CBD oil is a potent extract taken from the marijuana plant which contains large amounts of cannabidiol. This unique compound has been reported as offering many health benefits and having the potential to treat such illnesses as cancer, depression, epilepsy, and many more. The DEA still regards Marijuana as being a Schedule I controlled substance, and CBD oil is technically, kinda, pretty much, illegal (sort of).

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What is CBD Oil, Exactly?

Cannabidiol is a phytocompound derived from the Cannabis species—most commonly referred to as Marijuana. This compound is the major phytocannabinoid found in the cannabis species and accounts for nearly 40% of all cannabinoids found in cannabis extractions (R). This compound is non-psychoactive which means it does NOT cause a high similar to that of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).  Non-psychotropic compounds such as Cannabidiol are thought to actually reduce the psychotropic effects of THC.

The human brain and peripheral nervous system are loaded with special cannabinoid receptors

Clinical studies have confirmed this notion and observed remarkable decreases in social phobia responses to such events as public speaking (R). It’s not especially difficult to imagine CBD Oil as beneficial to our health. After all, the human brain and peripheral nervous system are loaded with special cannabinoid receptors—all part of our Endocannabinoid system. Even with a remarkable body of scientific evidence for the health benefits of cannabidiol—the legality of CBD Oil products is still very uncertain (R).

CBD Oil Legal Status OrganicNewsroom

Legal Status of CBD Oil

Cannabidiol is remarkable not only because of the large body of scientific evidence supporting it but also from miraculous stories of people that have had pharmaceuticals fail them. To understand the legality of Cannabidiol, you have to understand how the DEA currently regulates cannabis plants. Marijuana is regulated as a schedule I controlled substance which effectively gives it the same legal classification as Heroin. Schedule I is considered the most illegal of substances, with compounds like cocaine and methamphetamine being Schedule II.

DEA Classification

The most notable factor in consideration for a compounds legal scheduling under the Controlled Substance Act is whether or not it has any inherent medicinal value. Schedule I means a compound has zero noted medicinal value and is also considered illegal for the unauthorized purchase. Many prescription medications are considered Schedule IV, meaning they have controlled substances—but purported as being useful in medicinal matters. Marijuana’s Scheduling doesn’t just restrict how US citizens are able to use the plant—it also restricts how derivatives such as CBD oil can be used. All this is based on the DEA’s perspective that marijuana has no medicinal value.

DEA Intervention

The DEA has reaffirmed its stance on the derivatives of marijuana-derived products, such as CBD Oil as still remaining largely illegal (R). Products derived from the stalks of cannabis plants—known to contain only trace amounts of psychoactive compounds like THC—are able to be used for commercial goods. Typically, these materials are derived from low-THC strains of cannabis plants commonly called Hemp.  The DEA regards the stalks of these plants as being unable to provide raw materials with enough CBP Oil to be of merit.

CBD products in the US are sourced from products the DEA claims must be made outside of US legal codes but they can’t prove it

Overseas growers with less scrutiny from the DEA provide US importers with CBD products with less than the legal maximum of trace THC levels—claiming the source as being from the stalk and other acceptable parts of the plant. The DEA has little regulatory control outside of US soil are unable to reasonably validate the claims of such manufacturers. High Times has a great article for anyone interested in learning more about the intricate legalities currently facing CBP products in the United States. Basically, CBD products in the US are sourced from products the DEA claims must be made outside of US legal codes but they can’t prove it—and testing confirms legal levels of THC.

Expanded Regulations

Recently, the DEA has made public documents that have expanded on which types of marijuana compounds they seek to control. These documents have assigned a new drug classification code specifically for ‘marihuana’ extractions such as CBD oil. As noted by The Cannabist—the DEA purports this to be a move to greater facilitate the cataloging of scientific data and adherence to international standards. This re-iteration seemed to align with the recent denial of reclassification status of Marijuana as a non-Schedule I drug.

Research Restrictions

This move would have opened up the compound for more medical data to be collected, and allowed better access to raw materials by researchers. While many reserve admiration for the DEA’s in this matter, they have recently announced steps (pdf) taken to allow easier access for research purposes.  Historically, any researchers wanting to study marijuana were only able to buy from one government-sanctioned source—the University of Mississippi. While this move paints a somewhat optimistic picture for deregulation in the future; CBD oil is still illegal in many US States.

