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Best CBD Oil for Pain Relief & Inflammation: Highest Quality Brands On The Market

Over the past three years, CBD oil has become increasingly popular as a health and wellness supplement.

One of the main reasons people are interested in trying CBD oil is because of its pain-killing benefits. We’ll get into the details of how CBD is suggested to help with pain later, along with some suggestions for the best CBD oils for pain and inflammation.

The ability for CBD to help with pain is a significant advantage over conventional pain management options — which often involve addictive and potentially harmful medications. Instead, this natural supplement has very few side effects and an exceptional safety profile — all without compromising on effectiveness.

But how do you choose the right CBD oil for the job?

This is an important question to ask because the truth of the matter is that not all CBD oils work. Many simply contain too little CBD to be of any help, while others contain harmful contaminants like heavy metals, pesticides, or chemical solvents — all of which could add to the pain you’re already experiencing by damaging the sensitive nerve cells around the body.

We’re going to cover all of this in the article below. You’ll learn how to spot a high-quality CBD oil and how current evidence shows CBD to work inside the body.

This is a big topic, so let’s get started with our list of top-rated CBD oils for pain.

Top 10 Best CBD Oil Brands for Pain Management in 2022

Not sure which CBD oil to buy to help with chronic pain? Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how CBD is suggested to work for pain and inflammation, here’s our top 5 list of CBD oils I’ve used myself for back pain.

We’ll also offer some advice on a few ways you can spot a trustworthy CBD vendor even if they didn’t quite make it onto our list.

I’ve been using CBD for over 5 years now and I’ve stumbled upon some stellar companies with top-notch oils and fly-by-night businesses with oils that can’t simply don’t work.

I have a relatively short list of CBD brands that I fully trust and I want to share my choices with you so you can avoid some of the headaches and disappointment I’ve already endured.

Here are my top 10 CBD oil brands for pain:

1. Royal CBD (Best CBD Oil On The Market)

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 250 – 2500 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Mint, Vanilla, Berry
Potency 8.3 – 83.3 mg/mL

Get 15% off all Royal CBD products. Use code “CFAH” at checkout.

Why Royal CBD is My Top Pick:

As skeptical as I am towards the majority of new CBD brands, I decided to give Royal CBD a try because I liked the company’s dedication to quality. I love seeing companies that take what they do seriously.

You can tell right away from the color, flavor, and consistency of the oil that you’re dealing with a product well above average.

This oil is cheaper than most of the other premium CBD oils I’ve tried, comes in a full range of potencies, and uses some of the best full-spectrum hemp extracts I’ve ever seen. I’ve heard friends using this brand for quite some time and decided to give it a try for myself — so I ordered a few bottles in different strengths.

After taking the Royal CBD’s 2500mg full-spectrum CBD oil for just over a week, I noticed an improvement in my back pain. There was a time when I had serious problems falling asleep because of the sharp pains in my back that seemed to intensify whenever I laid down to fall asleep. It was a nightmare. I’d lay awake for hours changing positions to try and find a spot that didn’t leave me writhing in discomfort.

With this oil, my experience went far beyond what I expected. Not only did it help ease the pain, but my overall quality of sleep improved. I mean, I didn’t sleep longer but I began to wake up rested and with a clear head.

My favorite combination for this particular oil is the vanilla in the 1000 mg bottle. This is the largest potency option currently offered by Royal CBD and has the best value overall. I took the oil twice per day, once in the morning when I woke up, and again in the evening before bed. One bottle of the 1000 mg CBD oil lasted me about a month.

  • Sourced from US-grown organic hemp
  • Extracted with supercritical CO2
  • Contains the full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes
  • Available in 4 different strengths
  • Up to 2500mg of CBD per bottle
  • Lab-tested for potency and purity
  • Great natural flavors (no aftertaste and comes in multiple flavor options)
  • Free shipping within the USA
  • Newer brand on the market that only sells online, no physical presence

2. Gold Bee (Best Organic CBD Oil)

  • Premium Colorado-grown hemp
  • CO2 extraction
  • Contains full-spectrum CBD
  • Delicious kiwi flavor
  • Sweetened with organic honey
  • Lab-tested for potency and purity
  • Only one flavored option available
  • No high-strength oils (yet)

What I Like About Gold Bee:

I honestly believe Gold Bee makes the best organic CBD products out there. The brand combines premium Colorado-grown hemp with organic honey sourced from the Brazillian Rainforest. While Gold Bee offers a modest selection of oils — with up to 1200 mg of CBD per bottle — the formula is spot-on when it comes to the quality of ingredients. I’m totally not going to complain about the potency, as my back pain and sleep quality got better than with some high-strength oils I’ve tried in the past. Considering the quality of these products, they actually come at a bargain price. If you want to try other formats from Gold Bee, you can choose between its high-strength capsules and CBD-infused honey.

3. CBDPure (Runner Up)

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 100 – 600 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 1.6 – 10 mg/mL
What I Like About CBDPure CBD Oil:

I love how transparent this company is. If I were judging companies solely by their transparency level, CBDPure would have scored the second place, right after Royal CBD. The company provides all the details about each stage of production when making this CBD oil. You can find all the third-party lab test results for each batch on the product page — something we’ve come to expect from any high-quality CBD company.

What really makes this company stand out is its incredible satisfaction guarantee. If you order the product and decide it wasn’t working for you, simply send it back and get a full refund. This satisfaction guarantee extends over 3 whole months — which is about three times longer than the industry average.

I keep a bottle or two of CBDPure oil in my medicine cabinet for achy moments after a run or hike with the kids.

The only real downside to this oil is the potency — which comes in denominations of 1.5, 5, and 10 mg/mL. This is suitable for more minor symptoms, but may not be enough for people with heavy CBD demands.

  • Sourced from Colorado-grown organic hemp
  • Extracted with supercritical CO2
  • Tested for the cannabinoid content and purity in a third-party lab
  • Rock-solid 90-day return policy
  • Narrow product range
  • Low potency
  • They don’t ship to every state (i.e. Louisiana, Indiana, Arkansas, Kansas)

4. HempBombs

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 300 – 4000 mg
Available Flavors Unflavored, Acai Berry, Orange Creamsicle, Peppermint, Watermelon
Potency 10 – 133.3 mg/mL
What I Like About HempBombs:

I used HempBombs CBD isolate-based hemp oil for quite some time before switching to full-spectrum CBD oil and in my opinion, this is the best brand when it comes to CBD isolates. Their products contain 99% pure CBD and ZERO THC.

Now don’t get me wrong, CBD isolates are great, they offer consistent doses of CBD, contain 0% THC, and are generally cheaper than their full-spectrum counterparts. In most cases, I like using a full-spectrum extract like Royal CBD oil because of something called the entourage effect — which is a concept highlighting the phenomenon where cannabinoids like CBD tend to work better when other hemp-derived compounds are also present.

In isolates, the only cannabinoid present is CBD.

HempBombs CBD oil is available in five different strengths — from 300mg to 4000mg per bottle. The CBD is added in the form of a 99% pure isolate — which means there’s going to be virtually no traceable amounts of any other cannabinoids, including THC, CBC, CBG, or CBN.

You can also buy these oils in different flavors. Hemp Bombs often adds new flavors to the list, but my all-time personal favorite is the Acai berry. It’s not too sweet but adds a really pleasant flavor to the otherwise bland CBD and MCT oil formula.

  • Sourced from 100% certified organic hemp from European farms
  • Extracted with supercritical CO2
  • Completely THC-free
  • Tested in third-party laboratories for purity and potency
  • Available in 5 separate strengths
  • Up to 4000mg of CBD per bottle
  • Lacks the synergistic effects from other cannabinoids
  • The highest potencies are overkill for most users
  • Uses synthetic flavoring agents

5. CBDistillery

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 250 – 5000 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 8.3 – 166 mg/mL
What I Like About CBDistillery:

CBDistillery is now one of the largest CBD companies in North America. The company began in 2016 as a legacy brand for Balanced Health Botanicals.

Over the years, CBDistillery has had the chance to really dial-in its CBD oil formula. The company now sells its CBD oil in two formats — “full-spectrum” and “THC-free.” The THC-free option is great for people who want to benefit from the synergy of CBD and other cannabinoids but without bringing any THC whatsoever into their system.

Even the full-spectrum option contains less than 0.3% THC — which is well below the amount needed to cause any psychoactive effects. These oils are both completely non-psychoactive.

You can choose between five different strengths, starting at 250mg up to 5000mg of CBD per bottle. This covers just about every range of potencies you would ever need. We recommend opting for the higher potency options because they have the best value overall. The higher potency you purchase, the further your dollar gets you.

