premium CBD producers (including Tessera Naturals) are willing to use this method because it brings a much safer and higher quality product to their consumers. It also does not remove the beneficial contents of the plan as much as other methods do.  Lastly, the final product has a much lower chance of having contaminants. 

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Typically, the CO2 extraction process is done by using a “closed-loop extractor.” The machine contains three chambers. The first one holds pressurized, solid CO2 or dry ice; the second chamber has dried help plant material in it; the final chamber separates the resulting product.

From the first chamber, CO2 is pumped into the second chamber, which takes on the form of supercritical CO2 — between a gas and liquid state. The supercritical CO2 then runs through the materials and extracts the cannabinoids. It’s then pumped into the final chamber where the CO2 rises to the top. This leaves the extract at the bottom and isolated from the CO2. 

Which CBD Extraction Method is Best? 

While there are pros and cons to each extraction method, we feel that CO2 extraction is by far the most beneficial.  It consistently produces the highest quality concentration of CBD and is one of the safest extraction methods, leaving behind no toxic residue.

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What Happens After Extraction?

After the raw oil is extracted, the extract is further refined through a process called “winterization”. This step removes any solvents, chlorophyll, waxes or unwanted fats (lipids), resulting in a clean hemp oil with 70-90% CBD, minor cannabinoids, and terpenes.

NOTE: There is a recent increase in another type of refinement process referred to as CBD Distillate.  The distillation process involves applying high heat (boiling point) to the raw extracted oil to further separate the compounds and refine the extract through a distillation chamber. While resulting in a very pure and potent form of CBD, the main drawback of CBD distillate is that it does not contains many terpenes (if any) that work in synergy with other cannabinoids, thus missing out on the entourage effect. Due to this shortcoming, we feel that CO2 extraction and liquid chromatography is superior.

End product

As mentioned earlier, there are various types of CBD oils that can be produced with the hemp extract.

Full-spectrum CBD contains all of the cannabinoids and other natural compounds found in cannabis such as terpenes and amino acids (including trace amounts of THC).

Broad-spectrum CBD is similar to full spectrum, but removes the trace amounts of THC. 

To create broad spectrum CBD, the full spectrum CBD extract goes through an additional specialized process called liquid chromatography, which selectively binds to the THC and removes it at low temperatures, while the remaining synergistic cannabinoids, terpenes and amino acids remain intact.

CBD isolate contains a pure concentration of CBD only (99%), so it’s ideal for those who need high doses of CBD, but it does not contain any other cannabinoids and terpenes, thus lacking the “entourage effect”. 

To create CBD isolate, the extract is cooled and purified into a crystalline isolate form, which takes the form of a white, flavorless powder.

All Tessera Naturals products are broad spectrum CBD oil.  We feel this allows the benefits of consuming full spectrum CBD, but without the chance of ingesting any THC.

Key Takeaways

  • CBD must be extracted from raw cannabis in order to be most effective when ingested.
  • Solvent extraction can be efficient and inexpensive, but can potentially contain toxic residue.
  • Olive oil extraction is safe and inexpensive, but will have low yields and will result in a highly perishable product.
  • CO2 extraction, while most expensive and complex, will create the highest quality, safest CBD end product for the consumer.
  • After extraction, the CBD oil must be refined and purified to create either a full spectrum CBD, broad spectrum CBD, or a CBD isolate.
  • Broad spectrum will be the most appealing to the greater amount of people due to the benefits of full spectrum CBD and the “entourage effect”, but without the chances of consuming any THC.
  • In the end, the importance shouldn’t be placed on method, but more of whether it was done correctly.
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Are there Side Effects of CBD Oil? Is it Safe?

While more and more people are using CBD, there is limited research into the possible short and long term side effects of CBD oil, although preliminary evidence is pointing to very little, if any, adverse reactions experienced by the general public.

The popularity of cannabis, particularly hemp CBD, has soared over the last 3 years and continues to grow with forecasts predicting that the CBD market could reach $22 Billion by 2024!  

Twenty-six percent of Americans have tried CBD at least once in the past two years. For patients with conditions that seem to respond to CBD treatment, the numbers are much higher.  A recent survey shows that 57% of arthritis patients have tried marijuana and CBD for medicinal reasons.

If you’re considering trying CBD for the first time, read our Beginner’s Guide to CBD.

Current Status of Cannabis

People have been using the cannabis plant as medicine for centuries to treat a variety of conditions, such as:

  • Anxiety and mood disorders
  • Pain (the most common use for medical marijuana)
  • Nausea or vomiting from chemotherapy
  • Epileptic seizures
  • Muscle stiffness or spasms from multiple sclerosis
  • Many other uses

Research is starting to turn the tide on the decades old notions that marijuana is the devil’s lettuce, and more and more states are beginning to legalize it for medical and/or recreational purposes.

