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  • by Nicola Boulton August 30, 2022 5 min read

    Thinking About Starting CBD? - Comprehensive Guide for First-time CBD Users

    To get a clearer and concise guide for CBD beginners, we should understand CBD, its origin, and its various uses. Therefore, this article will elaborate on the pros and cons of CBD, CBD formulations, and how to choose high-quality CBD products.

    CBD has been identified to have various health and wellness benefits, and thus the demand for CBD products has risen dramatically. CBD eases anxiety, relieves chronic pains, and treats arthritis despite being cannabis-based. However, it may have a few side effects, such as appetite changes, fatigue, weight loss, and dizziness. Therefore, this article will focus on CBD, its formulations, legality, and therapeutic benefits.

    What is CBD?

    Cannabidiol (CBD) is a chemical compound found in hemp, a plant strain of the cannabis sativa plant. Although CBD is obtained from the cannabis plant, it doesn't contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the main psychoactive compound in cannabis and produces a "high sensation." Studies have also shown that CBD has chemicals that affect the brain, though not in the same way as THC.

    Apart from causing a sensation, THC has a few benefits, such as killing cancer cells, relaxing tight muscles in people with MS, and stimulating appetite in people with cancer and AIDS. In addition, it controls nausea and vomiting caused by cancer therapy, and according to Watt et al. (2017), it has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce inflammation and relieves pain.

    Before starting CBD, beginners should understand that there are various considerations that the CBD user must understand since CBD works differently among various people. Therefore, our bodies react differently when exposed to foreign compounds. Below are some facts that one must consider or rather know in detail.

    Is CBD Legal?

    Congress passed the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized hemp products by removing hemp from the legal definition of marijuana. Therefore, hemp was considered federally legal, although state governments developed laws that would regulate the use of CBD in their states. Currently, seventeen states have legalized CBD for medical and recreational use.

    CBD Formulations

    Full spectrum CBD contains various cannabinoids and chemical compounds found in hemp. These cannabinoids include THC, cannabichromene, and cannabigerol (CBC and CBG, respectively). Additionally, the chemical compounds include terpenes such as myrcene and linalool. However, THC levels are lower in these CBD products.

    Broad spectrum CBD is similar to full spectrum CBD, although it lacks THC since it is completely extracted from it.

    CBD isolate is pure since all other cannabinoids and essential elements are absent from it.

    Full spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD exhibit the entourage effect – a phenomenon in which the chemical compounds in hemp work synergically to enhance CBD's therapeutic effects.

    What to Consider when Buying CBD products - A Comprehensive Beginner's Guide

    Body Chemistry

    Here one has to be aware of the body's allergic reaction. This only means that the user should know how their body reacts when they consume certain products. Also, they must know exactly what they are allergic to, either internally or externally. For example, some people are highly affected by topical CBD products applied to the skin since it leads to the development of rashes and skin inflammation. Therefore, it may make them more uncomfortable, and if they intend to improve skin health, the desired results won't be realized.

    Moreover, CBD products that are ingested orally include CBD gummies and capsules. If they are not subjected to third-party lab tests and are not extracted using CO2, the CBD products may retain heavy metals that are harmful to the body. In addition, CBD grown inorganically may contain pesticides that cause an allergic reaction.

    User's Body Weight

    A user's body weight also determines CBD's efficacy. For example, larger people may have low immunity because their bodies are not working optimally due to strained blood vessels. Also, they have excess body fats that inhibit metabolism. On the flip side, smaller-sized people require smaller amounts of CBD since they have a higher metabolism.

    Desired Outcome

    This entails the reasons motivating the individual to choose CBD over other organic or inorganic supplements and the desired results. For example, if they use topical CBD products, they aim to improve skin health. According to Dawidowicz et al. (2021), CBD has antioxidant properties that protect the skin from oxidative stress. Furthermore, it alleviates free radicals that cause the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on the skin. Therefore, they must familiarize themselves with the contents of the topical CBD products to ensure they are not allergic to any ingredients. Furthermore, they should check whether the product has harmful substances such as molds and heavy metals.

    Also, one must know the hemp source and the manufacturing processes involved to ensure they purchase high-quality CBD products. If the product is for medicinal use, one should understand what they want to treat, and seek further medical advice about the right CBD formulation. Grimison et al. (2020) suggested that CBD has anti-emetic properties that improve stomach and gastrointestinal health. According to Aqawi et al. (2021), CBD has anti-bacterial properties that reduce bacteria from the tissues and skin.

    Dosage Required

    Dosage refers to the amount of CBD concentration in the product. Therefore, an individual must be aware of the purity status of the product to make an informed decision. This applies to those who use it for medicinal purposes and those who want it for beauty purposes. To improve skin health, you should be aware of the concentration of CBD in the creams and bath soaks used. In the case of medical use, the product should be well labeled if it needs a single or double serving.

    To ensure certainty about product quality, an individual can ask for third-party testing and a certificate of analysis (COA). Furthermore, they can check the hemp source extraction methods and ingredients used in processing the CBD products. This helps minimize side effects such as nausea, drowsiness, migraines, and vomiting. Remember, due to the high demand, manufacturers can use underhand methods in their products to generate more profits while minimizing production costs.


    CBD has various benefits, such as reducing anxiety, improving mood, and reducing pain and inflammation. However, low-quality CBD products have various side effects, such as migraines and nausea.

    Therefore, individuals should research more about the CBD products they are about to purchase. For example, a person should be aware of the hemp source, the extraction methods, ingredients used, THC levels, and whether or not the product has undergone intensive independent third-party testing. Additionally, a person should seek medical advice on the right dosage to consume, according to their preferred CBD formulation.


    Watt, G., & Karl, T. (2017). In vivo evidence for therapeutic properties of cannabidiol (CBD) for Alzheimer's disease. Frontiers in pharmacology, 8, 20.

    Dawidowicz, A. L., Olszowy-Tomczyk, M., & Typek, R. (2021). CBG, CBD, Δ9-THC, CBN, CBGA, CBDA, and Δ9-THCA as antioxidant agents and their intervention abilities in antioxidant action. Fitoterapia, 152, 104915.

    Grimison, P., Mersiades, A., Kirby, A., Lintzeris, N., Morton, R., Haber, P., ... & Stockler, M. (2020). Oral THC: CBD cannabis extract for refractory chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting: a randomized, placebo-controlled, phase II crossover trial. Annals of Oncology, 31(11), 1553-1560.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton

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