The more potent options also las the longest because you need smaller amounts of the oil each time to get the desired dose of CBD.

I tried the 1000mg bottle to keep myself calm during the first few months after giving birth to my first son and I must admit it helped me maintain my sanity during that time. I found it to have a remarkable calming effect on the body and mind.

  • Available as full-spectrum CBD or pure CBD oil (THC-free)
  • 5 strengths to choose from
  • Carries up to 33.3 mg of CBD per mL (in the 1000 mg bottle)
  • Excellent value CBD oil
  • The hemp isn’t certified organic
  • No flavor options available
  • The company website is clunky and hard to navigate

6. NuLeaf Naturals

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 240 – 4850 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 48.5 mg/mL
What I Like About NuLeaf Naturals

Nuleaf Naturals is one of the most popular CBD companies in the United States — most likely related to how long the company has been in the business of selling CBD. Nuleaf naturals were one of the first CBD companies to enter the mainstream market.

Despite the companies longstanding reputation, Nuleaf Naturals only sells one CBD oil. When you go to the website you’ll find a few different options, including a pet oil — but it’s important to understand that these are all the exact same full-spectrum extract, the only difference is the bottle sizes.

We love the simplicity of Nuleaf Naturals product lineup. The oils come with a decent potency of around 48 mg/mL, and just about every bottle size you can imagine. This makes it easy for everybody to find a product that works for them regardless of the budget.

With that said, if you have the cash, we highly recommend getting the larger bottle sizes in order to get the best value for your money.

You can choose between five different sizes:

  • Sourced from organic Colorado-grown hemp
  • Extracted using supercritical CO2
  • Made from a full-spectrum hemp extract
  • More expensive than the other brands in this ranking
  • Narrow product range

7. Charlotte’s Web

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 200 – 1800 mg
Available Flavors Mint Chocolate, Lemon Twist, Orange Blossom, Olive Oil
Potency 7 – 60 mg/mL

About Charlotte’s Web:

Charlotte’s Web is one of the pioneers in the American CBD industry. Established by the Stanley Brothers, the company has coined a reputation of a trustworthy manufacturer by helping now late Charlotte Figi with her treatment-resistant epilepsy. Although the company has recently received a warning letter from the FDA due to their health claims, they still have many faithful customers and a massive number of positive reviews on the web.

Charlotte’s Web CBD oil comes in several potencies: 200 mg, 500 mg, 1500 mg, and 1800 mg of CBD per bottle. The highest strength offers 60 mg of full-spectrum CBD per milliliter. There are two bottle sizes to choose from: 30 mL and 100 mL; Charlotte’s Web also has flavored variants of its CBD oil, including Lemon Twist, Orange Blossom, Mint Chocolate, and Olive Oil.

What could the company do better?

First off, they could change their extraction method because they use ethanol, which is less efficient than CO2 extraction. Secondly, and most importantly, the suspension in olive oil makes them taste a bit bitter — even in the flavored versions.

Pros:

  • One of the most reputable brands on the market
  • Full-spectrum CBD
  • Delicious flavored versions
  • Up to 1800 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Available in two sizes: 30 mL and 100 mL
  • Third-party tested for potency and purity

Cons:

  • Non-organic hemp
  • Ethanol extraction
  • Suspension in olive oil (bitter taste)
  • The company received a warning letter from the FDA in the past due to inappropriate health claims

8. cbdMD

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 300 – 7500 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Berry, Orange, Mint
Potency 10 – 250 mg/mL

About cbdMD:

cbdMD is another popular manufacturer that offers a wide range of CBD extracts, from tinctures to gummies to capsules, bath bombs, topicals, sleep aids, and pet products.

The brand offers a wide range of pure CBD oils, with up to 7500 mg of CBD per bottle. The highest potency comes with a whopping dose of 200 mg of pure CBD suspended in MCT oil for higher bioavailability and a smoother flavor. cbdMD also has three flavored CBD oils: Berry, Orange, and Mint.

Despite an impressive potency range, cbdMD uses broad-spectrum CBD in their products, which doesn’t evoke the full entourage effect. The higher potency may not necessarily mean better results in this case.

The company has high transparency standards; not only does cbdMD broadly describe their activity from farming to testing, but they also provide batch-specific certificates of analysis for their products, including the results for potency and common contaminants like pesticides, heavy metals, and residual solvents.

Pros:

  • US-grown, non-GMO hemp
  • CO2 extraction
  • THC-free
  • Up to 7500 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Batch-specific certificates of analysis

Cons:

  • Limited entourage effect due to the lack of THC
  • Most people don’t need such high doses of CBD in their routine

9. Medterra

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 500 – 3000 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Citrus, Mint Chocolate
Potency 16 – 100 mg/mL

About Medterra:

Medterra is a small craft company from California. The brand offers premium CBD oils in different spectra: full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and isolates. The potency of these products ranges between 500 mg and 3000 mg of CBD per bottle, which is a standard range. On top of the unflavored version, there are two flavored options: Citrus and Chocolate

Medterra prides itself on making the real full-spectrum CBD because each bottle of its full-spectrum CBD oil comes with 2 mg of THC. However, these products are only legal in the states that have legalized higher amounts of THC for recreational use. So, if you want to buy the company’s products in all 50 states, your options are limited to broad-spectrum CBD and CBD isolate. These provide more CBD per bottle — upwards of 1000 mg.

The entire Medterra’s product range is tested in a third-party laboratory for their CBD content and safety.

Pros:

  • Premium-grade CBD oils
  • Up to 3000 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Available as full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and isolates
  • Lab tested for potency and purity

Cons:

  • The “real” full-spectrum CBD oil isn’t available in all states
  • Some of the lab reports indicate higher CBD levels than stated on the bottle
  • No discounts for returning customers

10. Joy Organics

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 450 – 900 mg
Available Flavors Tranquil Mint, Fresh Lime, Summer Lemon
Potency 15 – 30 mg/mL

About Joy Organics:

Joy Organics holds the reputation of one of the most reputable CBD vendors in the industry. The company was established by a woman named Joy Smith, who has been using CBD oil to manage her problems with pain and sleep. After experiencing the benefits of CBD first-hand, she has decided to share her passion for cannabis with other health-conscious consumers.

The brand sells a range of broad-spectrum CBD products from certified organic hemp. They have many positive reviews all over the Internet; they also haven’t received any warning letter regarding health claims from the FDA — unlike many companies in this space (even the veterans like Charlotte’s Web).

The Joy Organics CBD oil features a broad-spectrum CBD formula in a modest potency range, from 450 to 900 mg of CBD per bottle. You can choose from three refreshing flavors: Summer Lemon, Fresh Lime, and Tranquil Mint. The strongest version of the Joy Organics CBD oil contains 30 mg of broad-spectrum CBD in every milliliter, which is a standard dose for most people who take CBD oil for daily supplementation.

In 2018, one of the company’s flavored CBD oils was found to contain a fungicide that is commonly sprayed on citrus fruit during independent lab testing. Fortunately, Joy Organics recalled the product shortly after this incident and implemented a new third-party testing system to make sure there are no flaws in the end product.

Pros:

  • Non-GMO, US-grown hemp
  • Supercritical CO2 extraction
  • Broad-spectrum CBD
  • THC-free
  • Delicious flavors

Cons:

  • A bit expensive
  • No high-strength oils

CBD Oil for Pain Management: Complete Guide for Beginners

Now that we’ve covered a few CBD oil options that are going to provide the best value for your money, let’s discuss how CBD is suggested to support chronic pain in the first place. We’ll also cover some of the most common ways people are using CBD oil for pain.

What is CBD Oil?

CBD stands for cannabidiol _ it’s one of the primary active ingredients in the cannabis plant. It’s completely non-psychoactive and offers a wide range of benefits to the human body.

CBD oil is a combination of a CBD extract, with a carrier oil to help dissolve and store the CBD. Most CBD oils use carrier oils like MCT oil, or hemp seed oil — which is then combined with CBD isolate, or full-spectrum hemp extract rich in CBD and other similar cannabinoids.

Cannabinoids like CBD are fat-soluble — which means they dissolve when mixed with oil, but won’t dissolve in water. By dissolving these compounds in an oil solution, the CBD becomes much easier to store and use. Instead of measuring out micrograms of CBD crystals or hemp resin, all you need to do is measure oil to get your dose of CBD. This can be done using a simple dropper that comes standard with most CBD oils.