While people are starting to open up to the idea, there is still a stigma associated with cannabis, especially when it comes to recreational marijuana.  This is mainly due to THC. THC is the chemical compound in cannabis that is responsible for making you high.

CBD, on the other hand, seems to offer the best of both worlds when derived from hemp.  CBD contains medicinal properties and has been shown to alleviate symptoms of many ailments, without the psychoactive effects of THC.

Even though cannabis derivatives are emerging as safer options over conventional prescription medications, we still have a lot to learn.

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What is CBD?

To understand the side effects of CBD, we first need to understand what is CBD. As mentioned, CBD (short for cannabidiol) is a chemical compound found in the cannabis plant.  Unlike it’s cousin THC, you won’t get high from CBD.

There are several varieties of cannabis that intensify specific characteristics of the plant. One variety of cannabis that is responsible for the CBD market surge is hemp.  Hemp contains a high amount of CBD, and only trace amounts of THC… which makes it the preferred plant for extracting CBD.

Is CBD Oil Legal?

While the 2018 US Farm Bill legalized hemp derived CBD, the details and execution are still in flux.  What the farm bill did was removed hemp derived CBD and all hemp derivatives from the DEA’s list of Schedule I drugs.  It also allows farmers to grow hemp legally.

The confusion is that marijuana and THC remain illegal, and it’s difficult for law enforcement agencies to distinguish between CBD derived from hemp and CBD derived from marijuana.

The legality of CBD mainly depends on whether the CBD comes from hemp or marijuana.

Another issue is that the FDA has some apprehensions about CBD. The fact that the FDA has approved a CBD-based prescription drug, Epidiolex, it expects that any product that markets CBD for health purposes should go through the same FDA official drug approval process.

In addition, if CBD is added into food, it is considered a “food additive” according to the FDA, and they have not approved CBD for that purpose yet.  This has led some jurisdictions to outlaw any CBD added to food.  

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How Does CBD Oil Work?

CBD takes effect by working on the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS).  All humans and animals have an ECS, which plays a huge role in regulating various major functions in our bodies such as mood, pain sensitivity and sleep patterns.

Our endocannabinoid systems produces cannabinoids of our own that bind with receptors all throughout our bodies.  Cannabinoids from plants (such as CBD and THC) interact with these receptors as well, and can help people who don’t produce enough cannabinoids themselves.  

Is CBD Oil Addictive?

There is no known risk of addiction to CBD. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that CBD is well tolerated by most people and is considered safe and that “CBD oil exhibits no side effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential.”  

The report also states that “To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.”

So in other words, there is no evidence that CBD hemp oil is either physically or psychologically habit forming.

That being said, some people can develop a tolerance to cannabinoids in general. Some may even experience side effects of withdrawal if they stop taking CBD oil regularly, such as irritability, restlessness or nausea.

What Are the Side Effects of CBD Oil?

Various studies on the safety and side effects of CBD oil have suggested that CBD is generally safe and non-toxic in humans and animals and that high doses up to 1,500 mg/day of CBD are well tolerated by humans.

While the WHO has also stated that CBD is generally well tolerated by most people and is considered safe, there are some people who may be particularly sensitive to cannabinoids and might experience some minor side effects.

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Some of the noted side effects for higher doses of CBD oil include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Changes in appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea and vomiting

There is a documented list of side effects associated with the specific CBD-based drug Epidiolex.  These side effects include:

  • Sleepiness
  • Sedation and lethargy
  • Elevated liver enzymes
  • Rash
  • Malaise and weakness
  • Insomnia, sleep disorders
  • Infections

What about liver damage?  One recent study by the University of Arkansas looked at the effects that CBD had on the livers of mice and showed evidence of liver damage in 75% of the mice.  

Interestingly, many other herbal supplements can cause adverse side effects including liver damage. These products, like CBD, are not regulated by the FDA and caution should be taken when consuming higher doses. 

A big caveat to this study is that the mice were given doses that were the human equivalent to the maximum dose of the drug, Epidiolex. According to website for Epidiolex, a dose of 20 mg per kg of body weight is recommended per day for the greatest reduction in seizures.

To put that in perspective, that would be over 1300 mg of CBD per day for an adult weighing 150 pounds!  This is much higher than the typical daily dose of casual CBD oil users. Most people stick to somewhere in the range of 10-80 mgs per day, with slightly higher doses for insomnia, therapeutic effects and “flare ups”.

