Hemp oil is one of the hottest topics in the natural remedy space right now.
The benefits of hemp oil are being discussed and researched as more opportunities open up for cannabis-related products. In fact, hemp oil has been used as medicine and food for thousands of years in China.
Those who are looking into hemp oil for the first time likely have many questions about it. What is hemp oil good for? What are the benefits of hemp oil? Will hemp oil help improve my life?
Ahead, we’ll take a look at what hemp oil will help with, so you can make an informed decision on whether or not it’s right for you.
What is Hemp Oil?
Hemp oil is the oil extracted from the seeds of hemp plants that are low in THC. There may be trace amounts – under 0.3% of THC in a hemp plant, but not enough to affect your mental state or behavior.
In this section, we’ll take a closer look at hemp oil as well as its sister oils CBD and cannabis oil so you can better understand hemp oil and the differences between the other two oils.
Hemp Oil Vs. CBD Oil Vs. Cannabis Oil
One of the more confusing elements when shopping for hemp oil is the hemp oil vs. CBD oil difference. When you add cannabis oil to the mix, it gets even more confusing. Although all three of the oils come from the marijuana plant, they’re different and have different applications.
Hemp oil and CBD oil are far more similar than cannabis oil. Both come from the male marijuana plant and don’t contain THC. Cannabis oil, on the other hand, is concentrated oil from marijuana plants that do contain THC.
CBD and hemp oil contain many health benefits, and some argue that cannabis oil does as well. If you’re looking for one of the former two, though, you won’t want to accidentally buy cannabis oil. On top of the differences between it and CBD or hemp oil, it’s also illegal in many states.
You might be asking yourself, “What is hemp oil?” It’s a fair question, especially considering a lot of people mistake it for CBD oil.
Hemp oil is hemp seed oil – which means it’s made from the seeds of the hemp plant. These plants are manufactured for industrial purposes rather than medicinal or recreational uses like traditional marijuana plants are.
We’ll discuss the benefits of hemp oil in detail above, so we won’t go over them again here. The uses are much different than those of CBD oil, though, which you’ll discover below.
CBD oil is short for cannabidiol. Like hemp oil, CBD oil comes from the hemp plant. Unlike hemp oil, though, those who produce CBD oil extract it from the leaves rather than the seeds. It’s non-psychoactive as well, so you won’t be getting high off of CBD oil.
The CBD oil benefits are well documented at this point and are part of the reason why the oil has become one of the leaders in the natural remedy movement. Anxiety, depression, and pain reduction have some of the most research behind them relating to CBD oil, with over half of CBD users reporting improvement in one study.
It seems like every day that passes brings a new application for CBD oil, from improving mood and mental disorders to lessening the side effects of chemotherapy for cancer patients. The FDA has even approved CBD oil as an epilepsy treatment.
The hemp oil uses are much more topical and supplemental, while many consider the CBD oil benefits to be more medicinal. They are similar in some ways but have significant differences in terms of application.
Both hemp oil and CBD oil have their uses, but it’s important to know what you’re buying before you go shopping for hemp or CBD oil.
Unlike CBD and hemp oil, cannabis oil does contain THC – and often a lot of it. You can only purchase it through legitimate means from states where marijuana is legal for recreational or medicinal use.
Cannabis oil is concentrated, which means people will extract it from the buds of marijuana plants that contain THC. Although some studies suggest cannabis oil can help with a variety of conditions, it’s far different from CBD or hemp oil.
Farm Bill 2018
The 2018 Farm Bill is one of the most impactful pieces of legislation regarding hemp and CBD oil in recent years. Before the bill, cannabis plants were never part of any government subsidies or insurance. This bill changes all of that.
Even though hemp plants need to contain less than 0.3% THC, the government made no distinction between it and regular marijuana plants. It was excluded from benefits, controlled, and only relegated to research purposes.
Now, though, farmers can grow and export hemp plants without worry. There are still some regulations, however.
Industrial hemp plants can’t contain more than 0.3% THC. States will also have to regulate and license hemp production, meaning farmers will have to apply for permission to grow the plant.
Hemp still isn’t in the position that other industrial plants are, but it’s heading that way. The new Farm Bill opens the doors for local farms to start producing hemp on a large scale. This will lead to the increased availability of CBD and hemp oil for consumers like you.
Hemp Oil Benefits
Hemp oil provides a variety of topical and general benefits, depending on how you use it. You can apply it directly to your skin or add it to your diet for long-term benefits.
Ahead, we’ll take a look at the most well-researched and impactful benefits of hemp oil so you can see what supplementing your diet and skin care regimen might do for you.
One of the primary benefits of hemp seed oil for skin is that it can help keep your skin hydrated without making acne worse.
Acne is usually caused by your skin’s oil production. Skin that is too oily will develop acne, and dry skin can trigger a production in oil that will clog your pores.
Using hemp oil on your skin will keep it healthy and hydrated without stimulating excessive oil production. It won’t clog your pores when you apply it to the skin and can regulate the amount of oil your skin naturally produces.