Because of their ease of use, and long shelf-life, CBD oils have become the go-to method of using CBD and other hemp extracts.

You can also opt-out to use CBD-infused gummies if you wanted something discreetly, read our in-depth review on CBD Gummies to understand better.

How Does CBD Work?

Cannabis has been used for managing pain and inflammation for thousands of years.

The earliest records of the medical use of the herb date back to ancient China when the emperor Shen-Nung placed it among other therapeutic substances in the Chinese pharmacopeia (1). The leaves were wrapped around an injury as a poultice to reduce pain and discomfort, and reverse swelling and bruising.

Despite being a known medicine for a long time, scientists have only recently begun to unlock the mechanisms cannabis uses to achieve its important pain-killing benefits.

Since the discovery of the endocannabinoid system in 1992, CBD and other phytocannabinoids have been in the spotlight of modern medicine.

The endocannabinoid system is one of the most important neurochemical networks in the human body (2). It works by interacting with the endocannabinoid system — a series of hormones and receptors that help regulate over a dozen core processes in the human body. The active compounds in the cannabis plant are very similar to the naturally-produced hormones involved with our endocannabinoid system.

By interacting with the endocannabinoid system, CBD and other cannabinoids are able to modulate several key processes, such as:

  • Appetite
  • Immune function
  • Memory
  • Mood
  • Stress
  • Sensory perception (including pain)
  • Inflammation
  • Reproductive health
  • Nerve function
  • Sleep

How Can CBD Reduce Pain Transmission?

How does all of this relate to pain? The answer lies in the way pain is transmitted to the brain.

When we injure ourselves, cells in the immediate vicinity begin releasing compounds that trigger a cascade of inflammation and sensory activation — which is what triggers the pain transmission.

The pain signal is then sent to the spinal cord through a network of nerves distributed all around the body.

Once in the spine, the pain signal is sent through a gateway (opioid and vanilloid receptors) designed to limit the amount of signal that ends up in the brain for processing. This works like a border crossing. The border security decides whether or not you’re allowed to enter and what you can take with you.

In the context of pain, these gateways can limit the amount of pain signal that continues across the border to the brain. If more pain signal is allowed to pass, the brain perceives more pain. If the pain is stopped at the border, the brain perceives less pain.

Conventional pain medications work by activating the opioid receptors acting as a key gateway for pain transmission to the brain.

CBD has a similar effect, but through a different receptor is known as the vanilloid receptors. These vanilloid receptors are tasked with regulating a specific form of pain caused by either heat or inflammation. CBD has been reported to modulate this vanilloid receptor — leading to a reduction in the pain signals sent to the brain from inflammatory causes such as arthritis, muscle damage, or infection, to name a few.

CBD has other ways it can limit pain transmission as well:

  • CBD may reduce inflammation, limiting the initial cause of pain in the body
  • CBD acts as an antioxidant, helping the body resist and recover from damage
  • CBD relaxes muscle fibers, reducing pain caused by muscle spasms and tightness

More research is needed to fully understand how CBD and other active cannabinoids can block pain. Every year dozens of new research papers are published in an attempt to paint a clear picture of how CBD works, how to get the most benefit from the supplement, and what its limitations are.

(Pain Transmission Pathway to the Brain)

Choosing CBD Oil Companies: How to Differentiate the Good From the Bad

CBD has become a lucrative business. Companies are selling a myriad of different CBD oils and other products in an attempt to cash in on the new health trend. This means there are a lot of excellent products coming to market, but it also means there’s a lot of trash as well. It’s important as a CBD user that you understand what makes a CBD oil good, and what makes it bad so you can avoid wasting your money, or worse — using CBD oils that contain harmful or damaging ingredients.

Let’s cover the most important points to remember when shopping for CBD oil online or in-store.

1. Check the Hemp Source

The source of the hemp used to make the oil is vitally important when it comes to determining which CBD oils are the best. The main reason comes down to the botany of the hemp plant itself.

Hemp is a bio-accumulator — which means it has the tendency to absorb compounds from the soil and accumulate them in its leaves, stems, and roots. The deep taproots of the hemp plant stretch far beneath the soil, pulling out and storing all the heavy metals and other elements it can find in the soil.

This aspect is in part why hemp is so nutritious, but it also means that plants grown in contaminated soils often contain contaminants that can be harmful to your health. Some of the worst offenders are heavy metals — which can build up in the body over time and lead to severe long-term health effects.

You want to avoid consuming heavy metals at all costs.

Poorly grown hemp could contain heavy metals, as well as other contaminants like mycotoxins, or pesticide residues that will end up in the CBD oil after all the processing is complete.

For this reason, it’s important to purchase CBD oil from companies that account for this effect. Only buy from company’s that make an effort to source hemp from organic farms, and take measures to assess every batch of hemp that enters the facility to determine heavy metal, microbial contaminant, and pesticide contamination.

The best hemp sources tend to come from states like Oregon, Colorado, or Alabama, as well as neighboring countries like Canada or Scandinavian countries. These places are all known for having high standards for hemp cultivation, and clean soils.

2. Look for CO2 Extracted Products

Once the company has the hemp, they need to extract the CBD from it. You can do this in many different ways using solvents like ethanol, methanol, hexane, ether, or butane. All of these solvents work to strip the active compounds from the hemp plant and can then be evaporated to leave behind a pure CBD-rich resin.

however, there’s a problem with these solvents.

Even in professional lab settings, it can be very difficult to remove all traces of these solvents from the final product. Most of these solvents are toxic to the human body, even in trace amounts.

Therefore, the best companies are using another method to strop the active ingredients from the starting hemp material. This method uses CO2 placed under high pressure. the high pressure and temperature control convert the CO2 into a phase that’s neither liquid nor gas. This special state is referred to as being supercritical.

Supercritical CO2 acts just like any other solvent, but with one key benefit — as soon as the pressure is relieved, the gas evaporates completely, leaving behind no harmful chemical residues.

when shopping for CBD oil, it’s ideal to look for a company that uses supercritical CO2 to extract the CBD rather than the toxic solvents mentioned above. Supercritical CO2 is very expensive and highly technical — but usually produces a far superior product in the end.

If a company is using harsh solvents like butane or propane (or they don’t tell you anything about their extraction methods), it’s a sign that you should look for another brand.

3. Ask for Third-Party Lab Reports

Every company has the option to send their products to an independent lab or third-party testing.

These laboratory tests check for the entire cannabinoid profile of the extract and are able to detect over 200 common contaminants.

Before a CBD product becomes available for sale, it should pass the laboratory test for potency and purity. If any inconsistencies are shown between different batches of the same product, the company should rework it and send it for analysis once again.

High-quality CBD companies will continually send each batch of product to a lab with no affiliation to the company (called a third-party or independent lab) for testing. These results are then published publicly on the website for customers to view.

The best companies will take this even one step further — adding a database and batch numbers on every bottle of CBD oil so you can view the results for your specific bottle of oil. Third-party testing is now an industry standard.

Always buy your CBD oil from companies that show third-party lab reports on their website. Only then will you know what’s inside the bottle before you even order a product. If the company is producing CBD oil that’s as high quality, as they say, there should be nothing to hide in these lab tests and they should be listed publicly on the company website. If you can’t find them on the site, you can ask customer service for these as well.

If these tests don’t exist, or you can’t track them down from the website or customer service — it’s best to avoid this company and move on to another that takes this important step seriously.

What the Research Says About Using CBD Oil for Pain:

Understanding how CBD works is no simple task. This compound is incredibly complex — working through a number of unrelated receptors around the body, interacting with enzymes, cell membranes, and various other cell structures. This makes studying CBD very difficult.

Nevertheless, there have been thousands of research papers published on medical marijuana — seeking to understand the interaction between cannabinoids like CBD and the human body. A lot of this research specifically focused on the effects of CBD on various forms and causes of pain. Let’s explore some of the results this research has yielded in the context of pain management.

1. CBD Oil for Chronic Back & Nerve Pain

The painkilling properties of cannabidiol have been most thoroughly studied in animal models, as well as a handful of human clinical trials.

One of the best studies we have available on the topic is a meta-analysis published in 2017. This analysis looked at 24 different clinical trials involving 1,334 patients over several years and demographics. These studies all used various forms of cannabis for treating chronic pain. The analysis reports that many of these studies showed a reduction in chronic pain scores by 50% or more (3) — suggesting the cannabis plant to be a potential treatment for chronic pain.

Another clinical trial looked at the effects of a combination of CBD to THC in the treatment of intractable cancer pain. This study found that twice as many people in the treatment group given CBD and THC had a 30% or more reduction in pain symptoms at the conclusion of the trial (6).