Some of the more serious side effects listed for Epidiolex include “thoughts about suicide, attempts to commit suicide, feelings of agitation, new or worsening depression, aggression and panic attacks.”

While these side effects sound pretty scary, as we’ve demonstrated above, the hemp-derived CBD products you can find on the market today such as tinctures, capsules and gummies contain much lower doses of CBD than Epidiolex. Therefore, it is not likely that over the counter CBD products will present much, if any, harm to the general consumer.  

Can CBD Oil Interact With Other Medications?

The biggest side effect of taking CBD hemp oil is that it can interact with other medications you may be currently taking.

Our liver has a family of enzymes called Cytochrome P450, which breaks down drugs into smaller bits that allow our cells to absorb them better and eliminate them properly.  

Although the effects have been shown to be minimal, if you take high enough amounts of CBD, it can inhibit the CYP450 enzyme’s ability to metabolize certain pharmaceutical drugs.

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Interestingly, CBD is not alone in CYP450 inhibition. Eating a portion of grapefruit or grapefruit juice have a similar effect.  Furthermore, Watercress, St. John’s Wort, and Goldenseal have all been shown to impact the CYP450 liver enzymes and inhibit drug metabolism.

If you are currently taking any pharmaceutical drugs or medications such as NSAID or blood thinners, you should discuss with your doctor before using CBD oil to discuss any potential complications regarding reduced CYP450 enzyme activity.

But Isn’t CBD All Natural?

You may be thinking that CBD is completely safe because it comes from a plant and it’s all natural.  That being said, the reality is we don’t know for sure if adverse reactions are possible in high enough doses.  

Even though CBD comes from the hemp plant, many natural herbal supplements have been shown to pose some risks and carry adverse side effects such as St John’s Wort, Echinacea, Ginkgo Biloba, Saw Palmetto, as well as Chaparral, Comfrey, Kava, and Skullcap.

Researchers have also identified over 20 traditional Chinese medicinal herbs that have been shown to possibly cause liver toxicity, despite being used for centuries.

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Side Effects of CBD Oil Depends on Dosage

As with any treatment, dosage has a direct correlation not only on the effectiveness of the treatment, but also to the prevalence of side effects.

Since CBD is not regulated by the FDA, there is no standard therapeutic effective dose for specific medical conditions, so many people are left wondering how much CBD oil should I take?

Furthermore, everyone reacts differently to CBD.  Several factors influence each person’s optimal dose of CBD including weight, diet, metabolism, sleep patterns, stress levels and genetics and it may take a bit of trial and error to find the right dose of CBD oil for you.

We always suggest starting with a low dose (10-20 mg of CBD) and see how you react.  You can slowly increase the dose over the next few days until you find the most effective dose for you without any adverse side effects.

Use Only High Quality CBD Oil for Safety and Reduced Risk of Side Effects

Since CBD is not yet regulated, and there is no external body holding CBD companies accountable, there is no guarantee that a product you purchase contains a safe or effective level of CBD.  

In fact, a 2017 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that 70 percent of CBD products sold online are incorrectly labeled.

The worst thing you can do is to pick up some random CBD product from your local vape shop, (or God forbid… a gas station!) without doing any research.  

It’s up to you as the consumer to educate yourself on what to look for when buying CBD oil products and not put yourself in danger, or waste your money and experience ineffective results.

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Here are some tips when considering CBD products:

  • Always review certificate of analysis (COA’s) and/or 3rd party lab reports to ensure the products contains what is on the label
  • Look for products that are manufactured in a GMP certified (Good Manufacturing Principles) facility and that the lab is registered with the FDA
  • Look for CBD from hemp that is organically grown, preferably in the USA
  • Make sure you understand the difference between full spectrum, broad spectrum and CBD isolate
  • Only purchase from a reputable company that is focused on quality and standing up for the health and safety of the consumer, rather than just making a quick buck

Key Takeaways

  • Cannabis has been used as a medicine for centuries with no history of lethal doses.
  • CBD derived from hemp is federally legal, while THC and CBD derived from marijuana is still illegal.
  • CBD works with our endocannabinoid system to help regulate various functions such as mood, pain sensitivity and sleep patterns.
  • CBD is non addictive.
  • Side effects of CBD can include diarrhea, changes in appetite, fatigue, dry mouth, nausea, elevated liver enzymes, sleep disorders and infections.
  • Most side effects of CBD oil occur when taken at extremely high doses (10X+) compared to the casual user of over the counter CBD products.
  • Purchasing high quality products from a reputable source is the safest option to avoid the dangers of any unregulated products you consume.
  • Before taking CBD, make sure to consult your healthcare provider first to discuss whether it’s appropriate for you and your condition.

