Everyone says THEY'RE the best.
No one seems to advertise they're the worst CBD but they're definitely out there as well.
This goes to the heart of the question…
How do we determine the best and worst CBD on the market?
There are now dozens of brands with more joining almost daily.
Pretty soon, CBD will be offered by major companies in their food and beverages.
The research on CBD is pretty amazing (check out the List of CBD benefits here) but only if we're actually getting CBD.
And no other really bad things with it!
There's the whole question of the best CBD for allergy and histamine issues.
That's important to a good 40-60% of the population (more if a woman and even more if a woman over age 40).
So let's first establish how we separate the best from the worst.
Most people are brand new to CBD so this will be invaluable!
- How to determine if CBD is good or bad
- 3rd party testing levels for best and worst CBD
- Verified CBD levels for best and worst CBD
- Cost comparison for best and worst CBD
- Other ingredients for best and worst CBD
Let's get into it!
The good, the bad, and the downright ugly CBD.
How to determine if CBD is good or bad
Having studied CBD research for 1000's of hours and scoured over brand information, there are very basic requirements that separate the good from the bad.
We'll get into the big ones separately but here are the differences:
- Where the original CBD hemp is grown
- How the original CBD hemp is grown
- How the CBD itself is extracted
- What base oil is used for the CBD
- Full-spectrum versus CBD Isolate if you have allergy or histamine issues
- 3rd Party Testing
- Verified levels of CBD
- Cost per mg of CBD
Let's look at these in more detail.
Where the original CBD hemp is grown
The Best CBD has the following characteristics:
Grown in the US, primarily in zones designated by the US Farm Bill for legal industrial hemp (it's an official designation) growing.
This is usually Colorado, Kentucky, Nevada, and a few other places.
The worst CBD doesn't say where it's grown and most likely comes from China or other places where the processing can be very suspect.
Look...you're putting this in your body.
There have been so many news stories of bad chemicals ending up in different items from China and elsewhere, that we absolutely want US grown hemp and produced CBD.
It's also why we can't buy CBD on Amazon.
The recent scare with blood pressure med contaminant and lung cancer should be a warning.
US grown and processed for the best CBD.
How the original CBD hemp is grown
The best CBD comes from hemp that is organically grown since the plant itself can absorb so much from the soil.
Hemp itself (which CBD comes from) is a powerful soil remediator.
This means that it can take things out of the soil very efficiently.
In fact, they'll use hemp to "clean" a field of contaminants, heavy metals, pesticides, etc.
For this reason, we want organically grown CBD.
Organic can be a specific designation by the FDA.
Currently, it's nearly impossible to get the designation of organic but the crop itself can be organically grown none-the-less.
The worst CBD will not state how it's grown or will use terms like "all-natural" which means absolutely nothing.
Organically grown or bust.
How the CBD itself is extracted
The best CBD is extracted via CO2 cold extraction or alcohol extraction.
The CO2 is the best in practice for the industry.
The worst CBD uses heavy solvents and heat to extract out the CBD from the industrial hemp.
Granted, they may pass 3rd party testing if done really well, but it's best to avoid it altogether.
We don't want any parts per million of butane!
The worst CBD can be the result of a Frankenstein processing with heavy solvents or chemicals.
If the company doesn't specify its process, run, don't walk.
What base oil is used for the CBD
This is less of an issue unless you have allergy issues.
Many of us do!!
The best CBD uses MCT or virgin olive oil.
MCT is an extract from coconut oil and has the lowest histamine load if you have allergic reactions to plant material.
Hemp oil is a very popular option but it may cause issues for people with allergies.
There can also be up to .3% THC.
Roughly 75% of people with allergy issues are allergic to THC.
There are other issues there we want to avoid and contrary to all the marketing, you don't need THC to activate CBD.
The worst CBD might use other oils or not even specify what they're using.
That's a sign of bad CBD.
Full-spectrum versus CBD Isolate if you have allergy or histamine issues
This is more a question of best or worst IF you have allergy or histamine issues.
Learn all about CBD for histamines here.
The net-net is this…
CBD Isolate will be much better for people who have allergy issues.
It may be the difference between being able to use CBD or not!
We've seen many people use full-spectrum, have bad side effects only to be fine with CBD isolate.
That's roughly half the population so not a small thing!
Just check out our reviews to see the difference in terms of experience that people have.
Not really best or worst but definitely important.
3rd party testing levels for best and worst CBD
This may be the most important in terms of safety and effectiveness.