It doesn’t matter whether your skin is naturally dry or oily; hemp oil will help limit the amount of acne you experience.
A Natural Moisturizer
A lot of people elect to use hemp oil for eczema because it’s a natural moisturizer. Dry patches and inflammation caused by eczema and atopic dermatitis will become moisturized and healthy after using hemp oil on them.
The omega fatty acids (more on these below) in hemp oil promotes new skin growth in the place of old, dry, dead patches of skin. It will also limit the inflammation in the area, which is almost always the culprit of constant itching when you have eczema or atopic dermatitis.
Hemp Oil for Hair
Another of the popular uses for hemp oil includes hemp oil for hair care. As we’ve covered, hemp oil works as a natural moisturizer, and your hair is no different.
Using hemp oil on your hair and scalp can help bring the moisture back to dry hair, as well as promote healthy hair from the source. Using hemp seed oil will help limit the amount of moisture your hair loses throughout the day.
Adding moisture to your hair gives it strength, and reduces the chances it will break or fall out. Hemp seed oil will help make sure your hair is soft, moisturized, and strong.
Hemp oil will also help stimulate your hair growth through some of the Omega fatty acids it contains. You can gain this benefit by using hemp oil on your hair and ingesting hemp oil directly or through food.
You don’t have to use pure hemp oil on your hair if you don’t want to. There are several natural products on the market that are infused with hemp oil. These are natural versions of shampoo and conditioner that contain hemp oil as well as other nutrients that will help strengthen your hair.
One of the primary conditions that medical marijuana and CBD address is epilepsy. The FDA has approved the use of CBD for treating epilepsy, as we covered in the section above.
Researchers have been studying the effects of CBD on epileptic patients for a while now, and the debate on its efficacy is still raging on. Still, there has been evidence that shows CBD oil can help control epileptic seizures.
Much of the evidence is anecdotal, but CBD oil is clearly a welcome too to any patient who has been diagnosed with epilepsy.
Health Benefits for Dogs
Interestingly, many of the hemp oil benefits also apply to our canine companions. Using hemp oil topically or adding it to your dog’s food can reduce skin allergies, control inflammation, regulate their weight, and reduce the chance that they develop cancer.
Other Hemp Oil Uses
Another interesting use for hemp oil is wood finishing. Hemp oil can help restore worn-looking wood and protect it from normal wear and tear.
Whether you’re looking to use a finish on furniture, floors, or other items, hemp oil can bring life and protection into old and new pieces of wood.
Unlike a lot of other finishing products, hemp oil is safe, natural, and durable. It brings nearly everything you want out of a finish, which is why it’s becoming increasingly popular.
Now that we’ve covered the hemp seed oil uses and benefits, it’s time to get to practical applications of the oil. Here, we discuss some precautions and best practices when using hemp oil on your skin or adding it to your diet.
As is the case with anything, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before using hemp oil. You should also check with your state laws to make sure hemp oil is legal in your area. Hemp oil is safe for most people, but some may be sensitive to it.
Topical Hemp Oil Use
Those who are trying to clear acne or dry patches of skin will likely want to apply the hemp oil directly to the affected areas. Adding hemp oil to your diet will help limit these flare-ups in the long-run, but hemp oil can also provide some immediate relief when you use it topically.
First, you’ll want to be sure that you’re not sensitive to hemp oil before using it on a large scale. We recommend washing a small area or your arm, adding hemp oil, and letting it sit for a day. If nothing happens, you’re all set to keep using hemp oil. You are likely sensitive if it starts to itch or turn red, though, and shouldn’t use it on other areas of your body.
Once you’ve determined you’re not allergic or sensitive, you can use hemp oil on your face or any other area that might be troubling you. Apply it directly to your skin once or twice per day. You can let it sit or wash it off with water when you’re finished.
You may even want to consider mixing hemp oil with other essential oils to help bolster your skin’s health and resilience.
Ingesting Hemp Oil
You can consume hemp seeds through their natural form or through hemp oil. You can easily add the seeds or the oil to any recipe, or add the oil to a glass of water. There are even tinctures that allow you to take the hemp oil without anything else.
As we’ve stated, hemp oil is safe for nearly everyone. The vast majority of hemp oil products contain no THC and those that do only contain trace amounts that won’t affect your mood or how you act.
That being said, some people may experience sensitivity, so it’s best to use precautions when adding anything new to your skin or your diet.
Most people will benefit from using hemp oil as a topical or internal supplement. It can help clear skin conditions, strengthen your hair, and even help improve pain and anxiety. With that in mind, it’s safe to say that hemp oil is almost always a beneficial supplement to use.
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Resources and Further Reading
- Neuropsychopharmacology: Cannabidiol Reduces the Anxiety Induced by Simulated Public Speaking in Treatment-Naïve Social Phobia Patients
- FDA: FDA approves first drug comprised of an active ingredient derived from marijuana to treat rare, severe forms of epilepsy
- Epilepsy Foundation: Medical Marijuana and Epilepsy
- Curr Pharm Biotechnol.: Gamma linolenic acid: an antiinflammatory omega-6 fatty acid.