In the last few decades, therapeutic oils have become one of the hottest commodities in the wellness marketplace. CBD Oil’s rise in mainstream popularity has coincided with another type of product’s surge in demand – essential oils. Both CBD oils and essential oils are used for similar healing purposes, they are both strong-smelling liquids, and they are both extracted from plants or plant material.
All these similarities, coupled with their simultaneous ascent to stardom, has left many people asking, “Is CBD an essential oil?” The answer is no, and here’s why:
What are Essential Oils?
To paint a clear picture of the differences between CBD oils and essential oils, let’s first detail what exactly essential oils are.
When is the last time you stopped and smelled the roses or passed under a blooming magnolia tree and took in the sweet scent? Plants have unique smells and aromas individual to them. The chemicals that produce these identifying scents are known as terpenes. By using massive amounts of pressure in a technique referred to as cold pressing, those smells can be distilled into hyper-concentrated compounds, which are then added to a carrier liquid. The resulting final product is an essential oil, which is, as the name would suggest, an oil containing the essence of a plant.
What are Essential Oils Used for?
Once you’ve taken that aroma down to its essence, what can you do with it? Well, essential oils are primarily used as aromatherapy. Let’s look at lavender as an example. This is one of the common essential oils on the market today. Lavender scents have historically been used in things like bubble bath, as it’s known to be relaxing and good for promoting rest. So the idea is that by smelling concentrated lavender in the form of essential oil, your body will physically relax. Believe it or not, there’s actually some science behind this.
Smells can stimulate a part of your brain called the limbic system, which is responsible for a whole slew of bodily functions such as memory retention and emotion regulation. The limbic system is actually why certain smells can trigger memories. Because of this effect on the brain, some proponents of essential oils claim that their aroma can have curative effects on the human body, though there hasn’t been much in the way of scientific research to back this up.
One key thing to note is that essential oils are not meant to be consumed orally; they are meant strictly to be smelled. As we’re about to discover, this is very different from the way people use CBD.
What is CBD Oil?
Now that we’ve covered the basics of essential oils let’s talk about CBD oil.
The cannabis plant is chock full of compounds that can benefit our health, including those that make up the base of essential oils. Cannabis, however, also contains compounds called cannabinoids, which can interact with our body’s endocannabinoid system – a system of neurotransmitters partly responsible for maintaining homeostasis. One of the most popular of those cannabinoids is CBD.
The CBD found in cannabis can be extracted similarly to the terpenes in essential oil; however, cannabinoids are primarily extracted using a solvent, such as BHO or C02. Like with essential oils, the extracted cannabinoid is then mixed with a carrier oil. Broad-spectrum and full-spectrum CBD oils will also contain the cannabis terpenes.
Unlike essential oils, however, CBD oil is meant to be ingested. The whole point is to get those cannabinoids into the body where they can produce physical effects.
What is CBD Oil Used for?
Also, unlike essential oils, a plethora of hard scientific research indicates that cannabinoids can have tangible medicinal benefits. For example, the 2018 study suggests that cannabinoids can be effective at mitigating pain. Another study from 2016 found that CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties can be used to treat arthritis in rats.
CBD oil is taken for a myriad of reasons. Some people use it to help with chronic pain, and others use it for mood regulation. Many people who struggle with various forms of insomnia find that CBD can help them get some much-needed sleep.
A Better Way to CBD
There’s plenty of ways to get cannabinoids into the body, and though CBD oil is incredibly common, it’s far from the most efficient method. CBD has a low rate of bioavailability, which means that our bodies don’t like to absorb it. When you consume CBD orally, most of those good cannabinoids you want disappear before ever reaching your bloodstream.
However, when CBD is inhaled, it’s bioavailability can be more than doubled. That means more cannabinoids. Our innovative CBD delivery device elon®, is engineered to maximize bioavailability while being as easy to use as an oil or tincture.
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