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What exactly is CBD? The Ultimate Guide


What exactly is CBD & what are the benefits? 

The ultimate guide to feeling good

Are you confused, yet curious about CBD? Are you asking: What is it? How will it make me feel? Will it make me high?

In this guide, we’ve collected all the hard questions you’re asking around CBD and answered them so that you have everything you need to know about CBD in one place.

The goal? To help you choose the high-quality CBD that best suits your needs with absolute confidence (Pssst! This article is about CBD in general, but we happen to offer all the good things referred to in this guide).  From dosage guidelines to health benefits, we’ve explored it all. 

Interested? Let’s get started.

Let's start with the basics. What exactly is CBD?

In short, CBD stands for cannabidiol, a naturally occurring compound found in the Cannabis sativa L. plant, otherwise known as hemp. Unlike Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient we think of in marijuana, CBD is non-psychoactive.

CBD as a plant medicine has been around for thousands of years (ancient cultures mixed it with other medicines to relieve pain and various ailments like rheumatism and nausea), but it’s resurged recently as we’ve rediscovered its many uses for health and wellness in the modern day.

Now, classified as a Novel Food by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), it’s the subtle key to a well-balanced wellness routine, harmonising the body from morning through night.

So CBD won't get me high?

That’s right. Both cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are active cannabinoids in the cannabis or hemp plant, however, the way they interact with the body is different.

THC produces the euphoric or “high” effects associated with marijuana consumption, whereas CBD does not have any psychoactive properties and by itself will not cause a high so you can take it with ease. Read more: 'Is CBD safe?'

Speaking of hemp, how is CBD made?

CBD is extracted from the flowering head of the Cannabis sativa L. plant, the part of the hemp plant that contains the richest source of CBD. 

This can be done using several extraction techniques, two of the most common are ethanol and CO² , the former considered to be cleaner, more gentle and sustainable than other methods.

The CBD is then combined with a carrier oil, such as olive oil (or, in our case a higher quality medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil) that studies show could support metabolism. As the extract we use is full spectrum it doesn’t dissolve well in water, so we need a neutrally tasting oil carrier to deliver it to you.  Read more about MCT oil here.

The CBII Example

CBII CBD oil specifically is full spectrum. Our CBD is sourced from ethically and legally grown plants from the EU and extracted in Switzerland.

We collaborate exclusively with Bod Australia and their Swiss CBD producer Linnea SA to extract our CBD using a trademarked ethanol extraction method that’s gentle enough not to damage the plant’s natural compounds.

It is rigorously tested through each stage of the process to ensure consistent quality. We then go a step further and have it independently tested by Interlabor Belp AG in Switzerland for your peace of mind.

Did you know? Linnea recycles over 90% of the ethanol used during the process. When they’ve completed the extraction, they recycle any unused plant matter into renewable energy at their biogas facility in Switzerland, so nothing goes to waste.

What does full spectrum mean?

Full spectrum CBD oil is an extract that contains all the natural compounds found in the plant, in addition to cannabidiol (CBD), such as the terpenes, cannabinoids and flavonoids that result in a high-quality oil as nature intended.

High-quality full spectrum oils tend to be very high in CBD and low in THC (usually less than 0.3%).

Full spectrum oils tend to be a different quality, colour and taste than other CBD oils due to the additional plant matter from the natural plant. The alternative to full spectrum CBD is isolate CBD which contains only the CBD and none of the additional plant matter. If you’re looking for a completely CBD and THC-free alternative, try our hemp seed oil capsules

How does CBD work?

Think of your mind and body as an orchestra with instruments playing at different tunings and tempos. Individually they sound great, but the magic really happens when they all work together in harmony.

CBD plays a key role in maintaining the natural balance in our bodies when we’re feeling out of sync. With its anti-inflammatory properties and working as an immunomodulator, it maintains the body’s equilibrium that can otherwise be poorly impacted by stress, anxiety and lack of sleep to generally increase our quality of life. 

Taking a CBD supplement every day is a great way to optimise our overall wellbeing and restore balance in the body and mind.

The endocannabinoid system

The way the body maintains its own natural balance is through the endocannabinoid system (the ECS), a hugely complex part of our bodies that was only really discovered in the 1990s and to this day, is still not fully understood.

