CBD UK is the latest health craze to hit the high street, with claims that it can help everything from pain relief to anxiety. But what is it, and is it legal?
The ACMD recommends that regulatory authorities ensure that any consumer CBD product placed on the market has limits set such that the dose of 9-THC (including its precursor 9-THCA) and other controlled phytocannabinoids does not exceed 50 micrograms per unit of consumption.
The UK laws around CBD have been changing rapidly over the last few years, and are now much more relaxed than in many other countries. As long as the CBD product is labelled clearly, has lab reports showing it meets stringent standards, and contains less than 1mg of THC, it is legal to buy in most UK shops. However, it is wise to err on the side of caution and only use high-quality, pharmaceutical-grade CBD oil from a well-known brand.
The latest survey results showed that a significant number of people are still unaware that CBD is legal in the UK, with men and older individuals being particularly likely to be unaware of this. This was a big concern given that the majority of respondents were already using CBD for wellness purposes, with some being prescribed it by their doctor.
In November 2018, the UK government changed the restrictions around cannabis-based medicinal products (CBMPs), making it easier for doctors to prescribe them. However, this isn’t yet widely available on the NHS, and the current laws surrounding CBD still mean that most over the counter products are still illegal to sell in the UK unless they have Novel Food authorisation from the FSA.
CBD is one of many chemical compounds inside the cannabis plant. It supports the endocannabinoid system, which keeps the body balanced by regulating hormones and sleep patterns, among other things. CBD is also known to reduce anxiety and depression, as well as to improve the quality of sleep in people with insomnia. CBD can be found in a variety of different products, including capsules, gummies, and oils. However, you should always check the label and follow the instructions on the product for the best results.
It is important to note that although CBD oil can be used as a supplement, it should not be taken by children or pregnant women. It can be dangerous to them because of the possible psychoactive effects. Additionally, if you are taking other medications, it is recommended that you talk to your doctor before using CBD products.
NHS England has launched a patient registry for clinicians who are prescribed cannabis-based products for medicinal use. This will help the NHS collect data on the effectiveness and safety of these products, and how they are used by patients. This data will be useful for researchers and clinicians to help inform future research on cannabis-based medicines. However, the NHS cannot recommend a specific product or prescribe unlicensed products. Private doctors on the Specialist Register of the General Medical Council can do so, but they should follow similar processes to those for prescribing unlicensed special medicines.
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant and does not have any of the psychoactive effects associated with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). CBD has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of symptoms, including anxiety, insomnia and pain. It is also thought to have potential as an antidepressant and may be able to help treat conditions like PTSD.
CBD can be used in a variety of ways, including as an oil, capsules or edibles. A recent study showed that patients with chronic pain experienced significant reductions in pain after using CBD oil. However, the researchers noted that more research is needed to determine if CBD can be safely used by people with severe pain or PTSD.
The UK’s newest laws mandate that only hemp derived CBD products with less than 1mg of THC can be sold in the country. Companies that produce CBD with a higher THC content risk having their product seized by customs for illegal importation. Many of the best CBD brands, such as Blessed CBD, only source their hemp from farms in the US and EU that are known for their superior farming practices.
Before you start taking CBD, it is important to consider your own unique physiology and condition. It is recommended to start with a small dose, such as 20mg a day, and slowly increase your dosage until you find the optimum amount of CBD for you.
CBD is a cannabinoid that may relieve pain, lower inflammation and decrease anxiety without the psychoactive ‘high’ of THC. It has become a popular product and is available in health food stores as an oil to drop under the tongue or e-liquids to be vaped.
The products are advertised as being free from THC but they can contain traces of it due to the plant’s natural occurrence (see table below). THC has psychotropic properties and can lead to feelings of dizziness, paranoia and hallucinations. It is important that people who use CBD are aware of any potential psychoactive effects.
A blind test by the Centre for Medical Cannabis of over 30 products bought on the high street and online found that 45% had measurable levels of THC and therefore were illegal to sell in the UK. A further 43% had levels of CBD significantly below the amount advertised. The only legal products are oils & sprays, CBD paste, capsules and gummies that have been exempt from the Medicines Directive regulation (MDR) because they meet three criteria: They cannot be sold as a medicinal product, they must not contain more than 1mg of THC, THCA and CBN and the controlled phytocannabinoids cannot be removed from the finished product by simple extraction.
Only doctors on the General Medical Council’s specialist register can prescribe cannabis-based products to patients. This is only for specific conditions, such as severe sickness from chemotherapy or multiple sclerosis muscle spasticity that is not improved by other medicines.