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Water is essential for life… but what if the stuff coming out of your tap contains more than just H2O? Drinking water can be contaminated with foreign substances that impede your health, but by investing in one of the best water filters on the market, you can ensure you're drinking clean, purified water.

Indeed, there are plenty of ways you can filter your drinking water and make sure you're not drinking anything you don't intend to. But does everyone need a home water filtration system? And, if so, which kind is best?

Water is essential for life… but what if the stuff coming out of your tap contains more than just H2O? Drinking water can be contaminated with foreign substances that impede your health, but by investing in one of the best water filters on the market, you can ensure you’re drinking clean, purified water.

Indeed, there are plenty of ways you can filter your drinking water and make sure you’re not drinking anything you don’t intend to. But does everyone need a home water filtration system? And, if so, which kind is best?


Best Water Filters: Our Recommendations

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. Learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn a commission.

Why Use a Water Filter?

For as much as we’d all prefer to believe that our tap water is crystal-clear and perfectly clean, that’s simply not the reality. Remember that your water has to travel through miles of pipe just to make it to your home. Along the way, it picks up contaminants or debris from the pipe itself.

And this is to say nothing of different treatments like chlorination that are used on residential drinking water. While many of these can be more helpful than harmful, some are potentially harmful to pets and humans.

It may shock you to know that the average home’s drinking water contains more than 300 contaminants. If you want to whittle that number down to something closer to zero, your best bet is with a water filtration system.

Most homeowners can benefit from a water filter; this is true whether you’re drinking treated city water or water from a well, which can come with its own ground contaminants. Some of the most common warning signs that you need a home water filter include:

  • Your water tastes bad or stale (usually a sign of contaminants)
  • Your home predates 1986 (in which case, there could be lead pipes bringing your drinking water)
  • You get your water from a well
  • You wash your clothes and they come out looking dingy or dirty
  • You have a constant build-up of scum in your sink or shower

If you notice any of these issues, it probably means you have bad water — and that it may be time to improve your water quality with a new filter.

Full Reviews of Our Top Picks

Best Overall: PUR PLUS Faucet Mount Water Filtration System

For a faucet-mounted filter, try PUR, one of the longest-running and most popular brands in water filtration. This is an inexpensive way to skim out more than 70 of the most common water contaminants, leading to notably improved water taste and clarity.

Customer Rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars with over 8,300 Amazon ratings

Standout Review: “We’ve been using it for about 2 months now and it works perfectly. The natural minerals in the filter give you a crisp and fresh drink, and it is truly effective at removing the tastes of city water… This thing makes my plain tap water as tasteless and fresh as all of those fancy water brands.“ — Ryan M. via Amazon

Why Buy: The PUR PLUS faucet attachment comes at a low price point, is a breeze to install and has a mineral filter that leaves your water tasting pure. We also like the filter’s Filter Change Light, which alerts you when it’s time to change your filter.

Best Tap Attachment: Brita Basic Faucet Water Filter System

An alternative to PUR is Brita. Brita’s on-tap filter promises improved water purity and major savings, as you won’t have to spend nearly as much buying your water by the bottle. It can remove more than 99% of lead, chlorine and other common contaminants.

Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars with over 11,600 Amazon ratings

Standout Review: “Very easy to install… Because it screws directly onto the faucet, the mount is also sturdier… Water tastes great — removes the slightly ‘off’ taste that our public water contains. If it lasts for the expected lifespan, we’ll be purchasing this again.” — S. LaCour via Amazon

Why Buy: The Brita tap attachment water filter has a compact design that can catch sediment as well as common harmful contaminants. We like that this filter has a spray mode for washing produce and that replacement filters are only needed every four months or so.

Best Pitcher Filter: Brita Extra Large Filtered Water Dispenser

If you prefer a refrigerated or countertop water filter, consider this option from Brita. It holds 18 cups of water, enough to fill six 24-ounce reusable water bottles. The BPA-free dispenser uses a Brita standard filter, which removes pollutants and organic compounds like copper, cadmium and mercury.

