Although cannabis has a long history, CBD (one of its many compounds) has remained widely misunderstood.

The most well-known compound is probably THC (with its psychoactive properties, it’s the one that makes you feel euphoric).

Although they’re related, CBD and THC’s differences make them more like second cousins, twice removed.

What is CBD?

The cannabis plant has two separate species: marijuana and hemp.

Marijuana is grown mainly for its high levels of the mind-altering compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), while hemp produces the non-psychoactive compound CBD (cannabidiol).

The major difference between the two is that THC will make you feel intoxicated, while CBD will not.

The earliest record of cannabis’ use is from 2737 BC when Chinese Emperor Sheng Nung used cannabis-infused tea to treat health conditions like malaria, rheumatism, and gout.

CBD was first isolated in 1940 by Illinois-based chemist Roger Adams and spent many years afterward on a legal rollercoaster.

Finally, in 2018 it was legalized federally when the U.S Farm Bill was passed (see below for specific details on this).

Since then, CBD has grown in popularity.

You’ve probably heard much more about it recently than ever before.

That’s because as more legal research is being conducted, more people are trying it and talking publicly about its many benefits.

How is CBD made?

Starting with plant material that is rich in CBD (most often hemp), the pure oil is then withdrawn using one of several methods: ethanol, olive oil, or CO2 extraction.

Ethanol is a high-grade grain alcohol that is mostly used to extract CBD for use in vape pen cartridges.

Another method involves olive oil, which is an inexpensive way to extract CBD from plant materials.

The CO2 extraction process isolates CBD using carbon dioxide under high pressures and extremely low temperatures.

Depending on who’s making it, the method may differ.

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The explosion of CBD onto the market has brought with it many different ways to ingest it. 

People use different methods for different reasons, and depending on your needs and tastes, you’ll probably find a preferred way too. 

A great way to take CBD is directly under the tongue, or dropped into your favourite food with a tincture.

Another way is to swallow pure oil in a capsule, or if you want to target a specific area of your body, use a topical cooling gel, or body butter

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Lastly, Where is CBD legal?

In 2018, the U.S. Farm Bill made the production of hemp legal on a federal level, but there are limitations.

One stipulation is that the THC level of each plant needs to be less than 0.3%.

It’s now up to each state to set the laws, so CBD isn’t technically legal everywhere you go in the country.

Although many states have legalized all cannabis products for both recreational and medical use, others have only legalized the latter.

Several states still outlaw all cannabis products for all types of use.

For a full list of cannabis laws by state, see here.

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