9 Reasons Why CBD Might Not work For You

Does CBD oil work?  Here are 9 reasons why it might not.

Unless you’re a hermit, you’ve probably heard of CBD by now.  If you haven’t tried it yet, you may be wondering does CBD oil really work? There is plenty of buzz (no pun intended) about this amazing natural compound from the hemp plant promising to relieve symptoms of conditions from anxiety to cancer.

Someone who has been suffering from a long term chronic condition and has finally found relief after so many years will consider CBD a miracle.  Others are just happy to have found a natural remedy to help with bouts of pain and inflammation, mood swings or insomnia rather than resorting to popping prescription pills.

There is an enormous amount of anecdotal evidence supporting CBD’s value in providing relief from a variety of health issues. There is also a growing pile of scientific evidence showing that CBD hemp oil does indeed work.  

Unfortunately, there is also a lot of misinformation out there, often fueled by unscrupulous “snake oil” salesmen touting that CBD is a cure all for everyone with instant results!  Many people are confused about CBD oil and whether it works or not.

Many have tried taking CBD with disappointing results, or maybe felt “something” but chalked it up to a placebo effect.

If you’ve tried CBD oil and it didn’t work for you, there may be several factors involved, which we will discuss in this article.

A Quick Refresher On CBD

CBD (short for cannabidiol) is a natural compound found in the cannabis plant.  Unlike it’s cousin THC, CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning it doesn’t get you high.

Hemp is a variety of cannabis which has a high concentration of CBD and a lower concentration of THC (0.3% or less). CBD from hemp has been shown to provide a multitude of health benefits for conditions such as anxiety, pain, inflammation, immune disorders and other neurological conditions, with little to no side effects.

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How Does CBD Oil work?

CBD works by interacting with our Endocannabinoid System (ECS).  The main role of our ECS is to support balance and equilibrium (homeostasis) in our bodies. Our ECS also regulates many of our vital functions such as sleep patterns, pain sensitivity, mood, brain health, gut balance and cognitive and motor abilities.

Here Are 9 Reasons Why CBD Oil May Not Be Working For You…

1. You’re taking the wrong type of CBD oil

It’s important to understand the type of hemp CBD oil you’re consuming.  There is a big difference between full spectrum CBD, broad spectrum CBD and a CBD isolate product.  

Full spectrum refers to a whole plant extract.  Besides CBD, a full spectrum extract contains 100+ other cannabinoids (including trace amounts of THC), as well as terpenes and amino acids that naturally occur in the hemp plant. 

CBD isolate includes only the CBD compound that has been separated (isolated) from the hemp plant extract.  

Broad spectrum CBD is the best of both worlds. It starts as a full spectrum oil, then the THC is fully removed.  Broad spectrum CBD has all the benefits of full spectrum oil, but without any chance of consuming THC.

Research has shown that full spectrum CBD and broad spectrum CBD offers higher levels of relief than CBD isolate due to the Entourage Effect.  

2. You’re taking the wrong dosage of CBD

If you’ve tried CBD and it hasn’t helped, you may be taking the wrong dose.  This could mean taking too little or too much.

So how much CBD oil should you take? While there is no right dose for everyone, finding the optimal dose is an individual process that each person must undertake.  It will require a bit of trial and error to find the right dose of CBD for you.

Furthermore, many factors can influence a person’s optimal dose of CBD including diet, weight, metabolism, sleep patterns, stress levels, and genetics.  Also some individuals are just more sensitive to the effects of supplements than others.

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CBD dosage also depends on your goals. Someone who is seeking relief of chronic pain from a serious condition such as Fibromyalgia will most likely need a higher dose than someone who is trying to curb a headache or minor bouts of insomnia.  Some have even suggested that low doses may energize you while higher doses encourage relaxation and improve sleep.

When beginning to introduce CBD for the first time, it’s best to start low and slowly increase over time until you’ve found the most effective dose for you. We suggest starting with 10-20 mg per day and slowly increasing from there.

Most people end up somewhere in the 10-80 mg of CBD range per day, with higher doses for therapeutic effects and “flare ups”.

Visit our free online CBD Dosage Calculator to determine a good starting point.

3. You’re taking the wrong format / or not using CBD correctly

The way in which you consume CBD is very important for its effectiveness.  Each delivery system offers a different amount of bioavailability, which refers to the degree at which a substance is absorbed into the bloodstream. 

For example, when you consume edibles, your body processes the CBD through its digestive system, filtering out a significant portion of the CBD.  A 2009 study reports that cannabinoids taken orally have a very low bioavailability rate between 4 – 20%.

