What is CBD? | Health Benefits, Side-effects & Products

We are here to answer the question: What is CBD? CBD is an acronym for cannabidiol, a compound discovered in 1940. Cannabidiol is a chemical extracted from Hemp and Cannabis sativa plants. Cannabidiol was once just a holistic health trend, but it has gained traction over the years. Cannabidiol products are available to sell in many forms, such as oils, edibles, gummies, and more.

Firstly, CBD is not just a mere accessory for the anxiety-ridden hipsters of society. It is a versatile natural elixir that has many benefits. It is not only excellent for humans, but you can use CBD for pets too!

You are probably here because you have heard people talk about how awesome CBD for humans is. We are here to tell you just that! Cannabidiol products are a fantastic investment. Want to sleep better? Have clearer, glowing skin? Or treat pain and other ailments without overusing pills? Well, these are just some of the things that cannabidiol can help you with.

What Does CBD Mean? | CBD vs THC


Before we dive into the qualities of cannabidiol, it is essential to differentiate between CBD and THC as many people still tend to confuse the two. Both THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) are components found in Cannabis.

While they have similar structures, these cannabinoids have different effects on the human body.

Here Are Some Key Differences Between CBD and THC:

CBD                                                                    THC

  1. CBD tends to have calming effects.                         1. THC is psychoactive (makes you high).
  2. Can be used to treat anxiety.                                   2. Can cause short-term anxiety.
  3. CBD is less harmful to your organs.                         3. THC can have adverse mental effects.

What is CBD Oil? | Common Techniques to Extract CBD Oil

Not everyone is a fan of the effects of THC or of smoking weed because smoking weed can risk one’s organ health. In contrast, you can use CBD oil as a natural remedy for various ailments.

As mentioned before, Cannabidiol is extracted from the buds and flowers of cannabis or hemp plants. Cannabidiol is isolated from the plant in various ways to create oils and products. The oil can be purified or combined with other hemp components (cannabinoids).

CBD oil extraction techniques produce crude oil to use as is or further refined for specific health and aesthetic purposes.


Common Techniques to Extract CBD Oil

Here are the most common techniques for extracting oil from plants. The result of your oil in terms of its cannabidiol content and purity will vary because of certain manufacturing factors. These factors include temperature, the carrier oil used, equipment, technique, and finally, the type of hemp or cannabis plant used.

The Oil Infusion technique

Oil infusion is an old and popular extraction technique because cannabidiol binds with fat, making oil an excellent ingredient to mix with cannabidiol.

The first step is to decarboxylate the hemp or cannabis plant (the removal of carbon molecules from the cannabidiol molecular structure). To do this, bake the plant in the oven for about 30 minutes between 110-140 ℃.

Then, you can infuse the activated cannabidiol with a carrier oil of your choice. Olive oil is excellent for this purpose, so heat the two ingredients at about 100 ℃ for a couple of hours. Other carrier oils/fats to include are; coconut oil, avocado oil, butter, and canola oil.


The Carbon Dioxide technique

For the Carbon Dioxide technique, you need a Supercritical CO2 Extractor. In a nutshell, the system uses heat and pressure to allow compressed carbon dioxide to dissolve cannabidiol components from the hemp plant. This results in a CO2 liquid that contains cannabidiol molecules.

Then, the liquid enters a different part of the extractor, where the carbon dioxide gets separated from the cannabidiol molecules. Finally, store the remaining hemp compounds in a vessel for later use.

The Liquid Solvents technique

The liquid solvent technique is not preferred for CBD oil extraction as the end product may have impurities, but it is the cheapest way to extract cannabidiol. This extraction technique starts with pouring ethanol or butane over a hemp or cannabis plant. The alcohol removes the cannabinoid molecules from the plant.

Then, the cannabidiol/alcohol mixture is heated to allow the alcohol to evaporate from the liquid to leave behind an oily substance rich in cannabidiol. The problem with this extraction technique is that the liquid solvents don’t always extract pure cannabidiol but rather other unwanted hemp compounds such as chlorophyll.


What Does CBD Oil Do to You?

It’s clear that cannabidiol seems to have a positive, calming effect on the body.

When CBD oil enters the bloodstream, it may interact with hormonal receptors. Hormones tell the body when to be sleepy, when to stress or calm down. Cannabidiol may regulate these hormones by increasing or decreasing the amount released by the body.

Hence, cannabidiol could enhance the body’s melatonin level which promotes better sleep. Similarly, if you want pain relief, it could improve the body’s endorphin levels.


