Move over magnesium, CBD is the fitness world’s newest infatuation and the most buzzed-about nutrition trend in the UK. But where do you start?
Magnesium helps relieve muscle tension, tightness and stiffness, making it great for easing DOMS (delayed-onset muscle soreness) following a strenuous gym sesh. But studies have also shown that CBD oil, the new kid on the block in wellness circles, can achieve the same effect, and then some.
Not only is CBD a strong muscle relaxant, helping to relieve tension and spasms and speed up the recovery process in the long-term, it’s also an effective painkiller, blocking pain signals from reaching the brain. CBD is also an anti-inflammatory, making this cannabis-derived supplement a triple-threat when it comes to alleviating muscle pain.
CBD is non-intoxicating, non-addictive and perfectly legal – so long as it contains less than 0.2% THC (the cannabis compound that gets you high).
Millions of Britons are already giving it a try, but with hundreds of brands flooding the marketplace, how are you supposed to find the right CBD oil for you?
With so many options, it’s easy to wind up with ‘paralysis by analysis’. Fear not, though, because here’s a quick-and-easy guide to finding the best CBD oils in the UK & USA.
3 Things to Look For
when Buying CBD Oil
1 CBD Lab Testing
Simply put, if you can’t find the lab test results for a CBD oil, don’t buy it. Since the UK government itself doesn’t test CBD products, brands who care about their reputation will hire independent third party laboratories to do the job instead.
A CBD lab test will certify that the oil contains as much CBD as it should, and no more THC than is allowed by law. Lab tests will also show whether the oil tested positive for contaminants like pesticides or harsh chemicals, which you certainly don’t want as part of a healthy new lifestyle.
2 Type of CBD
CBD oils are classified according to a number of criteria, but the most important one might be their THC content. While no over-the-counter CBD oil contains enough THC to get you high, some (called full-spectrum CBD oils) do contain small traces. Many scientists believe these are the most effective CBD oils, since a small amount of THC can elevate the effects of hemp’s other beneficial compounds via a cellular interaction known as ‘the entourage effect’.
However, THC isn’t for everyone. Some athletes, in particular, are wary of any contact with the compound. If this applies to you, then broad-spectrum CBD oil or CBD-isolate might be more appealing choices. Both are processed to remove all traces of THC. Broad-spectrum oils contain CBD and a number of other hemp compounds, and CBD-isolates are pure CBD.
3 Concentration of CBD
Nobody wants a watered-down product, especially when paying a premium. However, scientists still haven’t reached consensus on ‘the ideal’ potency of CBD, so it’s best to fall back on a simple but useful formula.
Take the total amount of CBD (usually displayed in milligrams) and divide it by the total volume of the product (usually displayed in millilitres). Ideally, the number you end up with should be at least 25-30, which will give you a solid amount of CBD per dose.
5 of the Best CBD Oils
The CBD marketplace is a crowded one. To help you make sense of the madness, we’ve picked out some of the UK and USA’s top options:
1000mg CBD Oil
The flagship product of UK-based fourfivecbd – a company founded by rugby stars George Kruis and Dominic Day – this versatile tincture is designed specifically with athletes in mind. The 1000 mg CBD Oil from fourfivecbd is a full-spectrum product made with all-natural ingredients, and is certified for purity and potency by one of Europe’s top testing labs. It also comes in a handy 30ml spray bottle, making it easy to get a quick dose before or after a workout. Plus, it’s vegan and vegetarian friendly.
2 OK CBD
200mg CBD Oil
People who want to give CBD a try without spending a fortune might find OK CBD’s CBD Oil 200mg to their liking. While these 15ml vials are a bit light on the CBD, the oil is available in a wide range of flavours including vanilla, orange, spearmint and summer berry. Plus, the great price point means this CBD oil doesn’t require much of a commitment.
500 mg CBD Oil Tincture
Made in the USA, Medterra’s 500 mg CBD Oil Tincture is a 30ml vial filled with non-GMO CBD isolate. This oil, which is certified by the US Hemp Authority, is tested by independent laboratories (test results can be viewed on the product page) and has been praised by a number of professional athletes.
4 Simply CBD
Black 50 ml CBD Oil
It comes with a steep price tag, but the Black 50 ml CBD Oil from Simply CBD crams a whopping 5,000mg of full-spectrum CBD into each vial. The Dutch company provides lab results directly on its website, and also provides information on the growing conditions of its hemp. No pesticides or herbicides are used.
0% THC CBD Oil
If you’re looking for a CBD oil that’s entirely free of THC, then fourfivecbd’s 0% THC CBD Oil could be the product for you. Specially formulated for athletes who want to play it safe, it’s available in both orange and natural flavours (like the aforementioned 1000mg CBD Oil from fourfivecbd) and comes in a 30ml spray bottle. Plus, fourfivecbd oils use MCT oil as a carrier, which helps dissolve the CBD molecules so the body can process them more quickly and easily.
Which CBD Oil Is Best?
Choosing the right CBD oil to support your active lifestyle depends largely on your personal preferences. Are you OK with trace amounts of THC? How do you feel about the taste of natural CBD? Do you prefer a medicine dropper or a tablet?
Having said that, a full-spectrum CBD oil with easily visible lab tests and a high concentration of the titular ingredient (CBD) is always going to be a good bet, which makes fourfivecbd’s 1000 mg CBD Oil a stand-out product. Plus, the brand’s emphasis on fitness and nutrition give this oil a leg up on its competitors.
You’ll want to have a quick chat with your doctor or medical professional before you start taking CBD, just as you would with any supplement. But assuming that you use it correctly, adding a hemp-based supercharge to your daily routine could be just what you need to push yourself to the top.