A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows the problem the CBD industry is facing as a result of conflicting legal and regulatory requirements among states and the federal government and further prove reasons to know your supplier!
Among CBD products purchased online, a wide range of CBD concentrations was found, consistent with the lack of an accepted dose. Of tested products, 26% contained less CBD than labeled, which could negate any potential clinical response. The overlabeling of CBD products in this study is similar in magnitude to levels that triggered warning letters to 14 businesses in 2015-2016 from the US Food and Drug Administration (eg, actual CBD content was negligible or less than 1% of the labeled content), suggesting that there is a continued need for federal and state regulatory agencies to take steps to ensure label accuracy of these consumer products. Underlabeling is less concerning as CBD appears to neither have abuse liability nor serious adverse consequences at high doses; however, the THC content observed may be sufficient to produce intoxication or impairment, especially among children. Although the exclusive procurement of products online is a study limitation given the frequently changing online marketplace, these products represent the most readily available to US consumers. Additional monitoring should be conducted to determine changes in this marketplace over time and to compare internet products with those sold in dispensaries. These findings highlight the need for manufacturing and testing standards, and oversight of medicinal cannabis products.
This study, which took place in 2016, examined 84 different products.
These results are serious concerns for the industry, because mislabeling (especially underlabeling) can cause products to be discarded as not useful simply because the amount of CBD in the product is not high enough to be a therapeutic dose.
And that’s another problem. What DOES constitute a therapeutic dose of CBD?
As yet, we only know by trial and error. Some No BordersNaturals products for example, contain 500 mg of CBD. That’ true of our body lotion, which is amazing for skin and face. An adult with anxiety, in studies that have shown benefit, might be taking 300 to 600 milligrams per day internally. That would be very expensive so many people will use a much lower dose, even though those low doses have not been shown to be effective.
Anecdotally, I can tell you that I have been using No Borders Naturals lotion on my face, but I have also noticed that my IBS is cleared up. I believe that’s because the Emu oil carrier makes it go through my skin into my endocannabinoid receptors.
As far as we can tell, only one doctor has worked on efficacy and safety studies for CBD in humans, and that’s the man who is responsible for shepherding the CBD-based drug for intractable seizures through the FDA, Dr. Orrin Devinsky:
“CBD is a unique molecule. It works on a variety of receptors in the brain, some of which are relatively unique to CBD, and certainly the combination of working on more than six different receptors in the way it does is quite unique to CBD. We have proven [its effect], and it has led to FDA approval of CBD to treat several rare epilepsy syndromes in that form of CBD. Epidiolex is now on the market and available to patients who have those disorders.”
There is a lot of additional data from animal studies and small human studies to suggest that CBD may have benefits for a variety of other disorders, from anxiety to autism to sleep induction for people who have insomnia, to sleep disorders and inflammatory disorders, so it has a very wide range of potential uses.
If you are thinking of trying CBD, we caution that the most important thing is to know your supplier. If you are buying online, go to someone who has tested their product in a lab and can produce the lab results if you are asked. Some suppliers, like us, have taken great pains to do so. And before you consumer internally, check with your physician for drug interactions.