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Can You Be Allergic to CBD Oil?

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If you have seasonal or food allergies — and even if you don’t — it’s a fair question to ask: Is it possible to have a CBD allergy?

While there isn’t a direct correlation between CBD and allergies, research has linked some allergy symptoms to the cannabis plant, which is where CBD oil comes from.

It’s always wise to exercise caution and know the CBD side effects whenever adding a new component to your wellness routine, but we can help you work through allergy concerns related to CBD oil in this guide.

We will cover:

  • What is CBD oil?
  • CBD oil and CBD allergies
  • Safely introducing CBD to your system
  • Identifying possible causes for allergic symptoms
  • Building up allergen tolerance: A breakdown
  • Possible side effects of CBD oil
  • Uses and benefits of CBD oil for people with allergies

Let’s dive in …

What Is CBD Oil?

If you’re worried about an allergic reaction to CBD, it may be helpful to know what CBD is. 

While there are no known allergies associated with CBD oil, you can be allergic to the cannabis plant.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a naturally derived chemical compound that comes from a cannabis plant — either marijuana or hemp. The difference between a hemp plant and a marijuana plant is THC, a psychoactive compound that causes the sensations associated with being “high.” Hemp plants have less than 0.3% THC content (by weight), while marijuana plants have 16% or more THC content by weight. It is also important to understand that hemp oil is different from CBD oil, even though they are derived from separate parts of the cannabis plant. Hemp oil is derived from the hemp seeds of the hemp plant, while CBD oil is derived from hemp stalks, leaves and flowers.

CBD Oil and Allergies

While there are no known allergies associated with CBD oil, you can be allergic to the cannabis plant. Any plant that produces pollen, including the cannabis plant, can be an allergen trigger. Symptoms of allergy to the cannabis pollen may include:

  • runny nose
  • skin problems like inflammation or itchy skin or
  • itchy or watery eyes
  • sneezing
  • wheezing

If you happen to discover you’re allergic to hemp plants, you’re likely allergic to marijuana plants — but you might not be allergic to CBD.

Think of the cannabis plant like an avocado tree and CBD oil as the avocado. If you’re allergic to pollen — which the avocado tree produces — then you might find yourself sneezing when exposed to its pollen, but you can still enjoy avocado toast, avocado eggs benedict and guacamole without having a reaction. In this example, the avocado tree pollen output triggers an allergic reaction, but the avocado itself can be enjoyed worry-free because — while it’s derived from the plant — it’s separate from the allergen, just like the cannabis plant and CBD oil. So you can have a cannabis allergy and be allergic to cannabis pollen but not necessarily have a CBD allergy.

Safely Introducing CBD to Your System

If you have myriad allergies, you may have learned to be cautious when it comes to trying new supplements or foods in order to avoid having an allergic response. The advice for those with allergy concerns and those who are trying CBD for the first time is the same: start low and go slow. It is critical that you gauge your immune response before applying or consuming various CBD products.

Most importantly, if you’re worried about having an allergic reaction to CBD, consult your doctor prior to adding it to your wellness routine. 

Here’s how to start taking CBD low and slow:

  1. Avoid introducing new supplements or vitamins at the same time you start taking CBD. 
  2. Read the CBD product label to find the recommended dose. 
  3. To be extra cautious, start your CBD intake with halfthe recommended dose.
  4. Wait two hours for the CBD to be completely absorbed into the bloodstream
  5. Check in with yourself. How do you feel? Have you noticed any allergy symptoms? Are you enjoying beneficial effects from the CBD, or, do you feel nothing at all?

If you don’t notice any changes, it might mean our dose was too small to feel the effects, and/or you aren’t allergic to CBD. In this case, wait a day to help your body reset from the experiment, then repeat the steps above with a slightly increased dose. The most important thing is to listen to your body to find out whether your CBD dose and your CBD product are a good fit. 

Identifying Possible Causes For Allergy Symptoms

If you’ve been experiencing allergy symptoms and you’re worried that your favorite CBD oil might be the problem, you can try the elimination or isolation method. This method involves identifying foods or products that you were exposed to around the time your symptoms started, then slowly eliminating them to identify the culprit.

Even if you don’t have a CBD or cannabis allergy, you still may want to introduce CBD oil into your system slowly. 

If you notice consistent allergy symptoms and don’t see an obvious cause, see a doctor as soon as possible.Your doctor can first do an allergy prick test to help eliminate a few suspects from the list. 