Even though more clinical trials on humans are needed to gauge how CBD affects specific forms of pain or other conditions, scientists believe the efficacy of CBD in treating chronic pain is related to its anti-inflammatory effects (3).

2. CBD Oil for Arthritis

CBD has had a lot of research as a potential alternative to prescription and non-prescription pain medications commonly used for alleviating arthritis pain.

Researchers have found a clear link between the endocannabinoid system and the pathophysiology of osteoarthritis, which is a degenerative joint disease associated with chronic pain and inflammation (4).

One of the key areas CBD is thought to support osteoarthritis specifically is through the effects on an enzyme known as 5-lipoxygenase — AKA 5-LOX. CBD has been shown to inhibit this enzyme (7), which converts fatty acids into pro-inflammatory compounds. These inflammatory messengers have been shown to be a key component in the underlying inflammation involved with osteoarthritis (8).

By reducing the underlying causes of arthritis pain, CBD is thought to reduce the overall burden of pain from the condition over the long term.

3. CBD and Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Pain

Due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, CBD is a potent neuroprotective — which is how experts believe CBD is able to relieve debilitating MS pain, —which affects roughly 50–70% of patients diagnosed with the condition.

A study conducted on animals at Cajan Institute tested the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD on mice the researchers wanted to find out if CBD can provide a reversed inflammatory response on those cells. After ten days, the researchers found a reduction in inflammatory markers with a rodent encephalitis model designed to imitate the impact MS has on the body (5).

More research is needed to see exactly how these effects are translated to humans. Currently, there are 23 clinical trials currently underway, or planned within the next 12 months seeking to explore the effects of CBD on MS.

4. CBD Oil in Sports: Injuries & Muscle Endurance

Cannabidiol can be applied in two different ways when it comes to pain and physical activities. For example, when you administer CBD orally in the form of oil as a post-workout, it helps alleviate the muscle inflammation that troubles athletes once they go beyond the edge again.

If, however, you’re suffering from an injury, it’s best to apply CBD topically. Its anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties allow the cannabinoid to relieve pain and improve regeneration capacities.

Does CBD Have Any Side Effects?

The main reason why parents are so enthusiastic about CBD is that this cannabinoid is completely non-intoxicating, doesn’t cause addiction, and has only a few mild side effects when taken at excessive doses.

Research shows that even doses up to one and a half grams have no severe side effects on human health (9).

Despite being a notoriously safe supplement, there are some side effects of using CBD in high doses. Let’s cover the most common side effects people report from using CBD:

  • Anxiety
  • Brain fog
  • Reduced appetite
  • Mood changes
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea and vomiting

The most common side effect by far, like other forms of cannabis, is dry mouth. This is best managed by taking your CBD oil along with some juice like pineapple or orange juice.

Another common side effect is lowered blood pressure, which may trigger another unwanted reaction — lightheadedness. This side effect is important to consider if you suffer from low blood pressure already or are taking blood pressure-lowering medications.

Always consult your doctor before using CBD or other cannabis extracts if you’re taking prescription medications or have underlying medical conditions.

In Summary: Buying CBD Oil For Pain

As CBD becomes more popular around the world, scientists are publishing new research on cannabinoids on a near-weekly basis. As time goes on, experts are mapping out the complicated mechanisms CBD and other hemp derivatives are using to support both acute and chronic pain of all different origins.

Here are the main takeaways from the current research:

  • CBD inhibits inflammation at several different levels
  • CBD offers antioxidant support
  • CBD may relieve muscle tension and inflammation
  • CBD interacts with the vanilloid receptors in the brain responsible for regulating inflammatory pain transmission

When it comes to pain, CBD appears to target the cause of the problem instead of just masking its symptoms.

Getting relief on so many levels and without any harmful side effects or risk of addiction is the reason why CBD oil has become so popular over the past half a decade.

I hope this guide has managed to clear up any confusion regarding CBD oil and pain, and given you the insight necessary to find the right CBD oil for the job.

Have you tried CBD oil for chronic pain? Did you feel any difference? Let me know in the comments below!

References:

  1. Brand, E. J., & Zhao, Z. (2017). Cannabis in Chinese Medicine: Are Some Traditional Indications Referenced in Ancient Literature Related to Cannabinoids?. Frontiers in pharmacology, 8, 108.
  2. Alger B. E. (2013). Getting high on the endocannabinoid system. Cerebrum: the Dana forum on brain science, 2013, 14.
  3. Aviram, J., Samuelly-Leichtag, G. (2017) Efficacy of Cannabis-Based Medicines for Pain Management: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Pain Physician, 20(6), E755-E796.
  4. Bruni, N., Della Pepa, C., Oliaro-Bosso, S., Pessione, E., Gastaldi, D., & Dosio, F. (2018). Cannabinoid Delivery Systems for Pain and Inflammation Treatment. Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), 23(10), 2478.
  5. Elliott, D. M., Singh, N., Nagarkatti, M., & Nagarkatti, P. S. (2018). Cannabidiol Attenuates Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Model of Multiple Sclerosis Through Induction of Myeloid-Derived Suppressor Cells. Frontiers in immunology, 9, 1782.
  6. Johnson, J. R., Burnell-Nugent, M., Lossignol, D., Ganae-Motan, E. D., Potts, R., & Fallon, M. T. (2010). Multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study of the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of THC: CBD extract and THC extract in patients with intractable cancer-related pain. Journal of pain and symptom management, 39(2), 167-179.
  7. Takeda, S., Usami, N., Yamamoto, I., & Watanabe, K. (2009). Cannabidiol-2′, 6′-dimethyl ether, a cannabidiol derivative, is a highly potent and selective 15-lipoxygenase inhibitor. Drug Metabolism and Disposition.
  8. Lascelles, B. D. X., King, S., Roe, S., Marcellin‐Little, D. J., & Jones, S. (2009). Expression and activity of COX‐1 and 2 and 5‐LOX in joint tissues from dogs with naturally occurring coxofemoral joint osteoarthritis. Journal of orthopaedic research, 27(9), 1204-1208.Chicago
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Top cbd oil for appetite for sale

As of 2022, CBD that comes from hemp (a type of cannabis sativa plant) that produces no more than 0.3% THC by dry weight is considered legal at the federal level. State laws vary, so it’s best to confirm any rules and regulations that apply to your area with your local and state legislation.

Is CBD oil safe?

The FDA reports it’s only seen limited data regarding the safety of CBD. Anyone interested in consuming CBD in any form should first consult with their healthcare provider and be aware of potential risks associated with using CBD products, including liver injury, drug interactions and male reproductive toxicity.

Who should use CBD oil?

A growing body of research suggests CBD oil can benefit people with:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • PTSD
  • Epilepsy syndromes
  • Opioid addiction
  • Neurodegenerative disorders and diseases
  • Unmanageable chronic pain
  • Diabetic complications
  • Arthritis

Talk to your healthcare provider to learn more about whether CBD oil could be beneficial for you.

Can CBD oil impact the results of a drug test?

Standard drug tests don’t screen for CBD because it’s not an intoxicating substance, nor is it an illegal controlled substance. However, some CBD products contain trace amounts of THC, which can affect the results of a drug test.

Sources

Footnotes

  • Battista N, Di Tommaso M, Bari M, Maccarrone M. The endocannabinoid system: an overview. Front Behav Neurosci. 2012;6:9.

References

  • VanDolah HJ, Bauer BA, Mauck KF. Clinicians’ Guide to Cannabidiol and Hemp Oils. Mayo Clin Proc. 2019;94(9):1840-1851.
  • Lu H-C, Mackie K. An introduction to the endogenous cannabinoid system. Biol Psychiatry. 2016;79(7):516–525.
  • Cather JC, Cather JC. Cannabidiol primer for healthcare professionals. Proc (Bayl Univ Med Cent). 2020;33(3):376–379.
  • FDA and Cannabis: Research and Drug Approval Process. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Accessed 8/10/2021.
  • FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD). U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Accessed 8/10/2021.
  • What is third party certification?. National Science Foundation. Accessed 8/10/2021.
  • How to read a COA and why it’s so important. ACS Laboratory. Accessed 8/10/2021.
  • What You Need to Know (And What We’re Working to Find Out) About Products Containing Cannabis or Cannabis-derived Compounds, Including CBD. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Accessed 8/10/2021.
  • Can You Take CBD and Pass a Drug Test?. Consumer Reports. Accessed 8/10/2021.

