A-list stars can’t get enough of this wonder supplement, but not all CBD oils are created equal. Here’s how to find one that works.
It is undoubtedly the supplement of the moment. Jennifer Aniston takes CBD oil for joint pain; Alessandra Ambrosio uses it to induce sleep and calm her nerves; and Kim Kardashian West threw a CBD-themed baby shower last April, at which guests were encouraged to blend their own CBD bath oils.
Other celebrities are taking things further still by joining the growing band of so-called ‘cannapreneurs’. Whoopi Goldberg has co-founded a line of cannabis infused wellness products, Whoopi&Maya, specialising in cannabis and CBD-infused bath and body products for menstrual cramps, while lifestyle entrepreneur Martha Stewart partnered with the marijuana company Canopy Growth, to develop CBD products for pets.
There is no doubt about it: CBD is big business. So much so that market research firm The Brightfield Group predicts that the medicinal CBD market will grow from $590 million (£452 million) to $22 billion (£17 billion) by 2022. In the UK alone the CBD market is set to skyrocket to £1 billion per annum by 2025 if growth continues at the current pace, according to a report commissioned by the Centre For Medicinal Cannabis (CMC).
But unfortunately, since not every business in the CBD gold rush has their customers’s best interests at heart, not all CBD products are created equal. And with few rules and regulations to keep the booming industry in check, CBD has evolved into a multi-billion-dollar Wild West.
In fact, a report last June by PhytoVista Laboratories, one of the UK’s most reputable labs for testing cannabis oils and hemp products, turned up worrying results after testing more than 30 CBD products available in the UK for the CMC. Sixteen contained less CBD than advertised, and eight of these contained less than half the amount they claimed on the bottle. One product – which had a £90 price tag – contained no CBD whatsoever.
Does CBD live up to the hype?
Not to be confused with medical cannabis, CBD is made from hemp, a variety of the cannabis plant which is low in the high-inducing THC. In the right dose and form, CBD really can help manage – but not cure – a huge range of health issues, according to Dr Dani Gordon, integrative medicine physician and world-leading expert in CBD and cannabis medicine, who is currently writing The CBD Bible, a book out in June. That’s because CBD (short for cannabidiol) works on the endocannabinoid system, the body and brain’s main balancing system. “It works on a number of very diverse pathways,” explains Dr Gordon. “That’s why we’re seeing it used on so many things, from pain to skin.”