Customer Rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars with over 46,000 Amazon ratings

Standout Review: “I bought this to replace my old Brita that cracked after three years. I like that it doesn’t take up much room in the refrigerator like most standard-sized models. This unit is good for one or two people, but if you have a family, I would recommend upsizing.” — Robert Robinson via Amazon

Why Buy: The capacity of the Brita water dispenser allows users to go a while before refilling. If you don’t have enough fridge space to accommodate this large of a fixture, there are smaller 10-cup and ultra space-saving five-cup water pitcher options as well.

Best Under-Sink Filtration: Waterdrop Under Sink Filtration System

As for under-sink water filters, we recommend Waterdrop, a high-capacity filter that uses a four-stage process to ensure your drinking water is as clean as can be. The system comes with a lead-free brushed stainless steel faucet for added ease of use and seamless integration in your kitchen.

Customer Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars with about 700 Amazon ratings

Standout Review: “First off, installation was easy, taking all of 20 minutes for me. The unit seems to be of high quality, instructions were clear, and it all went together well. No leaks so far, and my water tastes much better. ” — C. B. Long via Amazon

Why Buy: The Waterdrop under-sink water purifier reduces heavy metals but retains essential minerals like potassium and calcium. The faucet has a fast flow rate that can push out 0.75 gallons of water per minute.

Best Whole-House Water Filter: Culligan Whole House Filtration System

Whole-house filters are a little tougher to install and require that the filter cartridge be changed regularly. In the long run, however, they can be one of the more convenient options, guaranteeing clean water from all of your taps. We like this Culligan model best of all, and it’s priced very reasonably.

Customer Rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars with over 3,200 Amazon ratings

Standout Review: “I had this installed by a master plumber. (I have had enough problems with leaks and floods that I wouldn’t want to risk an error!) Professional installation was absolutely worth it. I had no idea how much stuff was in my city water until I had this filter to ‘show’ me… This little unit was/is a great investment.” — Heidi via Amazon

Why Buy: If you’d rather pre-filter your water supply before it hits the taps in your house, the Culligan water treatment system might be the best fit for you. It has a battery-operated filter change timer that lets you know when it’s time to change the cartridge.

How to Choose the Best Water Filter

So, which type of filter is the best choice for your home? There are a number of options, and the most convenient tend to be fridge units, faucet units and water filter pitchers. The best water filter for you will depend on your preference.

  • A fridge filter will come built into your kitchen appliance and will help filter out any water that’s dispensed from the fridge or used to make ice. If you happen to have a fridge with a built-in filter, that’s great! However, by their very definition, these filters will leave other home water sources (including bathroom taps) unfiltered.
  • Faucet units help you to filter water in other areas of your home, though again, you may need to invest in multiple units to ensure clean drinking water throughout your house.
  • Another option is to invest in a pitcher that filters water for you, making sure you always have a clean hydration source (that is, as long as you remember to re-fill the pitcher).

As you look for the best home water filters, certification is another foremost concern. Specifically, be on the lookout for water filters that rise to the level of National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certification. NSF has rigorous, nationalized standards for clean and contaminant-free municipal drinking water, and the best water filters receive certification after undergoing a testing process.

There are several third-party and independent labs that test water filters and make sure they’re up to NSF standards. Some examples include the CSA Group, Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and the Water Quality Association (WQA). If you see any of these certifications on a water filter, that’s a good sign that the product has been thoroughly vetted and found to be effective.

Frequently Asked Questions: Water Filters

Which filter is best for drinking water?

To turn municipal water into clean drinking water, we recommend the PUR PLUS Faucet Mount Water Filtration System.

Is it worth getting a water filter?

Well water and city water both can have harmful contaminants that have adverse effects on human and pet health.

Which water filter removes the most contaminants?

When looking for a water filter that removes many contaminants, look for certifications from the National Sanitation Foundation or other labs. These have been tested and are guaranteed to filter out most common contaminants.

Do filters really clean water?

Yes, water filters can be highly effective at filtering contaminants from pesticides to sediments. Reverse osmosis systems are ultra-effective at cleaning water.

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In the past several years, CBD has become a popular and natural way for people to help manage their anxiety. What is the best CBD for anxiety? And how does CBD help with anxiety? In this article, we highlight our favorite brands of CBD for anxiety and provide important background information on how to use CBD oils to help manage anxiety and depression.

