5 Factors to Consider Before Buying Hemp Products
In December 2018, the United States legalized hemp as a crop. Since then, the hemp and CBD markets exploded.
If you’re not familiar with the plant yet, you’re missing out. But don’t walk away, hemp-lovers: Anyone buying hemp products has something to learn from this.
Take a look at these five things to know about buying hemp.
1. Hemp Isn’t Always Obvious
Hemp makes headlines most often when talking about CBD products. However, there are a lot of other different hemp products out there, some you might not suspect.
Along with the medicinal uses of hemp-derived CBD, hemp fibers are used for rope, paper, and even for building. Hemp twine is used in jewelry and growing the crop removes contaminants from soil. It’s even being used to absorb radiation at the Chernobyl disaster site.
2. There’s (Almost) No THC in Hemp
Hemp and marijuana are the same exact plant. It may come as a surprise to learn they’re both varieties of Cannabis, a genus of plants within the Cannabaceae family.
There’s a lot of dispute over how many plants are in the genus. The flower loved by stoners, popular CBD oils, and the source of hemp rope all come from Cannabis sativa. Whether that species is the only one in the genus Cannabis or not is up in the air.
So, what’s the difference between weed and hemp? Aside from the fact that weed is federally illegal in the United States while hemp is not, hemp is a cultivar bred with an emphasis on special properties that help make different hemp products like rope and CBD oil. The other biggest difference is the lack of THC in hemp.
Clean-cut CBD lovers like to say that THC is the psychoactive substance in cannabis. The truth is that CBD is somewhat psychoactive too. That’s why people take it as a calming drug and sleep aid, even when it’s derived from hemp.
Still, THC is the stuff that takes credit for the stereotypical kind of “high” one gets from weed. True hemp has under 0.3% THC.
3. It’s Not Always a Cure-All
There’s no denying at this point that there are medical benefits of hemp-derived CBD. In fact, the FDA has even approved a CBD-based medication.
It’s only approved for a couple of very rare conditions and there aren’t other medications like it on the market at this time. Yet, the fact remains that even the top American drug authorities confirm the substance’s value.
This is a big deal because the federal government historically lumped hemp and marijuana together, up until 2018 when industrial hemp became legal. They are the same species of plant, but industrial hemp lacks the properties that are supposed grounds for marijuana’s criminalization. CBD and marijuana have also long gone hand-in-hand, so the recognition of CBD’s medical properties on the federal level is huge.
Still, hemp CBD alone doesn’t do it for everyone. Some chronic pain patients and people using CBD for stress relief report that they need THC with CBD, and early studies suggest this too. If you’re one of those people and live somewhere where marijuana is illegal, you may need to look elsewhere for treatment
But hemp CBD’s popularity isn’t an accident. Many people still feel they benefit from the use of hemp-derived CBD and use it to treat a variety of conditions. If you’re not sure whether it’s the thing for you, it can’t hurt to try.
4. You Can Smoke It, Too
The more psychoactive, THC-containing version of Cannabis often called marijuana is famous as a smoked substance. Still, just like you can use marijuana-derived extracts and oils, you can smoke hemp nugs.
Pot purists might scratch their heads over the purpose of smoking hemp. The most obvious reason is that you can get all of the benefits of hemp CBD from smoking it. It can also be a good substitute for marijuana when you can’t access it.
Using a lot of CBD has a calming and uplifting effect. It’s not the same as a pot high, but it hits some of the same buttons. A less obvious reason to smoke CBD hemp flower is just for the sensation.
Smoking hemp comes with many of the same procedures, smells, and tastes you get when you smoke marijuana. If you moved away from somewhere you can access weed and your hands are twitching to grind some bud or roll a joint, this is just the thing for you.
It can also be a good cigarette replacement for smokers looking to quit. That is, so long as you’re not quitting because you can’t inhale any kind of smoke itself, even from non-tobacco sources and without nasty additives.
5. Watch for Quality When Buying Hemp Products
Even though hemp products are federally legal, they’re still not regulated by the FDA, USDA, or any other United States government agency. Most USA hemp producers are legitimate and can show you lab results to back it up.
Still, independent testing on recent products showed that some so-called hemp CBD actually had a little THC in it. That’s not a concern for a lot of people, but a lack of oversight for pesticide use and pollution should be.
Look for responsible, trusted sources of hemp. If they can prove they’re organic, so much the better. If you’re really wary, go with more-tightly regulated, European-grown hemp.
More Surprising News and Lifestyle Pieces
With these five facts about hemp in mind, you can set out and improve your life by buying hemp products. What’s more, you can spread the word among those you know. Popular support is what got hemp this far, and more demand will lead to more research and wider legalization.
Chances are, you learned something you weren’t expecting to read in this article. What if I told you that the other articles on this site are just as interesting? To find out for yourself, click on another piece and be surprised today.