What is CBD and Why Does it Work?

What Does CBD Stand For? Is it a Drug?

Cannabidiol (CBD), is a phytocannabinoid (plant-derived chemical) produced naturally in all Cannabis plants. Minny Grown CBD is extracted from the hemp plant. Contrary to popular belief, CBD does not cause the intoxication or euphoria that comes from cannabis. It is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in cannabis, also known as marijuana, not CBD in hemp, which is the primary psychoactive component of cannabis plants. If you’re curious about the various differences in more detail, take a look at our article: “What is Hemp and How is it Different from Marijuana.”

CBD, along with THC, are the chemicals most commonly associated with the medicinal benefits of cannabis. Although these chemicals share similarities in structure and origin, they vary greatly in their therapeutic effect and interaction with the human body. While THC is well known to cause a feeling of euphoria and intoxication, CBD is legally and medically viewed to be non-intoxicating. Despite the presence or absence of intoxicating qualities, both CBD and THC play a major role in modern medicine due to their unique interaction with the Human Endocannabinoid System. So, next time someone asks you “what is CBD,” you know what to tell them! Plus, CBD isn’t anything new. There’s actually a ton of history behind this incredible compound. Check out the “History of Cannabis Use and Cultivation” to learn more.

How Does CBD Work

The therapeutic effects commonly associated with CBD are largely due to the cannabinoid’s unique chemical structure, allowing it to interact with the human endocannabinoid system when inhaled or ingested. Unlike THC, CBD does not bind and activate the CB1 and CB2 receptors found in your body. Instead, it interacts with a binding site on the receptor surface and interferes with receptor functionality. 

Although you see things about CBD almost everywhere, it’s important to understand that CBD is just one of the many cannabinoids produced by Cannabis plants. To this day, scientists have discovered over 100 cannabinoids, likely with more to come as research continues investigating Cannabis biochemistry. 

Does CBD Oil Get You High?

No, you cannot get high from CBD products. The cannabis plant is comprised of two players that can affect your body and mind — THC and CBD. As we mentioned, THC is the one that has intoxicating properties. While CBD and THC both play an integral role in the consumption of cannabis, only one will get someone high. Using CBD and THC can play an integral role in the endocannabinoid system, but CBD is not illegal in the United States and its effects will not impede the user in any way.

So, you may be asking yourself — will CBD show up on a drug test or screening? The truth is that it depends. CBD may show up depending on individual biochemistry. What do we mean? Well, traces of THC may be found in hemp, but in very small amounts. As we mentioned, hemp has very little tetrahydrocannabinol (less than .3%). This is the legal limit for all hemp plants in non-legal states. However, similarly to other alcohol or drug screening — trace amounts could trigger a positive result. Similar to how Listerine may affect a breathalyzer, depending on the individual’s biochemistry, CBD could leave enough THC behind that an individual fails a drug screening. If you’re expecting a drug test, it’s recommended that you speak with your health care provider. They may find a reason to believe that your body converts cannabinoids in a way that would yield unfortunate results in a drug test.

What about travel? well, the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized hemp and product containing CBD means that you’re able to travel without worrying about your CBD being confiscated. You’re able to fly, take the train, and drive without any issues. If you are flying, make sure that you’re aware of TSA limitations regarding the amount of liquid you can carry. You can also mail CBD as well. This is important not only for those traveling who may have found a new CBD goodie to send their friend or family member, but also for companies that need to ship their inventory to consumers.

What About Hemp

That’s a great question. While many believe that cannabis, marijuana, and hemp are all the same plant, there is some species variation that plays a major role in differentiation. Cannabis Sativa has two primary species — the marijuana plant and the hemp plant. While both of these species contain CBD, hemp has a much higher concentration of it. Hemp has an extremely low percentage of THC that can be found in the plant (less than 0.3%), which is not enough to intoxicate the user — which is why it’s widely legalized.

So, what about hemp oil?  Hemp oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant.

What Is CBD Used For?

Research and studies surrounding CBD oil are continuing as we speak, but their findings have offered some positive insight into various health benefits that consumers can take advantage of. Natural solutions such as CBD are fantastic because compared to over-the-counter medications, they have very limited (if any) side effects. CBD oil may have a positive impact on a wide variety of individuals and may even have some promise in managing certain symptoms. While these findings are indeed a great leap forward for hemp, it’s always recommended that you speak with your health provider for medical advice regarding a medical condition. While hemp CBD is a natural solution, there may be side effects for certain individuals. Research has found that these side effects could include dry mouth, changes in appetite, changes in mood, drowsiness, or nausea. These side effects differ from person to person and are not typically common.