How Much CBD Oil Can You Get From One Plant?

In 2024, Cannabidiol could be a profitable business. Hence, why many people want to know how much oil you can get from one plant.

Note that most cannabidiol is extracted from hemp plants as they contain much more CBD and the least THC. One hemp plant can produce about 1 pound of crude CBD oil which is about 453 grams.

What Is CBD Used for? | 10 Uses

Cannabidiol medical products have many health benefits. Use CBD health products daily without causing damage to vital organs such as the lungs, brain, and heart.

Keep in mind that cannabidiol does not have the same effects on everyone. Some people may benefit from its use, while others do not. It depends on how cannabidiol molecules interacts with the body; other factors are genetics, dosage and health.

With that said, here are some benefits of CBD oil for humans:


1. Clear Skin

Anyone suffering from oily or acne-prone skin may benefit from CBD products. Cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce skin inflammation caused by topical infections.

CBD topical creams can also control the hormone that produces excess oil in the sebum, allowing for a less oily appearance. If you have dry, itchy or other skin ailments, have a look at our list of 16 best cannabis topicals for clearer, moisturised skin.

2. Anxiety

Cannabidiol has proven properties that can potentially treat anxiety disorders because it has a calming effect on the body. If you want to try a natural alternative to traditional anxiety medication, look at the best CBD oil for anxiety in South Africa.

3. Depression

Cannabidiol medical products are well known for those suffering from depression. Cannabidiol molecules can interact with the serotonin receptors in your body, therefore, increasing your serotonin levels for antidepressant effects.

4. Pain

Cannabidiol molecules can also enhance the anandamide hormone in the body that helps reduce pain and inflammation. Read here for more information.


5. Nausea

Marijuana commonly treats the side effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients. It is a great natural alternative to nausea and other common side effects from medications or illnesses.  CBD health products, with a small amount of THC, is an excellent option to decrease the intensity of nausea.

6. Insomnia

Another hormone that cannabidiol can impact is the sleeping hormone cortisol. Cannabidiol may help control the body’s cortisol levels, thus allowing you to sleep better. Try out CBD oil for insomnia to experience the incredible calming effects firsthand.

7. Loss of Appetite

The THC component in weed can increase your appetite, which is supported by many studies. However, pure CBD seems to have the opposite effect of THC, thus making it an excellent ‘appetite suppressor’ for overweight or obese people.

8. Epilepsy

Epidiolex is a product of cannabidiol, and an FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved treatment for some rare forms of epilepsy. Since marijuana products are still a new field within the health sector with little scientific backing, Epidiolex might only be the beginning of many cannabidiol related health breakthroughs in the future.


9. High Blood Pressure

According to MedicalNewsToday, CBD may help lower blood pressure. Some research suggests that cannabidiol can widen blood vessels, thus improving the body’s blood flow.

10. Inflammation

As mentioned in ‘clear skin’, CBD helps with inflammation. Not only can this leave your skin looking better, but if you are suffering from acute inflammatory conditions (like arthritis), it can be of assistance.

Whether taken topically or ingested, CBD will work with your endocannabinoid system to provide anti-inflammatory responses.

CBD Health Products

You are probably itching to get your hands on CBD products now that you know about all the health benefits. However, CBD comes in many shapes and forms. Here’s a breakdown to help you distinguish the different types of CBD products before you make your purchase:


CBD oil is the most common type of all cannabidiol products. The Majority of CBD oils are odourless and tasteless. The oil is mainly for oral consumption, but you can rub it on your skin for pain relief, itchiness, eczema and more. Find in-depth details about how cannabidiol extraction, how and when to use it, and much more further down.

Gummies or Edibles

CBD Gummies are chewy, colourful candies made from gelatine and infused with CBD oil. At the same time, CBD Edibles include a broad spectrum of snacks such as chocolate, nuts, dried fruit, and so on.



CBD Capsules are like any other supplement with a gel consistency, and is the easiest way to consume cannabidiol regularly without being concerned about the dosage.


As mentioned before, CBD-infused creams can be fantastic for clearing acne-prone skin and helping dry or oily skin. But, there are more uses for CBD cream on other parts of the body.

The creams have anti-ageing and anti-inflammatory properties to help reduce the appearance of scars, stretch marks, and wrinkles. CBD also has anti-fungal properties you can use for topical fungal infections.

