We're always leery of the word "best" anytime we see it.
Since we read NIH studies on CBD 2-3 hours a day (seriously...it's officially embarrassing), the typical marketing slogans are pretty transparent.
That being said, with CBD, there are many contenders for the worst CBD when it comes to anxiety.
There are new reports of CBD brands and products with very bad test results.
We'll go through the basics but most importantly, we'll touch base on why 90% of CBD on the market may make anxiety worse!
All based on NIH studies of course.
We're all about research to guide our decisions.
The rest is just slick marketing.
We'll cover these topics on finding the best CBD for anxiety:
- Quick intro to why CBD might be best for anxiety
- Minimum requirements of CBD for anxiety
- Best CBD for anxiety sufferers with allergies or histamine issues
- Best CBD delivery method for anxiety
- Best CBD for anxiety without THC
Let's get started.
Quick intro to why CBD might be best for anxiety
We've written 100's of articles based on NIH research but this one cuts close to home.
It's actually how we found CBD to begin with!
Scrambling to get away from the various benzo's and SSRI's the doctors were prescribing, we tried EVERYTHING.
We also had to try many brands of CBD as well.
In the end, we got there and the effects on anxiety match what's showing in research.
Being close to our heart, we wrote an extensive review of CBD's benefits for anxiety but a few quick takeaways.
There are multiple pathways at work that drive anxiety:
- Neurotransmitter imbalance - primarily GABA, Cortisol, Glutamate, and Serotonin
- Brain region dysfunction - Amygdala versus prefrontal cortex
- Hormone imbalance - Progesterone, Testosterone, Estrogen speak to gender difference
- Brain inflammation and immune response - the new front in health - our gut's response!
- Histamine response - don't discount allergic reactions in the brain!
CBD gets to the heart of all of these issues based on NIH research!
In fact, anxiety is the leading reason for people to try and stay with CBD.
Again..it's a 4000+ word total review of CBD for anxiety so we'll leave the studies and research (we reference over a dozen) there but CBD might be the best tool we have now for anxiety with a very strong safety profile.
We get into the meds as well.
Once we establish that CBD has the potential to help, how do we find the best CBD for anxiety?
Let's start with the basics.
Minimum requirements of CBD for anxiety
There are some minimum requirements that apply...especially for anxiety!
- The CBD must be sourced from organically grown industrial hemp in the US at an FDA registered farm
- The CBD should be Isolate only (we'll get into why below)
- The CBD must be CO2 extracted - much cleaner process
- The CBD must be 3rd party tested for the following items
- THC free - very important as THC can actually increase anxiety
- Solvent-free - solvents can cause an immune response which may make anxiety worse
- Pesticide-free - same effect on the immune system
- Bacteria and mold-free - we want to feel better...not worse
We make sure to put our 3rd party results at the bottom of every page on this site.
It's amazing how many bogus brands out there don't even run testing!
CBD products are not FDA regulated so it's incredibly important to have 3rd party testing and it should be readily available.
Let's look at each of these with a little more detail.
The CBD must come from the US!
There are so many bad products out there coming from China and Mexico.
Who knows what is in there but if the recent recalls of blood pressure meds (heavily regulated by the FDA) for carcinogens is any indication, CBD must be US sourced.
Organically grown goes to the fact that hemp is very good at removing things from the ground.
They call it a soil remediator for a reason!
The solvent, pesticide, bacteria, and mold should be pretty obvious.
We don't want these substances in anything we might put in our body but it's even more important for anxiety.
Most of the new research is pointing to immune response and inflammation-causing a host of mental health issues.
Or at least, making them worse!
Inflammation in the brain and central nervous system IS anxiety.
Along with a host of other issues.
This needs to be a 3rd party tested and out of our CBD.
We're amazed when we research brands for people on Reddit and the given brand has testing but it shows a nasty pesticide out of range!
Do they assume no one will read the report??
Check out the whole section on Inflammation and Anxiety in the CBD benefits for Anxiety article.
Very fascinating (don't forget the gut microbiome!!)
We'll discuss why it's especially important to make sure these substances are not in our CBD for anxiety sufferers below (histamine section).
Research has shown that THC actually can cause anxiety or make it worse depending on the dosage.
This is no surprise to many people who have had adverse reactions to marijuana.
Check out how CBD helps when greening out (too much THC).
Then there's the whole allergic reaction issue.
Let's go there now.
Best CBD for anxiety sufferers with allergies or histamine issues
No one's talking about this but it makes up roughly half the population!
Every brand out there is slinging "full-spectrum" CBD.
This means that you have lots of hemp plant material in the bottle with CBD added to a certain level (with a reputable brand that is).
Here are the stats.
