What is Hemp Oil

Hemp Oil or CBD stands for cannabidiol. So what is cannabidiol?

Cannabidiol contains more than 60 types of cannabinoids that can be seen in the hemp plant. One of those cannabinoids is called THC, which stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. THC has a major effect on people’s consciousness while CBD does not. Although CBD does not have the same effect of that of THC, recent studies have shown that it might be of medical importance.


History has shown that humans have been using cannabis as long as 5000 years ago. Ancient scriptures found in China depicted cannabis as an effective cure for various conditions like malaria, beriberi, constipation, rheumatic and menstrual pains. Various ancient civilizations like Sumerians, Egyptians, Romans, and Greeks have their own records on their ways of usage of the hemp plant. Cannabis was also mentioned in the Ayurvedic text in India which dates back 3000 years ago, as well as in the Old and New Testament.

But in 1937, cannabis was made illegal in the United States. People became wary of it and such feelings still extend to the present time. Recently, there has been a number of people who are interested in THC and its psychotropic effect. Marijuana with a high percentage of THC was cultivated, often at the expense of the CBD content of the plant.

An article was published in 1972 by Dr. Tod H. Mikurya entitled “Marijuana Medical Paper 1839-1972”. His paper gave people a complete summary of all published papers regarding the cannabis’ medicinal properties. This gave rise to a fiery debate on the usage of cannabis in the medical field and also gave rise to its research for the decades to come.

In 1994, the term “medical cannabis” was coined by a Dutchman named Wernard Tanning. He would spend many years of his life fighting for the legalization of cannabis oil and his cause has had a major impact on the decision of Els Borst, the Dutch Minister of Health at that time. The Dutch government declared in 2000 that cannabis should not be exclusively sold in coffee shops and that medical grade cannabis free of any contamination should be freely accessed by the citizens.

This decision of the government gave rise to a government agency whose role is to produce cannabis and deliver it to pharmacies. In 2003, medical cannabis became available to the Dutch public but since its cost is much higher than those sold in coffee shops, its sale is still limited.

There has been a continuous influx of research studies regarding the beneficial effect of cannabinoids and studies are still going on. A rise of publications regarding the effects of CBD oil has been on the increase since 2000.

Since THC is an illegal substance in many countries in the world, Israel developed a hemp plant in 2012 that contains mostly CBD with hardly and THC components. This way the plant can be grown legally for the production of medicinal hemp oil that does not have any effects that can make its user stoned.


CBD cannabidiol chemical structure

(The compound structure of CBD.)

We mentioned earlier the cannabidiol which is made up of more than 60 types of cannabinoids that are found in the hemp plant. But did you know that the human body also produces certain types of cannabinoids? The cannabinoids produced by the body are called endocannabinoids. CBD and THC are also similar to these substances. When CBD is administered either via the oral or inhalation route, the body will absorb it and the CBD will attach to the cannabinoid receptors in the body.

The receptor in the body are the sites wherein substances can attach to. The attachment of a substance to a receptor will either initiate a cascade of biochemical reactions or will prevent such reaction from occurring. We can relate it to how a key fits into a lock. The substance that will be the key is the agonist which will open the “door”. After attaching its self to the receptor, it will initiate different biochemical reactions, this motion is kind of how the key slides into a keyhole and opens the door.

There are also keys that fit the keyhole but does not unlock it. These are called antagonists. They can attach to the receptor site but will prevent any reactions to take place. The agonist won’t be able to attach to the receptor sites now, so in essence, the receptor is now blocked.

CBD is considered an antagonist since it doesn’t trigger any biochemical reaction when it attached to the receptor. THC, on the other hand, is an agonist since it initiates a cascade of reactions in which you can get stoned or high. Based on this, we can assume that the combination of both would not work well since there will be an antagonism from CBD and you won’t feel the effects of THC.

In studies, however, it was shown that CBD actually reinforces THC. One explanation for this is that CBD makes the receptors more sensitive and when the CBD is cleared, it would only take a smaller amount of THC to do its usual effect so the user will get high faster. The mechanism between these two is not fully understood yet by researchers.


In order to make your own hemp oil, you must have CBD-rich cannabis buds on hand. You would then need to soak it in pure alcohol for a few days. Then the extract must be filtered by pouring the mixture through a nylon stocking or a coffee filter. After this, you are left with a green solution.

