Jamey Powell

Author: Expert reviewer:

March 23, 2023

Jamey Powell

Contributing writer

By Jamey Powell

Contributing writer

Jamey Powell is a writer and editor living in Brooklyn, NY. Previously the senior market editor at Healthline.com, she has years of experience scouring endless product reviews and testing out the latest and greatest products in the sleep, fitness, and nutrition markets.

cbd for inflammation picks plant people cbd one tree cbd and lazarus natural cbd on blue background

March 23, 2023

Our editors have independently chosen the products listed on this page. If you purchase something mentioned in this article, we may

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Inflammation may sound like a scary word, but it’s actually a natural part of our body’s immune system. Still acute inflammation from muscle strain or dietary choices can be uncomfortable at best, while chronic inflammation left unchecked over time can lead to serious health issues. But early research suggests that CBD from hemp may help modulate inflammatory responses in our bodies—yep, yet another reason folks are turning to the cannabinoid.*

Disclaimer: Our website includes general information and instruction relating to health and wellness topics. This content is not a substitute for medical advice from your healthcare provider. All treatment decisions should be determined in partnership with a health care practitioner. Hemp CBD products are derived from U.S. industrial hemp (less than 0.3% THC) and European hemp (less than 0.2% THC). While hemp CBD products are legal on a federal level in the U.S., some states have specific laws, so you’ll want to check your state’s laws to be sure

What causes inflammation?

Inflammation1 is typically our body’s response to defend against infection, injury, or disease—in the best case, it’s our immune system going to work to protect us! Potential causes of inflammation include injury or bacteria, although certain foods, alcohol, chronic conditions, and some medications can also be triggers.

There are two main types of inflammation: acute and chronic inflammation. The former is the body’s natural inflammatory response to help you heal, often a result of pain from exercise or an injury. On the other hand, chronic inflammation is when your body’s inflammatory response is permanently on, leading to problematic health issues2 over time.

Can CBD help with inflammation?

The research behind CBD’s impact on inflammation is still in the early stages, but medical cannabis expert and double-board certified doctor Dave Gordon, M.D., says it’s promising.

“CBD has many anti-inflammatory properties and is an effective tool to help reduce inflammation throughout the body,”* explains Gordon. “This is important for optimal health, as too much inflammation is part of the root cause of nearly every single chronic disease.”

When it comes to understanding the benefits of CBD from the hemp plant, research has a long way to go. Still there have been some early studies3 that suggest that CBD could be a promising tool for combating inflammation by binding to our bodies’ endocannabinoid receptors4. One 2020 study5 in particular found that CBD might decrease chronic inflammatory pathways in people with joint concerns like rheumatoid arthritis.*

Are oral or topical CBD products best for inflammation?

Ever since hemp-derived CBD exploded on the scene, the types of CBD products on the market have continued to expand. With gummies, creams, oils, and salves to choose from, we asked Gordon what worked best for encouraging a healthy inflammatory response.*

“I typically recommend ingested CBD products for reducing inflammation,” he says. “There is more research on using CBD systemically (throughout the body). Also, pain and irritation in other body parts is often caused by gut inflammation, and oral CBD has been shown to improve gut health6.”*

Still, if your inflammation is centralized, a CBD cream or balm may be worth a try. “Topicals work just on or under the surface where they are applied and can be an option for hand and foot symptoms or sore muscles,” explains Gordon.

Understanding CBD types:

Most experts (Gordon included) recommend full-spectrum hemp CBD products. “Full-spectrum” means that the product contains the full array of compounds from the cannabis plant, such as cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. Researchers believe this mega-mix provides an “entourage effect,” where all of the plant’s compounds work together to create the most beneficial outcome.

However, it’s worth noting that full-spectrum hemp contains 0.3% or less THC (i.e., trace levels) by dry weight—that’s within the legal U.S. federal limit7 (and won’t produce mind-altering effects). For those hoping to avoid THC entirely, broad-spectrum hemp may be a better fit (we included a great option on this list!). Broad-spectrum hemp retains the same compounds as full-spectrum, but filters out the THC. However it may still have undetectable amounts that could pop up on a drug test.

CBD Glossary:

  • Endocannabinoid system (ECS): A cellular-level communication network involving cannabinoids, cannabinoid receptors, and specific enzymes. This unique, whole-body system is responsible for maintaining homeostasis across all the body’s organs and physiological functions, including but not limited to stress resilience,  mood, sleep, appetite, inflammatory balance, and pain modulation.
  • Cannabinoids: Unique bioactive compounds that interact with your body’s endocannabinoid receptors. Your body creates cannabinoids (called endocannabinoids, like anandamide and 2-AG) and you can also ingest them (called phytocannabinoids, like CBD) from certain plants like Cannabis sativa, aka hemp.
  • Cannabidiol: The formal name for CBD, a unique phytocannabinoid compound found in  the hemp plant (Cannabis sativa).
  • Terpenes: Unique aromatic bioactive phytonutrient compounds that give many plants their  unique aroma, flavor, and beneficial biological properties. 
  • Flavonoids: A large family of polyphenolic phytonutrients found in many plants (including hemp) that give particular flavors, colors, and health properties.