CBD stands for cannabidiol, and it is one of the active ingredients found in cannabis. Though CBD is a critical component in medical marijuana, most commercially available CBD products are derived from the hemp plant. These products are said to offer a range of personal health benefits, and one of the most significant of those benefits is relief from anxiety.

In the past several years, CBD has become a popular and natural way for people to help manage their anxiety. What is the best CBD for anxiety? And how does CBD help with anxiety? In this article, we highlight our favorite brands of CBD for anxiety and provide important background information on how to use CBD oils to help manage anxiety and depression.

CBD stands for cannabidiol, and it is one of the active ingredients found in cannabis. Though CBD is a critical component in medical marijuana, most commercially available CBD products are derived from the hemp plant. These products are said to offer a range of personal health benefits, and one of the most significant of those benefits is relief from anxiety.

A Harvard report notes that CBD is commonly used as a way to manage anxiety symptoms, and that those who struggle with various mental health concerns may use CBD to help them combat sleeplessness.

But what does the science really say about using CBD oil for anxiety and depression? And for those who wish to use CBD products to help with anxiety, what are the best CBD for anxiety brands out there?

Does CBD Help for Anxiety?

Studies show that, while CBD doesn’t necessarily alter a person’s baseline anxiety level, it may be useful for reducing experiential anxiety. Indeed, research points to CBD as a potentially effective way to address the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder (SAD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Additional research indicates that CBD “has a promising role as alternative therapy in the management of anxiety disorders,” though more clinical testing is needed to verify safe dosage levels.

Based on the available evidence, CBD may potentially help manage the symptoms of anxiety, though it is not a cure. Be sure to consult with your primary care physician or mental health care provider before taking CBD for anxiety and depression if you have any questions or concerns.

Best CBD Oil for Anxiety in 2022

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose CBD Product for Calming

When creating our list of the best CBD oils for anxiety and depression, we compared brands and products ib six specific categories.

  • Type of CBD — Does the brand use full spectrum, broad spectrum, or CBD isolate?
  • Strength — How many milligrams of CBD does the oil contain per recommended dose?
  • Source — Where does the get the hemp used in their hemp extract? Is it grown in the U.S.?
  • Flavor — Do they offer multiple flavors, and if so, do they use natural flavoring instead of artificial flavors?
  • Transparency — Is the product tested by an independent third-party lab and do they make the results easy to access?
  • Customer Experience — What are customers saying about the product and if it has helped them manage stress and anxiety?

Learn more about each of the CBD oils on our list below.

Our Complete Reviews & Opinions

Best Overall: CBDistillery

thecbdistillery.com

CBDistillery is known for high-quality, pure CBD products, and their full spectrum oil is a great choice to help you relax. All of their products are third-party lab tested and confirmed to be safe and effective. We like their Relief + Relax CBD oil because it is a full spectrum oil that provides plenty of additional active cannabinoids and plant compounds like CBG, CBC, and terpenes to give you the full benefits of the entourage effect.

  • CBD: Full Spectrum
  • Strength: 33 mg CBD per serving (1000 mg per bottle)
  • Hemp source: Colorado

Why buy: We love this strong full spectrum CBD oil for anxiety because it is sourced from non-GMO, U.S. Hemp Authority Certified hemp grown in Colorado. Taking CBD Relief + Relax in the morning may be a great way to support a sense of calm throughout the day.

Strongest Full Spectrum: Spruce

takespruce.com

Spruce CBD oil checks all of the right boxes: it’s all-natural, made from USA-grown hemp, and is backed by rigorous third-party lab testing. You can get this lab-grade CBD oil tincture in a range of potencies, ranging from 750 mg to 2,400 mg per bottle. We like that Spruce CBD oil is all-natural, organic, vegan, gluten-free, and contains no artificial flavors, preservatives, or sweeteners. Note that Spruce products may be too strong for entry-level customers.

  • CBD: Full Spectrum
  • Strength: 25 mg to 80 mg of CBD per serving
  • Hemp source: Kentucky and North Carolina

Why buy: We love that Spruce offers some of the strongest full spectrum CBD products, including their extra strength formula with 80 mg of CBD per serving. We recommend it for experienced CBD users looking for powerful relief from feelings of anxiety and stress.

