There’s a lot of hype around CBD or cannabidiol, which means there’s also many unscrupulous providers trying to cash in on this prolific health trend.
Neurologist and spokesperson for Oil Science, Dr Alison Richardson, cautions consumers to know the source of the product to ensure it is legal, safe and efficacious.
“There are 5 important considerations before purchasing a product to ensure you don’t end up with a fraudulent or toxic product.”
#1: Not all CBD is created equal
“It’s extremely important to be an educated consumer. As CBD products are now legal in our country, there are many retailers who boast high-end tinctures and infusions, but quality does vary.”
Oil Science’s hemp, for example, is grown according to international cultivation techniques to ensure quality and consistency in each batch.
The hemp is then processed in a GMP (good manufacturing practice)-certified facility, so that each batch is produced consistently and full traceability is maintained from raw material to final product.
Products are then sent to an independent laboratory for final testing, where a certificate of analysis (COA) is produced. The COA indicates the cannabinoid and potency profile.
“When considering your CBD brand, a full COA should be available for each product,” states Dr Richardson.
#2: Check the ingredients
Many people today won’t buy cereal without first knowing what’s in the box, and the same should go for CBD.
Any reputable CBD company should provide a COA to affirm the product’s quality and its source, listing key information such as potency and solvents.
“If the COA seems tampered with or there isn’t one, take a pass. Without the COA, you may buy a product that’s toxic or fraudulent. Given the health risks, not to mention that true CBD can be pricey, it’s just not worth taking the chance,” adds Dr Richardson.
#3: Know your hemp from your marijuana
There’s a difference, and it’s vital. Although hemp and marijuana are both cannabis plants, hemp has higher levels of CBD and lower levels of THC – the psychoactive compound that makes you “high” – than a marijuana plant.
In South Africa, only CBD products containing less than 0,001% THC concentration are legally allowed to be sold.
#4: Check the colour of the CBD oil
Many consumers are unaware that CBD oil comes in varying degrees of strength and quality. Generally speaking, there are two types of CBD oil.
- Raw: The type of oil is black/dark green in appearance because it has been extracted from raw hemp material and no further purification process has been implemented. These products generally contain plant matter, varying amounts of THC and chlorophyll.
- Filtered: This comes in a light golden/amber colour and has undergone both decarboxylation and filtering processes, removing parts of the plant that were left over from the initial extraction process.
#5: choose quality over affordability
We all love a bargain, but as a customer concerned about your general health and wellbeing, it definitely pays to know what you are buying.
A simple online search for “CBD oil” will reveal innumerable results. “The problem is that many of these products are likely to be cheap, low quality oils that probably won’t offer much therapeutic benefit,” cautions Dr Richardson. “When in doubt, always consider quality over affordability.”
For more information about premium CBD products that are cultivated naturally, contain zero THC, are 100% organic, which are certified and safe visit www.oilscience.co.za.
Author: Pedro van Gaalen
When he’s not writing about sport or health and fitness, Pedro is probably out training for his next marathon or ultra-marathon. He’s worked as a fitness professional and as a marketing and comms expert. He now combines his passions in his role as managing editor at Fitness magazine.