At least once a week there’s a message in my in-box about collaborating with a CBD company. Everything from gummy bears to suppositories. (yeah you read that right) So in the name of research, I have sampled edibles, creams, pills, tinctures and even vapes to see if these products get results. The answer? Yes! But to varying degrees.
CBD and hemp product companies in general are going after moms because they know we are tired and stressed out and we can’t drink wine ALL the time. Well, we can, but it’s not really recommended if you’d like to stay functional. So that’s where CBD comes in- a product that’s more vitamin than drug, with the power to take the edge off the stress and even ease muscle aches and pains.
What is CBD?
CBD is oil that is extracted from the cannabis plant. Cannabis is also commonly called hemp. Hemp is a versatile plant that is related to the marijuana plant but is different in several important ways. CBD oil is specifically “cannabidiol,” which is one of 85 cannabinoids identified in the cannabis plant. CBD is not to be confused with THC, which is the psychoactive compound also found in the cannabis plant. THC produces a “high,” CBD does not.
So what does CBD do?
CBD helps with various ailments affecting both the mind and body, from migraines to anxiety. How exactly it does this is still being heavily researched. It’s been confirmed that CBD causes a broad range of effects in our bodies by interacting with the endocannabinoid system which includes two types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors can be found in many areas of the brain and play an essential role in functions such as mood, memory, sleep, pain sensation and appetite. CB2 receptors are usually found in the immune system are responsive to CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties.
Which CBD product should I try?
This is where all my experimenting comes in! I’ve tried some products for free, and purchased products of my own, but I wanted to note that no specific company is sponsoring this post and my reviews are based on my own experience. I’m not trying to sell anything here, nor am I profiting from affiliate links. Just sharing information in an effort to get the word out about a possible better way to combat stress, pain and anxiety.
Pills – Pills are good for targeting things like anxiety, stress and inflammation. The pills, usually some form of gel cap with either a powder of liquid inside, are my least favorite method. I’m just not a pill fan. I tried the Plus CBD softgels and capsules and was not able to ascertain if they made much of a difference. I also sampled the Stress and Sleep formulas from Twinlab’s new CBD line and felt like they both just made me kind of tired. Good for the Sleep pills, not so good for the Stress option since you want to be able to take it in the middle of the day.
Creams – Creams are great for pain relief in specific areas. At first I wasn’t impressed with creams and most of the ones I sampled ended up being used as cuticle cream, or on cracked heels and rough elbows. They were all very moisturizing, but lacked the pain relieving properties I was seeking. My back often hurts and I always seem to be tweaking something doing “mom stuff” like reaching in the backseat with a sippy cup or picking my son up with one arm. After being unimpressed with many products, I was blown away by Aspen Green’s Muscle Relief Cooling Gel and their Pain Relief Body Balm. This stuff is magical! It provides immediate relief that lasts a couple hours and is way better than slathering myself with stinky menthol sports creams. Aspen Green also has the unique distinction as being one of the few CBD companies that is certified organic.
Edibles – One of my favorite CBD products to try are the edibles like gummy bears and chocolate. These are good for stress relief, anxiety and relaxing. I loved the hemp chocolate bars by White Cedar Superfoods, but then, I love most chocolate. I enjoyed the gummy bears from Just CBD, but went through them pretty fast because the relaxing effect took a big handful of gummy bears and they were just too easy to gobble up. They were definitely on the mild end as far as feeling any effects, but I think that’s CBD overall – a mild effect that doesn’t make you feel weird or loopy. Their gummy products barely had any hemp taste at all, but some I tried, like the gummies by Plus CBD, were overpowering and unpleasant.
Vapes – I’ve never been a smoker, so trying the vape was a new experience for me. I’d be very careful about your vape source since there’s been so much bad press lately about contaminated vapes. I’ve stuck to medical marijuana dispensaries for this one. Vapes are the way to go if you want to really feel an immediate chill effect. They work better and faster then any other method I’ve tried. You can get them with or without THC. The effects are immediate and the most obvious of all the CBD methods I tried.
Drops, Sprays & Tinctures – The CBD oils that you hold under your tongue for a bit before swallowing usually work pretty well, but sometimes take a while to have any effect. My doctor explained that some will be absorbed through the membranes in your mouth, but the bulk of it is traveling through your digestive system so it can take up to two hours (or more!) to feel the effects. My two favorite oils are the Aspen Green Full Spectrum Hemp Oil and the Plus CBD Hemp Spray. The Aspen Green one has a nice mild hemp flavor, while the Plus CBD is peppermint flavored. The minty flavor can be a bit much after a while, so sometimes I prefer just the plain hemp taste.
Are you ready to try some CBD now or what?
I hope I gave a good overview of what CBD is, what it does and the many different ways you can use it. There’s SO much information out there that it can be overwhelming and confusing. CBD is still fairly new and there’s a lot of research to be done. But there is overwhelming evidence that it does good things, without the issues like addiction and health problems created by over prescribed opioids. If you haven’t given CBD a chance yet, I recommend giving it a try.