DALLAS — Have you heard of cannabidiol (CBD oil)? It's growing in popularity as a natural way to treat epileptic seizures. And more broadly, anxiety and insomnia. The issue is how close CBD is, scientifically, to marijuana.
Marijuana is rich in the compound THC, which gets you high. And while CBD is not pot it does have a tiny bit of THC in it. That has some people wondering if CBD oil can cause someone to fail a drug test.
For answers, I'm looking at what federal law says about CBD and I'm reaching out to one of the largest lab-testing companies in America: Quest Diagnostics. Maybe you've peed in their cup.
Dr. Barry Sample is Quest's director of science and technology. And yes, that's really his name.
“Can the use of CBD oil cause you to fail a drug test?” I asked him.
“CBD, itself, on our tests, would not be confused with either THC or THC metabolite," Sample said. "Analytically, we can clearly differentiate the two substances,”
So… you'd pass.
Last year, with the 2018 Farm Bill, Congress permitted the interstate commerce of hemp products that contain "not more than 0.3 percent" THC — a very low level.
According to Sample, that amount of THC is so low, tests don't pick it up.
Case closed? Not really!
As a product, CBD oil in not regulated in the United States. That means the government is not ensuring the level of THC remains low.
And in fact, researchers in the Journal of American Medical Associatio tested a variety of CBD oils and found 43 percent had more THC in them than labeled.
Sample said that's a big problem.
“If somebody is using a CBD oil that contains residual THC in it, they very likely could test positive on a urine drug test. Not because of the CBD itself but because of a contaminant that is in that oil,” he said.
So, while CBD should not cause you to fail a drug test...the reality is: It could.
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