The best CBD has 3rd party testing and it's available right there on their site!
No hiding. No requesting.
Right there before you purchase.
We actually link to ours at the top of every page on our site!
It must be US-based and one of the big testers.
The brand's name needs to be on the test and it must be within a common-sense time frame from purchase.
The required tests are:
- Heavy Metals
The worst CBD won't have 3rd party testing.
That's not just a red flag...it's a deal-breaker.
It means they're not legitimate or that these have bad stuff in the bottle.
Our goal is to make you an informed consumer because there are some really bad actors out there.
Verified CBD levels for best and worst CBD
Knowing this market so well, this is probably the biggest tip-off of CBD legitimacy of a product.
We can tell right away with a new brand if they're bogus.
Here's the deal...there's amazing research on CBD. It's all on CBD ISOLATE by the way!
Check out the list of CBD benefits from A-Z (growing by the day).
All that research (and we've read it!) is based on levels around 300-600 mg for more serious issues.
Wellness levels are around 30-50 mgs of CBD.
Even sleep showed improvement of around 160 mgs.
Those aren't small levels!
If a bottle of CBD oil has 250mg of CBD, you're never going to get there.
There are products with even less CBD which means it's basically over-priced oil.
We'll save you the money...go get a bottle of MCT oil instead.
It actually makes us angry because we KNOW they're taking advantage of people.
People who probably really need to feel better.
The worst CBD will have levels from 0 to 250 mg of CBD per container.
If we have a standard 30ml bottle of CBD oil with 250 mg total in the body, that's about 8 mg of CBD per full dropper!
Good luck with that.
Even more frustrating, many brands (even big brands) won't specify how much CBD they have.
They'll say "phytocannabinoids" or "hemp oil" or worse yet, they'll just say 500 mg but not say of what.
Totally misleading people.
That's the worst.
No, the worst is all the brands just throwing CBD on the box with barely any present (probably bad stuff anyway).
The best CBD will specify the exact level of CBD and it should be 1000 mg or higher per 30 ml container.
The balms may be lower at about 500.
Cost comparison for best and worst CBD
Once we know our CBD is safe (3rd party testing) and adequate (verified levels of CBD), we want the best cost.
This is tricky and many brands are misleading here as well.
The key metric is cost per mg of CBD!
There are so many volumes and CBD levels that it's impossible to compare without a protractor and Deep Blue.
Unless...we have a cost per mg of CBD.
All of sudden, all the pomp and circumstance drops and the naked value of the CBD is obvious.
It will usually be in cents range.
The best priced CBD is usually around 4-7 cents per mg of CBD.
Now..once we know that, you can see how many brands (even big brands) are really taking advantage of people's lack of knowledge.
We see the cost per mg of CBD at 10x that amount!
- Same testing.
- Same verified levels.
- Same basic ingredients.
10x's the cost!
That can only happen because people don't understand how to compare all this stuff.
Hopefully, you do now!
We actually did a big CBD price comparison here with major brands to show exactly what they're doing.
Finally, what else is in the CBD bottle?
Other ingredients for best and worst CBD
It's not that different from food.
The best CBD has very simple ingredients.
Ideally just two of them!
- CBD itself
- Base oil
We shouldn't have anything else.
They sure better say what the ingredient are!
The worst CBD may have preservatives, colors, scents, flavors, and more.
This rarely works out well for our health.
There's a new study almost weekly on some preservative, color, flavor, or industrial enzyme and how it wrecks our gut biome.
Even worse is if a CBD brand doesn't specify its ingredients!
Part of why we created IndigoNaturals was due to the sheer volume of bad CBD on the market.
Even some of the big brands were taking advantage of people in terms of cost.
If people can't afford CBD, they'll never get the benefit out of it.
We'll go head to toe against any CBD brand out there in terms of CBD levels, safety, process, and….cost.
Here's your laundry list of requirements to separate the good from the bad:
- 3rd party testing readily available
- Organically grown in US at an FDA registered farm
- CO2 extraction
- Verified levels of "CBD" above 1000 for oil (really, should be 2000 or higher)
- Simple ingredients (CBD, oil)
- Cost around 5 cents per mg of CBD (good luck with that one...see CBD price comparison here).
If you find a brand that meets these, note below and we'll compare.
We stand behind IndigoNaturals because we did it the right way!
Our entire families use this oil so it better be the best. Crafted based on Research!
Always work with a doctor or naturopath with any supplement!
The information provided here is not intended to treat an illness or substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified healthcare provider.