Unlike the THC that's in marijuana, CBD oil doesn't get you high. It contains a chemical called cannabidiol that might help relieve stress, anxiety, drug withdrawals, and nerve pain.
One interesting piece of research is a 2012 study published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. Researchers injected rats with chemicals that prompt inflammation. Then they gave the rats CBD.
More research on CBD has been emerging as it has gained popularity. Still, there are only a few clinical studies on the effects of CBD oil.
The men who took 300 mg of CBD oil showed less anxiety than those given a placebo. Interestingly, the men who took 100 mg or 600 mg of CBD oil didn't have these results.
The tricky part is calculating the exact amount of CBD per milliliter of oil. Some tinctures have concentrations of 1,500 mg per 30 mL, while others have 3,000 mg per mL (or more).
However, there aren't many studies that examine the use of CBD in treating chronic pain in people. The studies that do exist almost always include THC. This makes it hard to isolate CBD's unique effects.
In most of the studies, lower doses of CBD (10 milligrams per kilogram, mg/kg, or less) improved some symptoms of anxiety, but higher doses (100 mg/kg or more) had almost no effect.
For example, CBD without THC didn’t help decrease withdrawal symptoms of opioid use. On the other hand, it did reduce drug-seeking behaviors in users of cocaine, methamphetamine, and other similar drugs.
CBD oil contains CBD mixed with a base (carrier) oil, like coconut oil or hemp seed oil. The bottled CBD oil is called a tincture and is sold in different concentrations.
The cannabis plant has hundreds of chemicals in it, including more than 120 cannabinoids, Hill explains. Of those cannabinoids, two are most familiar: THC, which produces the euphoric effects or “high” people experience from marijuana, and cannabidiol or CBD, which has some anti-inflammatory, anti-seizure, anxiety-relieving and analgesic properties, according to Low Dog.
Tinctures, though, remain somewhat shrouded in mystery, in part because of their old-school apothecary-style packaging, but more likely because of how they’re taken: a few drops at a time, under the tongue.
What are tinctures specifically?
An herbal tincture is made by using a mixture of alcohol and water to extract compounds from a plant—in this case, the cannabis plant.
What is it?
“At the end of the day [CBD] is a fairly safe compound,” Hill says. “Although, we still need to know a lot more about it, like how it interacts with other medications people may be taking and what are the long-term effects,” he adds. And perhaps his biggest concern: “Sometimes people want to use it instead of evidence-based treatment and that can be a problem clinically in certain situations.”