Tinctures are the most popular way of consuming CBD hemp oil. With tinctures, the oil is placed under the tongue (sublingually) and the CBD enters the bloodstream directly through the capillaries there.  Since the CBD is not metabolized through the liver, this method leads to a higher bioavailability . This means that you can take a lower dose and still get the same results.

Many people use tinctures, but instead of taking the oil sublingually, they add the oil to their food or beverage. While this is perfectly ok to do, you’ll run into the same issue with edibles where the CBD must pass through your digestive system, decreasing some of its efficacy.

Vaping CBD enters the bloodstream directly through the lungs, with decreased breakdown rates and higher bioavailability overall. Vaping CBD offers the fastest absorption time and almost immediate result, but also has the shortest duration.

Topicals are a great way to relive pain to a targeted area in the form of a CBD hemp cream or balm. The important thing to note is that the CBD rubbed onto the skin will not enter the bloodstream and only provides relief to the localized area to which it was applied.

You’ll need to weigh the pros and cons of each delivery system based on your goals and lifestyle.

4. You’re not taking CBD with some healthy fat

Speaking of bioavailability.  It’s best to consume CBD with a little food if taken orally.  Consuming CBD oil on an empty stomach does not work as well because of our harsh stomach acids. These acids will break down the compound significantly if there is no other substance to slow those acids down.

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Aside from having something in your stomach, you should ideally consume CBD hemp oil along with some healthy fat such as from oils, fish or nuts..  The fat acts as a binding agent and “protects” the CBD as it travels through our digestive system and bypasses a good deal of first pass metabolism. 

Research shows that consuming CBD with dietary fat leads to higher bioavailability.  For this reason, most CBD products, whether tinctures, capsules or high quality edibles, are contained in a base of coconut oil, olive oil, hemp seed oil or other carrier oils rich in omega-3 fatty acids. 

5. You’re not giving CBD enough time

CBD is not a quick fix, and sometimes it needs to build up in your system just like any other medication or supplement.  Similar to an antibiotic, you’ll typically need to follow a regimen over a certain amount of days or weeks before experiencing results.

If there is some sort of deficiency in your endocannabinoid system, it most likely took time to develop.  In the same sense, it may take some time for your body to heal and bring itself back into balance. And remember, reaching balance (or homeostasis) can be achieved in very different ways for different people.

For some, reaping the benefits of CBD’s anti-anxiety properties may be felt almost immediately with the first dose.  For others, it may require daily use over a period of time. 

You may want to try using a journal to log your results when taking CBD. Keep track of how much you’ve taken, how you feel before and after, and note any changes in symptoms.  Over time, this can help paint a picture of how CBD affects you and what the right dosage is for you.

6. Your genetics

We’re all wired differently and genetics play a big part in how we react to CBD.  The reality is that CBD may not be 100% effective for everyone; nothing is. For example, if you’ve been regularly taking 100mg of CBD oil per day for pain and it isn’t working, perhaps CBD is just not for you.

As we’ve stated before, everyone is different and there is no “one size fits all” when it comes to CBD usage or its results. Just like when we join a gym and start working out, we notice that some people are blessed with “good genetics” and can pack on muscle and burn fat much more quickly than others.

Our genetics determine our sensitivity to alcohol and drugs, medications, health related treatments and supplements, which can vary greatly from person to person.

CBD is no different.  Some individuals will just be more sensitive and feel the results right away with low doses, yet others will need higher doses to reap any benefits, if at all.  Unfortunately, we have no control of our genetics and we get what we get!  

7. Your lifestyle

Unlike our genetics, which we have not control over… we most definitely have control of our lifestyle and daily habits.  Many people suffer from chronic diseases like diabetes due to poor diets and sedentary lifestyles or the stresses in their life. 

For example, if someone drinks excessive amounts of alcohol, constantly eats “junk food” and consumes no fruits and vegetables, they will have difficulty reversing the effects of their habits just by taking some CBD hemp oil.

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Besides diet and regular exercise, we believe that whole plant supplements can do wonders for our health and wellness.  Heck, even by taking a little fish oil and a high quality daily multivitamin, you’ll be much further ahead than the majority of the population.

If you’d like to learn more about leading a more natural and healthy lifestyle, we love Dr Axe and Dr Mercola!

8. You’re using low quality products from un-reputable sources

If you’ve tried CBD oil and it didn’t work for you, perhaps it was the product itself. The quality of the hemp CBD products you consume will be one of the biggest factors in producing desired results.

Unfortunately, due to the lack of regulation in the CBD industry, there has been an onslaught of shady companies trying to capitalize on this “hot new trend” and make a quick buck, rather than provide real value to the consumer.