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CBD Benefits

Cannabinoids are thought to provide their benefit by acting on our bodies’ endocannabinoid system. This system of cannabinoid receptor sites is generally split into two separate classifications—CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are found mostly in our brains and are responsible for controlling pain, inflammation, and stress reactions (R). These receptors are commonly targeted by the psychoactive cannabinoids like THC. CB2 sites are most-commonly found on immune cells and are much less prevalent in the brain than CB2 cells.

Modern research illustrates these receptor sites to play an integral role in modulating the effects of inflammation throughout our body (R). Inflammation is considered by many to be the root of almost every major disease, and helping to reduce its effects could help to attenuate the impact of many diseases. Below are several of the most clinically-supported health benefits of CBD oil—though many people report a much larger range of actual benefits.

Anxiety & Depression

Anxiety and depression come in many forms, occasion, and responses. These types of symptoms can be regarded as both physical and mental responses to certain stimuli, and vary wildly from person to person. Clinical data surrounding the experience of anxiety is gathered in numbers related to heart rate, cerebral blood flow, and blood-oxygen levels in certain areas of the brain associated with stress responses. If you suffer from anxiety or have panic attacks, you’ll likely attest that the physical symptoms are usually the least of your concern.

There have been a number of clinical, pre-clinical, and epidemiological studies conducted that show cannabidiol to have a remarkable ability to reduce anxiety symptoms. Tests have reached similar results in both animal and human models, and paint a very positive interpretation of CDB oil for anxiety. 5-HT is another receptor in our brains which cannabinoids are known to attach, and are also known to play an integral role in modulating symptoms of anxiety and depression.

These receptor sites help regulate the binding of serotonin and are commonly thought to be targeted by such natural anxiety supplements like 5-HTP. 5-HT1A is particularly well known to be related in the role of stress and anxiety symptoms. While the exact means of interaction are still unknown, Cannabidiol seems to produce a net-result of modulating these receptor sites in an anxiety-reducing manner (R).


Cancer has long-since passed epidemic status in the United States, with 40% of the population being estimated to receive a cancer diagnosis within their lifetime (R).  Cannabinoids have shown the ability to target cancer cells directly, causing a decreased spread rate and also increased cancer cell death (R) The US’s official cancer resource Cancer.gov lists many of this research on its cannabis page—seemingly in direct conflict with the DEA’s viewpoint (R). It’s noteworthy that the only research directly mentioned on that page is related to animal studies, though the implication of medicinal merit is still abundantly clear.

Cannabidiol has shown the ability to directly treat breast cancer, gliomas, leukemia, lymphoma, lung cancer, and colon cancer (R). With the limited ability of researchers to get authorization and access to needed materials, there’s a strong likelihood CBD Oil has the potential to treat many more cancers as well. To be clear, this research is related to the direct treatment of cancer cells and their proliferation—not just symptom management. The United States Government refuses to reconsider the medical merit of marijuana-derived compounds, but science doesn’t lie.


Possibly the most well-known health benefits of CBD Oil comes from the treatment of seizure-related illnesses in children. In the past few years, there have been a number of children’s parent who has resorted to ‘alternative’ medicine after pharmaceutical drugs have failed to stop their children’s debilitating seizures. Research has been finding the ability of cannabinoids to reduce the impact of seizure activity for decades, if not longer.  (R).  Still, some of the most persuasive data come from the heart-wrenching stories of children like Charlotte Figi—who suffered from hundreds of seizures each week before CBD Oil.

Watch this video from a local Denver Colorado news channel for more on that story. The bottom line is that CBD oil seems able to stop many seizures dead in their tracks. A very loosely-controlled study found that of 150 parents reporting the use of cannabidiol enriched marijuana, all found a high rate of success. This included noted decreases in self-stimulation, decreased weight loss, lower rates of insomnia, and an increased appetite. Other human trials investigating CBD oil for seizures have also indicated positive effects, though more research is still needed.

Types of CBD Oil
CBD Oil comes in many different forms from many different strains of cannabis.

Types of CBD Oil

The DEA has been clear that CBD oil is still regulated under the guise of being a marijuana product—and even have a shiny new code for it. Still, there is a flood of CBD Oil products available on the market. These products include encapsulated CBD Oil supplements, Oil-Suspended CBD Oil Tinctures, and various other forms used by many in vaporizing pens. CBD Oil products have commonly found their way on the shelves of non-legalized State health food stores with seemingly little repercussion.

