You may have seen CBD products at the health food store, gym, favorite workout place, your doctor’s office or even at a gas station. What are these products?

Let’s start with the acronym CBD. What do the letters stand for? The answer is “cannabidiol.”

Now, what are cannabidiols? They are the prevalent active ingredients of hemp. CBD is found in the highest concentrations in the hemp flower and roots of the plant. There are some CBD’s in the stalk and leaves, but at lower levels.

Hemp seeds have little to no CBD in them. When you purchase hemp seed oil or hemp seeds in the grocery store for cooking or adding to a salad, you are not getting a dose of CBD with it.

Currently, CBD is unregulated by the FDA. Many folks are hoping this will change in the near future. It is believed that CBD and hemp oil products will fall under the dietary supplement category.

There are two basic types of CBD products, isolate and full spectrum. Isolate, as indicated by its name, isolates the CBD molecule when extracted from the plant. It is sold as a white crystal or powder. This is the purest form of CBD at 99 percent.

Full spectrum or full plant hemp CBD includes a wide range of cannabinoids, flavonoids, terpenes and a great source of essential vitamins, minerals, and Omega fatty acids.

In full spectrum CBD products, you might find trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the hallucinate also found in marijuana. It’s important to note that if taking a full spectrum product, you might show positive on a drug test for THC.

Both types of CBD products have had positive health benefits for both people and pets, per user testimonials.

It was previously believed that CBD in its isolated form was more potent and concentrated than full spectrum CBD. However, in 2015, the theory was debunked by a study from the Lautenberg Center for General Tumor Immunology in Jerusalem.

While full spectrum CBD has ultimately proven to be more effective than CBD Isolate, it does not discredit the effectiveness of CBD isolate. There are a wide variety of situations in which CBD isolate would be preferred over full spectrum CBD with its “entourage effect.”

For example, let’s say your employer does random drug testing. The amount of 0.3 percent of THC will show positive on a drug test.

It is also important to note that other cannabinoids might cause negative reactions when isolated CBD would not.

As for the possibility of side effects, Dr Nagarkatti, Ph.D. of the Medical University of South Carolina recently noted that in very large doses of cannabis (in clinical trials with mice), there have been liver elevations.

However, as soon as the cannabis was stopped, these values came back to normal range. It was also noted that Warfrin, a blood thinner, and some seizure medications had altered effects when taken with high doses of cannabis.

It is advised you speak with your doctor before trying out any version of CBD.

Cynthia Groff, CCMA is the owner of Sativa Health Products on Hilton Head Island.