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Ask An Aromatherapist: Does Hemp Oil/Seed I Buy at the Grocery Store Contain CBD? What About Hemp Es

You may have seen hemp oil or seeds at the grocery store or in body care products. You may have also heard about the benefits of the cannabinoid (CBD) for a variety of health issues. Hemp oil, seeds, and CBD are NOT psychoactive -- they don't produce a high but are valued for their nutritional and therapeutic properties. The plants they come from are legal across the U.S. -- as they are raised for therapeutic and industrial reasons and NOT recreational purposes. They must meet government guidelines showing they will not cause psychoactive effects.

So what's the big deal about the cannabinoid CBD? Research has shown that CBD may be beneficial to people with epilepsy and Parkinson's disease. It is useful for promoting sleep, reducing pain, reducing feelings of stress, and improving performance

Hemp oil is pressed from the seeds of the hemp plant. It is prized for it's fatty acid profile of 3:1 ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids which mimics the balance required by the human body. Thirty to thirty-five percent of the hempseed weight yeilds an edible oil that is comprised of about 80% essential fatty acids: 55% linoleic acid, omega 6, 22% alpha-linoleic acid, omega 3, as well as 1-4% gamma-linoleic acid, omega 6, and 0-2% steardonic acid, omega 3. (1) Hemp oil does contain some of the non-psychoactive cannabinoid CBD in very small amounts, typically less than 25 parts per million (ppm). (2) Thus hemp oil is a great nutritional and anti-inflammatory oil due to the fatty acid profile but does not contain significant amounts of CBD.

Hemp essential oil is distilled from flowering hemp plants and contains aromatic compounds from the hydrophobic distillate -- that is the portion that is not water soluble. Hemp essential oil is rich rich in beta-myrcene (21 - 31%) and beta-caryophyllene (13 -19%) both of which are analgesic and anti-inflammatory (3). B-myrcene is sedative and b-caryophyllene is anti-spasmodic. Thus hemp essential oil is an excellent choice when dealing with aches. But does it contain CBD? The CBD molecule contains 21 carbons, while most found aromatic compounds found in essential oils contain 10 to 15 carbons. It doesn't show up in the distillate most likely due to its size. Thus hemp essential oil is great to add to a blend for muscle soreness but if you are looking for CBD it's not there.

If you do have questions about CBD or are looking for a blend that contains it feel free to contact me or visit the store and check out the Relieved! Hemp synergy. In time I plan to offer more CBD products to support sleep and relieve aches and support health.

While we get our product lines up and running here are two reputable CBD sources I've used:

And for information about amounts of CBD needed for various reasons check out this website to get started:

1. Wikipedia, Hemp Oil, Accessed 2/11/18 from: and Hemp comparison chart:

2. MPN News: Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: accessed 2/11/18 from:

3. Tisserand, R. and Young, R. (2014), Essential Oil Safety 2nd Edition p. 300

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