CBD oil and other products containing it are increasingly popular in the UK. They can be taken in various forms and are said to ease pain, anxiety and insomnia.

However, not all products on the market are legitimate. Some make unauthorised health claims. Many are also illegal. Those that are legal follow strict regulations.


CBD can help with a range of conditions. It interacts with your endocannabinoid system, a network of receptors that maintain vital functions in the body including sleep, appetite, pain and mood. It has been shown to alleviate symptoms of PTSD in children, and to reduce pain during movement and at rest in people with rheumatoid arthritis in a small trial in 2006.

CBD oil is sold as drops, sprays and capsules as well as in creams, gummies and chocolate bars. It is recommended that you speak to your GP before trying any new supplement, particularly if you already take medication.

It is also worth noting that CBD products may interact with certain medicines – it can affect the way some drugs are metabolised by your liver, for example. Always check the label to ensure that the product you are buying does not contain THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.


CBD is a natural compound that is found in the cannabis plant. It is non-intoxicating and does not make you feel high, unlike its counterpart, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It can be extracted from either the seeds, stalks, or flowers of the hemp plant. It is then diluted with an oil, usually olive or coconut, to improve its bio-availability.

It is best to start with a small amount and gradually increase your dosage until you feel the desired effects. The recommended dosage is a maximum of 5mg of CBD per kg of body weight. You can choose from a variety of CBD products, including capsules, oils, and tinctures. Capsules are the easiest to use, as their milligram content is clearly indicated on the packaging. It is recommended that you start with a minimum dose of 0.5 mg per day and increase it to 2 mg per day if necessary.

Side effects

CBD acts on the body’s endocannabinoid system, which uses cannabinoids to maintain functions including sleep, appetite and pain response. It has the potential to treat anxiety, a movement disorder called dystonia, Crohn’s disease, diabetes complications and pain caused by rheumatoid arthritis (although more research is needed). It also has anti-seizure properties and may be useful for treating a rare form of epilepsy known as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

Studies suggest CBD can reduce nausea and vomiting resulting from chemotherapy, but more high-quality research is needed. It can also help with a range of other symptoms, including muscle stiffness in MS and depression.

It can interact with some medications, particularly those metabolised by the liver’s P450 enzymes, such as anti-coagulants and the sedatives benzodiazepines. It can also cause dry mouth and dizziness in some people. CBD oil is usually sold as drops in a bottle with dropper caps or as mouth sprays. These products deliver the CBD quickly into your bloodstream but can cause side effects such as a stinging sensation and dry mouth.


CBD is legal in the UK as long as it meets certain criteria. The main rule is that it can’t contain more than 1mg of THC (full-spectrum CBD) which is a controlled substance under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations. It must also be labelled correctly and have a novel food application submitted to the FSA. Products that don’t meet these requirements may be seized by customs.

The best CBD oil UK comes from hemp plants that are naturally low in THC and then processed using a CO2 extraction method. This is what makes it safe to consume without fear of failing a drugs test.

The most popular type of CBD is a mixture of hemp extract and a carrier oil such as olive or coconut. This is sold in a dropper bottle for easy dosing. It can be used by placing the drops under your tongue or added to your food or drinks. Taking CBD oil doesn’t interfere with most prescription or OTC medications, however it can bind to the cytochrome P450 enzymes which reduces how much of your medication is absorbed into your bloodstream.

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