Posted on

are hemp gummies safe

The main active ingredient in hemp is CBD, and CBD does not have any psychoactive properties. Instead, CBD has been credited with relieving anxiety, inflammation, insomnia, and pain, although currently there is little scientific proof that CBD works, except for epilepsy. Epidiolex Is a prescription CBD oil that was FDA approved in June 2018 for two rare and severe forms of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) and Dravet syndrome. Other trials are underway investigating the benefits of CBD for Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and anxiety.

Cannabis is a plant, and there are two main types; Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Sativa. While marijuana can be derived from both types, hemp is only derived from the Cannabis Sativa family.

There is no scientific evidence that gummies work, although anecdotally some people report a benefit and there is likely a strong placebo effect (the act of taking something to relieve your condition makes you feel better even if that product contains nothing).

Can CBD gummies make you high?

However, research into the effectiveness of CBD oil only tested pure CBD oil, not gummies. Even for pure CBD oil, there are very few well-conducted trials backing up its apparent health benefits, although research is expected to ramp up now that laws distinguish between hemp and marijuana.

Medically reviewed by Carmen Fookes, BPharm. Last updated on Sep 20, 2020.

CBD is derived from hemp, which is almost devoid of THC. THC is the chemical in marijuana that gives you a high. By law, hemp must contain no more than 0.3 percent THC to be considered hemp, otherwise, growers are at risk of prosecution under federal law.

There is still a lot of confusion over what exactly is CBD, with many people thinking cannabis, hemp, marijuana, CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the same thing. They are not.

Side effects of CBD include nausea, fatigue and irritability. CBD can increase the level in your blood of the blood thinner coumadin, and it can raise levels of certain other medications in your blood by the exact same mechanism that grapefruit juice does. A significant safety concern with CBD is that it is primarily marketed and sold as a supplement, not a medication. Currently, the FDA does not regulate the safety and purity of dietary supplements. So, you cannot know for sure that the product you buy has active ingredients at the dose listed on the label. In addition, the product may contain other (unknown) elements. We also don’t know the most effective therapeutic dose of CBD for any particular medical condition.

Some CBD manufacturers have come under government scrutiny for wild, indefensible claims, such that CBD is a cure-all for cancer, which it is not. We need more research but CBD may be prove to be an option for managing anxiety, insomnia, and chronic pain. Without sufficient high-quality evidence in human studies we can’t pinpoint effective doses, and because CBD is currently is mostly available as an unregulated supplement, it’s difficult to know exactly what you are getting. If you decide to try CBD, talk with your doctor — if for no other reason than to make sure it won’t affect other medications you are taking.

CBD is commonly used to address anxiety, and for patients who suffer through the misery of insomnia, studies suggest that CBD may help with both falling asleep and staying asleep.

Is CBD safe?

CBD may offer an option for treating different types of chronic pain. A study from the European Journal of Pain showed, using an animal model, CBD applied on the skin could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Another study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits inflammatory and neuropathic pain, two of the most difficult types of chronic pain to treat. More study in humans is needed in this area to substantiate the claims of CBD proponents about pain control.

Cannabidiol (CBD) has been recently covered in the media, and you may have even seen it as an add-in booster to your post-workout smoothie or morning coffee. What exactly is CBD? Why is it suddenly so popular?

CBD has been touted for a wide variety of health issues, but the strongest scientific evidence is for its effectiveness in treating some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically don’t respond to antiseizure medications. In numerous studies, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and, in some cases, it was able to stop them altogether. Videos of the effects of CBD on these children and their seizures are readily available on the Internet for viewing, and they are quite striking. Recently the FDA approved the first ever cannabis-derived medicine for these conditions, Epidiolex, which contains CBD.

Image: yavdat/Getty Images

Zuardi AW, Morais SL, Guimaraes FS, Mechoulam R. Antipsychotic effect of cannabidiol. J Clin Psychiatry 1995;56(10):485-6. View abstract.

Devinsky O, Verducci C, Thiele EA, et al. Open-label use of highly purified CBD (Epidiolex®) in patients with CDKL5 deficiency disorder and Aicardi, Dup15q, and Doose syndromes. Epilepsy Behav. 2018 Sep;86:131-137. Epub 2018 Jul 11. View abstract.

Likely Effective for

Overview. GW Pharmaceuticals Web site. Available at: https://www.gwpharm.com/about-us-overview.aspx. Accessed: May 31, 2015.

Pickens JT. Sedative activity of cannabis in relation to its delta’-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol content. Br J Pharmacol 1981;72(4):649-56. View abstract.

Harvey, D. J., Samara, E., and Mechoulam, R. Comparative metabolism of cannabidiol in dog, rat and man. Pharmacol Biochem.Behav. 1991;40(3):523-532. View abstract.