Best Full Spectrum: NuLeaf Naturals

NuLeaf Naturals CBD oil is about as natural as a CBD tincture can get. It’s made from organic hemp, it’s additive- and pesticide-free, and it’s carefully lab-tested by independent third-party labs. This Colorado-grown, full spectrum CBD offers the full benefits of hemp extract in a natural, organic product. It may be taken daily to help you manage stress and feelings of anxiety by promoting a sense of calm and wellness.

  • CBD: Full Spectrum
  • Strength: 30 mg of CBD per serving (1800 mg per bottle)
  • Hemp source: Colorado

Why buy: We love this strong full spectrum CBD oil because of its simplicity. It contains organic full spectrum hemp extract and organic virgin hemp seed oil. NuLeaf Naturals also provides a consistent concentration of CBD across all bottle sizes to make dosing easier.

Best Organic: Cornbread Hemp

To make their Distilled CBD Oil, Cornbread Hemp extracts CBD only from hemp flowers. This distillation allows the oil to maintain a full spectrum of cannabinoids, with a CBD-to-THC ratio of 27:1. Lower in THC than their Whole Flower oil, this product is better for finding comfort during the day while staying focused and alert. Cornbread Hemp CBD is USDA organic and offers a cleaner tasting oil than some whole plant extracts.

  • CBD: Full Spectrum
  • Strength: 50mg per 1mL serving
  • Hemp source: Kentucky

Why buy: We love this Cornbread Hemp Distilled CBD Oil because it uses whole flower CBD extract for a cleaner product and milder taste. It may be a great way to help ease anxiety during the day without drowsiness or loss of focus. Plus, it’s USDA-certified organic with third-party, ISO certified lab tests on every batch.

Using CBD to Help With Anxiety & Depression: What the Research Says

As cited above, initial research has found that CBD has the potential to help manage the symptoms of anxiety in a variety of cases.

There is also clinical evidence to suggest that CBD can be a tool for managing panic attacks. Panic disorder (PD) impacts about five percent of the total global population, making the anxiolytic effects of CBD products potentially impactful on a widespread level.

There is even clinical evidence that CBD may help minimize the symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), a nervous condition that can be debilitating. Currently, OCD is treated primarily through cognitive behavioral therapy and antidepressants, but the recovery rate is exceedingly low. The prospect of CBD as an alternative intervention is potentially game-changing.

But how exactly does CBD impact those with anxiety conditions? The short answer is that products from the cannabis plant tend to have a strong, reactive effect with the endocannabinoid system, a molecular system that regulates many core functions of the body, including emotions. Cannabinoids can bind to receptors in the endocannabinoid system and modify the way they function, yielding a range of possible health benefits.

In fact, one study notes that “modulating the activity of the endocannabinoid system turned out to hold therapeutic promise in a wide range of disparate diseases and pathological conditions, ranging from mood and anxiety disorders, movement disorders such as Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease, neuropathic pain, multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury, to cancer, atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, stroke, hypertension, glaucoma, obesity/metabolic syndrome, and osteoporosis, to name just a few.”

While CBD may potentially help to manage stress and anxiety, it is not intended as a cure for anxiety or depression.

Related: Best CBD Oils for Pain Management 2021

How to Choose CBD Oil for You

When you’re looking for the best CBD for depression and anxiety, it’s important to choose a product that is safe, effective, and natural. Here are some important things to keep in mind when shopping for CBD.

What to Look For

Always look for the following pieces of information when comparing CBD oils for anxiety: type of CBD, hemp source, strength, and lab testing. Below are more details on what each of these mean and why they matter.

Type of CBD

There are actually three different types of CBD extract, including full spectrum, broad spectrum, and CBD isolate. We typically recommend full spectrum products as the most effective, as they allow you to benefit from the full entourage effect of the hemp extract. However, if you undergo drug testing for work or are sensitive to THC, broad spectrum products offer many of the same benefits without the THC. This can also be important for those who find that THC negatively impacts their anxiety.

Hemp Source

The quality of the CBD is directly related to the source of the hemp used in a product. Always look for brands that use hemp grown in the U.S.A. We also recommend brands that use either USDA organic hemp or hemp grown using organic farming practices. This ensures that the plants do not contain any pesticides and or artificial fertilizers.

