Hemp (Cannabis sativa L) is a complex plant that has been used for religious, recreational and medical purposes for over 3000 years.
Many people have become aware of the potential healing benefits of cannabis, but the problem is that when people smoke marijuana, they experience psychoactive effects and that is not always a welcome side effect.
Scientists all over the world had been researching how to reduce the psychotropic impact of cannabis so researchers can focus on studying the medical benefits of cannabinoids. The research has paid off, and there are now various non-psychoactive cannabis products available to purchase in most countries.
Unfortunately, as with any popular product, many low-quality cannabis extracts are being offered for sale by unscrupulous websites and health stores. For example, some cannabidiol oils (CBD oil) have been found to not contain any active cannabinoids, while others can provide much less than stated on the label.
The best way to ensure that you will receive a good quality product is only to purchase full spectrum CBD oils from websites that display the relevant laboratory analysis certificate for that specific product. The other option is to make your own hemp CBD oil, it's not an easy option, but it's a sure fire way to know precisely what is in your oil.
In this article, we are going to look at CBD oil (Cannabidiol) and how you can make it.
CBD oil has been widely studied to discover if it can offer any potential medical benefits.
For example, it could potentially be useful for people with chronic pain disorders because some cannabinoids have been found to produce a relaxing and soothing effect.
CBD oil can also be applied topically for localised effect, and has the additional benefit that it does not ccause the psychoactive effects commonly associated with cannabis.
The CBD oil industry is thriving, cannabidiol oil products are becoming incredibly popular, and researchers are busy attempting to prove if it may be useful for the treatment of anxiety, epilepsy, intestinal conditions and even some types of cancers.
The media are now portraying CBD oil and CBD products as possibly the ultimate solution to a large number of health problems. So let's take a quick look at how commercial CBD oil is made.
How Industrial CBD Oil is Made
There are basically three industrial processes that have been modified for the extraction of CBD oil. Each method has advantages and disadvantages, but overall most CBD oil manufactured today is of reasonably high quality.
The first method is the CO2 extraction method; this is the most efficient and safe way to make CBD but is also the most expensive technique. It takes place in a Lab, where CO2 goes through a process which alters the temperature and pressure. CO2 is first cooled and then compressed to 10,000 psi which takes the CO2 to a phase called “supercritical” where it has the properties of liquid and gas phase at the same time. Then the “supercritical” CO2 is heated and is forced through the cannabis or hemp, and a whole-plant, multi-cannabinoid, pure extract is obtained. The CBD oil produced by this method also contains a full spectrum of hemp terpenes and flavonoids.
The second method to make CBD oil relies on the use of ethanol and canola oil. The problem with using Ethanol is that is a polar solvent, which can complicate the process due to chlorophyll (the plant’s pigment)being co-extracted along with the cannabidiol. Chlorophyll in the concentrate can produce an inferior quality product (wrong colour, poor texture etc.). Luckily, Chlorophyll can be removed from the mix by filtering the extract, the problem is that the process is expensive and the final extract may still be a low-quality oil. The other problem with Ethanol is that extraction using this method can lower the potency of the oil due to the removal of the plant’s waxes during the process.
Rick Simpson Method
The third method is known as “The Rick Simpson Method” In this process hydrocarbons are used such as butane, propane, acetone or pentane to extract CBD oil from the cannabis leaves and flowers. Hydrocarbons have low boiling points, and they can be purged easily at the end of the extraction, the result is a pure and potent cannabidiol extract. The problem with this method is that it is potentially hazardous. During the process, there are highly flammable fumes created which can likely cause explosions or fires.
How to make CBD oil at home
Those are three primary methods by which CBD oil can be extracted industrially, but now, let`s see what's involved if you decide you would like to make some yourself.
First, let's have a look at what materials and equipment are needed to make your own CBD oil:
- One ounce of hemp/cannabis bud (Bract and Calyx are ideal for CBD oil). You can use other parts of the plant, but you will need two or three ounces.
- 4 litres of solvent. Ethyl alcohol will be ideal but be careful, methyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol can`t be used as solvents.
- A glass or ceramic bowl (medium size).
- A filter with a piece of cloth to separate the substantial parts. A nylon stocking could do the job.
- A container to collect the extract.
- 2 kitchen pots. One should fit inside the other because you will use “Bain Marie” technique.
- Cookware (wood spoon, silicone spoon, syringe and a funnel)
The DIY CBD oil process.
First, the work area should be clean and organised, and the equipment should be close at hand for easy access. The process should take place on a stable and secure place like a table, desk or counter. Let`s look at it step by step:
Step 1: Put the crushed cannabis in the bowl, make sure you have enough room for the solvent, if you don’t, look for a bigger bowl that will hold all the ingredients.
Step 2: Put the alcohol inside the container with the cannabis, it should cover it all and have at least 2 centimetres of space between the hemp buds and the top of the alcohol.
Step 3: Using the wooden spoon, mix the cannabis and the solvent for three minutes, this allows the resin glands of the hemp to combine with the solution.
Step 4: Put the filter in the container ready to collect the fluid, pour the dark green liquid from the bowl through the screen and let it flow down to the bowl. You can push the cannabis into the filter to get all the fluid out of it, but it should be done carefully. You can repeat the process with the marijuana to get even more extract out of it, so don't throw it away!
Step 5: Now, you will need the two kitchen pots. Put some water inside the largest one and set it on the stove. Inside the smaller one, put the resin and solvent mixture.
Step 6: Put the smaller pot inside the bigger one, use reasonably high heat and leave it on the stove until the fluid starts boiling.
Step 7: Turn off the stove and the temperature of the water will enable the alcohol to evaporate, this could take 15 to 20 minutes, if the alcohol is still there, you could turn on the stove again and repeat the process. The evaporation process is happening only if you see bubbles coming out of the fluid.
Step 8: When the mix is still fluid, turn on the stove until it’s boiling again and then, turn off the stove, this time you should use low heat. Mix until the alcohol evaporates. The oil is ready when the mix is thick, and the bubbles have ceased to form.
Step 9: Using a syringe, collect the CBD oil and store it. This extract is highly concentrated, so if you want it for a topical use you should put hemp oil, coconut oil, or olive oil in the mix to make it more liquid (this will reduce the potency of the oil).
So there you have it, one relatively easy method to make CBD oil that can be done at home. The best part is that is a reasonably safe way to obtain the oil (but do not use a gas-fired stove!). Your homemade oil can be applied topically or taken orally.
If you need direct absorption in a specific area for a faster effect, topical use of the oil is ideal. On the other hand, oral effects can take up to 2 hours but provide a full body effect.
If you don´t want to make your own CBD oil, then you can easily purchase it online, or buy it in a store, but you should check the quality and potency of the oil and ask to view the lab test certificate.
Potential benefits of your home made CBD oil.
A large-scale study using CBD for patients with epilepsy demonstrated the good long-term safety of the medication, it also has been proved safe for children, and the research results have been incredible.
Some potential CBD medical benefits include pain, insomnia, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, anxiety and depression.
Cannabinoid products are being researched for potentially hundreds of medical applications and CBD products, in particular, are set to become an industry worth tens of billions of dollars.