Here’s how to identify whether or not CBD oil may be causing your allergy symptoms:

  1. Identify anything new in your diet or daily routine. This might include foods or beverages; cleaning, makeup, haircare or skincare products; clothes or jewelry; and supplements or medications
  2. Eliminate any new items one at a time for one month. For example, if you think your new lavender-scented laundry detergent is making you sneeze, use your old detergent brand for 30 days. If you think your CBD oil product might be the cause, stop taking it.
  3. Monitor your symptoms day-by-day and take notes. Are you feeling better? Are you still sneezing? 
  4. After one month, evaluate whether your symptoms are persistent, then repeat with the next potential allergen. 

If, after a month without CBD oil, you continue to experience allergy symptoms, then it’s probably good news! Your CBD product is most likely notthe culprit. The bad news is that you still have to figure out what is, but at least you can resume use of your favorite CBD product in the meantime. 

Building Up Allergen Tolerance: A Breakdown

Some mild allergies can be eased with tolerance-building. For example, if you move to a new neighborhood in a different part of the country, your body may react to a difference in air quality, a new variety of pollen in the nearby woods or even humidity levels. That could result in mild allergy symptoms. But the human body is an amazing thing. After continued exposure to certain irritants, the body can build up a tolerance. The best way to do this is by: 

  1. exposing yourself to very small amounts of the potential allergen.
  2. letting your body recover over a few days.
  3. gradually increasing the amount of the potential allergen exposure over time.

    Before trying this method, be sure to talk to your doctor about your symptoms to ensure it applies to your situation. 

    Possible Side Effects of CBD Oil Use

    While having a sensitivity to cannabis doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll develop an allergy to CBD oil, it could trigger physical reactions. Even if you don’t have a CBD or cannabis allergy, you still may want to introduce CBD oil into your system slowly. 

    There are some potential side effects and considerations when first adding CBD to your wellness routine, including: 

      • known reactions – Most people will have no issues with CBD, but there are a few known potential reactions, such as:
          • dizziness
          • fatigue
          • drowsiness
          • appetite change
      • complications with medications – You may also want to consider interactions with any medications you’re taking. Should you be on medications, consult a doctor or medical professional prior to incorporating CBD into your wellness routine.

      Uses and Benefits of CBD Oil For People With Allergies

      If you decide to give CBD oil a try, this unique, naturally derived compound offers a host of potential uses and benefits to explore. Consider these examples of how CBD oil can impact your health and vitality:

        • uplifted mood – Allergy season can leave you feeling blue, as your usual morning run turns into a sneeze-a-thon. CBD oil can tip the scale in favor of good feelings to help you experience a more relaxed and at-ease mood through allergy season and beyond.
        • enhanced energy – All of that wheezing and watery-eye-wiping can deplete your energy supply. CBD can help add a little pep to your step so you can enjoy whatever the day has in store, whether you’re having Thanksgiving with a relative whose pet makes you itch or enduring an outdoor party near some pollen-heavy trees.
        • improved sleep – Allergies can sometimes get in the way of life. Worrying about allergies can get in the way of so much more, especially sleep. CBD can help soothe away worried thoughts, so you can melt into a deep, nourishing rest.

        Zebra CBD: Your Trusted CBD Oil Experts

        If you’re considering trying CBD oil, we can help. There’s no need to feel overwhelmed by the selection process! Our products come with a Label Accuracy Guarantee™, meaning they are tested by two different third-party laboratories to ensure our label claims are 100% accurate.

        Here at Zebra CBD, we’re all about health and wellness. If you’re worried about allergies, the two best things you can do are to consult with your doctor prior to trying CBD, and — when you get the green light — purchase products whose quality you can trust.

        For the second part, you came to the right place if you’re looking to buy CBD oil.   


        Healthline. CBD vs. THC: What’s the Difference?

        VeryWellHealth. The Health Benefits of CBD Oil.

        U.S. News and World Report. Can you Be Allergic to Marijuana?

        Mayo Clinic. What are the benefits of CBD — and is it safe to use?

        WebMD. Elimination Diet.

        Healthcare Weekly. How long does it take for CBD to work?

        Co-founder of Copycat Copywriters, Adam has written for dozens of CBD and cannabis companies on a wide array of topics, including regulations, economics, farming practices and biochemistry.

        About the Author

        Adam Biederman Image

        Adam Biederman

        As co-founder and lead writer of Copycat Copywriters, one of Adam’s primary areas of expertise is within the budding CBD and cannabis space. He has written for dozens of CBD and cannabis companies, producing a collection of white papers, press releases, blog posts, articles and ebooks about a wide array of industry-related subjects, including regulations, economics, farming practices and biochemistry.

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