Stressed or Anxious? Try CBD for Mental Health Self-Care

Self-care means different things to different people. Your self-care routine may not be the same as others, and that’s okay. What’s important is that you take time aside to do things that make you feel good. 

When you don’t take the time to practice self-care regularly, your mental and physical health can take a hit. Long term stress can hurt you in many ways, from digestive issues to anger or irritability and many other symptoms. 

While self-care can sometimes be spa days and face masks, it can also be a number of other things. Cleaning a space, taking a peaceful walk, or even a nap when you need one can be considered self-care. All of these acts can be beneficial for mental health. 

If you struggle to rid your mind of anxious thoughts or cope with stress, CBD may help. It’s not a cure-all but can be used as a tool. Below, we’ve put together a list of ways you can incorporate CBD into your mental health self-care routine. 

Get enough rest with CBD 

Life doesn’t slow down and it can be tough to catch up. Sleep often gets sacrificed first.

One way you can exercise self-care is to prioritize rest. That may mean turning electronics off and heading to bed an hour earlier each night. Or it could be setting your alarm an hour later to let yourself get some rest. 

That’s easier said than done. If you are stressed or anxious, you may be kept awake at night whether you like it or not. CBD may help you sleep. Try adding it to your nighttime routine to help achieve better rest. 

Take time for yourself with CBD to ease anxious thoughts

Sometimes we need a break from our inner monologue, especially if it’s constantly full of worry. Many people find CBD helps them manage anxiety

It’s important to set time aside for yourself. Take a meditative walk or spend time in a patch of grass watching the clouds. Be alone with your thoughts. 

Being alone with your thoughts isn’t always a good thing, as many know. That’s why self-care is important. Take the time to think about your thoughts and redirect them to be more useful to you. 

CBD may help with this. Anecdotal evidence has shown users successfully managing their anxious thoughts with CBD. The effects are generally described as subtle, allowing users to be more in control of their thoughts without issue. 

Whether it’s a walk, meditation, or another activity you love, be sure to schedule some time for you. 

Cut back on drugs and/or alcohol

What you do in your free time is up to you, but there are times where it can hurt. Most things, including some drugs and alcohol, are okay in moderation. But if your mental health is taking a hit, it may be time to cut back. 

If you’re dealing with anxious thoughts and stress, it may feel like the worst time to cut back on substances. After all, they are useful in taking the edge off. CBD may help with this transition. 

There are plenty of anecdotal tales where CBD helped people stay sober. Often it’s because it can help manage the very reasons we turn to drugs and alcohol in the first place. 

CBD is even suggested to help treat opioid addictions. We need more definitive research, but what we know now is promising. 

So if you want to cut back on drugs or alcohol for your mental health, CBD may help. This is especially true when CBD helps manage the very reasons you reach for substances in the first place.

Final thoughts on CBD for mental health self-care

Remember that CBD is not a cure-all for anything. It can be used as a tool for many purposes, though. 

Mental health care is a great example. Nobody is going to boost their mental health by just taking CBD. But if they take CBD to assist with other mental health good practices, the results could be even better. 

Don’t forget to practice self-care regularly. It’s important for well-being. Take time for yourself and be gentle with your mental health. 

What Pesticides Can Be Found In CBD Oil?

Some CBD products contain pesticides. There is no governing force preventing this right now. A consumer’s best defense is to check the Certificate of Analysis (COA) on the label. This displays what tests were conducted and their results. 

How worried should you be about pesticides in CBD? Well, one report found 70% of tested products were contaminated. The culprits included heavy metals such as arsenic and lead. They also found herbicides including the active ingredient in RoundUp, pesticides, BPA, and even toxic mold. Consumers should be concerned.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) clarified hemp regulations in 2019. They added hemp to an approved list for 10 different pesticides. Nine are biopesticides that occur naturally and can control pests. One is a conventional pesticide (synthetic chemical that works by killing pests). So, according to the EPA, there are 10 types of pesticides for use on hemp. 

This is good news for CBD users and those who produce it. High-risk, dangerous pesticides are not approved for use. This allows farmers to only use pesticides deemed safe for consumption. 