Strength

It’s important to know the concentration of CBD in a product so that you can take the appropriate dosage level. For those new to CBD, it’s generally recommended to start with a lower dose, 10 mg or less, and slowly increase the amount as you are comfortable to find the right level of relief. Extra strength products, with 30 mg or more per serving, are recommended for those who know how CBD will affect them. You can read more about the strongest CBD oils here.

Lab Testing

Only purchase CBD oils for anxiety that undergo independent third-party lab testing for quality and safety. This is critical to ensure that the product contains the correct levels of CBD and cannabinoids, and that it is free from toxins, heavy metals, or other harmful substances. The brands we recommend all make their lab test results available through QR codes on the product label or on their site.

How to Read Labels

When you check the label of any CBD product, look for information on the four key factors listed above. Labels should clearly state the type of CBD and if it was made with U.S. grown hemp. To evaluate the strength of the product, look for both the amount of CBD per bottle, usually in milligrams per 30 mL, as well as the amount of CBD per serving, usually in milligrams per 1 mL dropper.

Quality products should also include lab-testing certification and a way for you to verify the results for yourself. You can also look for industry certifications and seals from the USDA, Leaping Bunny, the GMO Project, and the U.S. Hemp Authority. Finally, take time to check the list of ingredients to make sure that you are not allergic to any of them. Most CBD oils use a carrier oil like hemp seed oil, olive oil, or MCT coconut oil.

How to Use

For most CBD oils, take a dose once or twice per day, depending on the amount. Some oils work better for daytime use and can be taken in the morning, while others are better suited for nighttime use to help you fall asleep. Again, if you are new to CBD, start with a low amount and slowly increase it to find the correct level to provide relief.

The amount of CBD needed may vary from person to person based on their level of anxiety and other health concerns. One thing that holds true across the board is that using CBD consistently is best for improving stress levels, as the compound builds up within the body, amplifying its effect. In other words, CBD may help you manage anxiety symptoms, but don’t expect it to take effect immediately.

Safety & Side Effects

According to the Mayo Clinic, CBD is generally well-tolerated. There are, however, some mild side effects that can occur. These often result from taking too much CBD, and can include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Diarrhea
  • Reduced appetite
  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue
Additionally, CBD can potentially interact with certain prescription medications, like blood thinners and certain forms of statins. Always check with your doctor if you plan to start using CBD alongside any prescription medications. No CBD product has been approved by the FDA to treat anxiety or depression, so be sure to do your own research on any product you choose to purchase.

Alternative Options

While CBD may be a great option to help supplement your anxiety management, it is not meant to cure or treat anxiety. If you are suffering from severe anxiety and depression, the best thing to do is speak with your primary care physician or a mental health professional. They may recommend things like cognitive behavioral therapy, journaling, exercise, yoga, or prescription medications to help.

If approved by your doctor, CBD for depression and anxiety may work with these other approaches to help you find relief and better manage stress.

Josh Hurst is a journalist, critic, copywriter, and essayist. He lives in Knoxville, TN, with his wife and three sons. As a writer and independent reviewer of CBD products, Josh covers the relationship between cannabis-based products and the human body. His writing has appeared in Health, Shape, and Remedy Review.

Medically Reviewed By:

Alan Carter
PharmD Scientific Advisor, Medical Reviewer, and Clinical Pharmacist
Adjunct Faculty, UMKC School of Pharmacy

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Photo Credit: Devon Gailey

CBD oil for pain management has become a popular natural remedy in recent years. What is CBD? Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a compound derived from the Cannabis sativa plant. CBD is different from another well-known cannabinoid in cannabis, THC, in that it may help ease pain and relax the mind without the psychoactive effects.

Read below to learn more about the best CBD oils for pain management, how CBD may help relieve aches and inflammation, and how to use CBD oil for pain.

CBD oil for pain management has become a popular natural remedy in recent years. What is CBD? Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a compound derived from the Cannabis sativa plant. CBD is different from another well-known cannabinoid in cannabis, THC, in that it may help ease pain and relax the mind without the psychoactive effects.