Information provided on Forbes Health is for educational purposes only. Your health and wellness is unique to you, and the products and services we review may not be right for your circumstances. We do not offer individual medical advice, diagnosis or treatment plans. For personal advice, please consult with a medical professional.

Forbes Health adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. To the best of our knowledge, all content is accurate as of the date posted, though offers contained herein may no longer be available. The opinions expressed are the author’s alone and have not been provided, approved or otherwise endorsed by our advertisers.

Alena is a professional writer, editor and manager with a lifelong passion for helping others live well. She is also a registered yoga teacher (RYT-200) and a functional medicine certified health coach. She brings more than a decade of media experience to Forbes Health, with a keen focus on building content strategy, ensuring top content quality and empowering readers to make the best health and wellness decisions for themselves.

Top 10 Best CBD Oil Products for Sleep Aid & Insomnia (2022 Update)

Sleep-related problems affect 50 to 70 million Americans every year, according to the National Sleep Foundation. That means roughly one in every five Americans suffers sleeping issues each year.

This is a concerning metric when you consider just how vital sleep is for our health. Insufficient sleep can affect everything from cognitive function to cardiovascular health.

Getting deep and restful sleep is difficult to achieve when we’re stressed, have small children or infants, or are anticipating an important meeting or presentation the following day.

When my first child was born, I was looking for help sleeping anywhere I could look. I ended up relying on OTC meds for a while. I soon realized I didn’t want to be that kind of parent whose daily performance depended on potentially dangerous medications. I just wanted to remain clear-headed throughout the day and get rid of that free-floating anxiety keeping me awake at night.

And then I discovered CBD oil.

Don’t get me wrong, CBD oil isn’t some kind of a magic pill that will turn you on and off on demand. Instead, it’s a very versatile tool that can help you regulate your sleeping patterns and put you in the right frame of mind to help you fall asleep naturally.

In this article, we’ll discuss why CBD is so popular for helping people get a good night’s rest, how to use CBD oil effectively, and provide a list of the best CBD oils for sleep.

Best CBD Oil For Sleep — Top 10 Brands Reviewed in 2022

CBD oil needs some time to take effect. Supplementation with CBD should be considered a long-term investment in your health rather than a miracle short-term cure for all your problems.

I’ve tried a ton of different CBD oils out there in search of something that could help with my anxiety and sleeping issues. Here’s a collection of the CBD oil brands I’ve found to offer the best support when it comes to sleeping issues.

1. Royal CBD (Most Potent for Sleep)

Get 15% off all Royal CBD products. Use code “CFAH” at checkout.

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 250 – 2500 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Peppermint, Vanilla, Berry
Potency 8.3 – 83.3 mg/mL
What I Like About Royal CBD:

Most of the time, I approach new CBD brands with a lot of skepticism. Not because I don’t believe in them — it’s because I’ve seen way too many CBD companies fail to deliver on their promises.

Royal CBD is one of the few companies that practice what they preach. They claim to use high-grade ingredients and ordering a bottle to test I wasn’t let down. Everything feels quality with this company. The hemp oil tastes fresh and clean, and the MCT oil contains absolutely zero impurities.

The brand even provides up-to-date third-party lab tests publicly on its website. This is a big step in the right direction for Royal CBD because it proves the company believes in what they sell and want to offer as much transparency to its customers as possible.

Royal CBD was launched in 2018, selling only two types of products: full-spectrum CBD oil and Zero-THC CBD Gummies (read our gummies buying guide for more information). Only later in 2019 did the company begin branching out to sell CBD-infused topical creams.

Royal CBD continues to grow and release new products every few months such as CBD capsules that help fight insomnia. I’ve tested all of them and have yet to be disappointed.

CBD oil from Royal is sourced from Colorado-grown organic hemp, which already speaks to the quality of these oils. Colorado is well-known for producing some of the best hemp in North America.

The guys at Royal CBD make their hemp extract using supercritical CO2 extraction, which results in a pure and potent product free from any residual solvents. Conventional extraction uses either butane or hexane — which can leave small amounts of these toxic solvents in the final product. Using CO2 eliminates this possibility by using CO2 instead — which simply evaporates into the air as soon as the pressure is released.

Don’t take my word for it, just go to their website and open the lab analysis of their full-spectrum CBD oils.

Once extracted from the hemp plant, the team at Royal CBD dissolves the extract into premium-grade MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) oil. This helps with absorption in the gut and makes it much easier to measure doses of CBD.

  • Sourced from organic hemp
  • Extracted with supercritical CO2
  • Contained in premium MCT oil
  • Full-spectrum (you get the entourage effect)
  • Up to 500 mg of CBD per bottle (16.6 mg/mL)
  • Higher in CBN than the competition
  • Lab-tested for potency and purity
  • Good price/quality ratio
  • Only two potencies available
  • No flavored options

2. Gold Bee – Best Organic Formula

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 1200 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Kiwi-Honey
Potency 40 mg/mL

What I Like About Gold Bee:

Try as you might, but you won’t find a better organic formula out there. The only reason why Gold Bee scores second place here is the lack of high-strength CBD oils in their collection. Other than that, this is a creme de la creme of CBD extracts.

This California-based company was established in late 2019 by a group of health-conscious superfood producers. The guys at Gold Bee have taken their experience from the superfoods industry and carried it over to the hemp market in order to raise the quality standards among competitors.

Gold Bee makes full-spectrum CBD, so you’re getting the synergy from all active ingredients in hemp. The cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids allow the body to process CBD more efficiently so that lower doses can remain effective — the primary reason why Gold Bee has yet to release a high-strength version of its oils.

The CBD extract is suspended in hemp seed oil for higher bioavailability. Unlike competitor brands, Gold Bee doesn’t use artificial flavorings and sweeteners in its flavored CBD oils. Instead, the company uses its organic honey as a sweetener, which is another advantage in its favor. If you use 40 mg CBD or less (daily), Gold Bee’s products are very affordable in the long run, especially when you consider the quality of their ingredients.

I use half a dropper before bed to boost my sleep length and quality (the oil does a great job here), and a quarter after I wake up to improve my energy, sharpen my focus, and reduce anxiety throughout the day.

The Gold Bee CBD oil, as well as its capsules and CBD-infused honey sticks, are rigorously tested in a third-party laboratory for its CBD content and purity. If you don’t feel satisfied with the company’s product, you can use its 30-day money-back guarantee to get a full refund for returning the product.

  • Premium Colorado-grown hemp
  • CO2 extraction
  • Contains full-spectrum CBD
  • Delicious kiwi flavor
  • Sweetened with organic honey
  • Lab-tested for potency and purity
  • Only one flavored option available
  • No high-strength oils (yet)

3. CBDPure

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 100 – 600 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 1.6 – 10 mg/mL
What I Like About CBDPure Oil:

CBDPure is one of the more reputable companies I’ve come across. They describe each stage of production for their CBD oil and provide extensive third-party testing on each batch to remain transparent about the quality and potency of the oil.

CBDPure CBD oil is sourced from domestically grown hemp and extracted with supercritical carbon dioxide for the highest purity possible without any chances of contaminating the final product with butane or other harmful chemical solvents.

These are full-spectrum extracts, so you need less CBD to get the desired results than you would with CBD isolate. This feature makes up for the low potency of CBDPure products. However, if you need something a little stronger, we recommend you go with Royal CBD oil instead.

Nevertheless, if you’re still unsatisfied with the effects, CBDPure offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee program, which gives you a full refund if you return the order within 90 days after purchase.

  • Sourced from Colorado-grown organic hemp
  • Extracted with supercritical CO2
  • Tested for potency and purity in 3rd-party laboratories
  • You have 90 days to return the product for a full refund if you’re not satisfied with it
  • Only oil drops and soft gel capsules available
  • Low potency
  • They don’t ship to Indiana, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Kansas

4. Hemp Bombs

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 300 – 4000 mg
Available Flavors Unflavored, Acai Berry, Orange Creamsicle, Peppermint, Watermelon
Potency 10 – 133.3 mg/mL
What I Like About HempBombs:

HempBombs is my absolute number one when it comes to CBD isolates. This American company specializes in making 99% pure CBD extracts. You can buy their products as regular tinctures, vape oils, capsules, and gummies.

HempBombs CBD oil is sold in five different potency options, from 300 mg to 4000 mg of CBD per bottle.

The hemp used to make this CBD oil has been sourced from certified organic farms in Europe and extracted with CO2 for maximum purity. This oil also contains zero THC, which makes it a great alternative for people who want to avoid even trace amounts of psychoactive THC.