It’s not all good news, though. Even if the only pesticides present are approved, residue may still exceed safe limits. This potentially puts users at risk. Plus, acceptable residue levels are still unclear as the EPA navigates figuring out what pesticide residue levels are safe for human consumption. 

Keep in mind that some producers may still choose to use harmful, illegal pesticides in their CBD. After all, there is no requirement to test the CBD for pesticides before it hits the shelves. What’s stopping producers from just going for it? 

How do pesticides end up in CBD? 

Some manufacturers may choose to use pesticides to keep their plants free of pests. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to flush plants clean of these pesticides. It can cause mold, another issue within the industry. 

Hemp is extremely absorbent. It absorbs pesticides applied directly to its surface. But it goes beyond that. It also absorbs contaminants in the ground through its roots.  What you apply to and around the plant will remain a part of it. These pollutants can become even more concentrated when extracted into a CBD oil. 

What are the dangers of pesticides in CBD? 

If you go down the list of accepted pesticides for hemp, you may notice most seem generally safe. Most are naturally-occurring, after all. But excess residue may still be dangerous. There is also a risk that other contaminants are present. Even if they’re not listed. 

And if you’re wondering, “do people actually do that?”, the answer is yes. Take this story, for example: Two cannabis dispensaries had to close their doors in 2018 because some products tested positive for pesticides. Not just any pesticides, either, but bifenthrin, a prohibited pesticide for use in cannabis. 

The EPA considers Bifenthrin to be a possible human carcinogen. The state of Massachusetts had already banned the use of bifenthrin for cannabis. The positive test results prove that banned pesticides are still in use.

According to Leafly, pesticide residue is worse in concentrates than it is for the plant itself. Hemp and cannabis have different growing regulations but are very similar in structure. Pesticides in cannabis concentrates are worse than pesticide residue on the plant. This translates the same with hemp. 

Leafly states that “the processes used to concentrate cannabinoids also concentrate pesticides.” They noted that there may be nearly 10 times the amount of pesticides in cannabis concentrates than in cannabis flower. 

In the context of CBD, this is a problem. The majority of CBD products on the market are oils and tinctures, or concentrated forms of CBD. Users should not risk ingesting concentrated pesticides to relieve pain, anxious thoughts, or whatever it is they’re using CBD for. 

Red flags for purchasing pesticide-free CBD

If a product doesn’t have a COA available, be wary. Companies should be willing to share proof that they have complied with pesticide regulations. Their product should be labeled accurately for purity and potency. 

For the safest option, consumers should go a step further when purchasing CBD. Don’t just look for a product with a COA. Look for a product with a COA from an ISO-accredited laboratory

Why? Because CBD brands can easily do in-house testing or give their product to their buddy to “test” in their lab. This leaves a lot of room for error, whether intentional or not. Unfortunately, intentional mislabeling is common. Whatever can make the product sell better can sometimes take precedence over safety. 

CBD manufacturers pay laboratories to conduct tests for them. It’s no surprise that some of these testing companies may choose to omit potentially damaging results for their products. After all, their clients are the CBD manufacturers, not CBD consumers.  

That’s not to say all CBD companies are intentionally mislabeling their products. Some are testing with best intentions but doing so inaccurately. 

One study found one-third of cannabinoid content testing facilities in Washington state provided unreliable test results. Researchers concluded that one way to fix this issue is to only test in ISO-accredited laboratories. These labs have proven their compliance with industry standards. 

Tampered products

It’s common for in-house laboratories to use equipment that has a “limit of detection” known as LOD. This means that there is a minimum amount that can be detected in a sample. Even if a substance is present in a sample, if it falls below the equipment’s limit of detection, it will show nothing. Therefore, manufacturers can claim they tested zero for that substance. 

Pesticides in CBD face a similar issue. There is no federal regulation for CBD, meaning the limits of detections can vary across different labs

Unfortunately, this serves as a loophole for some manufacturers. By adding extra oil to their substance, they can dilute it until it detects zero. But this dilutes the entire product. It cuts back CBD content and displays a false negative to mislead consumers. 