Read below to learn more about the best CBD oils for pain management, how CBD may help relieve aches and inflammation, and how to use CBD oil for pain.

Does CBD Help With Pain Management?

CBD may work to reduce pain through the endocannabinoid system, or ECS, which involves CBD binding to certain receptors. In particular, the receptor CB1, found in the central nervous system, helps mediate pain regulation and activation of it can result in inflammation and oxidative stress. On the other hand, the CB2 receptor, found mostly in the tissues and cells outside of the nervous system, can help slow down chronic inflammatory processes in the body.

When CBD binds to these receptors it potentially acts as an anti-inflammatory compound, and reducing inflammation can help relieve pain.

7 Best CBD Oils for Pain Management 2021

Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. You can learn more about our review methodology here. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

How We Chose Our List of Oils for Pain Relief

When looking for a CBD product, it’s important to choose a high-quality product you can trust. This is because some CBD products, since they are not regulated by the FDA, may not contain the potency the label states and/or they may contain other ingredients that could cause harmful side effects.

We used the same five criteria to compare each CBD oil product and brand to find the best ones to recommend. Here is how we made our list:

Type of CBD: It’s important to consider the type of hemp extract used in the CBD product you choose. We tried to include a range of options, both full spectrum oils that contain trace amounts of THC and broad spectrum CBD that is THC-free, so that you can select the right type of CBD for you.

Strength: In general, the CBD oils for pain relief we recommend contain higher concentrations of CBD in order to help provide a stronger effect. This may allow the product to better help you manage your pain.

Source: Not only is the type of extract important when it comes to CBD, but it’s also important to consider where the hemp plant was sourced. We prefer hemp from Colorado, Kentucky, and North Carolina, states with robust industrial hemp programs. We always try to support American-grown hemp.

Flavor: The best CBD products should be effective and offer a clean, natural taste. We look for products that are vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, and contain no artificial sweeteners or preservatives.

Transparency: It’s vital to choose a CBD product that has been independently lab-tested by a third-party to ensure that what you see on the label is what you get in your product. It can also help to choose products that have certification by ISO 9001: 2015 or by places that ensure trusted testing practices like the U.S. Hemp Authority. Tests should include a measure of heavy metals, pesticides, solvents, and bacteria and mold, and brands should make those results easily accessible.

All of these factors went into our list of recommendations below.

Our Top CBD Picks for Pain Management

​Best Overall: Spruce Max Potency CBD Oil

Spruce Max Potency CBD Oil

takespruce.com

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Concentration: 80 mg of CBD per dropper

What we like: Comes in a hemp seed oil or coconut MCT oil base; 100% natural; free of pesticides and preservatives; only 0.3% THC; made in U.S.A; vegan; gluten-free.

Why buy: We like this product because it’s free of artificial flavors or sweeteners and contains a dropper to ensure accurate dosing. The high concentration means that this formula is best for people who have been using CBD for a while or require a higher daily dosage.

​Strongest Full Spectrum: CBDistillery 2500mg Full Spectrum Tincture

CBDistillery Relief + Relax CBD

thecbdistillery.com

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Concentration: 83 mg of CBD per serving (2500 mg per bottle)

What we like: Uses a fractionated MCT coconut oil base; made from U.S. Hemp Authority-certified non-GMO industrial hemp grown in the U.S.A.; supports natural farming practices.

Why buy: We like this product because it uses hemp that has been certified by the U.S. Hemp Authority and contains low levels of THC for potential pain relief without the high. At 83 mg of CBD per serving, this is the strongest oil for pain management on our list and is not recommended for those new to CBD.

​Best USDA Organic: Cornbread Hemp Whole Flower CBD Oil

Cornbread Hemp Whole Flower CBD Oil

cornbreadhemp.com

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Concentration: 25 mg or 50 mg of CBD per serving

What we like: These are whole flower hemp extracts, meaning they are made without leaves or stems for a very full spectrum oil with a high CBD-to-THC ratio of 22:1. Made from USDA certified organic hemp, they also contain organic MCT coconut oil.

Why buy: We love Cornbread Hemp CBD for its strength and full plant experience, as these oils contain the highest amount of THC allowed. This CBD oil is best for use in the evening or before bed and may help relieve pain for a better night’s sleep.