How we picked:

When it comes to hemp CBD, going organic means you’re avoiding putting nasty pesticides and herbicides into your body (and into the environment). All of the picks on this list use USDA certified organic hemp in their products, which means they come from farms that are accredited by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for organic farming practices.

As Gordon explained, some inflammation is better treated orally, while some ailments can be tackled topically. We made sure to offer a few topical options, as well as a mixture or oral CBD products, so you can find what works best for you.

We read hundreds of reviews on these products, especially focused on feedback that mentioned support for inflammatory processes.

As part of our vetting process, it’s crucial that brands provide access to third-party testing results and share information about their sourcing. All of the picks on our list are open and informative about where their hemp comes from and how they manufacture their products.

A guide to CBD dosage

Hemp CBD affects each person differently, so finding the right dose for you might take some trial and error. For a baseline reference, here’s how we categorize hemp CBD potency here at mindbodygreen:

  • Gentle: Less than 20 mg of hemp CBD per serving
  • Moderate: 20 to 40 mg of hemp CBD per serving
  • Strong: 40+ mg of hemp CBD per serving

Our picks of the best CBD products for inflammation:

Best CBD gummies: Cornbread Hemp Full-Spectrum CBD Gummies


  • No artificial colorings, synthetic dyes, or high-fructose corn syrup
  • 2 strengths


  • No broad-spectrum option
  • Up to 4g of sugar per serving

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: Moderate, 30 mg of CBD per serving; Strong, 50 mg of CBD per serving

Servings: 15 or 30

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.13

Whether you choose the berry, peach, or rotating seasonal flavor, you can rest assured that these vegan and gluten-free CBD gummies from Cornbread Hemp don’t use any high-fructose corn syrup, synthetic dyes, or artificial colorings. Instead, the innovative gummy formula relies on unique ingredients like organic blue agave, apple pectin, and beetroot for a cleaner profile all around.

The USDA certified organic pick includes full-spectrum hemp and is available in two potency options: either 20 mg (moderate) or 50 mg (strong) CBD per serving.

Sustainability & packaging: Cornbread Hemp is a Kentucky-based company that sources organic hemp from local farms. The gummies come in a curbside-recyclable glass jar with a recyclable plastic cap.

Transparency: The COA for Cornbread Hemp’s gummies are easy to find using the brand’s third-party lab results database. You can also find out more about the company’s farming and extraction process on the website.

Best broad-spectrum CBD oil: Joy Organics Tranquil Mint Organic Broad-Spectrum CBD Tincture


  • Variety of potency & flavor options
  • Highly rated


  • Some full-spectrum flavors aren’t available as broad-spectrum
  • No additional ingredients to support inflammatory response

Type: Broad-spectrum

Potency: Gentle; 15 mg of CBD per serving; Moderate; 30 or 45 mg of CBD per ser serving; Strong, 75 mg of CBD per serving

Servings: 30

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.08

Due to Joy Organic’s quality offerings and sustainability efforts, its products repeatedly make their way onto our “best of” lists. This broad-spectrum tincture is a great pick for anyone looking to avoid THC entirely (although if you’re routinely drug tested, you’re better off opting for a CBD isolate).

While you’ll find this tincture in a variety of flavored and unflavored options, the “tranquil mint” flavor is a fan-favorite. It uses organic extra virgin olive oil as a base, USDA certified organic broad-spectrum hemp extract, and organic peppermint oil for a minty taste. Best of all, there are plenty of potency options to choose from, ranging from 15 mg per serving (gentle) to 75 mg per serving (strong).

Sustainability & packaging: Joy Organics is family-operated out of Fort Collins, Colorado and Austin, Texas. In addition to organic farming and using recycled materials in its packaging, we love that Joy Organics offsets all of the carbon emissions generated through the shipping process by partnering with Carbon Fund.

Transparency: You can easily access all of Joy Organics’ COAs on the website. It also includes instructions on how to find your lot number on your product at home.


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Best full-spectrum: Charlotte’s Web Full-Spectrum CBD Oil


  • 3 flavor options & 2 sizes
  • Brand makes solid social impact efforts


  • Expensive
  • Unlined dropper means customizing dosages may be trickier

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: Strong, 60 mg of CBD per serving

Servings: 30 or 100

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.07

For an even higher potency option (but at a considerably higher price), check out this pick from Charlotte’s Web. It’s yet another USDA certified organic oil that offers 60 mg of full-spectrum hemp per serving. You can choose from three flavors—orange blossom, lemon twist, and mint chocolate—and two size options (although that doesn’t necessarily change the potency per serving).

