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CBD oil goes mainstream with sales expected to top a billion dollars by 2020

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Is it a medical miracle in a bottle or is CBD oil nothing more than modern day snake oil? The jury is still out with limited research on claims it can help with pain, anxiety, depression and trouble sleeping. Regardless of that, the public is becoming more sold on CBD leading to a boom in business. Stores have opened in Clanton, Birmingham along Highway 280, and Tuscaloosa.

CBD oil once carried a negative stigma because it's an extract from the cannibas plant. Now the industry is expecting sales to top a billion dollars by 2020. With storefronts popping up across the country it seems CBD has gone mainstream.

At Revelator Coffee in downtown Birmingham they're serving up a special brew boosted with the CBD oil. "It's definitely popular," says Regional Director Chris Clevenger. He's so sold on the product he uses it every morning. "Whether promoting a sense of calm or clarity and possibly to help with pain, it has great benefits," explains Clevenger.

Birmingham manufacturer Relyf is their supplier. "We kind of equate it to a souped up super food," remarks Jenny Golden who is a certified natural health practitioner with the company. She says they emphasize educating the public on how to use CBD for the best results.

South of Birmingham, Clanton is home to CBD American Shaman. "It feels like a movement is happening and we're blessed be a part of it," explains owner Diane Moore. They are stocked with oils, creams, sweets and dog treats. Moore says it's all legal. They have THC free products or up to .3% which is the legal limit. Their products will not get you high.

And while Moore says people are a little surprised to see them in Clanton, Alabama she says the testimonies from customers are amazing. From aches and pains to headaches and anxiety, she tells us clients are raving about CBD oil.

The most dramatic cases involve children who suffer from seizures. The FDA approved a CBD drug after research showed it worked to reduce or eliminate the seizures.

Now in addition to her young son who has a neurological condition, Wendy Umetsu's whole family takes CBD oil. She looks at it as an investment in their health. Once a taboo product, she works to educate others about the potential benefits. She feels CBD has saved her son's life. "It's sad for so long there was such a stigma when it could have helped so many people like it has helped our family," says Umetsu.

She advises you to ask for a product's third party lab reports to see exactly what's in it. Umetsu says you need to research carefully what you buy. As for side effects, the biggest one is fatigue if you take too high a dose.

Since CBD is considered a supplement it is not regulated by the FDA. The Alabama State Health Department issued a warning earlier this year.

Full Release: State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris cautions the public to avoid using any untested, unregulated and potentially dangerous products. Falling into this category is CBD (cannabidiol), a nonpsychoactive compound derived from Cannabis sativa, the marijuana plant. While CBD is derived from the cannabis plant, it does not produce a “high” because it is not psychoactive.

In Alabama, medical marijuana use is prohibited, with the exception of products prescribed for those enrolled in a UAB Department of Neurology study (under Carly’s Law) or those being treated for a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition including one that produces seizures (under Leni’s Law).

“Products labeled as CBD oil and/or other CBD-related products might contain any number of substances, and there is no assurance they are safe to consume as they have not been evaluated or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,” Dr. Harris said. “Instead of helping relieve symptoms, using CBD products can have side effects that include harmful interactions with other medications. If you suspect a tainted CBD product has caused you to be ill, contact a poison control center and seek medical attention.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report , Notes from the Field: Acute Poisonings from a Synthetic Cannabinoid Sold as Cannabidiol-Utah, 2017-2018, found that counterfeit products labeled as CBD resulted in adverse reactions in some consumers.

A suspected case was defined as the occurrence of adverse reactions inconsistent with known CBD exposures after ingestion, inhalation, or under-the-tongue consumption of a product labeled as CBD or hemp oil. The report on the Utah outbreak found that acute poisonings occurred due to the presence of a synthetic cannabinoid that was being sold as cannabidiol sickened 52 persons. Five of these users making emergency department visits associated with reported exposure to products labeled as CBD experienced the following:

Altered mental status



Loss of consciousness


Among other cases in the study, the most frequent symptoms experienced were altered mental status, nausea or vomiting, and seizures or shaking.

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The public should be aware of the possible side effects of CBD use, and if symptoms arise, contact the Regional Poison Control Center at Children's of Alabama at 1-800-222-1222 and seek medical attention.

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