What’s the solution for pesticides in CBD?

It’s clear that the industry needs more oversight. The EPA created a list of accepted pesticides recently. They are working towards a better, safer future for CBD. 

But CBD is still not required to be tested.  Manufacturers have plenty of room to deceive their customers. Until that changes, CBD users need to take their health into their own hands. 

Only buy CBD that has been tested from an ISO-accredited lab for the most reliable results. This ensures that the laboratory is able to conduct tests in line with industry standards. 

There are many exceptional CBD companies out there doing everything right. Seek those companies out.

The Athlete’s Guide to Self-Care with CBD

We should all practice regular self-care to function at our best. Now, we know self-care can mean different things for different people. For some, it’s meditation and yoga. For others, it’s a nightly skincare routine and winding down with “me time” before bed. 

Athletes are no exception to this need. In fact, they must take the time to nurture themselves regularly. Athletes can become more in tune with their bodies and tend to any aches or pains more effectively with self-care.

Self-care for athletes can bring awareness to the mind and the body’s stress levels. As you practice self-care, you may notice yourself feeling more rested and less stressed.

But what if you don’t know where to start? Don’t worry. Why not try some of our CBD self-care ideas? 

With its anti-inflammatory effects and potential to alleviate anxiety, CBD may be the perfect addition to an athlete’s self-care routine. 

CBD topicals for athlete pain relief and recovery 

Athletes can incorporate CBD into their self-care routine with a CBD topical. If you have aches and pains from intense workouts, CBD may relieve them. 

CBD may alleviate joint pain. Whether you’re a tennis player with elbow pain or a runner with achy knees, you may find relief with a recovery CBD topical. Some use topicals before and after working out for preventative care or to provide relief from post-workout inflammation.

Athletes know you don’t just get one ache or pain when you train hard. Often, many things hurt at once. CBD topicals are versatile and work in most places.

Another popular choice for athletes is CBD for back issues. Whether it’s from improper spina l movement, disc damage, or another cause, CBD topicals may provide relief. Cyclists with hip pain and weightlifters with shoulder pain alike may also manage their injuries with CBD.

Topicals come in a variety of options like salves, creams, and lotions. The relief is targeted and localized because it’s applied directly to the affected area.  

If you really want to step up your self-care, use a CBD bath bomb or soak to alleviate aches and pains from the comfort of a hot bath. Not only is this great for muscle relief and relaxation, but it’s a great way to soothe the mind as well.  

Be sure to use CBD with verified potency and purity to prevent any unwanted contaminants in the product. The best way to get pure products is to check the test results. Choosing CBD tested from ISO-accredited laboratories will be the easiest way to know that the product is pure and potent. 

CBD tinctures to ease anxious thoughts and practice mindfulness

Athletes know how easy it is to succumb to anxious thoughts now and again. It takes discipline to stop your mind from wandering. 

A great self-care act for athletes (and everyone else) is to work on mindfulness. It doesn’t have to be anything over-the-top, either. Just you, a quiet space, and perhaps some CBD tincture. 

To get started, find a quiet space with no distractions. Get in a comfortable sitting position and maintain a relaxed posture. Now close your eyes and breathe in and out slowly. Feel your breath. Feel the tension in your face, neck, and shoulders roll away. 

Pay attention to the rhythm of your breath and count if you need to stay focused. Try to catch yourself when your mind wanders and bring your attention back to the breath. Don’t get frustrated if your mind does wander, though. It takes a lot of practice to get to a point where you can fully focus on your breath. Do this for at least 10 minutes. 

Try incorporating a CBD tincture before beginning your mindfulness exercise. With its potential to relieve anxiety and even speculation it may improve ADHD (there are no definitive results, but its sedative effects may help), it’s a great tool to shift your focus to mindfulness. 

Take some droppers of your favorite CBD before you begin or add it to a beverage or food. If you take daily supplements, you can even put the CBD next to your supplement jar to remind yourself to take it in the morning. 