​Best for Inflammation: Plant People Drops+ Mind + Body

Plant People Drops+ Mind + Body CBD Oil

plantpeople.co

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Concentration: 10.5, 21, or 50mg of CBD per serving (315, 630, 1500 mg per bottle)

What we like: We like that this doctor-formulated full spectrum oil is vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, USDA organic, and keto approved.

Why buy: Plant People CBD is full of a variety of secondary cannabinoids, including CBG and CBL. The full spectrum CBD is carried by coconut MCT and hempseed oil, for a natural flavor. We recommend this oil for its potential to help with inflammation.

​Best Full Spectrum Oil: ​NuLeaf Naturals 1800mg CBD Oil

NuLeaf Naturals CBD Oil

nuleafnaturals.com

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Concentration: 30 mg of CBD per serving

What we like: We like that this full spectrum hemp extract is made with organic hemp processed using CO2 extraction that helps retain a complete range of cannabinoids, terpenes, essential oils, and other beneficial phytonutrients.

Why buy: NuLeaf Naturals offers a strong, whole plant extract that may help you manage pain. They also make measuring the correct dose easy by offering a single concentration of 30 mg per serving across all of their products.

​Best CBD Softgel – Prima Daily Capsule

Prima The Daily CBD softgel

prima.co

Type of CBD: Broad Spectrum

Concentration: 15 mg of CBD per vegan softgel

What we like: We love these Prima CBD softgels because they are made with organically-grown hemp and include other plant compounds, like CBC, CBG, CBL, terpenes, and flavonoids, but no THC. They also contain turmeric to help with inflammation.

Why buy: These capsules make a great option for people who don’t enjoy the taste of CBD oils. They allow you to get the potential benefits of a THC-free CBD oil for pain in an easy-to-take and portable form.

​Best CBD Cream – Spruce Full Spectrum Topical Cream

Spruce Full Spectrum CBD salve

takespruce.com

Type of CBD: Full Spectrum

Potency: 300 mg of CBD in a 2 fl oz. jar

What we like: We like this lab-grade CBD cream because it is made in the USA using 100% natural hemp raised without pesticides to deliver a powerful dose of full spectrum cannabinoids directly to painful areas like knees, shoulders, and hands.

Why buy: Spruce is a brand we recommend because of the quality of their CBD products and the thousands of customer reviews on their website. This topical cream may help with joint and muscle pain, including arthritis pain.

Using CBD for Pain: What the Research Says

There are many different types of pain that someone can experience. Common forms of pain include:

  • Nociceptive pain: Occurs after exposure to certain stimuli like heat, cold, chemical irritants, or force. Chronic back pain may be a form of this type of pain, depending on the cause.
  • Inflammatory pain: Occurs because of activation of the immune system by an injury or infection.
  • Pathological pain: Includes neuropathic pain, or damage to the nervous system, as well as dysfunctional pain, which is pain occurring with no damage or inflammation. Examples of dysfunctional pain are the types of pain people experience with fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, and tension type headaches.

As noted earlier, CBD may help to reduce pain through its potential anti-inflammatory characteristics for certain types of pain, especially chronic pain and arthritis pain.

A 2017 study also states that cannabis-based medicines like CBD may benefit those with chronic pain, especially those with neuropathic pain like people with MS.

A 2018 study shows that people with multiple sclerosis (MS) may benefit from CBD use since it may help reduce fatigue, spasticity, and pain, which in turn may improve mobility.

CBD oil may also be helpful to those with arthritis pain. A 2020 study review reports that in animal studies cannabinoids show potential to lessen the pain associated with rheumatic diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. More clinical trials are needed to confirm such positive findings in humans, but CBD potentially has a role to play in natural pain relief.

There is limited research on the most effective dosage of CBD for pain. However, a 2019 study shows that a dose of 2.4 milligrams of CBD per kilogram of body weight per day may be too low to provide a significant benefit to pain relief.

How to Choose a CBD Oil for Pain Relief

When looking for CBD oil for pain management, you should look for several important factors to make sure that you get a high-quality and safe CBD product. Here are the main things to look for.