Vape Juice

CBD vape juice is a cannabidiol extract combined with food-grade ingredients used in e-cigarettes and liquid vaporisers. CBD vape pens are excellent for anxiety, chronic pain, and insomnia.

What Are The Side Effects Of CBD? | Drugs To Avoid


CBD has become a promising natural remedy for many health and cosmetic purposes. But, as with most treatments, it has a few side effects.

Side Effects

Recorded side effects of cannabidiol are drowsiness, dry mouth, low blood pressure, fatigue, and diarrhoea. These side effects may vary from person to person and depend on if you are using CBD properly with the correct dosages.

What Drugs Should Not Be Taken With Cannabidiol?

The most crucial point to consider is that you should use CBD cautiously with other medications. Cannabidiol can alter the way medications operate in the body. So, if you are on regular medication, consult with your doctor before you try CBD products.


Cannabidiol can also worsen the side effects of particular prescription or over-the-counter medications. It will intensify sleepiness and drowsiness caused by some antidepressants and antipsychotics.

Here are some drugs that should not be taken with Cannabidiol:

  • Antidepressants
  • Antipsychotics
  • Antibiotics
  • Prokinetics
  • Antihistamines
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Anaesthetics

See the extended list here for more drugs to avoid in conjunction with cannabidiol.

Note: If you are using one of these medications and still want to use CBD, consult with your doctor to find out the best approach.

More Info on CBD Oil

Now we can finally look at other aspects of CBD such as where to find it and how to use it.

Where to find CBD Oil?

These days there are many ways to get your hands on CBD oil. However, the wisest option would be to purchase it straight from a local dispensary. The chance of getting quality and purer cannabidiol is much higher.

Also, these dispensaries focus on CBD oil, while large brands focus on many other products. Find the nearest Cannabis dispensary in South Africa to benefit from the unique products.


How to Find Quality CBD Oil Brands:

  • Make sure that a third-party laboratory tests the cannabidiol products. The brand’s website usually posts third-party lab results as links.
  • Find out where the company or brand sources their hemp plants from.
  • Consider the manufacturing and extraction techniques behind CBD oil, which have a considerable impact on the quality and purity of the oils.
  • See how much THC is present in the CBD oils. You do not have to be too concerned about this if you are okay with a small amount of THC. CBD oils do not have more than 0,3% THC, thus eliminating any psychoactive symptoms such as a high.
  • Look at the concentration of cannabidiol. A higher concentration means that the product is more potent. Anything less than 250 milligrams per 10 ml bottle won’t be effective.

How to use CBD Oil? | Proper Dosage

Place a few drops of CBD oil underneath your tongue and keep it there for about a minute before swallowing.

The proper dosage of CBD oil will vary for everyone, and it also depends on what you use it for. Generally speaking, an average daily dosage would range between 5 mg- 25mg.


When is the Best Time to Use CBD Oil?

When you take CBD oil depends on your daily routine. At night, use CBD oil marketed specifically for better sleeping and insomnia. Take CBD oil in the morning as you would do with any other health booster for daily health benefits. Finally, use CBD oil as you need it for any pain or inflammation.

Full-spectrum, Broad-spectrum, or Isolated CBD Oil?

When it comes to which CBD oil to choose, make sure you understand the meaning of the CBD terms: full or broad-spectrum and isolated CBD. These terms are usually labelled on quality CBD products to show consumers if the cannabidiol is pure or not.

Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all of the other hemp properties, including terpenes and THC. A broad-spectrum oil contains every cannabinoid present in hemp, apart from THC.

Lastly, a CBD isolate label shows that the CBD property in hemp is wholly isolated from other cannabinoids, which makes it the purest form of CBD oil.


Final Thoughts: What is CBD?

All of this was a lot to unpack- we know. But, thank us later the next time you are at a dinner party, and the topic happens to be CBD.

On a serious note – we highly suggest that you try out nature’s very own golden elixir. Again, do use it with caution. If you have any health complications, consult with a doctor before incorporating CBD oil into your daily routine. The possible side effects of CBD may be unpleasant, but it should not stop you from reaping all its benefits.

CBD oil and other products will not solve all your problems. The oil might aid in pain recovery, nausea, help calm you down if you have anxiety, and so much more- but CBD oil is not a cure based on recent research. Think of it as a natural healing enhancer because it can enhance specific hormones in our bodies that exist to protect us from pain and disease.

CBD products are growing in popularity, so plenty of new research is emerging daily. Perhaps we will learn about more benefits, uses, and techniques to help the medical marijuana industry flourish.

Share the page!

Other Dope Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.