As cannabidiol (CBD) becomes more and more popular, a lot of people are willing to give the cannabinoid a try. Yet, one worry still lingers over them – will CBD appear on a drug test?
The short answer it’s possible. Throughout this article, we’re going to discuss everything you need to know about CBD appearing on drug tests. From there, we offer some advice on how to avoid testing positive for cannabis while consuming CBD.
The Problem with THC in CBD Products
The majority of drug tests that’ll check positive for cannabis consumption seek out another cannabinoid known as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). This is the plant compound that’s associated with psychoactivity – or feeling “high.” While THC is naturally found in both marijuana and hemp, a cannabis plant is only considered hemp if it contains less than 0.3% THC.
In terms of federal law, CBD products may only be developed through the hemp plant. With that said, the majority of CBD products out there contain 0.3% THC or less. Still, even though this amount of THC won’t cause psychoactivity, it does hold the potential to appear on a drug test.
To take things further, if you live in a state where medical or recreational marijuana is legal, you may run into CBD products that contain more THC.
However, not everyone who takes CBD that contains hints of THC will check positive on a drug test. There are two variables that occur when determining this, including:
- The drug test itself. There have been reports of drug tests claiming false positives of THC for other cannabinoids, including cannabinol (CBN).
- How much CBD you’re taking. If you take CBD frequently (i.e. on a daily basis), you are more at risk of testing positive for cannabis consumption than someone who takes it intermittently. The main reason for this is you’re allowing THC to stay in your system for a longer period of time.
Luckily, some CBD companies understand the concern many of us have when it comes to drug tests. And they’ve made it possible to take CBD without having to worry at all about testing positive for THC.
Know Your Spectrums
All CBD products on the market are developed into one of three spectrums. Each of these spectrums is unique due to its cannabinoid composition and two of them have allowed people to consume CBD without having to worry about THC. The three spectrums include:
- Full-Spectrum – sometimes referred to as “whole plant,” full-spectrum CBD contains all of the cannabinoids extracted from the hemp plant, including THC.
- Broad-Spectrum – similar to full-spectrum, broad-spectrum CBD contains all of the cannabinoids extracted from the hemp plant, with the exception of THC. In other words, the THC is extracted in a laboratory leaving consumers with all of hemp’s other beneficial cannabinoids and terpenes.
- CBD Isolate – the purest form of CBD. A CBD isolate is cannabidiol and nothing else.
As you can see, by understanding your spectrums, it’s easy to find CBD products that won’t test positive for THC. Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that some studies have found false positives for THC when testing other cannabinoids, such as CBN. With that in mind, for those who want to avoid any potential risks, a CBD isolate is the best way to go.
Always Check for a Certificate of Analysis
Still, even when a CBD company advertises its products as CBD isolate, there’s a potential they’re lying to you. How can this be? Unfortunately, the CBD market still isn’t regulated by the Federal Food & Drug Administration (FDA). Because of this, many shady companies have entered the marketplace and made a quick buck off of uninformed buyers.
However, don’t let this scare you away from CBD. Luckily, there are a number of reputable companies out there that are transparent about what goes into their CBD products. And they do this through a Certificate of Analysis (CoA).
A CoA is a third-party lab test result that seeks out a number of aspects about the CBD product, including its purity and whether or not it contains any contaminants, such as heavy metals or pesticides. For the sake of drug tests, one aspect of these lab results you’ll want to keep an eye out for is the cannabinoid and terpene count.
If a CBD product is labeled as an isolate, check to make sure if it has a CoA. If it does, make sure that CoA informs you of the cannabinoids found within the product. While CBD isolates products will range in purity – a true CBD isolate will contain over 95% CBD and absolutely no other cannabinoids.