Industrial Hemp

Many US-based CDP Oil products are sourced from industrialized hemp. This low-THC variety of cannabis is legal for the manufacture of food products like hemp oil, hemp hearts, and hemp butter. These all contain only trace amounts of THC, and the DEA argues that they aren’t able to produce medically effective levels of CBD oil—implying any worthy products must certainly be breaking the law somehow.

In 2016 alone the FDA issued warning letters indicating that 8 different CBD Oil products did not contain the advertised levels of Cannabidiol

One of the first commercially-available CBD product brands in North America was the CBD Plus brand. This product hit the market in the form of oils, sprays, capsules, and creams before any other products were commercially-viable.

Legalized Marijuana

Now that more and more US States are voting to legalize marijuana, more and more CBD Oil products are becoming available. One of the most dangerous states of market conditions for consumers is where there exists a large demand and poorly-defined regulatory status. For example, in 2016 alone the FDA issued warning letters indicating that 8 different CBD Oil products did not contain the advertised levels of Cannabidiol.

Emerging Sources

If you are interested in purchasing CBD Oil products, you must ensure you buy from trusted manufacturers and educate yourself on your State’s laws. The DEA has been publicly-hinted that it doesn’t really plan on pursuing CBD Oil purchase offenders, but know that it is still illegal in many cases. As new legislation continues to expand the legality of marijuana in the United States one can reasonably expect CBD oil products to become much more available in more standardized forms.

CBD Oil Needless Syringe
A Needleless Syringe Used to Orally-Administer CBD Oil (photo from Wisconsin Public Radio)

Where to Buy Cannabis Oil

The best option for buying cannabis oil is to find a local retailer that offers a supply from a trusted source. These types of products have been tested by people you can talk to and can be easily catered to your needs. This is obviously not a great option for many people, as most State legislation makes local retailers wary to carry such products.

Buying CBD Oil Online

Buying CBD oil online can help you locate more substantial retailers that have more options. These types of CBD oil companies have been in business long before CBD oil became as popular as it is today. These manufacturers are mostly located overseas—often in Europe. Many of these brands are now establishing US-based branches of their organizations and allow for easier domestic distribution (no overseas shipping.)


Currently, we feel the best option to buy quality CBD oil online is from Endoca. They are a European-based manufacturer with relatively-new US-based locations. They are cGMP certified, guarantee the CBD concentrations of their products, use only organic and Non-GMO sourced cannabis, and have a wide variety of products. Many of their products offer the option to include the CBDa (cannabidiolic acid) compound which is thought to help bioavailability of the cannabidiol contained in CBD oils.

Important Considerations

CBD oil has shown serious promise in its ability to treat a wide range of health issues. Research on the benefits of CBD oil is still sparse, though recent deregulation for research purposes may help change that.

The DEA still regards marijuana as a Schedule I drug and has recently included specialized coding for CBD Oil type derivatives. You should check your local laws before purchasing any CBD Oil products to ensure you don’t run into any legal issues.

Public statements made on behalf of the DEA suggest they have a very soft agenda for pursuing any such casual or medical users of CBD Oil. News reports to suggest the opposite are plentiful and any such stance is susceptible to being changed under shifting administration views.

Buying CBD oil online is still a risky business, but certain companies like Endoca seem to offer a very regulated and high-quality product line. Reports by the FDA indicate that many such products are not of claimed potency, and likely made with little concerns for GMP practices.

Final Thoughts

CBP oil shows remarkable ability as a natural treatment for many health conditions and generally produces very few side effects. At this point, there is little peer-reviewed evidence to explain the many remarkable benefits attributed to CBD oil. That only means that one shouldn’t expect the FDA to approve CBD oil as an anti-seizure treatment anytime soon. The biggest danger right now is the lack of manufacturing standards in the CBD and marijuana industries. Until GMP practices are developed, one should approach any unfamilar CBD oil products with caution.

How’d we do?

CBD oil has shown great promise as a natural remedy for all sorts of health concerns. It still has a negative stigma attached to it and we feel it’s important to help spread to word of its potential as an alternative medicine. If you enjoyed this article please share it with your friends and rate it using the rating box below.

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