The isolate will give you the highest dose per serving, which is better for sleep support as higher doses of CBD tend to offer the best sleep support.

With that said, experts generally agree full-spectrum extracts offer a stronger effect profile due to the complex synergy between the many cannabinoids and terpenes produced in the hemp plant. If you’re okay taking trace amounts of THC and other cannabinoids with your oil (non-psychoactive), I recommend you go for a full-spectrum option instead. My favorite full-spectrum option is the Royal CBD oil discussed in point number one.

  • Sourced from 100% certified organic hemp from European farmers
  • Extracted with CO2
  • Contains zero THC
  • Lab-tested for purity and potency
  • 5 potency options available
  • Carries up to 4000 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Less expensive than full-spectrum CBD oil
  • No entourage effect from other cannabinoids and terpenes
  • Hemp Bombs uses synthetic flavoring for its CBD oils

5. CBDistillery

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 250 – 5000 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 8.3 – 166 mg/mL
What I Like About CBDistillery:

CBDistillery is one of the veterans in the industry — having been around for a few years before the CBD industry began to explode in popularity.

Despite being one of the trailblazers in the industry, CBDistillery hasn’t settled. The company continues to innovate the industry with new products, marketing techniques, and customer service improvements. They offer some of the most reliable CBD products on the market.

CBDistillery sells both “full-spectrum” and “THC-free.” oils. This gives customers the option to choose either a full-spectrum product or broad-spectrum extract that can guarantee 0% THC.

There are five different potencies to choose from, starting at 250 mg and increasing in intervals all the way up to 5000 mg of CBD per bottle. The highest potency options deliver the best value for your money and provide enough CBD to last a few months.

CBDistillery is a good brand to consider for mothers who don’t want to spend a fortune on high-quality CBD. Their 250 mg CBD oil costs just $20 — making it super easy for anybody to try CBD without breaking the bank.

  • Sourced from non-GMO, pesticide-free hemp plants
  • Available as THC-free or full-spectrum hemp oil
  • Third-party lab tested
  • 5 different potency options to choose from
  • Contains up to 66.6 mg of CBD per ml of oil (in the 1000 mg bottle)
  • Not certified organic
  • No additional flavor options

6. NuLeaf Naturals

Technical Details:
Total CBD Content 240 – 4850 mg
Available Flavors None
Potency 48.5 mg/mL
What I Like About NuLeaf Naturals:

NuLeaf Naturals has been providing consumers with CBD oil for over 5 years now. The company only sells two products — which are actually the exact same oil. There’s a version for humans, and one for pets.

At first, it seems this company offers a whole range of different potencies for this product, but the reality is that these oils are all the same potency of 48 mg/mL — they just come in different bottle sizes.

While the selection of CBD oil sizes and product types is slim, the company is best known for producing a reliable, high-quality products. Every time you order, you can rest assured the product you receive will be at the highest level of quality possible. Nuleaf has a large following of users who swear by this brand.

All Nuleaf Naturals products are sourced from domestically-grown hemp and extracted with a combination of subcritical and supercritical CO2. NuLeaf Naturals CBD oil has been carefully filtered to remove any plant matter — hence its beautiful amber-gold color.

There are five different volumes to choose from:

  • 5 mL — 240 mg of CBD per bottle
  • 15 mL — 725 mg of CBD per bottle
  • 30 mL — 1450 mg of CBD per bottle
  • 50 mL — 2425 mg of CBD per bottle
  • 100 mL — 4850 mg of CBD per bottle

Every bottle of Nuleaf Naturals CBD oil delivers 48 mg/mL of CBD — which works out to around 1.6 milligrams of CBD per drop. This is a relatively high potency compared to a lot of the other CBD oils on the market. For most people, a higher dose of CBD is necessary to achieve optimal benefits in regard to falling asleep.

  • Sourced from 100% organic hemp grown in Colorado
  • Extracted with a mix of subcritical and supercritical CO2
  • Tested in laboratories for potency and over 200 common chemicals
  • More expensive than the competition
  • Small product range

7. Charlotte’s Web

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 200 – 1800 mg
Available Flavors Mint Chocolate, Lemon Twist, Orange Blossom, Olive Oil
Potency 7 – 60 mg/mL

About Charlotte’s Web:

Charlotte’s Web is one of the most well-known names in the CBD space. Established by the Stanley Brothers, the company has coined the reputation of a trustworthy manufacturer when they helped now late Charlotte Figi with her intractable epilepsy, naming their signature hemp strain after the girl. Although Charlotte’s Web has recently received a warning letter from the FDA due to its health claims and inconsistencies in CBD levels between different products, the brand still holds the title of one of the best companies on the market.

Charlotte’s Web CBD oil comes in 4 strengths: 200 mg, 500 mg, 1500 mg, and 1800 mg of CBD per bottle. The highest potency offers 60 mg of full-spectrum CBD in every milliliter, leveraging the whole-plant synergy. You can buy these oils in either 30 mL or 100 mL bottles; they are available in four flavor versions, including Mint Chocolate, Lemon Twist, Orange Blossom, and Olive Oil.

Much as I appreciate the company’s contribution to the cannabis community, I believe that the guys at Charlotte’s Web could use a better extraction method. They currently utilize ethanol instead of CO2, which isn’t the best method for the broad-scale production of CBD extracts. Not to mention the suspension in olive oil, which makes these oils taste a bit bitter — even in the flavored versions.

Pros:

  • One of the most reputable brands on the market
  • Full-spectrum CBD
  • Deliciously flavored versions
  • Up to 1800 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Available in two sizes: 30 mL and 100 mL
  • Third-party tested for potency and purity

Cons:

  • Non-organic hemp
  • Ethanol extraction
  • Suspension in olive oil (bitter taste)
  • The company received a warning letter from the FDA in the past due to inappropriate health claims

8. cbdMD

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 300 – 7500 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Berry, Orange, Mint
Potency 10 – 250 mg/mL

About cbdMD:

CbdMD is another reputable manufacturer that offers a range of CBD products, including tinctures, gummies, capsules, sleep aids, topicals, bath bombs, and pet products.

The company’s CBD oils are available in a broad range of concentrations, from 300 mg to a whopping 7500 mg of CBD per bottle. The strongest version delivers 200 mg of CBD in every milliliter, making this product a very affordable option if you want to stock up for months to come.

The CBD extract has been infused into MCT oil for better absorption. You can choose from three flavored options: Orange, Mint, and Berry.

However, these products are based on broad-spectrum CBD, which means there are no traces of THC in them. As a result, you’re not getting the full entourage effect. The therapeutic effects of CBD aren’t linear on the dose-response curve, so the more isn’t necessarily the merrier in this case.

Transparency-wise, CbdMD has high standards, providing batch-specific certificates of analysis for all its products, including the results for pesticides, heavy metals, solvents, and microbial contaminants.

Pros:

  • US-grown, non-GMO hemp
  • CO2 extraction
  • THC-free
  • Up to 7500 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Batch-specific certificates of analysis

Cons:

  • Limited entourage effect due to the lack of THC
  • Most people don’t need such high doses of CBD in their routine

9. Medterra

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 500 – 3000 mg
Available Flavors Natural, Citrus, Mint Chocolate
Potency 16 – 100 mg/mL

About Medterra:

Medterra was founded in California as a small artisan company. It didn’t take long for the founders to grow the brand to a decent size and achieve a reputation of a solid manufacturer. Medterra specializes in premium CBD oils, which they sell in all cannabinoid spectra — including full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolates. These products contain between 500 and 3000 mg of CBD per bottle, which is a standard range for CBD companies. On top of the unflavored CBD oil, you can choose from two flavored variants: Citrus and Chocolate.

Medterra claims to offer real full-spectrum CBD oils, with 2 mg of THC in each bottle. However, if you want to order these products, you need to live in one of the 17 states that have legalized cannabis for recreational use. If you want a federally legal product, your options are limited to broad-spectrum CBD and isolate.

All Medterra’s products are third-party tested for their CBD content and safety.

Medterra is a small artisan brand rooted in California. The company specializes in premium CBD oils in various cannabinoid spectra, including full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate. These products contain from 500 mg to 3000 mg of CBD per bottle, which is a regular range for CBD companies. Aside from the unflavored version, you can choose from two flavored options: Citrus and Chocolate.