Charlotte’s Web has no shortage of fans, and this tincture gets great reviews, especially the mint chocolate flavor. Most negative comments about this oil are about the high price tag (but we’d argue it breaks down to a relatively solid value at $0.06 per mg of CBD).

Sustainability & packaging: Charlotte’s Web is another certified B Corporation that uses organic farming and an environmentally-friendly CO2 extraction process to create its products. Packaging is curbside recyclable.

Transparency: The lab results for Charlotte’s Web’s products are a little tricker to find than the other products on our list, but they are available online.

Best flavored CBD oil: One Farm Organic CBD Oil


  • Range of potency options
  • 4 flavors available


  • Tree nuts allergen: coconut
  • No subscription discount

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: Gentle; 10 or 15 mg of CBD per serving; Moderate; 30 or 40 mg of CBD per serving

Servings: 30 or 60

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.16

One Farm’s USDA certified organic full-spectrum hemp CBD oil is one of the more customizable picks on our list. You can choose between two different sizes (1- or 2-ounce bottles) and four different potencies, which range from a super gentle 10 mg of hemp CBD per serving to a stronger 40 mg per serving.

There are a few flavored options—cinnamon, lemon, and mint—but we’re fans of the unflavored tincture, which just has a slight hempy taste. If you do choose a flavored oil, you can rest assured that One Farm only uses organic oils for flavoring. Either way, just note that MCT oil (which is derived from coconuts for this and most CBD oils) is the base of this tincture, which might not work for folks with a coconut allergy (albeit rare).

Sustainability & packaging: One Farm prioritizes partnering with independent, organic farms for all of its ingredients. The company also uses a supercritical CO2 extraction process to make its oils (which is a more environmentally-friendly process) and its packaging is all curbside recyclable.

Transparency: One Farm links to a third-party testing results database on each product’s description page. The brand is also very transparent about how they source hemp.


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Best budget CBD oil: Lazarus Naturals Full-Spectrum High-Potency CBD Oil Tincture


  • Great value
  • Flavorless & flavored options
  • Low cost per mg of CBD


  • Tree nuts allergen: coconut
  • No subscription discount

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: Strong, 50 mg of CBD per serving

Servings: 30 or 60

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: No

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.03

Another USDA certified organic pick, this high-potency tincture from Lazarus Naturals offers a lot of bang for your buck with 50 mg of CBD per serving. Also, it’s available in three creative flavor options: unflavored, chocolate mint, and strawberry lemonade. 

We know: This potency might seem like more than you need, especially if you’re new to CBD. But Lazarus recommends using the guide on the dropper, which is marked every 0.25 ml (12.5 mg CBD) to customize the dose that’s right for you—a tip that will certainly help stretch this already-affordable option even further.

Plus, the brand offers 60% off to veterans, people on long-term disability, and households that qualify as low-income. Just note that this is another pick that uses MCT oil as a base, which might not work for folks with a coconut allergy.

Sustainability & packaging: Lazarus Naturals farms organic hemp in central Oregon. Both a certified B Corp and Leaping Bunny Certified, it uses recycled materials in product packaging. The brand also aims to be entirely carbon neutral by 2030.

Transparency: You can access the COA for this tincture on the product page, or via QR code on the product’s packaging.

Most potent: Plant People Drops+ Relief


  • Additional ingredients to support the body’s inflammatory response
  • Multiple potency options


  • No flavored oils
  • Tree nuts allergen: coconut

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: Gentle, 12 mg of CBD per serving; Strong; 96 mg of CBD per serving

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.14

In addition to USDA certified organic full-spectrum hemp, this tincture from Plant People incorporates other popular ingredients to support the body’s inflammatory response, including turmeric and ginger extracts, wild orange oil, and black pepper oil.* 

It’s available in two very different potencies: 12 mg of CBD per serving (gentle) or 96 mg per serving (strong). Regardless of tincture strength, you can expect the formula to have a warm citrus flavor.

Sustainability & packaging: Plant People is a Climate Neutral certified company certified as well as a B Corporation, which means it’s held to a high standard of environmental, legal, and social transparency. Production uses minimal plastic and organic farming practices, and the brand plants a tree for every product sold.

Transparency: The COA for this oil was easy to find on the product page, as well as through a separate page under the website’s “Learn” section.


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Best CBD cream: One Farm Turmeric Relief Cream


  • Additional ingredients to support the body’s inflammatory response
  • Soothing arnica and eucalyptus

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: 425 mg of CBD per bottle

Bottle Size: 1 ounce

Organic: No

Subscription: Yes

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.17

Another pick from One Farm, this cream combines organic full-spectrum hemp with a powerhouse trio of turmeric, piperine, and cayenne to further support a healthy inflammatory response.* It also contains soothing aloe, eucalyptus, and arnica (which is hailed as a natural pain management aid).

