Many people associate the hemp plant cannabis exclusively with intoxication. In addition, a medical effect is traditionally described, which modern, science-based medicine is also increasingly discovering for itself.
The traditional application of hemp in the nature and herbal medicine is supposed to go back in some countries already 5000 to 10.000 years, as many traditions in the nature and folk medicine report.
The focus of attention is increasingly on cannabis oil, which contains mainly the substance cannabidiol(CBD) and therefore has no psychoactive effect without significant amounts of THC. Many users mean exactly these oils when they talk about cannabis oil.
Here, medically interested consumers ask themselves the question whether cannabis oil can help them with various symptoms. In the following we would like to give you more information about the oil of the cannabis plant, its production and potential health effects.
This is also about the prescription of medical hemp applications.
Hemp - a plant with different faces
The hemp plant can serve as a basis for various substances and applications. It depends on the type of plant and which parts of the hemp are processed.
Applications containing the psychoactive THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are obtained from the leaves of the female hemp plant (for example marijuana) or from the resin (hashish). In contrast, cannabidiols are extracted from the leaves and flowers of female industrial hemp.
Commercial or industrial hemp, mainly the variety Cannabis sativa, is per se poor in THC. In the strictly medical field, however, not only extracts from hemp are used, but also products containing THC. Also mixtures of low and high THC extracts are common in this segment and can have a very convincing effect.
The oils of the hemp plant as a collective term for various products
When generally speaking of cannabis oil, it is not clear from which plant parts and which hemp species the oil was obtained. Here, for example, in addition to leaves and blossoms, hemp seeds are also a possible source from which the so-called hemp or hemp seed oil is extracted.
In this respect we are dealing with a generic term for various oils. Like other hemp products, they differ primarily in the THC content: Here there are noisy oils with high THC content, which legally have a drug status.
Medically, these oils are only used on doctor's prescription for certain medical indications and are currently very rarely used legally.
Other oils are rich in cannabidiols and contain hardly any THC, which is why these oils are called CBD oils. These oils are legally mainly classified as food supplements or, like hemp seed oil, as edible oils.
If you are interested in the medicinal properties of the oils, you are probably focusing on dietary supplements or prescription drugs. Hemp seed oil may be of more general health benefit, especially due to its fatty acid profile, which is very beneficial to humans.
Making oils from hemp
In the production of the different hemp oils it depends above all on which plant parts are used.
Good to know: Cannabidiol oil is usually made from the flowers of commercial hemp. The available supply of high quality cannabis oil can be limited because only a certain amount of the cannabis plants are grown and harvested each year. Plant products are generally subject to fluctuations here depending on the weather and other seasonal influences.
This also influences the price of cannabis oil. High-quality oils are more expensive, which is also due to the sometimes complex manufacturing process. In addition, cannabis oil and also the original plant parts are subject to strict import regulations and sometimes to restrictions and quotas.
As some cannabis varieties produce THC-containing extracts, it is constantly being checked which type of cannabis oil is produced. A limitation of the cannabis oils results in particular also in the range of useful hemp from biological cultivation.
Production of high quality cannabis oils on organic hemp is more qualitative because it is not contaminated by pesticides and other foreign substances.
1. extraction using solvents
Oils with CBD content and a THC content of less than 0.2 percent are extracted from the flowers using a solvent. So-called supercritical carbon dioxide is the most commonly used solvent.
This form of carbon dioxide is kept in a fluid state above a critical point at temperature and pressure. This makes it particularly flowable and allows it to penetrate very deeply into other materials.
The source plants of high-quality oils are useful hemp plants from organic cultivation. In some products, further vegetable oils are added to the oils at the end to make the taste more compatible or to obtain another carrier.
However, such mixtures are less popular with purists of high-quality oils from the hemp plant.
2. extraction by cold pressing
The hemp seed oil is ideally obtained by cold pressing the seeds. This gentle production process guarantees that the valuable secondary plant substances, fats and micronutrients are preserved.
3. extraction by distillation
Essential oils, which are obtained by distillation from the hemp plant, play a subordinate role for the medical-health field of application. They are particularly suitable as ingredients for cosmetics and similar products.
To the point:
- Cannabis oils can be both THC- and CBD-rich oils as well as mixed oils.
- Oils with a high proportion of CBD are extracted with a solvent mainly from the flowers of the hemp.