CBD Spectrum

CBD comes in three different forms that vary by the amount of additional cannabinoids and plant compounds present in the hemp extract.

First, there is full spectrum CBD, which contains all the natural compounds of the cannabis plant, including CBD, trace cannabinoids including THC, aromatic oils known as terpenes, and flavonoids. Each of the compounds from this type of extract may enhance the benefits of the CBD. This is called the entourage effect. Full spectrum oils must contain less than 0.3% THC.

Broad spectrum CBD extracts contain all of the compounds found in full spectrum extract, minus the THC. This allows users to still enjoy the many of the benefits of whole plant extract without the risk of failing a drug test.

Finally, CBD isolate is about 99-percent pure CBD with no other cannabis plant compounds. This option is normally found in topical CBD products.

Concentration

CBD products come in varying concentrations, usually measured in milligrams of CBD per milliliter or per container. For help managing pain, we recommend a stronger concentration of full spectrum CBD where possible to provide the maximum potential benefit. This will typically mean choosing products with servings of 25 mg of CBD or more per dose.

CBD Oil vs. CBD Topical

The type of CBD oil product you should choose will depend on the type of pain you experience. For example, if you have isolated muscle or joint pain, it may help to use a lotions or balms. On the other hand, if you have systemic pain, or chronic back pain, then a capsule or oil you ingest orally may be more effective as it allows the CBD to reach more areas of the body.

How to Read Labels

With any CBD for pain relief product, it’s important to read the label and to understand what information it includes. When comparing CBD product labels, be sure to look for the following:

  • Hemp Source – The label should tell you where brand raises or sources the hemp used in their CBD extract. We recommend choosing brands that use hemp grown in the U.S.A. using organic or natural farming practices.
  • Dosage Guide – Most brands include a guide on the bottle or on the packaging to help you measure the appropriate amount of CBD per serving. This is also important in helping you make sure that it contains the proper strength or concentration.
  • Certifications – Look for seals of approval or certifications from industry organizations and groups like USDA organic, U.S. Hemp Authority, the Non-GMO Project, and B-Corp.
  • Lab Testing – Always make sure that any CBD product you use has undergone independent third-party lab testing. Many brands include a link on the label for you to access the lab results directly to check that it is safe and contains the right concentration.

How To Use

To get the most potential benefit out of any CBD for pain product, consistency is key. CBD works best as it builds up in your system over time, so while it may not provide immediate relief, it may help you better manage chronic pain when taken regularly. If you are using a CBD oil tincture or capsule, you will simply ingest the recommended dosage either once or twice a day. Some CBD oils work better at night to help you sleep, while others may be more effective when taken in the morning to last throughout the day. You can always adjust your CBD routine to suit you once you know how it will affect you.

If you are using a CBD topical or lotion, you can apply it to painful areas on the body to allow your skin to absorb the CBD and other ingredients. Note that you should never ingest a CBD topical and avoid getting it in your eyes.

Safety & Side Effects

Overall, the most common side effects linked with the use of CBD oil include:

  • Dry mouth
  • Diarrhea
  • Reduced appetite
  • Drowsiness
  • Fatigue

CBD can also interact with certain prescription medicines like blood thinners and sedatives like benzodiazepines and opioids. Be sure to talk with your healthcare provider and pharmacist before starting to take any CBD product.

Takeaway

If you live with pain in any form, it can limit what you can do daily and impact your quality of life. And with concerns of the addictive properties of certain pain medications like opioids and benzodiazepines, a natural pain reliever may help treat chronic pain without these serious adverse effects.

However, since most CBD oil products are not FDA-approved, you will still want to talk with your healthcare provider before starting CBD oil for pain. You should also never stop any prescribed method of treatment for pain management without first talking to your doctor.

Josh Hurst is a journalist, critic, copywriter, and essayist. He lives in Knoxville, TN, with his wife and three sons. As a writer an independent reviewer of CBD products, Josh covers the relationship between cannabis-based products and the human body. His writing has appeared in Health, Shape, and Remedy Review.

Medically Reviewed By:

Alan Carter
PharmD Scientific Advisor, Medical Reviewer, and Clinical Pharmacist
Adjunct Faculty, UMKC School of Pharmacy

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