Roughly 40% of the US has allergy or histamine issues.
That number goes up for women and even higher if over 40!
Our histamine pathway becomes more reactive as we get older.
There's a general move up in allergies over the past few decades in general (thanks pesticides and chemicals!).
We've helped many people who say that their original CBD brand (big brands...some of the biggest on the market) actually made their anxiety worse!
This makes no sense if you look at the NIH research until you realize that the research is all based on CBD Isolate (CBD by itself).
It's like you're taking CBD with a bottle of liquid ragweed or pollen.
Good luck with that!
The people switch to CBD Isolate and a better brand (the basics above)....and the increase in anxiety goes away.
Along with a host of other side effects (gastrointestinal, hives, headaches, etc).
It's ridiculous to us that 95% of the market is selling a product that's going to send half the population reeling!
All they have to do read 100's of NIH articles on how CBD works.
This is a good place to circle back to THC and anxiety.
Studies estimate that 73% of the people above with histamine issues are allergic to THC.
That's roughly 24-36% of the US population!
This speaks to many people claiming that their CBD (with trace amounts of THC) increases their anxiety.
Full-spectrum that is!
Legally, CBD products can have up to .3% THC as per the 2018 Hemp Bill passage.
Any amount of an allergen is not going to feel good if you're susceptible.
Check out CBD and histamines here to see how this is doubly so for women!
It's one of the reasons we focus (and found) CBD Isolate for anxiety.
We tried many of the biggest CBD oil products out there and we felt terrible on them.
Anxiety. Fever. Clicking in the back of the throat.
A full array of allergic reactions.
Just read our reviews and you'll how many of them speak to Isolate CBD causing the side effects to go away.
We switched to CBD Isolate and they all went away.
Also, the base oil should be MCT (derived from coconut) since hemp or olive oil are more of the same problem with histamines.
It's our entire focus here at IndigoNaturals to match what research is showing.
If you read the CBD benefits for Anxiety article, you'll see that we actually read the research.
Best CBD delivery method for anxiety
Once we narrowed down the best CBD to take for anxiety, how should we take it?
There are two methods popular for people with anxiety.
- CBD oil tinctures
- CBD vapes
The vast majority use oil tinctures.
The vape is faster but not everyone is comfortable with that approach and the effects also wear off faster.
Plus, there's still a question on the safety of this method (for anyone not watching the news lately).
There's a way to get the best of both worlds with the oil.
It's a two-pronged approach:
- Fast effect - hold the oil under your tongue for up to 60 seconds
- Slower effect - then swallow the oil for slower break-down by liver
Many times with anxiety, we need relief NOW.
That's the under the tongue trick.
There's a gland there that allows the CBD to absorb directly into the bloodstream.
When you swallow the oil after, the liver will slowly break it down.
NIH studies show that CBD generally peaks about 4-6 hours after taking it and remains in the bloodstream for about 24 hours.
Learn all about how to get the most out of your CBD for anxiety here.
Make sure to take it after a meal and at least 4 hours away from medications.
Of course, work with a good naturopath or doctor with any supplement.
Our CBD Quick Start Guide has lots of information.
We've gone through the basics...how about some specifics.
Best CBD for anxiety without THC
At IndigoNaturals, we literally designed our CBD approach based on our initial trial and error start for anxiety.
- We went through all the full spectrum issues.
- We learned about the basic safety requirements that are a must
- We found out what levels of CBD matter for anxiety
Maybe, more importantly, we realized that we actually need to afford this!
Look, every indication is that with the right CBD, you're going to see relief for anxiety.
We say this because we see it daily.
It might be the single greatest driver behind CBD's popularity (with pain and sleep close behind).
The research on anxiety is much more established for CBD.
So how do we get the best value CBD for anxiety?
This all comes down to cost per mg of CBD!
That's the golden rule of CBD.
We specifically priced our CBD at 4-5 cents per mg of CBD to be among the best-priced options on the market.
When really big companies are charging 2, 3, even 4 times that amount for the same product (actually full spectrum which can make anxiety worse and is cheaper to make)...
Because of 2017.
That's the year one of our founders was reeling from anxiety caused by hormones plummeting during perimenopause.
You can read the full story here but there was a 3-day window with no sleep (from Lexapro) where things were very bleak.
That's the driving force for our pricing.
Don't take advantage of people suffering seems like a pretty basic prerequisite.
We could charge more and still be under the market but people are suffering.
If you've been there personally, you understand.
We've been there. We got out. Now, it's your turn.
Everyone deserves to feel better.
Master overview of CBD and anxiety pathways to look at various aspects we can directly affect.
Links to CBD and anxiety research with dozens of anxiety-specific topics.
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.