There have been several cases where CBD companies are not genuinely selling what they claim to be selling.  Other companies are going even further by selling unsafe products such as synthetic cannabinoids in order to reap a profit, with no regard for the safety of consumers.

The main reasons for this is that the FDA has not yet given their seal of approval to CBD… yet.  Also, there is no external body holding CBD companies accountable to make sure that they are backing up their claims.

If you’ve picked up some CBD from a gas station or your local vape/smoke shop, chances are you’re not getting a quality product.  You’ll need to do a little more due diligence into the product, how it was made and the company behind it.

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When shopping for CBD, you should look for companies that use all natural ingredients, organic hemp farming practices free of pesticides, and high quality extraction methods (Supercritical CO2) with no harsh chemicals or solvents. 

Also, look for lab tests that show the potency, quality and safety of the products you are purchasing. CBD is not cheap, and your health is not something to be played with, so you should never buy CBD from a company that does not provide 3rd party lab results.

9. Your expectations vs reality

Lastly, your expectations play a huge part in how CBD works for you.

Because of the relation to the cannabis plant, many people expect to feel some dramatic sense of euphoria when consuming CBD. While hemp-derived CBD may help calm stress and anxious feelings, it will not produce a high like THC will. 

In reality, CBD is more about what you don’t feel, rather than what you do feel.  

When we have symptoms of pain, anxiety or insomnia, that is our body’s way of telling us that something is off. The goal of consuming CBD is homeostasis, and having homeostasis will bring your internal systems into balance in such a way that allows our body to heal and function optimally.  

CBD is not a cure all or a quick fix for all of the underlying ailments we’re suffering from. CBD allows our body’s self-healing mechanism to work properly, as well as providing us with temporary relief from the symptoms that our ailments are causing.

If you’ve tried CBD and were disappointed, perhaps some of the reasons above might have been a factor in your experience. If you’ve never tried CBD before and are interested in learning more, read out Beginners Guide To CBD.

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Key Takeaways

  • Understanding of the different variables at play can determine the effectiveness of CBD for each individual.
  • The wrong type, dosage and format of CBD can make a huge impact on how it works for you.
  • You need to consume CBD correctly, taken with healthy fats and give it enough time to see results.
  • Your genetics and lifestyle play a huge part in how CBD works for you.
  • Always buy high quality products from a reputable source, do your due diligence!
  • Maintain realistic goals and expectations when consuming CBD.
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CBD Oil For Pain

Does hemp CBD oil help with pain? What about other treatments?

On a summer 2018 getaway to the mountains of Colorado, Olga Cohen was offered a sample of hemp CBD cream to try on her knees.  Olga had suffered from knee pain for many years due to Chondromalacia Patellae, also known as “runner’s knee”, and had not been able to enjoy some of the activities she loved like hiking and HIIT workouts.

Within a few minutes of applying the CBD cream, she felt a sense of relief that she hadn’t experienced in a long time!  This was her first encounter with CBD, which led to many months of research and development with this miracle compound, until finally launching Tessera Naturals with her husband, Jason.

In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at the different types of pain, and some of the common and alternative treatments available, and using CBD oil for pain.

What is pain?

Most of us are not big fans of pain. Although unpleasant, it is one of the most important functions of our body.  It’s what makes your brain tell the muscles in your arm to snatch your finger off a hot stove.  

Pain is your body’s way of telling you something is wrong and needs attention.

In simple terms, pain starts when a specific nerve ending is stimulated, and sends a message to the brain. This could be caused by tissue damage, such as a cut or scrape, or when you stub your pinky toe on the bed frame in the middle of the night!  Pain can also come from damage to the nerves themselves.

Nerves function like cables transmitting signals (including pain signals), through your spinal cord to and from the brain. Your brain responds by beginning the healing process, such as sending additional white blood cells and platelets to help repair the tissue at the injury site. Your brain can also release pain-suppressing chemicals during the healing process.

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Different types of pain

Acute pain refers to sudden pain, or pain for a limited duration, usually resulting from damaged tissue (cuts, scrapes, broken bones, torn muscles, etc.)

Chronic pain is ongoing and is usually associated with a long-term illness, such as osteoarthritis or fibromyalgia. Chronic pain often results from nerve damage and causes severe muscle or joint pain.  Oftentimes, chronic pain is the defining characteristic of the disease. 

All pain can affect a person’s state of mind. In the case of chronic pain, it can cause emotional triggers like anger, depression, mood swings or irritability.  The emotional toll can even amplify the pain, causing a vicious cycle and worsening the situation.

Psychogenic pain refers to pain that is caused by psychological factors. Psychogenic pain can stem from physical pain (tissue damage, nerve damage, etc.) but the pain perpetuates and leads to anxiety, depression, stress, or fear.

