CBD is a cannabis molecule that offers a lot of the calming and relieving benefits of cannabis, with none of the psychoactive effects. However, many people are still concerned about the relationship between CBD oil and drug testing. Does CBD show up on a drug test? How can you make sure that the CBD products you buy are THC free? While people failing a drug test because of CBD is relatively rare, it isn’t impossible. Read on to find out how to avoid this situation if you are a regular CBD user.
What is CBD?
What is CBD? is a molecule found in cannabis. It’s classified as a phytocannabinoid, a chemical compound that can affect our endocannabinoid system.
Technically, both CBD and THC belong to the same category of phytocannabinoids. However, there are some significant differences in the way that both of these molecules affect us. THC affects our endocannabinoid system by reducing pain and inflammation, but also by producing changes in perception, mood, and consciousness. On the other hand, CBD also affects our bodies (by relieving pain, inflammation, nausea…) and our minds (by calming us down and balancing up our mood), but without causing changes in the way that we perceive reality.
For that reason, and although both molecules come from the same plant, only THC is considered a “recreational drug” and criminalized in most parts of the world. Here’s the problem: how can you take non psychoactive CBD without failing tests that look for traces of cannabis in your system? Does CBD show up on a drug test? Is there any chance that it accidentally might?
Is CBD marijuana?
First of all, it’s useful to note that CBD isn’t extracted from the marijuana plant. What we call marijuana is typically a cannabis plant that contains high amounts of THC. CBD is extracted from hemp, a type of cannabis plant that contains much higher amounts of CBD, and very low THC.
Before extracting hemp, CBD manufacturers have the plants tested to check how much THC they contain. If that amount is over 0.3% (the legal maximum in the U.S and in some other parts of the world), they don’t use it in their products. This gives consumers the security of knowing that the CBD products they consume are at least very low in THC.
CBD extracts and their THC content
How to extract cbd from cannabis. For those consumers that want to be completely sure that their CBD products are THC free, there is the option to get products made with “CBD isolate”. CBD isolate is essentially pure CBD that has been extracted from the hemp plant, and completely separated from any other molecules, be they cannabinoids, terpenes, or flavonoids. This type of extract loses some of the therapeutic properties that come from the diversity of cannabis molecules. However, it does guarantee that you won’t fail a drug test that looks for THC.
Broad spectrum CBD extract contains CBD alongside other cannabis molecules like CBN or CBG. However, the THC levels remain under the 0.3% limit. This type of extract is a lot more beneficial than CBD isolate because cannabinoids and terpenes are stronger together.
Finally, there is full spectrum CBD extract. Although this type of extract remains CBD dominant, it can have traces of THC higher than 0.3%. Those that do are actually illegal in some states. If you take full-spectrum CBD extract, there is a risk of failing a drug test.
If you’re worried about taking CBD oil and drug testing, stick with products that are made using CBD isolate or broad-spectrum CBD extract.
Does CBD show up on a drug tests if you take a lot?
Many people’s fear is that by taking large amounts of CBD, they are accumulating traces of THC in their bodies that could eventually make them fail a drug test. These fears are not unfounded. There is some anecdotal evidence of people failing drug tests despite only consuming CBD products.
Almost all CBD products contain at least traces of THC. This is because farmers haven’t yet succeeded in creating strains of hemp that don’t contain any THC. Although these traces are small, they can add up over time.
If you’re only taking a low to medium dose of CBD (5 to 20mg a day), the risks of you failing a drug test remain very low. However, if you’re redosing throughout the day or taking a lot more, the risk gets higher. So does CBD show up on a drug tests? It could but only if you take a lot of it.
CBD oil and drug testing: how to be safe
As we’ve seen, there are several types of CBD extract. The only real way to be sure that you won’t fail a drug test due to CBD is to choose products that are made using CBD isolate. Another thing to take into consideration is the trustworthiness of the products you buy.
As CBD becomes more and more popular, the demand for products has exploded. This has created a booming market for hundreds of new companies, many of which are not as scrupulous as they should be about testing their products for traces of THC. Because of the sheer amount of new products entering the market, it’s impossible for the government to check all of them for THC.
This means that you should be careful only to buy products that can actually show you what amounts of THC they contain. This is made possible by third party testing. Many manufacturers choose to send batches of their products to be tested by independent laboratories, in order to show customers exactly what they contain.
A certificate of analysis shows you how much CBD is in a product, how much THC, how much of other cannabinoids. It also shows you whether the product contains any traces of pesticides, bacteria, heavy metals, or fungi.
If you’re worried about taking CBD oil and drug testing, make sure to buy from reputable companies that use third party testing. Don’t stop there, actually read the certificate of analysis, and make sure that the product doesn’t contain too much THC! After all, it’s always better to check these things for yourself.
Does CBD show up on a drug test? If you’re worried that taking CBD will cause you to fail a drug test because of the traces of THC it contains, you can rest assured. This is extremely rare and unlikely to happen if you’re taking “average” doses of CBD. If you take larger doses of CBD on a daily basis, however, it’s well worth checking the THC content of your CBD products. Buy products made with CBD isolate when possible and/or read the certificate of analysis to check how much THC it contains. Following these simple steps, it’s easy enough to be safe and not to fail a drug test because of CBD.