Cannabidiol, or CBD, as it’s more commonly called, is getting plenty of attention these days. It is being researched extensively and seems to offer a lot of potential in treating everything from chronic pain to PTSD and severe anxiety. Is it safe, though? According to a report from the World Health Organization, "In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD."
Considerations When It Comes to CBD Safety
While most people exhibit no adverse reactions to taking CBD, it should be noted that this is not the case for everyone. An estimated 10% of people taking CBD experienced elevated liver enzymes. Roughly 3% saw spikes high enough to quit taking the supplement.
Other symptoms reported by a small percentage of those taking CBD include:
- Dry mouth
- Reduced appetite
These symptoms only occur in a small percentage of those who take CBD. However, if you are at risk for liver damage, it is worth working with a doctor to monitor liver enzyme levels if you decide to use CBD.
Finally, CBD has been shown to have adverse reactions with some medications, most notably blood thinners. If you are currently taking any prescription medications, consult your doctor before taking CBD.
While CBD is considered generally well-tolerated, the fact that it is unregulated by the FDA does pose additional problems. Manufacturers are not held to the same standards as are pharmaceutical companies, which can mean concerns when it comes to product potency and purity. It is critical to source your CBD products from a reputable company that focuses on product quality. Any reputable company will give you a certificate of analysis (COA) is you ask for one. Be sure to read it – do not assume that if you are given one that the product is high quality. There are many respectable companies selling CBD products out there, you need to do your homework to find one that is right for you.
Some untrustworthy companies have been known to sell CBD products that include the following:
- Too little CBD content to be effective in a therapeutic dose
- Less CBD than what was indicated on the label
- More CBD than what was indicated on the label
- Limited spectrum CBD
- Some products have included harmful ingredients like herbicides, pesticides, and heavy metals
So, is CBD safe for everyone? While most people will be able to use a high-quality CBD product from a reputable company, and benefit from it without adverse reactions, there is a small percentage of people who may experience unwanted symptoms. Always consult your physician before taking a new supplement.