Pros:

  • Premium-grade CBD oils
  • Up to 3000 mg of CBD per bottle
  • Available as full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and isolates
  • Lab-tested for potency and purity

Cons:

  • The “real” full-spectrum CBD oil isn’t available in all states
  • Some of the lab reports indicate higher CBD levels than stated on the bottle
  • No discounts for returning customers

10. Joy Organics

Technical Details
Total CBD Content 450 – 900 mg
Available Flavors Tranquil Mint, Fresh Lime, Summer Lemon
Potency 15 – 30 mg/mL

About Joy Organics:

Joy Organics was founded by a woman named Joy Smith, who has been taking CBD oil for her problems with pain and sleep. After experiencing the benefits of CBD first-hand, she has decided to share her passion for hemp extracts with people seeking natural and safe alternatives to conventional treatments.

Joy Organics offers a range of broad-spectrum CBD oils from certified organic hemp. The company has a lot of positive reviews on the third-party websites; they also haven’t received any warning letter from the FDA, unlike some of the other brands in our ranking. These are low-strength products, containing 450 mg or 900 mg of CBD per bottle. The stronger option provides 30 mg of CBD per milliliter, which is the standard dosage for many daily users who take CBD to support their endocannabinoid system.

These are one of the best-tasting CBD oils I’ve ever tried. They are available in three refreshing flavors: Tranquil Mint, Summer Lemon, and Fresh Lime.

In 2018, the Joy Organics citrus tincture was found to be contaminated with a fungicide commonly sprayed on citrus fruits. After these results from an independent lab analysis came out, the company immediately removed the tincture from its lineup and changed their third-party testing system to make sure such errors won’t happen again.

Pros:

  • Non-GMO, US-grown hemp
  • Supercritical CO2 extraction
  • Broad-spectrum CBD
  • THC-free
  • Delicious flavors

Cons:

  • A bit expensive
  • No high-strength oils

Why Do I Have Trouble Sleeping?

The most common form of sleep disorder is insomnia. There are a lot of reasons why someone may experience difficulty sleeping. It helps to rule things out by defining where the actual problem is. There are three main types of insomnia to be aware of — each with their own set of potential causes:

  1. Onset Insomnia — This is the type of insomnia where you have a hard time falling asleep at night. This may be associated with racing thoughts or worry before bed.
  2. Sleep Maintenance Insomnia — This form of insomnia involves waking up at some point in the early hours of the morning. You may wake up several times throughout the night, or just once but find it nearly impossible to fall back asleep.
  3. Non-Restorative sleep — People often overlook this form of insomnia. It involves sleeping throughout the night, but waking unrefreshed — as if you haven’t slept at all. You may not experience apparent insomnia like the others mentioned above, but for some reason, you’re not entering a deep restorative sleep during the night. This form of insomnia is the hardest to diagnose and usually requires sleep analysis at a medical center to understand the cause.

No matter what the cause, sleep issues can impact many different parts of the body. The most obvious is the brain, where sleep deprivation can result in “brain fog”, irritability, poor decision making, difficulty concentrating, and lapses in memory. Sleep deprivation can also affect other areas of the body — such as the heart, muscles, immune system, and digestive organs.

Let’s cover some of the most common causes for each type of insomnia using the table below:

  • Playing video games or watching tv too close to bedtime
  • Jet lag
  • High levels of stress
  • Too much caffeine or other stimulants
  • Side effects from medications
  • Irregular sleep-wake cycle
  • Physical pain
  • Irregular sleep-wake cycle
  • Irregular blood sugar levels
  • Physical pain
  • Underlying medical conditions
  • Exposure to blue light while sleeping
  • Jet lag
  • Side effects from medications

According to a 2010 review, insufficient sleep duration at night increases the risk of early death (1).

Noticeable signs of sleep deprivation include:

  • Daytime fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Excessive sleepiness
  • Yawning
  • Poor concentration
  • Mood swings
  • Bags under the eyes
  • Muscle weakness
  • A low threshold to stress

But there’s more to sleep disturbances than the symptoms listed above. Long-term sleeplessness is more dangerous than most people think.

The Negative Side Effects of Sleep Deprivation

We need to sleep — there’s no getting around it. Our physiology is intimately reliant on getting at least a few hours of sleep each night. The specific number of hours needed can vary from one person to another — but the general rule of thumb is that we all need roughly 7–9 hours of sleep each night.

Missing out on the recommended 7 to 9 hours of shut-eye nightly can take a severe toll on your health over time. Chronic sleep deprivation drains your cognitive capacity and puts your physical health at risk. Science has linked poor sleep with a myriad of health problems, from weight gain to a lowered immune function (2).

Here are some of the most common long-term side effects of insufficient sleep duration:

  • Memory impairment
  • Poor memory and concentration
  • Mood swings
  • Lowered immune function
  • Weight gain
  • Increased chance of developing type II diabetes
  • Low sex drive
  • Increased risk of heart disease

Plants Over Pills: Why Sleeping Pills Can do More Harm Than Good

Most sleeping pills sold in pharmacies belong to the group of sedative-hypnotics — a specific class of drugs used to induce sleep by inhibiting the activity of the central nervous system. The most common class of drugs in this category are benzodiazepines like Xanax, Valium, Halcion, or Ambien. Similar medications like Tramadol or Sonata are also used and have the same mechanism of action.

These drugs work by activating the GABA receptors in the brain — which essentially acts as a shut-off for neurological activity. Electrical signals are slowed down or blocked, causing us to feel relaxed and drowsy.

While there’s no dispute that these medications work exceptionally well for putting us to sleep — there’s a dark side to them that many people aren’t aware of until it’s too late.

The problem arises from the addictive nature of these medications. After just a few doses, the body begins to make changes to resist the effects of these medications. Over time, we need to take a higher dose of the pills to get the same effect. If we stop taking the medication or they begin to wear off, it can cause us to go through withdrawal symptoms — which have the same symptoms as the initial problem. Withdrawal from hypnotics can appear in as little as two weeks of use, cause users to feel anxious, and paranoid, and can make it impossible to fall asleep without another dose of the medicine.

There are also a lot of undesired effects that can come from using sleep medications:

  • Dry mouth or throat
  • Daytime drowsiness
  • Diarrhea
  • Appetite fluctuation
  • Heartburn
  • Problems with attention and memory
  • Stomach tenderness
  • Recurring nightmares
  • Muscle weakness
  • General malaise
  • Palm sweats, tingling or burning in the arms, feet, or legs

A lot of people are turning to natural supplements like CBD to support a good night’s sleep instead because of the significantly better safety profile, and a similar level of benefit. Of course, CBD is nowhere near as strong as pharmaceutical medications — but doesn’t have nearly the same level of side effects. CBD is reported to offer substantial benefits towards sleep without offering a crutch the body needs to rely on to fall asleep.

CBD is best used as a sleep aid, along with other changes to diet and lifestyle — such as avoiding caffeine, spending time to meditate or wind down before bed, exercising during the day, and taking measures to manage stress levels. Together with these changes, CBD should provide the level of support you need to get a good night’s rest.

Now let’s explore how CBD works.

What is CBD Oil?

CBD is an abbreviation for cannabidiol, the second-most abundant cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant.

Unlike its psychoactive cousin THC, CBD doesn’t directly activate the endocannabinoid receptors in the brain. THC does, which results in the characteristic high associated with marijuana.

Yes, you’ve read that right — CBD cannot make you high.

CBD primarily works through a series of receptors known as the endocannabinoid receptors. This system is located inside cells all around the body. It’s used to support the homeostasis in the body — which is a fancy word that means balance. The endocannabinoid system improves cellular communication so the body can keep track of important metrics like blood pH, body temperature, inflammatory processes, and sleep cycles.

Cannabidiol supports this regulatory system by slowing the breakdown of naturally produced endocannabinoids like anandamide and 2-AG. It also binds to the endocannabinoid receptors and makes it easier for other endocannabinoids to find and activate these receptors.

This has a trickle-down effect on the rest of the body. By improving the system that regulates homeostasis, we can better maintain optimal function for various organs around the body. This is why CBD has such a long list of uses and benefits — including sleep.

Also, there is an alternative to CBD oil if you don’t like the hempy taste. It’s CBD gummies; read our post on the Top 10 CBD Gummies Brands for Sleep to learn more about this consumption method

CBD For Sleep: How it Works

There are a few different ways CBD can be used to support a good night’s sleep. Let’s cover the main ones in more detail:

1. CBD May Alleviate Anxiety

We did another article on the effects of CBD for anxiety that describes how this works in more detail. In a nutshell, CBD works through the GABA receptors in the brain. GABA is used to slow down neurological activity to help us prepare for sleep. One of the most common concomitant symptoms associated with insomnia is anxiety. You may have experienced this familiar scenario — you’re lying in bed, tired and ready to go to sleep, when suddenly you can’t help but feel a wave of anxiety wash over you. You may feel worried, anxious, or uneasy — making it almost impossible to fall asleep.

