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CBD Gummies 101

CBD gummy bears are a tasty way to reap the benefits of cannabidiol.

Is there nothing cannabidiol can’t do?

The wonder compound—more commonly known as CBD—has been hailed as everything from a digestive aid to a potential cancer killer. But now it may be responsible for something even more unbelievable: Turning your favorite childhood candy into a health supplement.

CBD gummies may look like everyone’s favorite gummy bears, but they’re so much more.

Packed with the power of cannabidiol (the non-intoxicating cousin of tetrahydrocannabinol, better known as THC) CBD gummies offer many of the same benefits of CBD oil. And thanks to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, the treats are now legal nationwide.

But what are the health benefits of CBD gummies compared to other CBD products? And how can you make sure you’re buying the highest-quality CBD gummies available?

Keep reading for some of the most important facts about CBD gummies—the best thing this side of a Flintstones vitamin.

What Are CBD Gummies?

CBD gummies come in all shapes and sizes. There are CBD gummy bears, CBD gummy worms, CBD gumdrops, and CBD gummy-anything-else-the-market-can-imagine.

And the uses of cannabidiol gummies are equally versatile: They can be used to aid with anxiety, chronic pain, depression, migraines, post-traumatic stress disorder, and nearly any other ailment one would take CBD oil to help manage.

The main difference between CBD gummies and other CBD products is their delicious delivery method.

Typically, the sweet treats are made from a core of key ingredients, including fruity flavors, citric acid, sugar, and of course, a healthy serving of CBD oil (typically 5mg to 20mg). But all CBD gummies are not created equal, and it should be noted, are not the same as hemp gummies—we’ll cover this in more detail in “What Are CBD Gummies” below.

“Fruit flavors” as listed ingredients in CBD gummies can be derived from a number of sources. (When reviewing CBD edibles of this variety, CBD Oil Review always looks out for companies that use real fruit juice, fruit juice concentrate, or other natural means to flavor their cannabidiol gummies.)

Some companies also turn to artificial sources to make those candy colors pop. It’s not unusual for food dyes to show up in ingredients lists for CBD gummies, and while these are perfectly legal and even common additives in the world of edibles, some of the most common color enhancers have been called out by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as potentially problematic, including Red 40, Blue 1, and Yellow 5. (Manufacturers are required to list these ingredients when they’re used, and we at CBD Oil Review will always call them out when we see them.)

And of course, there has to be something in CBD gummies that gives them that distinctive gummy texture.

That trademark chew comes from one of two sources: gelatin or pectin. While the two ingredients may produce the same effect, it’s very important to note that gelatin is not a vegan-friendly ingredient. Anyone seeking out vegan CBD gummies should only buy items made with pectin. (Pectin is a sticky substance derived entirely from plants; gelatin is derived from animal parts.)

Now that you know what is–or should be—in your CBD gummies, let’s get into some of the potential benefits of taking this sweet treat.

What Are the Benefits of CBD Gummies?

Cannabidiol gummies are far from the only CBD product—or even CBD edible—on the market, and taking this route to incorporate more cannabidiol into your life comes with its own set of health benefits and potential drawbacks.

For many, the taste is a big draw, as taking just CBD oil has been known to leave a lingering bitterness on the tongue. Too, CBD gummies offer a more discreet way to ingest CBD oil compared to other methods like vaping and sublingual tinctures.

CBD gummies can also be easily added into a daily vitamin and supplement routine, so you won’t have to worry about forgetting to take them. Their shelf life is impeccable, with most brands remaining edible for 6 months to a year; storage tips vary, but some recommend keeping CBD gummies in the fridge to extend their shelf life.

The greatest benefits, which you’d receive from any quality CBD product, come from the fact that CBD gummies contain CBD oil. CBD oil has been proven to help with all sorts of conditions including anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, migraines, and chronic pain.

The main difference between CBD gummies and other CBD products isn’t their health benefits at all, but their bioavailability, which describes how easily a substance is absorbed by the body.

In general, the bioavailability of CBD gummies (and most other CBD edibles) ranks pretty low on the scale. Studies have shown that oral consumption of cannabidiol yields just a small percentage of the compound into the bloodstream, as it must first be processed by the metabolic and digestive systems.

Still, the strength and quickness of the effect you feel will depend on a whole host of things, which is why learning about dosage is so important.

Some factors that may impact how and when you experience the effects of CBD gummies include the strength of the product, how much is taken, and your weight and tolerance to CBD. Even those more experienced with CBD gummies may feel them differently at any given time, depending on how much food or liquid their bodies are already processing.

What Are the Best CBD Gummies?

Since the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, there’s been a flood of CBD oil-based products on the market. It seems as if everyone is rushing to cash in on this wonder crop—especially while industry has little to no regulations in place.

Unfortunately, the lack of guidelines has led to the production and sale of a number of disreputable CBD products. So how do you know you can trust a particular retailer? There are a few ways to narrow in on the more trustworthy brands.

First and foremost, make sure a company’s CBD oil is safe. One hallmark of a worthwhile retailer is the inclusion of Certificates of Analysis (CoAs) on their site, which indicate that the CBD oil has been tested by a third-party laboratory. You’ll want to make sure all CoA results are up-to-date (six months or less should suffice), and that the company has had its CBD gummies tested for any pesticides, heavy metals, and other contaminants.

Also be aware that CBD oil is not the same thing as hemp oil. In fact, hemp oil doesn’t contain cannabidiol (CBD)—or cannabinoids of any kind. Hemp oil offers a breadth of benefits all its own, but if you’re looking for benefits of CBD oil specifically, you won’t find it there.

It’s important to note that hemp seed oil may show up on a CBD gummy bear ingredients list, as it’s a typical carrier oil for CBD—this is perfectly fine, and should still allow you to feel the benefits you’d come to expect from CBD gummies.  

Generally, the best CBD gummies will be made from clean, safe, and quality cannabidiol, along with all-natural ingredients. If you can easily pronounce the ingredients and count them all on two hands or less, that’s a good place to start.

Price, of course, varies by how many gummies you’re getting, potency, and a company’s production values. Typically though, you’ll pay between $20 to $60 per bottle or package.

Luckily, when it comes to CBD gummies, you don’t have to sacrifice quality for price. Witness CBDfx, one of CBD Oil Review's five-badge brands and the maker of the original vegan CBD gummy. The company offers its CBD gummy bears for as low as $10 a pack!

Another fine maker of CBD gummy bears is Prime Sunshine CBD, though their product prices fall more into the regular market range.

As CBD edibles, CBD gummies, and cannabidiol in general become more widely accepted and understood, there's no doubt there will be plenty more delicious—and trustworthy—CBD gummy bears in the future. Try different brands and potencies to see what product works best for your needs.

Finally, always speak to your doctor before trying any CBD products, as there could be interactions between medications you’re currently taking and CBD.

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