According to Doctor Julie Moltke, a medical doctor specialising in sleep and stress management, the ECS “helps to keep the haemostasis - the balance in the body.”

Preliminary research indicates that the ECS plays an important role in our central nervous systems. It contains a network of tiny receptors that may help regulate vital functions in the body, such as sleep, mood, appetite, inflammation, and memory – all the things we need working properly to feel our best.

Medical cannabis journalist, Mary Biles, describes the endocannabinoid system as “a conductor of the orchestra of our body, keeping everything in balance. It acts like a dimmer switch, so if there is too much activity it brings it back into equilibrium again by producing its own endocannabinoids.”

What are the health benefits of CBD?

CBD is a fantastic health supplement that can make all facets of our lives more manageable. Whether it’s for everyday wellness or to support mental health, find out more about the benefits of CBD in our blog ‘Why should I take CBD?’

Okay, sounds good. But is CBD legal?

Yes, CBD oil is legal in the UK to those above the age of 18 as long as it contains less than 0.2% THC. For more, read our blog ‘Is CBD safe?’ 


In the UK, a report by the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis found that six million people have used the cannabis compound in some form, while in the United States, consumer sales are expected to reach $1.8 billion by 2022. 

But with CBD-infused teas, oils, supplements and gummies (not to mention tampons and mattresses) springing up all over the place, it can get confusing to know which one to choose – where do you even start?

CBD is personal and the way you take it comes down to your own personal preference – whether you prefer it in drop, vape, topical or capsule form is up to you.

To help you decide which format is best, we’ve listed the main differences of our most popular products in our blog on capsules vs oils – we’ll leave the choice down to you. 

Read more: 'CBD oil vs capsules'

Find your favourite CBD formula

As CBD is such a personal journey, we’ve put together a premium range of products to suit you and help you find your natural rhythm – whether you prefer easy-to-take CBD drops or the convenience of capsules.

How do I make sure I'm getting quality CBD?

It’s so important to do your research before choosing a high-quality CBD brand you can trust. For advice on what to look for in a quality brand, read our blog ‘What to look for in a quality CBD’ 

What does CBD oil taste like?

Unflavoured CBD oil like CBII has an earthy, herbal taste that comes from the natural plant matter.

If you prefer to hide the taste, you can take neutral tasting capsules instead or mix a few drops of your CBD oil with a fatty or protein-rich food such as peanut butter or a high-protein smoothie.

However, as adding CBD to food or drinks dilutes it, for best results we recommend applying it directly under your tongue.

How to store CBD Oil

You should store CBD oil below 25°C. Do not use it if the tamper evidence seal is broken or missing. For the best before date, see base of carton. CBII CBD products are packaged in the UK with full spectrum CBD extracted in Switzerland.

CBD Dosage: What you need to know

Taking CBD is simple, but it’s personal and not prescriptive. There is no set guide for how much to take as what works for one person may not work for another – experimentation and consistency is key.

For more advice on how to take CBD, how much to take, and when to take CBD, read our blog ‘CBD and dosage – what you need to know’

Is CBD oil safe?

CBD products are classified as food supplements that are safe for human usage in those over the age of 18 years. According to the Food Standards Agency, CBD is not suitable for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.

For more on whether CBD is safe for pets, side effects and medication, read our blog ‘Is CBD safe?'

Choose CBD with confidence

Here at CBII, we’re committed to helping you tune in to your natural rhythm to live happier, healthier and more balanced lives – day in, day out.

Whether you’re completely new to CBD or looking for new ways to streamline a well-oiled routine, we’re here to help. Our range of high-quality full spectrum CBD oils and convenient capsules with added vitamins and nutrients are carefully crafted to help you achieve the epitome of wellness in the everyday.

Now you know everything there is to know about CBD, we hope you feel more at ease choosing CBII CBD with confidence.

Still curious? Ask our experts

We know CBD can be confusing, especially if you’re just starting out. Still have a question or need some advice around CBD? Our experts are here to help. Give us a call on 01793 374130, email us or get in touch via social with any questions.

And don’t just take our word for it. See what other CBII users are saying about their experience on Trust Pilot.


What's new?

Our Credentials

Legally Sourced Hemp
GMO Free
Third Party Tested For CBD Content
Vegan CBD Oil
Full Spectrum CBD (<0.2% THC)
Recyclable Packaging

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