Some types of pain can be localized, such as shingles, while some pain such as damage to the central nervous system, can affect a large part of the body.

Inflammation is a natural immune system response to pain and is part of the healing process.

When the body senses some sort of damage, it begins sending inflammatory agents to the affected cells.  The inflammation works to kill damaged cells, which is the body’s way of ridding itself of possible cancers and maintaining optimal functionality.  Unfortunately, inflammation can cause pain as well, exacerbating the impairment, such as the case of sciatica caused by a bulging or herniated disk.

Everyone experiences some sort of acute pain on a regular basis, but according to a CDC study in 2016, more than 20% of adults in the US experience chronic pain, with 8% having high-impact chronic pain, meaning the pain has limited at least one major life activity.

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Common types of chronic pain include:

  • Migraines
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Arthritis

Along with drastically reducing quality of life, chronic pain can negatively impact our productivity and wreak financial havoc due to healthcare costs.

Different Ways to Treat Pain

Conventional pain treatments


Standard pain medications are the most common form of treating pain.  NSAIDs relieve pain by preventing the body’s cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes from working. COX enzymes make hormone-like substances called prostaglandins, which contribute to pain and inflammation. NSAIDs include over the counter products such as ibuprofen and naproxen, as well as more powerful, prescription-level drugs.


Opioids are another type of pain medication.  Opioids are considered narcotics, and are currently the most commonly prescribed medications in the United States overall.  Opioids are typically used to relieve more severe forms of pain such as chronic pain, pain from cancer, terminal illnesses or severe injury.

Unfortunately, many standard pain medications carry a long list of side-effects from dizziness or drowsiness, to more severe conditions like blood clots and liver disorders. 

Opioid Epidemic
Opioids are extremely addictive, which has led many pain sufferers down a path of abuse. Prescriptions for opioids have quadrupled in the US since 1999 and the rate of opioid overdose has tripled in that time. Some statistics conclude that opioid addiction, overdose and deaths are at an all-time high in the United States.

Physical Therapy and Chiropractic

Physical manipulation techniques such as physical therapy and chiropractic treatments are extremely popular for conditions such as back pain, injuries and sports recovery.  Physical therapists and chiropractors usually work on aligning the body’s musculoskeletal structure to restore mobility to joints, and to aid the body in healing itself without surgery or medication.


Advances in technology have resulted in sophisticated surgical options to treat chronic pain.  There are many types of procedures used in various categories of pain.

The drawback of surgery is that is can be very invasive, risky and extremely costly, causing many to seek alternative treatments for pain management and leaving surgery as a last resort.

Alternative treatments

Eastern Medicine

Traditional Eastern medicine has existed for thousands of years and many believe it is far more advanced and effective than conventional Western medicine.  

Eastern medicine involves various techniques such as acupuncture, herbal medicine, exercises and dietary approach.

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Massage therapy is extremely popular for the treatment of stress and pain.  There are dozens, if not hundreds, of different types of massage techniques all treating various needs and providing different benefits.  

For chronic pain sufferers, a good massage can be a godsend, but the results are often very temporary.

Yoga and Meditation

Yoga and meditation often go hand in hand.  The main purpose of these techniques is to decompress the mind and body and relieve pain through relaxation.

Our bodies have a built-in healing capacity.  Holding a relaxing pose can put the body and mind at ease.  This, along with breathing exercises, can strengthen the flow of energy and promote a sense of well-being, directing our body’s energy towards growth and repair.

Natural Supplements

There are many natural supplements available to help relieve a variety of pain conditions.  Below are 6 natural options for pain management.

1. Turmeric

Turmeric is a member of the ginger family and can be a powerful natural pain reliever.  Turmeric contains Curcumin, which has been found to have anti-inflammatory properties and promotes immune response. Besides pain and inflammation, there are many other health benefits of turmeric and curcumin that show much promise as a natural treatment for various conditions.

2. Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) 

Fish oil has also been found to contain anti-inflammatory properties, and should be part of your supplemental regimen if you don’t consume enough fish in your diet.

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3. Chili peppers 

Chili peppers contain Capsaicin, which is an analgesic used for pain relief.  Capsaicin is typically applied in a topical cream for muscle and joint pain, and for minor strains and sprains.

4. Bone broth

While delicious as it is, bone broth can promote healing, recovery, immune support as well as pain relief.  Bone broth is jam packed with nutrients such as collagen, glucosamine and chondroitin which acts as a pain reliever for stiff joints.

5. Herbs

There are many herbal pain remedies that people have used for centuries, such as Willow Bark, Cloves and Boswellia to name a few.