Again, be sure to choose CBD that is pure and potent. You don’t want to put unknown contaminants into your body, especially as an athlete. 

CBD self-care for athletes 

Self-care is important for athletes. Not only can self-care improve recovery, but it can also help relieve anxious thoughts and stress. Both stress and anxiety can negatively affect athletic performance. 

Many athletes incorporate CBD into their self-care routine. From pain relief for injuries to better recovery and stress relief, it may benefit users in a variety of ways. 

Have you used CBD as part of your self-care routine? Let us know your favorite ways to treat yourself using CBD in the comments! 

Athletes and CBD: What to Know About Purity

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Athletes are turning to CBD for many reasons both before and after working out. The World Anti Doping Agency removed it from their Prohibited List, so an athlete can still use it if they’re in an affiliated sport. 

Those interested in CBD should pick a product that is pure, potent, and credible. They should select a product that provides third-party lab testing results from an ISO-accredited lab. It’s also important to choose the right type of CBD to get optimal results for athletes. 

In an unregulated market (no, the FDA is not regulating CBD), choosing a quality product can be tough. We broke down everything an athlete needs to know about CBD to equip others to make an informed purchase. 

CBD basics for the curious athlete

CBD is short for cannabidiol. It is typically derived from hemp, a low-THC, high-CBD type of cannabis. CBD is a molecule that naturally occurs in the cannabis plant. It is particularly abundant in hemp plants. 

CBD will not get you high. It interacts with cannabinoid receptors in different ways than THC does. Plus, hemp-derived CBD is legal in the United States so long as the THC level is at or below 0.3%, which is too low to get users high. 

If you’ve heard reports of CBD intoxication, the product probably had more THC than the label claimed. This can pose an issue for athletes avoiding THC. CBD products should be properly tested for purity and potency to avoid these kinds of issues. Products that have been tested will also prevent athletes from consuming toxins. 

Athletes can try CBD for pain relief, better sleep, and more

In the United States, 40% of CBD users use it to combat pain. Even some pet owners give their dog or cat CBD to relieve some effects of aging. With this in mind, athletes may find great value in the compound for recovery and pain relief. 

Its anti-inflammatory effects can be beneficial both before and after working out. CBD topicals, such as lotions or salves, can be rubbed directly on achy muscles and joints for localized pain relief and recovery. Tinctures and oils, CBD edibles, or CBD capsules can also deliver anti-inflammatory effects. 

CBD may also ease anxiety and improve sleep. Some athletes use CBD to ease their anxious feelings, improve their focus, or improve sleep. It may promote relaxation and stress relief before a big event or help athletes sleep better. Edibles, tinctures/oils, or capsules can all be used to reap CBD’s beneficial effects on anxiety and sleep. 

CBD can be vaporized, too, with concentrates or flower. Now, athletes know that it’s important to have a good lung capacity if you want to be the best you can be. Vaping is easier on the lungs than smoking, delivers effects quickly, and can be used for all purposes. But if you are looking to optimize lung health, it may be a good idea to reach for a different method of administration. 

CBD affects everyone differently. Biology, dosage, method of administration, and the purity and potency of the product all affect this. If the CBD is no good, the results will not be either.  

How to choose and dose CBD for athletes

There is no universally accepted CBD dosage. Most products will have a recommended dosage on the package and you can adjust from there. If your product has a recommended dose, start with the low end of the recommendation and adjust accordingly. 

If you’re not sure where to begin, anywhere between 15-25 mg is a good starting point. Pay attention to how you feel and adjust your dose over time until you feel you’re getting optimal results. 

Your dose will also depend on if you use CBD isolate, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum CBD. Isolate contains no THC, while full-spectrum contains some THC and other cannabinoids. Broad-spectrum CBD contains CBD and other cannabinoids excluding THC. Some find broad and full-spectrum CBD to be more therapeutic because the plant parts synergize. 

It’s common for athletes to choose CBD isolate if they’re worried about potential THC showing up on a drug test. CBD isolate (or products tested as “THC free”) should not cause users to fail a drug test. If the product is improperly labeled or the athlete consumes enough for trace amounts to add up, they may run into problems. That’s why it’s important for athletes to choose products that have been tested for purity and potency.

