Is CBD Is A Waste Of Money & Potentially Harmful?

Is CBD Is A Waste Of Money & Potentially Harmful?

The recent article -  “CBD products don’t ease pain and are potentially harmful – new study finds” doing the rounds in the mainstream UK media has generated a lot of concern amongst those who use CBD products to help with health and well-being.

In this article, we will reflect upon what the article says and give our views on what seems to be a somewhat biased and sensationalist article.


Key Points Outlined


The article, published in the Journal of Pain claims that CBD products are ineffective, expensive, and potentially harmful.  More specifically, it claims:

  1. Cannabidiol (CBD) products have varying amounts of CBD, from none to much more than advertised.
  2. CBD products may contain other chemicals than CBD, some of which may be harmful.
  3. Sixteen RCTs for pain used pharmaceutical CBD in oral, buccal/sublingual, and topical forms.
  4. Fifteen of the 16 RCTs were negative: no greater pain-relieving effect for CBD than for placebo.
  5. Meta-analyses link CBD to increased rates of serious adverse events and hepatotoxicity.


Our Views


In regards to claim #1, we would agree. There is a huge range of CBD products available in the UK, and while there are many reputable suppliers, there are probably just as many who sell CBD products that do not contain the advertised level of CBD.

This makes it all the more important to ensure that your CBD supplier conducts lab testing to verify the CBD content of their products. If in doubt, ask them to provide a certificate of analysis for proof.

Claim #2 is somewhat accurate. Most CBD products do indeed contain additional compounds that naturally occur in the hemp plant.

In fact, this is normally desirable. Full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD products that remain close to the natural plant will contain hundreds of active compounds such as cannabinoids and terpenes.

But is there any real evidence that these compounds are harmful? Hemp extracts have been consumed by humans for thousands of years and there is no good evidence that they are harmful at normal daily intakes.

Of course, if you isolate a specific compound from the natural plant and then consume it in excess of what would be natural or recommended, then it may well become harmful.

Indeed, drinking too much water can cause intoxication and even death (drowning).

For claims #3 and #4 - as a food supplement company, we can't legally claim that our products have medicinal benefits. They are intended to support health and well-being like any other dietary supplement.

Therefore, we are not going to debate whether we believe that CBD oils may help with pain or not.

But we do agree that there is indeed a lack of good quality randomised control trials to prove efficacy. This is also the case with most other dietary supplements that people claim help relieve their pain. 

However, it's important to note that the vast majority of the studies that these conclusions are based upon use a highly refined CBD isolate, and not the full spectrum CBD extracts that most people find beneficial.

Many people, scientists included, believe that the benefits of CBD that people experience are actually due to the synergistic effect of hundreds of different compounds that the plant produces.

This is known as the ‘entourage effect’, and there are a few studies that support it.

But of course, due to the vast range of different compounds in different concentrations, this is problematic to prove in a clinical trial. 

Finally, claim #5 outlines how CBD has been linked to liver issues in meta-analyses.

While the link may be there, the truth remains that clinical trials have not found that CBD causes liver issues at normal intakes. 

The studies that do link CBD to raised liver enzymes are at daily doses that people would never consume (equivalent to several bottles of oil per day).




In conclusion, while we agree that there is, currently, a lack of evidence to support the use of CBD products for specific medical conditions such as pain, this does not mean that they are a waste of money.

Over 80% of our customers report experiencing benefits when using our products for health and well-being. Many of whom have been regular customers for many years.

This article seems to be biased as it exaggerates the potential harms of CBD, and ignores the fact that millions of people use these products with no ill effects and other clinical trials that show no harm at normal daily doses.

As always, be cautious when buying any health products online - ask questions and ask for lab reports to prove the advertised levels of active compounds.