As estimated by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), anxiety disorders are a primary cause of a wide range of sleep abnormalities and disorders, including the most severe one — insomnia.

A three-month study published in the January Issue of the Permanente Journal examined the health records of 72 patients who were administered CBD for anxiety and poor sleep (3). The trial showed that anxiety levels in both groups significantly declined after their CBD treatment. For those with sleep problems, the researchers reported improvements in their sleeping habits in the first month of the trial.

2. CBD Supports Deep Sleep

This effect is most important for people who can’t stay asleep (maintenance insomnia) or wake feeling unrefreshed.

Deep sleep is a critical component of a good night of sleep. If we only remain in light sleep for the entire night, it’s easy to wake up at the drop of a pin. Sometimes when we wake up from this state, it can be very difficult to fall back asleep again.

Research suggests that CBD oil increases the duration of the “deep sleep” phase — that stage when we regenerate — while reducing REM sleep (the stage responsible for dreaming) (4).

People who dreamlessly achieve better-quality sleep; their memory improves, and symptoms of depression may start to back away. Consequently, using CBD oil for sleep may lead to a natural improvement in the overall quality of your sleeping habits.

3. CBD May Alleviate Pain

Another common cause of sleeping issues comes from another symptom altogether — pain.

Chronic pain is common, affecting millions of Americans every year.

Depending on the source and severity of pain, it may be enough to keep us up at night. If only there was something reported to alleviate various forms of pain and inflammation.

Fortunately, pain reduction is one of the most common applications of CBD. Read our article on the best CBD oil for pain to learn more about how this works and which CBD oils are best suited for the job.

How Much CBD Should I Take To Help With Sleep?

Dosing CBD oil for sleep is a tricky job because low and high doses of this supplement can produce different effects.

For example, low doses of CBD oil tend to promote alertness, while larger doses tend to be more sedative.

However, this dose will vary a lot from one person to another. The best way to find the best dose for your body is to do some simple trial and error — and remain patient until you find a dose that works.

The process is simple:

  1. Start with a much lower dose than you think you need (most people start with 1 or 2 mg equivalents of CBD)
  2. Every day increase the dose by 2 mg until you begin feeling the effects
  3. Keep playing around with the dose in small increments until you find one that works reliably for you

The more you use CBD, the better you’ll begin to understand how it affects you directly. If you experience any side effects, simply lower the dose to the last time where there were no side effects or take CBD along with some food for future doses.

The table below illustrates the suggested daily doses for different effects based on the user’s weight:

Weight (lbs) Low Dosage Medium Dosage High Dosage
Up to 130 lbs 10 – 15 mg 30 – 45 mg 60 – 90 mg
130–230 lbs 15 – 22 mg 45 – 67 mg 90+ mg
More than 230 lbs 22 – 25 mg 67 – 75 mg 90+ mg

A Quick Check List for Buying CBD Oil for Sleep

I recommend you do some research before you decide on a CBD oil to purchase. There are a lot of great products available, but a lot of really poor quality products as well. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell the difference until you give it a try.

So, how do you find a reputable CBD supplier?

Start by asking yourself the following questions:

1. Is the Hemp Source Organic?

The quality of CBD oil depends heavily on the quality of hemp. If there are any impurities in the soil, they’ll begin to accumulate in the leaves and stems of the hemp plant as it grows and matures. This is because industrial hemp is considered to be a bioaccumulator — it has the unique ability to absorb all the elements from the air and soil around it and hyper-accumulate it in the plant tissue. If the soil is contaminated with lead, arsenic, mercury, or cadmium — the hemp plant itself will likely be high in these toxic compounds — which ultimately make their way into the hemp oil itself.

Additionally, some farmers will spray their crops with toxic herbicides or pesticides to improve their yields. These pesticides often don’t breakdown fully by the time the plants are harvested _, bringing these harmful endocrine-disruptive compounds into your bottle of CBD oil.

Organic farming doesn’t allow for any of these issues. The soil needs to be regularly tested for heavy metal contamination, and pesticide use is severely limited or outright banned.

For these reasons, it’s highly recommended you go with a product or company that uses organic-certified hemp plants to manufacture their oil.

2. What Extraction Method Does the Manufacturer Employ?

Once the hemp plants are harvested, they need to go through some processing to remove the cannabinoids and other phytochemicals. There are a few ways to do this, but by far, the best is CO2 extraction.

Conventional extraction methods used cold water (very inefficient), or solvents like methanol, butane, propane, or hexane — all of which are toxic to humans. After the extraction, this solvent is removed, but it’s nearly impossible to remove 100% of the solvents from the final product. This means there could be some of these solvents in your bottle of CBD if the company didn’t opt for using the more advanced CO2 extraction process.

Supercritical CO2 uses pressurized CO2 kept at a specific temperature to force it into a supercritical state. Once in this state, CO2 behaves exactly like a solvent — effectively stripping away the phytochemicals from the hemp plant (including CBD). Once the extract is done, the pressure is released, and all the CO2 evaporates into the air.

Even if some CO2 remained in the final product (it doesn’t), it’s completely non-toxic. Most of our atmosphere is already made of CO2.

3. Is the Product Tested by Third-Party Labs?

Anybody could produce a CBD oil and claim to test a sample for cannabinoid profile, terpene profiles, or contamination. These tests are super easy to fake, so the industry standard these days is to use a certified laboratory that has no affiliation with the company. This is called a third-party lab.

For a fee, these labs can test a sample of CBD product from a company, and provide a completely non-biased, transparent analysis of the product to prove the CBD oil is everything the company claims it is.

Always look for third-party lab tests for the products you’re interested in purchasing. If anything is missing or seems out of order, move on to another company instead.

Third-party lab tests should include the following information:

  • Cannabinoid profile
  • Terpene profile
  • Residual solvent testing
  • Heavy metal testing
  • Microbial contamination testing

4. Is the Product Formulated With Other Herbs & Ingredients?

Most CBD oils come with pure CBD, or a full spectrum extract mixed with a carrier oil like MCT oil. However, the best products will have other ingredients added as well to support the effects of CBD. Some common additives that make CBD even better for supporting sleep include:

  • Melatonin
  • L-theanine
  • Ashwagandha
  • Magnesium
  • Magnolia
  • Passionflower
  • Hops

The most popular combination at the moment for sleep is melatonin and CBD.

Melatonin is a hormone produced in the brain’s pineal gland that helps regulate our sleep-wake cycle. Our body typically increases melatonin release around early afternoon, peaking at night and naturally decreasing once the morning draws near.

In simple terms, melatonin tells the body it’s bedtime by setting the gears in motion for you to be able to fall asleep. This effect compounds the relaxing effects of CBD by targeting other areas of the sleep process.

A Final Note on Using CBD Oil for Sleep

Frequent sleep deprivation is a plague in modern society. Insomnia is often placed among the most common modern diseases. If neglected, sleep deprivation can lead to several severe neurological conditions and other health disorders.

If you’re looking for a natural alternative to help you sleep, research suggests CBD may be a valuable option. That’s because this cannabinoid brings balance to the endocannabinoid system — which is heavily involved in the process of sleep and recovery.

I hope this guide has cleared up any confusion regarding the quality of CBD oil, how it works for sleep, and what to keep in mind when buying your next bottle. If you’re not sure where to start, I highly recommend you give Royal CBD a try. For the highest cost savings and best bang for your buck, I recommend the higher potency bottle.

Have you used CBD oil for sleep? Did you notice any difference? Share your experience in the comment section below!

References:

  1. Cappuccio, F. P., D’Elia, L., Strazzullo, P., & Miller, M. A. (2010). Sleep duration and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies. Sleep, 33(5), 585–592.
  2. Medic, G., Wille, M., & Hemels, M. E. (2017). Short- and long-term health consequences of sleep disruption. Nature and science of sleep, 9, 151–161.
  3. Shannon, S., Lewis, N., Lee, H., & Hughes, S. (). Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series. The Permanente Journal, 23, 18–041.
  4. Chagas, M.H. et al. (2013). Effects of acute systemic administration of cannabidiol on the sleep-wake cycle in rats. Journal of Psychopharmacology (Oxford, England), 27(3), 312-6.
Nina Julia

Nina created CFAH.org following the birth of her second child. She was a science and math teacher for 6 years prior to becoming a parent — teaching in schools in White Plains, New York and later in Paterson, New Jersey.

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