Everything you need to know about the similarities and differences between hemp seed oil and CBD oil, including how they’re made, what they’re used for and potential benefits they provide. Ever thought to buy CBD oil at Walmart? Well you may be out of luck, since this retail giant currently doesn't offer and real CBD products.
Hemp Seed Oil vs. CBD Oil: What’s The Difference?
Dr. Myles Spar is a double board-certified medical expert in performance medicine, men’s health, advanced testing and integrative medicine.
Commissions we earn from partner links on this page do not affect our opinions or evaluations. Our editorial content is based on thorough research and guidance from the Forbes Health Advisory Board.
Table of Contents
- What Is Hemp Seed Oil?
- What Is CBD Oil?
Hemp seed oil and cannabidiol (CBD) oil are sourced from the cannabis sativa plant species. Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant, which is a variety of the cannabis sativa plant that contains less than 0.3% THC, while CBD oil comes from the leaves, stalks and flowers of both cannabis and hemp plants. Both oils can be identified across a variety of products, from beauty to food.
Read on to learn more about the similarities and differences between hemp seed oil and CBD oil, including how they’re made, what they’re used for and potential benefits they provide.
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What Is Hemp Seed Oil?
Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant and offers a robust and nutty flavor. Consisting of around 70 to 90% of polyunsaturated fatty acids (often referred to as healthy fats), it’s abundant in omega-3 essential fatty acids, tocopherols and linoleic and linolenic acids.
Depending on the way hemp seeds are handled and processed, hemp seed oil may contain delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and CBD oil, according to a report by Oklahoma State University. Most companies producing hemp seed oil for consumption must adhere to strict guidelines, ensuring that the products contain almost imperceptible amounts of THC, 0.3% or less. This amount will not cause psychoactive effects.
How Is It Made?
Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant. The seeds are cold pressed, similar to the way olive oil is made. Once oil is extracted from the seed, it’s stored in a cool, dark place for processing and shipping.
How Is It Used?
Hemp seed oil can be used as a culinary oil to enhance flavor and may be drizzled on vegetables or made into salad dressings. It can also be taken straight from the spoon as a dietary supplement, as it’s found to be rich in polyunsaturated omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, according to the American Oil Chemists Society (AOCS).
Hemp seed oil also has a variety of industrial uses, such as paints, varnishes and other coating materials, due to its drying properties. The oil is also used in plastic flooring, such as linoleum.
Potential benefits of hemp seed oil include boosting omega intake, thanks to the oil’s unique composition of a 3-to-1 ratio of omega-6 (linoleic) to omega-3 (alpha-linolenic) essential fatty acids. In general, a diet rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids contributes to skin health, cardiovascular health, maintaining healthy blood pressure and reducing pain and inflammation, as well as potentially reducing some PMS symptoms like breast tenderness.
The dense nutritional profile of hemp seed oil also includes:
- Antioxidants, such as vitamin E
- Omega-3, omega-6 and omega-9
Potential Risks and Side Effects
Hemp seed oil’s composition of fats can cause the oil to go rancid easily. A relatively low flash point—the temperature at which a liquid will vaporize or ignite when exposed to an open flame—also means it’s unsuitable for frying and is best consumed raw when fresh.
This oil is also difficult to store. Due to its fatty acid make-up, hemp seed oil is at risk of going rancid (oxidative deterioration), meaning it degrades when exposed to oxygen, according to the European Journal of Lipid Science and Technology.
For best use, hemp seed oil should be used at temperatures below 300 degrees Fahrenheit (150 degrees Celsius), and is best stored in the refrigerator or freezer after opening due to its short shelf life.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD is one of the most abundant active constituents of the cannabis plant. It’s a non-psychoactive isomer of THC—meaning it won’t result in the intoxicating, “high” sensation. It’s derived from the leaves, stalks and flowers of hemp and cannabis plants, but as the legality of cannabis is still controversial in some places, most CBD oils are extracted from hemp plants.
“CBD is a plant compound found in cannabis sativa—both hemp and cannabis,” says Yvonne Perez Emerson, an herbalist and the founder of Make and Mary, a CBD boutique in Portland, Oregon. There are thought to be at least 100 unique compounds found in hemp known as cannabinoids, of which CBD is the second most abundant. Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that interact with the body’s central regulatory system (endocannabinoid system), which manages the body’s homeostasis (physiological balance) among bodily processes such as appetite, mood, memory, sleep, and immune system functions, adds Emerson.
They can be either consumed as phytocannabinoids found intrinsically within CBD products or produced naturally by the body (endocannabinoids). When ingested, CBD oil can help the brain and body by interacting with the endocannabinoid system and neurotransmitters that impact inflammation, pain, mood regulation and stress response.