The solution needs to be heated to 34°C in order to evaporate out the alcohol present in the mixture. Raising the heat further than 34°C will destroy the CBD crystals. Slow evaporation through low heat will ensure that you are left with a pure and good quality hemp oil.

The evaporated alcohol is actually recommended to be absorbed since you can use it for multiple extractions in the future which will save you some cash.


Although CBD oil cannot make its user feel stoned, it has been shown that it has calming effects. This may be useful for those who have social anxiety problems since it will help them calm down. In comparison with THC, which does not exactly help those who have the anxiety to be more inclined to act outwardly in social situations.

Recent studies have suggested that psychosis can be triggered or enhanced by THC[2, 6]. It has also been reported that THC can have negative implications on short-term memory. Interestingly, it has been shown that CBD actually improves cognitive functions of an individual [3, 6].

This shows how the opposite effects of THC and CBD can affect its users. This can explain why some cannabis users become paranoid after smoking a joint while experiencing the opposite from smoking a hash which is oftentimes made from foreign plants that have a more balanced percentage of CBD and THC. Dutch cannabis, also called Nederwiet, have been cultured for several generations for its high THC percentage and often with little CBD content.

Some users prefer using foreign hash since some cannabis have very high THC which makes them generally feel sluggish. Foreign hash sometimes contains enough CBD to counter the negative effects of THC. This situation is an example of how the interference of people with nature does not always mean a better product and sometimes humans break an actual working formula that already existed in nature.


The cannabis offered in Dutch coffee shops has imbalanced components since most cannabis growers breed for cannabis with high THC content from the past. One way to counteract the possible paranoia effect from Dutch cannabis is to place a few drops of CBD oil which helps mitigate the effects of THC. It has been shown that the combination of CBD oil and THC in a joint actually gives off a beneficial effect.

It has also been theorized that CBD oil can also be helpful during mushrooms or LSD trips, although no research has been done in this particular area. But if you consider the components of CBD, it might actually help lower the rough effects of a bad trip.


Some of the ways that CBD can be taken is through capsules or waxy or liquid oil. Estimating the dosage for an individual is pretty difficult that is why first time users are recommended to only use one capsule or a small drop of liquid and start experimenting the level of dose from there in order to determine the desired level.

CBD can also be taken through a vaporizer which heats up the oil (not burning) releasing a cloud of vapor. One should check first if their vaporizer is suited for oils and waxes as not all are suited for this task. An advantage of vaporizing over the other methods is that the effects can be immediately felt by the user.


Recently, ingestion through vaporization has been rising as a trend of taking CBD. In this way, the CBD will be inhaled through electronic cigarettes or hybrid vaporizer using e-liquids. A lot of users prefer this method since its hard to get over the taste of CBD oil which tastes like wheat grass. E-liquids give the users an option of different flavors and inhaling the vaporized CBD is more effective than the oral route.

The bioavailability of a substance decreases as it goes down in the body. It can be described as the percentage of the active component that actually reaches the bloodstream. Oral ingestion of CBD oil or capsule results to a lower bioavailability since it passes through the liver and is broken down or absorbed before most of it reaches the bloodstream.

Ingestion of CBD through vapor offers a way to bypass the hepatic first pass as it goes straight into the lungs. As soon as it reaches the lungs, it will go straight to the bloodstream. The bioavailability of this method is about 50 to 60 percent and sometimes, this method is four times more effective than through oral ingestion. It’s higher bioavailability can also be explained by the short distance the vapors need to travel in order to get to the lungs which are why the effects may be felt 30 to 60 minutes earlier in comparison with oral ingestion which might take longer.


The adverse effects of usage of CBD oil have not been said yet in recent studies. Stomach aches have been reported during overdose but this isn’t a problem when CBD is taken at its normal or low dose. But think of it, overdosing on CBD is extremely difficult to happen unless you can pour a liter of oil straight down your gullet and at that point, any oil would be dangerous. The cost of CBD is also quite high so you can rule out overdosing since buying enough amount to make you overdose would be quite painful in the pocket.

We also have to take into consideration people who might be allergic to the oil. As with any substance in the world, there will always be people who might be allergic to it. In order to avoid any major allergy reactions, first-time users should start with only a small drop to test if there might be any minor reactions from the body.

At this point in time, the usage of CBD oil is still a new phenomenon. It would take time for scientists to fully understand its mechanisms and learn if there are any long-term risks associated with its usage. For anyone who is using CBD, it’s your responsibility to know the kind of product you are using and use it responsibly.


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