Final thoughts for athletes using CBD 

Whether  to combat anxious feelings, relieve everyday stress, improve focus, or boost post-workout recovery, CBD may be beneficial for athletes. But it must be a quality product. 

CBD should be tested to verify its purity and potency. This ensures there are no toxins, solvents, or other substances present in the product. The easiest way to get quality CBD is to choose a product that has been tested by an ISO-accredited laboratory. This ensures their testing methods are up to standard. 

CBD Bioavailability: Optimizing for Tinctures and Oils

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CBD bioavailability is an important topic. Bioavailability means how much of a substance actually makes it to the bloodstream without elimination on its way to the target.  When taken by mouth, drugs break down in the digestive system before reaching the bloodstream. The amount that makes it to the bloodstream is lower than what was originally ingested because the body eliminates some of it.  Bioavailability varies based on the method of consumption and the purity and potency of the product in question. If you want to get the most out of your CBD, pay attention to bioavailability. 

What is the best method to take CBD oil or tincture?

If you eat CBD or swallow drops from a tincture or oil, the digestive system will break it down first. This decreases bioavailability. Some reports have shown the bioavailability of CBD to be less than 10% when consumed orally. 

The best method for taking CBD tincture or oil is the sublingual method. Leave the solution under your tongue for 60-90 seconds and then swallow. The glands under your tongue will absorb the majority of the CBD and the remainder can be swallowed.  CBD bypasses the digestive system and goes straight to the bloodstream when taken sublingually. Reports have shown that sublingual administration enhances bioavailability. The exact amount is unclear with different publications claiming anywhere from 13 to 35%

How can I boost CBD bioavailability? 

The best way to increase bioavailability is to take the product sublingually. Choose a quality product with a focus on purity and potency. This will ensure that you’re not absorbing any other substances or contaminants. To find pure and potent CBD, look for products that have been third-party tested by an ISO-accredited laboratory.

Laboratories with ISO-accreditation have proven their ability to meet industry testing standards. The company should provide a copy of their Certificate of Analysis (COA) detailing their test results. You can check the purity and potency of the CBD by reading the product’s COA. Each batch test should at least check for chemicals, pesticides, and solvents. Some companies will go even further and check for additional impurities such as heavy metals. Testing covers potency as well. The product must fall at or below 0.3% THC to meet legal standards and prevent intoxication. It’s also important that the product actually contains the amount of CBD it claims. There have been plenty of cases where the number on the label does not match what the actual test results show. If you’re buying CBD with bogus amounts, you’ll never know what your proper dose is. 

What is the right CBD dose? 

There is no universal CBD dosage. Bioavailability varies across different methods of administration. You may never know exactly how much CBD you’re getting, even when you take a set amount. Figuring out how much CBD is right can be a process.  Start with a low dose anywhere around 15-25 mg and pay attention to how you feel after taking it.  It typically takes 15-20 minutes for sublingual CBD to take effect, though you may need to experiment a bit before finding the perfect amount.  Luckily, CBD has been found to be safe even in very high doses. It’s very unlikely that users would take too much and experience adverse effects. One rodent study found potential liver problems or adverse reactions to certain medications, though. So if you’re considering taking CBD, it’s worth discussing with your doctor first, especially if you have other conditions. 

Final thoughts 

When it comes to CBD, what you see isn’t always what you get. That’s why products should always be tested by third-party laboratories with ISO-accreditation. But it goes beyond that.  CBD’s effects vary across different users, products, and reasons for taking it. If you want the most relief from your CBD, be sure to pay attention to bioavailability when deciding how to take it. The better the bioavailability, the better your results will be. 

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Pure CBD products have no detected levels of pesticides, solvents, heavy metals, or microbial contaminants.
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Products must contain between 0-0.3% THC under the 2018 U.S. Farm Bill.
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Products should contain high concentrations of CBD and less than 0.3% THC.
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CBD is not regulated by the United States Food and Drug Administration.