CBD In Alabama
2023 Alabama CBD Buyers Guide
As Alabama moved towards the realized goal if a medical marijuana program in the state, what about CBD in Alabama?
More and more CBD-infused products are being released each day. CBD can now be found at local stores in a vast array of oils, tinctures, concentrate, capsules, topical solutions, lip balms, lotions, and edibles of all kinds.
In order to fully understand what it is that’s happening here you first have to understand the various types of cannabis, cannabis oils, and cannabinoids. After that, we can break down the legalities of each.
New Studies on CBD
As more and more companies take interest in CBD, more and more money is being spent on studies to determine the effectiveness and safety of CBD in treating a wide array of medical conditions.
Recent studies have shown that CBD is associated with behavioral improvements in children with autism, may be useful in treating brain cancer, and is useful for relieving pain, reducing anxiety, and improving sleep. Also, a study out of Switzerland presented data that suggest that smoking CBD-rich cannabis flower does not impair driving skills. Moreover, data presented in one report suggest that 71% of participants in a study experienced improvements in their health and well-being.
The progression of the CBD market has given birth to a relatively new product called delta-8 THC. Until recent times, few people had ever heard of delta-8 THC as well as THC O, & THC A. These are essentially cannabinoids that is similar to the familiar buzz-inducing delta-9 THC except that it’s produced directly from hemp CBD rather than from marijuana. Delta-8 is less intoxicating and less likely to cause feelings of paranoia than the THC found in marijuana. Nonetheless, it does have some intoxicating properties.
Because it’s a form of tetrahydrocannabinol that has mild psychotropic effects, Delta-8 falls into a gray area of CBD laws. Several U.S. states don’t seem to be too concerned with D8, some have regulated or banned it and lawmakers in some other states are looking into doing the same.
Separating Hemp from Marijuana
The Two Types of CBD Oil
Starting from the beginning, the cannabis plant has been growing happily on this planet, minding its own business until humans came along. Humans have been using cannabis as a food source since before we were even technically human. And we’ve been cultivating and domesticating cannabis for its seeds, fibers, and essential oils (resins) since the dawn of civilization.
It hasn’t been until recent years that humans recognized the mechanism by which cannabis imbues its medicinal effects. The magic ingredients are two families of compounds known as cannabinoids and terpenes.
Interestingly, terpenes, the oily compounds that are responsible for the distinctive aromas of marijuana are actually far stronger molecule for molecule than cannabinoids. While cannabinoids are measured in percent of weight — some strains producing as high as 25 percent or higher levels — terpenes are measured in parts per million. There are scores of types of both cannabinoids and terpenes, and each has its own set of effects and medicinal benefits.
Since cannabinoids were identified in the early 70s as the active compound responsible for the psychological effects, we’ve been breeding cannabis to provide specific cannabinoids and terpenes which produce specific sets effects. The overall effect of the ratio of cannabinoids and terpenes found in a strain is known as the entourage effect, and it’s why it matters which strain you choose to use.
The two most common cannabinoids found in cannabis are delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, aka THC, and cannabidiol, or CBD. THC is the cannabinoid responsible for the high produced by smoking or otherwise consuming marijuana.
Marijuana is just one type of cannabis crop. If you breed strains of cannabis that are high in THC, cultivate only female plants, and prevent them from going to seed, you produce a plant with big, sticky, resinous buds. This is marijuana. Different strains of marijuana produce different levels of various cannabinoids including THC, CBD, and also some less common cannabinoids such as CBG and CBN.
On the other hand, if you produce a crop that is essentially devoid of THC, but still rich in cannabinoids such as CBD, and cultivate the plant via the same methods, you’re technically growing what’s known as hemp, or more accurately, in this case, phytocannabinoid-rich hemp, or PCR hemp. There’s also a class of strains of hemp which are not used for medicine but rather for seeds and fibers known as industrial hemp.
CBD vs THC used as a Medicine
Okay, so it looks like CBD oil may now be at least considered legal by law enforcement officials in the state of Alabama. And medical marijuana might soon be legal in Alabama. The question remains, do you really need the THC? Or is hemp-derived CBD effective without the THC?
Many medical marijuana experts claim that THC provides some benefits that CBD does not, or is less effective than CBD alone. The combination of CBD and THC, they say, is ideal for treating a wide array of medical conditions. And in certain cases, they may well be right.
That being said, many CBD users report excellent results without the THC. In fact, the CBD-based drug Epidiolex has been shown in clinical trials to be effective at reducing seizures. And there are dozens of other medical conditions for which researchers and patients alike claim that CBD alone can provide relief.
CBD works via a number of different molecular pathways in the human body, the most important of which is the human endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS is responsible for keeping our health in balance.
For example, when we’re in need of nutrients it’s the ECS that makes us feel hungry, and when we’ve had our fill, it’s the ECS that makes us feel full. If this system gets out of balance we may pig out when we don’t need to or not eat enough. This is just one example. There are countless ways in which the ECS helps to maintain health. There are also other mechanisms aside from the ECS upon which CBD has an effect.
We can’t go into all of the ways CBD works in the human body in this post, but here’s a partial list of the benefits that CBD has been shown to provide:
- ADD & ADHD
- Addiction & Alcoholism
- ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
- Autoimmune Diseases
- Colitis & Crohn’s Disease
- Endocrine Disorders
- Epilepsy & Seizures
- Hair Loss
- Heart Disease
- HIV & AIDS
- Huntington’s Disease (HD)
- Liver Disease
- Mood Disorders
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Osteoporosis/Bone Health
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Sickle Cell Anemia
- Skin Conditions
- Sleep Disorders
- Tourette’s Syndrome
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
- Weight Los
So, the bottom line is, if you don’t want to get high, or you don’t want to risk being charged with a DUI or losing your job, you might want to avoid the THC found in marijuana and cannabis oils and just stick with hemp CBD oil or CBD-infused edibles.
can I legally buy CBD oil in Alabama?
Since long before officials in the state of Alabama gave the go-ahead to all residents to use hemp CBD, many smaller shops in the state — everything from smoke shops to gas stations — have been selling CBD oils and CBD infused products, especially in the larger cities in the state such as Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile, and Huntsville, Alabama. Although the FDA has specifically warned that CBD is not approved as a food additive, many of these shops sell products such as CBD gummies and baked goods, as well as CBD skin creams, salves, and balms, CBD vape oils and cartridges, and CBD beverages.
Where you won’t find CBD in the state of Alabama is at the major retailers such as Walgreens and CVS which both recently announced they would be selling CBD products at stores in other states but not in Alabama. Considering that the state’s law enforcement officials aren’t even sure what the deal is, it’s still too risky for the larger companies to get in the game.
Where to buy CBD products online
There are actually some benefits to buying CBD online. For example, you’ll find a much larger selection of CBD brands and products online than you will encounter in a local shop. Local shops might only carry a few brands, and these might not be the most trusted brands or highest-quality products. However, be sure to choose only products produced in states that require lab testing for purity and potency. Do your homework.
Here are some helpful links to learn more about hemp CBD oil
Learn more about CBD oil laws in Alabama
- Carly’s Law Alabama Code Title 13A. Criminal Code § 13A-12-214.2
- Leni’s Law Alabama Code Title 13A. Criminal Code § 13A-12-214.3
- NORML – Alabama CBD-Specific Marijuana Law (summary)
- FindLaw.com Alabama Marijuana Laws (more detailed)
- WSFA News – Alabama house Democrats to discuss legalization, potential taxation of medical marijuana
- AL.com – Five key figures in Alabama’s medical marijuana debate