Why You Can’t Buy CBD Oil at Walmart
Cannabidiol, or CBD oil, is widely used as a dietary supplement and it has many potential health benefits. Even pharmaceutical giants like CVS and Walgreens have added CBD creams and topical products to their shelves. But despite the promising effects of CBD, some major retailers have been slow to add these hemp extracts to their inventory list. But what’s holding big business back from meeting consumer demand for CBD? Keep reading to learn more about the hemp products sold by Walmart, and why Walmart CBD oil isn’t a real thing.
Does Walmart Sell CBD Oil?
No, Walmart does not sell real CBD oil neither online nor in-store. You may find many hemp oils that are made from cold-pressed hemp seeds, but these products do not contain CBD, and they won’t have the same health benefits as CBD products.
What CBD Oil Is & Why Walmart Doesn’t Offer It
CBD is a cannabinoid that can be found in cannabis plants, although CBD oil is typically derived from a sub-strain known as hemp. Hemp plants have naturally high amounts of CBD, and low levels of THC. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is another cannabinoid found within cannabis sativa strains, and it’s most well-known for causing the intoxicating high that marijuana users experience.
However, CBD is much different than THC and does not cause any psychotropic effects. Additionally, there are many potential health benefits of CBD oil such as pain relief, anxiety reduction, and sleep improvements, as well as maintaining balance internally through the endocannabinoid system. For these reasons and many more, consumers have latched on to the trend and can’t get enough of CBD-infused products.
Due to its immense popularity and lack of THC, the 2018 Farm Bill federally legalized hemp plants as an agricultural crop. With this change, CBD products were also deemed legal as long as they contain no more than 0.3% THC content. But the challenges facing CBD didn’t stop with the legalization of hemp.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has yet to evaluate mainstream CBD oil products, and these hemp extracts lie in a gray area between medicinal drug and dietary wellness supplement. Additionally, companies must tread lightly when making health claims surrounding CBD oil and its efficacy.
With these roadblocks and uncertainty about the future of the CBD industry, Walmart (along with some other major retailers) has given much consideration to CBD products and their massive impact. It was reported that Walmart executives were meeting with CBD brands and sampling products in preparation for the day where they are able to sell CBD publicly, but it’s unclear when that day will come.
Currently, the only hemp-derived products that you’ll find on Walmart.com or in their stores contains hemp seed oil, not hemp CBD oil. This distinction is important to note, since hemp seed oil contains minor cannabinoids and is not linked to the wide-reaching benefits of CBD oil. The same is true for “CBD oil” on Amazon, which also restricts its sellers to only offer hemp seed oils.
Where to Buy High Quality CBD Oils
While you may not be able to purchase CBD oil from your local Walmart store, there are thousands of retailers within the CBD market who can ship products right to your door. But with so many brands to choose from, it’s hard to know which CBD oils are truly worth the cost.
We have reviewed hundreds of CBD oils, and have highlighted the top three below based on variety, customer service, pricing, sourcing, and third-party lab test results.
Spruce CBD Oil
For a strong, full-spectrum CBD oil, Spruce is one of the best brands to buy from. They offer a 750mg and a max potency 2400mg CBD tincture, which customers love using for chronic pain or sleep issues. This no-nonsense company is highly recommended by all who have tried their CBD products.
Starting price: $89
Medterra CBD Oil
This CBD company excels in creating effective CBD isolate oils that are guaranteed to contain zero THC, and feature 99.6% pure CBD extract. This CBD oil is available in three different strengths (500mg, 1000mg, and 3000mg) and made with organic MCT oil.
Starting price: $34.99
cbdMD CBD Oil
If you are looking for something that’s THC free but still contains other beneficial cannabinoids, the broad spectrum CBD oils at cbdMD are a great place to start. They come in a variety of strengths and four different flavor options, so you can customize your CBD experience based on your preferences and needs.
Starting price: $29.99
If you’re looking for new products that go beyond CBD tinctures, these high quality brands also offer an array of other goods including CBD gummies, topical creams, capsules, and even pet products for your furry friend.
Will Walmart Ever Sell CBD Oil?
It seems as though for now, Walmart won’t be offering CBD oil products until there is more clarity on their legality. And with the FDA’s stance on CBD seemingly unclear, and the lacking scientific research on the benefits of CBD, it may take years for chain stores like Walmart to start selling CBD oil. However, there are plenty of other places to shop for CBD oil near you, as well as online.
Check out some of our CBD buyer’s guides to find other high-quality CBD products that have been thoroughly reviewed and tested by our team.