The full ingredient list is pretty long on this cream, but it’s free of phthalates, phosphates, and artificial colorings and fragrances.

Sustainability & packaging: As we mentioned with the full-spectrum oil above, One Farm partners with independent, organic farms to source all of their ingredients. The outer packaging on this cream should be curbside recyclable, but the bottle may need to be rinsed out.

Transparency: The COA for this cream was tricker to find than the reports for One Farm’s CBD oil. Still, it’s available via the lab reports database.

Best CBD massage oil: Lazarus Naturals CBD Body + Massage Oil


  • Budget-friendly price
  • Available as a spray or pump


  • Strong hemp scent
  • Tree nut allergen warning: coconut

Type: Full-spectrum

Potency: 500 mg or 4,000 mg of CBD per bottle

Bottle Size: 2 oz or 16 oz

Organic: Yes, USDA certified organic

Subscription: No

Cost per mg of CBD: $0.02

Another pick from Lazarus Naturals, this Leaping Bunny-certified massage oil combines full-spectrum hemp with organic jojoba seed oil, organic sweet almond oil, and MCT oil. It’s available as a 2-ounce spray bottle or 16-ounce pump bottle; the former is our preferred format for easy application.

Most reviewers report that this oil is moisturizing and effective at reducing discomfort. A few reviews are even from massage therapists who say their clients love this oil as an addition to their therapy. Be warned the hempy scent of this massage oil earns less praise!

Sustainability & packaging: As with the Lazarus Naturals oil we reviewed above, the brand uses recycled materials in its packaging and sources hemp from its own USDA certified organic farm in central Oregon. It’s also a Certified B Corp with an aim to be carbon neutral by 2030.

Transparency: You can easily find a link to the COA for all of Lazarus’ products when viewing this massage oil online (but you do need to search the database for this particular product).


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How to choose

Topical or oral

As Gordon mentioned, topical CBD products, like creams or balms, can be beneficial for targeted pain on or just below the skin. Otherwise, ingestible CBD products may be a better fit for more widespread inflammatory processes going on.

Choose your carrier oil

CBD oils are usually paired with a carrier oil(aka diluent), which can be anything from MCT oil (almost always derived from coconut) to sunflower oil, extra virgin olive oil, or hempseed oil. Be sure to read the ingredient list to ensure you’re aware and good with the other ingredients in the product before making a purchase.

Pick your potency

CBD products from hemp extracts come in a pretty wide range of potencies, and determining the right strength for you will depend on your body size, experience with CBD, the type of product (topical or ingestible) you’re using, and the health support area you’re focusing on. If you’re new to CBD, most experts (Gordon included) recommend starting small, around 15 to 20 mg of CBD per serving and working your way up. If you’re a seasoned CBD pro, you may want a stronger potency product, which could be anywhere between 40 to 70 mg of CBD per serving.

Mind your budget

While it’s true that a quality CBD product may cost a little more than a sketchy one (or one with cheaper “other ingredients”), buying from a reputable brand doesn’t need to cost an arm and a leg. Dig around to find the brands that prioritize financial accessibility with lower costs and assistance programs (like Lazarus Naturals on this list). And remember that higher potency options will cost more so, if you’re a newbie, save some cash and start with a lower dosage!


Does CBD bring down inflammation?

While research has a long way to go, early studies (and anecdotal evidence) suggest that CBD can be an effective tool for fostering a healthy inflammatory response, especially as it relates to the health of our joints and GI tract.* It also may be a helpful tool for alleviating muscle pain from exercise. People are increasingly interested in finding effective alternatives or adjuncts to pain medications.

How much CBD does it take to fight inflammation?

CBD dosing varies greatly from person to person and product to product. Still, Gordon says that when it comes to full-spectrum oils for targeting inflammatory pathways, taking 10 to 15 mg of CBD twice a day is a good starting point. It’s always best to start small and increase your dosage slowly until you find your personal sweet spot with a product.

How quickly does CBD reduce inflammation?

“Studies show CBD can have fairly immediate effects on reducing inflammatory markers, and for many individuals they feel a response within minutes to hours,”* says Gordon. “However, the benefits of CBD are cumulative, and I typically recommend trying a given dose for a couple weeks and then increasing if you’re not seeing the desired effects.”

The takeaway.

While there’s still a lot to learn about the benefits of CBD, early research suggests it may help our bodies produce a healthier, more balanced inflammatory response.* And these days, there’s no shortage of ways to incorporate hemp CBD in your routine, whether it’s through gummies, capsules, or massage oil.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

f you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or taking medications, consult with your doctor before starting a supplement routine. It is always optimal to consult with a health care provider when considering what supplements are right for you.