Anxiety Relief

CBD oil may be used to help with managing anxiety, affecting the brain’s response to serotonin — which plays a vital role in mental health. While studies are still ongoing, research is promising regarding CBD’s effects on anxiety. 

Pain Relief 

There has been a longstanding belief that cannabis can help with pain management as well, assisting with chronic pain, arthritis, muscle pain, spinal cord injuries, and more. CBD may play a significant role in this equation. The pain-relieving properties may be due to the anti-inflammatory properties that CBD oil has to offer rather than actual pain reduction. However, natural anti-inflammatory assistance is a great way to combat a wide range of symptoms and can be a sound addition to your wellness routine. 


Speaking of anti-inflammatory properties, your skincare regimen can also benefit from some CBD love. While everyone’s skin reacts differently to various products, CBD skincare products are often infused with various essential oils and moisturizing ingredients — creating a great mixture of anti-inflammatory and hydrating boosts. CBD can impact skincare in many ways, helping alleviate redness, dryness, and other unfortunate symptoms of conditions such as psoriasis and eczema.  


CBD may have some incredible neuroprotective properties, helping those who struggle with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, and even stroke victims. Researchers are continuously looking into these benefits as they could have a massive impact on the way neurologists treat certain diseases and disorders.  


One of the most cited and popular potential benefits of CBD is its usage as a treatment for epilepsy and various seizure disorders. While research is still in its infancy, there is promise regarding how CBD may help in fighting against seizure disorders. There is even some evidence to support the anti-convulsion properties of CBD for helping children struggling with dravet syndrome.

The science is there, and every day more and more benefits are emerging regarding CBD use. Those struggling with anxiety, stress, and sleep are discovering the incredible upsides in trying out a natural solution such as CBD. 

What CBD Products Are There

Today, there’s nearly an endless variety of CBD products that people can try out and add to their wellness routine for some extra health benefits. From edible products and candies to smokeable CBD and even topical solutions — your choices are vast when it comes to cannabis. Because this incredible solution can be made into CBD oil, there’s almost an endless array of possibilities for those looking to add CBD to their regimen.

CBD Tinctures 

CBD tinctures are one of the most popular CBD products on the market today — and for good reasons. They’re compact, easy to take, and offer a simple way to ingest the dosage of concentrated CBD oil you’d like — wherever you like. 

By seeping hemp flowers in high proof grain alcohol and applying minimal heat for a long period of time, active compounds in cannabis are infused with the neutral spirit, which boils off by the end of the process. You’re left with a potent CBD oil filled with all of the incredible benefits of CBD, without any intoxicating properties. 

CBD Isolates

For those looking to add some CBD into their daily regime, CBD isolates offer a solution. This THC-free extract product is jam-packed with the incredible benefits of CBD. Whether you’re looking to manage everyday stress, maintain a healthy sleep schedule, or recover from vigorous exercise — CBD isolates can be added to foods or drinks for some extra benefits.

CBD Capsules 

If you’d rather just take CBD like traditional medication, CBD capsules are another great option that is super convenient and familiar. You’re able to get all of the incredible benefits of CBD simply by taking a capsule that is packed full of your favorite full-spectrum CBD formula. 

CBD Topicals

We mentioned how beneficial CBD could be for your skincare regimen, which is why CBD topicals are a great option to have for your wellness routine. Whether it’s eco-friendly and natural lotions that can hydrate your skin, muscle creams that can provide anti-inflammatory properties for the active users, or hemp skin balm that hydrates lips or chapped areas like no other — CBD topicals offer a wide variety of beneficial applications. 

How to Evaluate CBD Products

The explosion of the CBD marketplace has been both a blessing and a curse for the consumer. While the massive variety in both growing conditions, plant types, company values, etc are great — it raises some potential concerns as well. The larger the variety, the bigger the range between “eh” products and “wow” products. So, what should you be doing to determine which company or products you should get behind?

Be wary of “cure” claims from CBD companies. While there’s a lot of promise with research and studies, CBD is not going to cure you. If you notice a company or product makes these claims, that’s a huge red flag. It’s not only illegal to make these claims, but it’s also a lie. So, if they’re willing to go that far with their marketing — you can only imagine what their cultivation practices are like. Using CBD does have incredible benefits, but be careful around companies making massive claims about their products.