- High-quality hemp seed oil is produced by cold pressing.
- THC contents above 0.2% lead to the classification of an oil as a narcotic and prevent the product from being freely marketable.
The use of cannabis oils
At this point we would like to distinguish three different areas of application for oils:
- The strictly medical application area with prescription products. In this sector, medicinal hemp is often referred to as medicinal hemp, although the name does not say anything about how the THC and other components behave in the individual preparation.
However, these are standardized extracts with fixed quantity ranges for the active substances. Some cannabis oil suppliers mean CBD oils when they use the term. This is not binding and is not generally treated as such.
In Germany, this category of medicinal cannabis oil includes exactly those substances that at least also contain THC and thus fall under the Narcotics Act (Betäubungsmittelgesetz, BTMG).
- The traditional health and wellness area with food supplements and the edible oils from hemp seeds.
Here, the cannabidiol oils, which are particularly low in THC, are used in food supplements.
- The non-legal area with psychoactive THC-rich intoxicants.
For many, this information can be confusing at first. Whoever is interested in the use of hemp products will primarily start from his health problems for which he wishes to get better.
Therefore, the next section will first deal with the potential medical effects.
Which symptoms and diseases respond to the oils?
The medical application of hemp oils has a long and interesting history:
During the heyday of an Islamic-influenced medicine in the early Middle Ages, various parts of the hemp plant were used by doctors. Already a little later corresponding herbal extracts reached the European monastic medicine.
Among other things, Hildegard von Bingen describes an effect on stomach complaints and nausea. Today it is not quite clear whether these extracts were also rich in THC. This is assumed because modern commercial hemp with its distinct THC outbreaks is a relatively new development.
Overall, the possible therapeutic scope is very broad. However, scientific research on medical hemp is not yet complete.
Findings and assumptions are therefore partly based on experience in traditional medicine. For some diseases, however, modern scientific studies already exist.
In the medical field, the effects of cannabis oil are being studied for these complaints, among others:
- Epilepsy - mainly THC oils, but also cannabidiol oils to protect the nerves during seizures
- Asthma - focus on oils with cannabidiol
- Pain - here different oils with both THC and CBD could have an effect
- Eye diseases like cataract and glaucoma - different oils are under discussion
- Alzheimer's - different oils are being tested
- Multiple sclerosis - oils with different compositions are tested in application
- Nausea - Cannabidiol seems to bring relief
- Depression - THC oils could have an effect on various receptor sites for messenger substances in the brain and thus reduce depressive phases
- Anorexia - Cannabis oil stimulates the appetite
- AIDS - here cannabidiol oil alleviates especially the side effects of AIDS medication
- Sleep disorders - various preparations without THC
- ADHS - THC-free cannabis oil can be used
Cannabis oil for cancer?
Whether oils from the hemp plant help against cancer is still controversial. It is constantly being investigated whether and how cannabis oils affect cancer cells. Various studies describe that the oils could reduce the side effects of cancer treatments like chemotherapy.
Pain would also become more bearable with cannabis oil. Here, it is particularly aggressive cancers such as lung cancer that may respond well to treatment with cannabis oil or other medicinal cannabis products. But it always depends on the individual case.
Cannabis oil for anxiety?
Anxiety is not a medical condition in the first place. It is a protective mechanism of the organism. However, symptoms of anxiety can take on an illness value in the context of various psychiatric disorders.
Can cannabis oil be an alternative in treatment?
To the point:
- Medical cannabis products in the narrower sense are standardised, usually prescription and in our case contain TCH.
- The indications for the use of cannabis and cannabis oils in the medical-therapeutic field are numerous, but not all of them have yet been proven by scientific studies.
- The use of cannabis oil and other hemp products in cancer appears to be sufficiently proven to be recommendable, at least for the relief of side effects and pain.
- Medical prescriptions of cannabis products remain rare despite the relaxation of the legal framework in 2017.
Will the doctor prescribe me cannabis oil?
Cannabis oil is usually prescribed by doctors only in exceptional cases. Admittedly, an amendment to the BTMG 2017 has made it easier to prescribe medical cannabis products. Doctors are very free in this respect, especially in the choice of indication, and are allowed to prescribe the products even for diseases for which these products are not expressly approved (off-label use).
The therapeutic range is estimated to be very high, even though not everything has been proven by studies. Permission for off-label use is also important because cannabis preparations are not approved for a single indication in our country.
