There is a new natural medicine on the scene that is creating quite a buzz. It is called Hemp Extract. It is a phenomenal gift from Nature made from the hemp plant. Thousands of clinical studies have proven that Hemp Extract can be used to safely address many health issues.
Hemp Extract is effective for conditions as diverse as pain, inflammation, epilepsy, anxiety, depression, insomnia, and infections from multi-drug resistant bacteria, oxidative stress, hormonal imbalance, and loss of bone density, cancer, autoimmune diseases, and even addictive cravings. In fact, over 40 different health issues have shown to benefit from the use for Hemp Extract.
There are now, literally, hundreds of Hemp Extract products available in the marketplace. But the burning question is always, "How do I know which ones are really the best?"
Caveat Emptor—Buyer Beware!
Before you dive into the Hemp Extract world, it is important to become a savvy consumer. There are some important facts you need to know about the growing, processing and formulation of Hemp Extract products.
The following seven guidelines will help you to choose the best Hemp Extract formulations.
1. Where and how is the hemp grown?
Until recently, the hemp plant was sourced from Europe because it was illegal to grow hemp in the United States. But there are now new federal regulations allowing US farmers to grow agricultural hemp. Hemp is now becoming a popular crop, which is widely grown through the country.
Some hemp farms grow crops on soils that have been previously contaminated with pesticides and herbicide, or actively use such chemicals in their farming practices.
To avoid chemical contamination, you always want to choose products made with organically grown plants from verified organic farms. Be sure that the label clearly states that it is organic.
2. Which parts of the hemp plant are they using?
Labels can be very confusing, if not downright deceiving. This is especially true when it comes to Hemp Extract formulas.
Often products will include hemp seeds or hempseed oil as major ingredients. Hemp oil or Hempseed oil that is pressed from the seeds is considered a food source. They have many beneficial nutrients such essential fatty acids, fiber, protein, and vitamin E. But, since they are pressed from only the seeds, they do not have the therapeutic effects found in Hemp Extract.
Hemp seeds are cheap. For less than $8 you can buy a pound of hemp seeds. It is very misleading when the products described as "all natural" and "100% Hemp" are mostly ineffective hemp seed oil.
Hemp Extract comes from the leaves, the stalk, and the flower of the plant. Only the Hemp Extract has proven therapeutic effects. Therefore, you want to carefully read the ingredients label to make sure you are getting Hemp Extract, rather than hemp oil.
3. Are you getting an isolate or a full-spectrum CBD hemp extract?
For many years it was believed there was a greater therapeutic effect if specific components were isolated from the rest of the whole plant. However, this theory was debunked after being researched at the Lautenberg Center for General Tumor Immunology in Jerusalem in 2015.
Full spectrum hemp extract contains dozens of compounds that can be extracted from the hemp plant. As it turns out, full spectrum Hemp Extract has a faster and more powerful effect than the isolate version.
4. How is the hemp processed?
It's important to make sure you know the process used when buying Hemp Extract. The quality of the final product is directly related to the quality of the plant material and the quality of the extraction process.
The best extraction method is called supercritical CO2 extraction. It uses carbon dioxide under high pressure and extremely low temperatures to isolate, preserve, and maintain the purity of the medicinal oil. This process requires expensive equipment, but the end product is safe, potent and free of chlorophyll.
This process extracts the valuable oil without damaging its properties or introducing poisonous chemicals. The goal is to have a clean and potent version of the Hemp Extract. Other extraction methods either use toxic solvents or the process creates an end product that has a very unpleasant taste and, most importantly, is inefficiently absorbed. When choosing a Hemp Extract product, always check to be sure the CO2 extraction method was used.
5. Are you getting the highest potency hemp oil?
One of the key features of an effective Hemp Extract product is its bioavailability. That means, how much of the active ingredients actually get to the cell. Unfortunately, the majority of Hemp Extract products in the market only have 3–6 percent bioavailability.
Also, many Hemp Extract products dilute the hemp extract with high amounts of hemp seed oil or coconut oil. So while there is slight nutritional value to these oils, they certainly do not deliver the health benefits of a potent Hemp Extract formula. Also, check the milligrams of Hemp Extract that are found in each serving. The effectiveness of a Hemp Extract product is determined not just by the amount of Hemp Extract it contains but also the kind of delivery system used.
6. What is the most effective and absorbable delivery system for CBD hemp oil?
Bioavailability is the proportion of the active ingredients that are absorbed and utilized by the body. If adequate amounts of the active ingredients do not get absorbed into the bloodstream and then on to the receptor sites on the cells, there will be very little therapeutic effect.
No matter how beneficial a medicinal substance may be, if it is not bioavailable, it is useless. The higher the bioavailability, the more effective the product will be. Bioavailability of Hemp Extract products varies greatly depending on the type of delivery system, e.g. capsule, spray, vaporized, etc.