Check for third-party testing by a company. If they’ve done it, it’s likely a legitimate operation that cares about their product. A third-party testing initiative shows that they’re able to prove the label’s accuracy when it comes to CBD oil and beyond. These tests can identify the potency and dosage. You can typically find this out by looking for a quality assurance stamp, certificate of analysis, or simply by checking in with the company. You can either ask someone directly or many of them will have it on their website.

What’s on the label can also help you evaluate your CBD oils, topicals, capsules, and more. The saying about how you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover doesn’t apply here. Judge away. But, we’re not talking about how cool or professional their artwork is. Instead, check for percentages, dosing information, and third-party testing. If it’s considered a dietary supplement, it should have a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) disclaimer, plus a warning section on it. Also, if it’s an oil or isolates — it helps if the bottling is dark so that it deters light. Light is not your CBD’s friend, and will significantly reduce shelf life.  You can learn more about CBD and expiration in our article: “Do CBD Tinctures Expire?

Speaking of dosing, this is another hot topic for evaluating your CBD products. First, determine if your CBD product is full-spectrum or an isolate. If you’re dealing with a CBD-only company, you won’t have to worry about sifting through CBD and THC products.

Check for other ingredients that may be in your CBD oils, topicals, isolates, or capsules. You should do this not only to know what you’re taking, but also to be sure that there are no ingredients that you’re allergic to or have adverse reactions to. Some CBD oils or topicals may contain lavender, coconut oil, or even melatonin. If you have issues with certain ingredients, be sure to read the label or speak with a representative.

Where you’re buying CBD is also important. While it can be found nearly anywhere nowadays, be wary of your seller. If you see it on the counter at your local gas station or mall kiosk — you may want to find a different source. While they could certainly be from a legitimate source, you’re more likely to find off-brand, untested, or illegitimate CBD at these locations. Stick to brick and mortar stores, natural grocers, or designated CBD distributors as a way to weed out any possible negative experiences.

Full Spectrum vs. Isolates

Hemp is made up of a lot of compounds (over 400), which includes the powerful cannabidiol (CBD) that we’re looking for. CBD may work differently for everyone, and choosing between full-spectrum and isolates can be tricky. However, before diving into how these two are different, it’s important to understand how certain variables may affect your experience. Along with cannabidiol, secondary phytocannabinoids, terpenoids, terpenes, and flavanoids can be found as well.

These work together to form what’s called the “entourage effect.” This process refers to the synergistic relationship between all of these compounds that boost the effects of CBD. Full-spectrum takes into account all of the great compounds found in whole-plant extracts — while isolates are primarily for just CBD boosts. Isolates can be used on their own — by adding to foods, liquids, or other supplements — or they can even be used to enhance a full-spectrum hemp extract.

Who Can Take CBD?

Almost anyone can take CBD without any issues. Many studies have shown that hemp extract with CBD does not hinder or have negative side effects for the majority of users. It’s an extremely well-tolerated compound. You can expect a sense of calm, stress relief, focus, sleep, and some balance in your everyday life from CBD. Some may find that it helps with inflammation, which makes it a great supplement to add to your post-exercise or workout routine. If you’re unsure of whether or not you should take CBD, consult with your healthcare provider.

Some CBD users may find that they experience one thing, while another may experience an entirely different interaction. Each body is unique, which means that everyone will have a slightly unique experience. Your Endocannabinoid System is what’s at play here, and certain hemp extracts may benefit or interact with you differently than your friend or family member. Many who use CBD experience feelings of relaxation, focus, and a sense of calm. It’s part of the reason why so many people who deal with anxiety or stress-related issues use CBD as a part of their wellness routine. It’s also a great way to ease yourself to bed, especially if you’re one of those people who get jittery or your mind races at night.

Try CBD Today 

If you’re interested in trying out CBD products, whether for an added supplement to your wellness routine or for certain symptoms — Minny Grown has a wide variety of products to choose from. Our premium growing practices and commitment to offering the best CBD products for our customers has fueled our company since day one. We take great care with each and every hemp plant we cultivate to offer the best CBD product possible. Whether it’s CBD oil, isolates, topicals, or capsules — we have a hemp solution for you.

Minny Grown is at the forefront of this research as we continue to integrate science throughout each step of our process. As the scientific literature surrounding CBD gets stronger and stronger, it is no doubt that CBD works, and it is here to stay in our world of modern medicine.