However, doctors still have difficulty in assessing the therapeutic properties of cannabis oil and other drugs derived from the hemp plant. Many also shy away from issuing a prescription under the narcotics law.
Nevertheless, patients may also ask for cannabis oil and cannabis-based medicines if they have heard of them. Perhaps the doctor will recommend cannabis oil without THC as a dietary supplement, even if he does not prescribe a hemp-based medicine in individual cases.
We can assume in the next years that the acceptance for hemp and cannabis oil in the medical field will increase, because more experience will be available. Also the greater use of cannabis oil as a food supplement contributes to a positive attitude towards the products.
How do I myself use cannabis oil for health purposes?
The legal use of cannabis oil without a doctor's prescription is limited to cannabis oil containing cannabidiol. Here you can fall back on the traditions of traditional medicine with regard to health problems.
The use of cannabis oil can be worth at least a try for many complaints.
The following points must be observed:
- When using cannabis oil for the first time, we recommend a cautious approach. You start with the lowest possible dosage, which you can always increase later.
- When choosing an oil, you should choose a high quality cannabis oil from a reputable supplier. While strictly medicinal cannabis oils are standardised, this is not necessarily the case for food supplements.
Serious suppliers of food supplements in this field offer a standardized cannabis oil with certificates of origin and analysis. This also protects you as a consumer from getting a cannabis oil containing THC. It should be possible for you to determine how and where the oil was produced.
Good providers not only sell the products but also provide comprehensive information on cannabis oils.
- Cannabis oils without THC are not addictive, they have no addictive potential according to previous findings.
- As with herbal applications in general, the effects of cannabis oil can be very individual. You may need some patience before you see its effect. This may be different for other users, so the dosage is also decisive here.
- Good oils do not contain preservatives or other additives.
What are full spectrum oils?
Hemp contains other valuable and health-supporting ingredients. A full spectrum oil does not filter them out but keeps them in the oil so that they can be absorbed. The hemp should come from organic farming.
What chances does cannabis oil offer in medicine?
The possibilities of oils and related products have not yet been fully explored. Potentially, many people can benefit healthily from cannabis oil. This also and especially applies to chronic diseases.
Cannabis oils have the great advantage here that as a rule there are no or only very slight side effects. On the contrary, the oils often help to alleviate the side effects of drugs.
Also the use of cannabis oils in classical school medicine can still be increased. If hemp loses its bad reputation as a drug, because more and more consumers and physicians recognize its health benefits, then this potent plant can unfold its potential on a much larger scale.
Oils in particular could play a key role here. They act faster and more directly than e.g. tablets or CBD capsules. The smell of cannabis oil, which takes some getting used to, can be reduced by adding coconut oil, for example.
Another advantage of cannabis oil is that particularly pure products can be produced by extraction. There is no need for a concentration process during production, as is required for tablets via pulverization.
Perhaps an increased demand will also lead to an expansion of the areas under cultivation of hemp, which will counteract the limitation of the products.
Summary of the
It is still true that high-quality cannabis oils are not sold in drugstore chains. You can buy them from reputable suppliers who have appropriate proof and certificates. Only high-quality oils can produce health-supporting and medical effects.
The legal classification of certain oils as food supplements does not make it easy for us as consumers to assess the potential in the medical field.
Health claims may not be used in advertising as long as no recognised "health claim" for cannabis oil. Therefore, the use of cannabis oils has mainly something to do with testing.
In many cases it is worth trying cannabis oils for a whole range of health problems and even for many chronic diseases.
So far, there is also no evidence that we can only take cannabis oils for a certain period of time or that the effect becomes weaker after longer use. For many people with chronic diseases, this is therefore the opportunity for a herbal product with often positive effects.
Cannabis oil and other cannabis products (such as Cannabis Liquid) deserve even more attention, for example in immune disorders, arteriosclerosis and muscle cramps as well as addiction and many psychiatric disorders.
Research in the field of cancer control is also promising. In palliative care, cannabis oils can provide well-tolerated support to many dying people. In view of the consequences of conventional medicines, which are becoming known time and again, oils can offer a good alternative on a herbal basis.
Note: In this article we report on prescription cannabis, prescription CBD or over-the-counter or legal CBD. This Article does not make any proposal as to the possible purpose of the proposal and is for information and education purposes only. Promises of healing and benefits are excluded.