There is a big difference between merely ingesting a substance such as Hemp Extract and efficiently absorbing its active ingredients. When nutrients and beneficial plant phytochemicals enter the body, they have certain requirements before they can be readily absorbed and utilized by the cells. The digestive process can destroy as much as 90 percent of the bioactive nutrients in Hemp Extract. Hemp Extract formulas have their own particular challenge when it comes to efficient absorption.
Hemp oil, in its natural form, is dense, sticky oil. Getting any oil-based substance to pass through a cell wall is a challenge, as the absorption rate can be greatly reduced. This means that very little of the active ingredients can be absorbed by the cells. So, you may need to take a higher dose in order to benefit, or the formula may not be absorbed at all.
Liposomes are by far, the best delivery system for optimal absorption. Liposomes are tiny hollow spheres that have the ability to carry both water-soluble and fat-soluble compounds very efficiently through the body and into cell membranes. You can also think of them as very small, Nanosized packets that are the delivery system allowing for rapid absorption of nutrients into the cell.
Liposomes protect the nutrients as they pass through the stomach and are delivered into the small intestine. Liposomes are effective because they are able to increase nutrient solubility and improve nutrient bioavailability, and they are also very stable within the body.
At present, liposomes are the most bioavailable way to deliver nutrients into the cells.
The reason liposomes are so effective is that they can be absorbed very quickly through a cell wall, either orally or topically. They enhance the effectiveness of Hemp Extract due to this super-efficient delivery method. By attaching to hemp oil molecules and transporting them to their destination, liposomes are a perfect delivery solution for achieving rapid results. Liposomal technology allows the Hemp Extract to be absorbed 15 times more efficiently than the capsule or liquid oil delivery methods.
7. Is the CBD hemp oil free of THC and contaminants?
Hemp extract manufacturers are not required by law to have their products tested by independent third-party labs. However, the reputable manufacturers pay for this testing at multiple stages of processing.
As a consumer, you may be most interested in two test results. One, the test for contaminants and other is the test for THC, the psychoactive molecule sometimes present in Hemp Extracts. Check on the manufacturer's website for the certificate of analysis.
It is important to know that a Hemp Extract product must have less than .3 percent of THC in order to be legally sold as Hemp Extract. Many Hemp Extract products are formulated with no THC present, at all.
On a Personal Note
The growing interest in Hemp Extract is well deserved. It is a healing plant that can alleviate so much suffering. It is also safe for children and even your pets. And considered safe with no known side effects.
As a Naturopathic Doctor, I am always searching for the very best products to recommend to my patients. For the past year, I have been researching all aspects of the Hemp Extract story. After sorting through the confusing world of Hemp Extract products, I found one exceptional company called OptiVida Health. After speaking with the formulator and investigating their manufacturing practices, I was convinced they were heads and shoulders about the rest.Why? For the following reasons:
- They use US certified organic hemp.
- They are third party certified for purity.
- They have a high potency product at an affordable price.
- Their products contain no THC (0%), the psychoactive molecule.
- They use super critical CO2 extraction.
- Their delivery system is a verified, liposomal technology that increases bioavailability.
It is the last point that I want to linger on a little longer. One of the key features of an effective Hemp Extract product is its bioavailability. That means, how much of the active ingredients actually get to the cell before being eliminated from the body. As previously mentioned, the majority of Hemp Extract products only have 3–6 percent bioavailable. That means that you don't absorb much of the active ingredients.
On the other hand, OptiVida Hemp products are formulated by Emek Blair, Ph.D., of Valimenta Labs, with an organic liposomal delivery system, which has a proven bioavailability of 15 times better absorption than all the other forms of delivery i.e., capsules, tinctures, vaping, etc. Increased bioavailability means that you not only get better results but also you need to take less.
Check out more at optividahealth.com
Join the Hemp Health Revolution
I trust that you are ready to join the Hemp Health Revolution. You now have the guidelines to ensure that you can find the very best products. Everyone, of all ages, can benefit from taking Hemp Extract, when needed. We truly live in an exciting time when the healing gifts of nature are so readily available to us.
This extraordinary plant has returned to help us on our path to optimal health and wellbeing.
Sherrill Sellman, ND
Dr. Sellman is an international author, psychotherapist, women’s health advocate and seminar presenter. Through her books including Hormone Heresy—What Women Must Know About Their Hormones, lectures and seminars, she has empowered women all over the world to make more educated and informed choices about their health.
Sherrill's latest book Hemp Health Revolution explores the history of hemp and the latest research in the Hemp Extract world. Dr Sellman gives us the A to Z list of the many chronic illnesses or health conditions that have been proven to benefit from Hemp Extract.