6. CBD 

As more and more people are seeking natural ways to treat pain because of the negative side effects often associated with standard pain medications, CBD hemp oil for pain is showing much promise in this regard.  

Some people are suffering from conditions that cause chronic pain and are looking for ways to avoid or get off opioids.  As concerns over opioids continue to escalate, there is preliminary evidence that suggests CBD oil can reduce substance abuse behaviors and may provide a solution to opioid addiction.

What is CBD?

Using cannabis for pain relief dates back to ancient China.  Recently, CBD derived from hemp (a strain of cannabis) has become extremely popular, and is showing significant promise as a treatment for many conditions such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, nausea, neurological disorders as well as pain with little to no side effects.

CBD, which stands or cannabidiol, is one of 100+ cannabinoids in the cannabis plant.  The hemp strain of cannabis contains high levels of CBD and low levels of THC, which makes hemp ideal for those seeking the therapeutic effects of cannabis, without the “high” associated with recreational marijuana.

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How Does CBD oil Help With Pain?

Along with contributing to brain functions like memory and mood, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in our bodies influence pain sensation and inflammation response.  

CBD and other cannabinoids and terpenes from hemp interacts specifically with CB2 receptors in our ECS, which are thought to serve an important role in immune function and inflammation.

The anti-inflammatory properties of CBD is unique, in that it does not work like other anti-inflammatory drugs by inhibiting COX-1 and COX-2 receptors.  This means there is no risk of developing ulcers, kidney and liver damage or heart attacks, unlike traditional NSAIDs. Some studies have even shown that cannabinoids (CBD and THC) are up to twenty times more potent anti-inflammatory agents when compared to NSAIDs.

CBD also inhibits glutamate release and other inflammatory agents, which makes it ‘neuroprotective’ and helps to reduce the negative sensations that neuropathic pain causes.

How To Use CBD Oil for Pain

For localized pain relief, topical hemp products are a great way to provide treatment as CBD is delivered through the skin directly to the affected area.  This process bypasses the digestive system, which leads to higher bioavailability and absorption over oral ingestion.

For more severe conditions and chronic pain, CBD oil can be taken orally in order to enter the bloodstream and address neuropathic pain, which is chronic pain resulting from injury to the nervous system.  How much CBD oil you should take will depend on the severity of your condition, as well as several factors such as your diet, metabolism, sleep pattern, stress levels, etc.

Note: When ingesting CBD oil orally, it’s best to use the sublingual method in order for it to absorb directly into the bloodstream through the capillaries under the tongue, rather than going through the digestive system.

To reap the most benefit of pain relief from hemp derived CBD, you should seek out either a full spectrum or broad spectrum hemp product, rather than a CBD Isolate.  This is due to the “entourage effect”, which is the exponential positive effects of consuming the various plant compounds together.  The combination of cannabinoids and terpenes in hemp, especially CBD and  β-caryophyllene, appear to be very promising for the treatment of chronic pain when taken together.

As mentioned above, pain can also lead to emotional and psychological break down.  CBD oil from hemp can also aid in this effort by curbing anxiety, stabilizing mood and reducing insomnia.

While CBD oil may not necessarily cure your underlying cause for pain, you might want to give it a try and see if it will provide some relief in order to restore balance and quality of life.  Combining both CBD oil and CBD pain cream can be a powerhouse for attacking pain from the inside and out.

If you’ve never tried CBD from hemp before, start by reading our Beginners Guide to CBD, which answers many of the common questions from newbies.

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As with any treatment, a multi-disciplinary approach is always best to attack your ailments from all angles, so we hope you take note of some of the various suggestions and options above and get back to living!

A word of caution: If you are currently taking any medications, CBD may temporarily deactivate cytochrome P450, which is an enzyme in our liver used to metabolize a wide range of compounds and drugs.  Please speak with your doctor before introducing CBD (or any new supplement) to make sure it will not cause any adverse drug interactions.

Key Takeaways

  • Pain is our body’s natural response telling us something is wrong.
  • Different types of pain include acute, chronic and psychogenic.
  • At least 20% of adults in the US experience chronic pain, with 8% having limited quality of life.
  • There are various conventional pain treatments including medication, physical therapy and surgery.
  • Many alternative pain treatments exist such as acupuncture, yoga, massage and herbal supplements.
  • CBD oil is a rising star in the treatment of acute to severe chronic pain.
  • CBD can be used topically as well as ingested and should be a full spectrum or broad spectrum hemp product, rather than CBD isolate.
  • It’s best to use a layered approach by combining Hemp CBD with other conventional or alternative treatments.
  • Always check with your doctor before beginning any new health regimen.
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