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Pharmacists: CBD may interfere with some daily medications

"If anybody takes any medications, they need to check with a pharmacist or their prescriber before they start taking CBD oil."

At Belew Drugs on Asheville Highway, the pharmacy staff is constantly answering calls about CBD products.

"Is it right for me? Is it going to interfere with my medicine? What dose do I take? Is it gonna work for this," said Samantha Boldin, the pharmacist in charge.

The popularity of CBD products is growing faster than researchers can keep up, and there are a lot of unknowns when it comes to the benefits and drawbacks.

"A lot of the things that we're learning is that we don't know as much as we think we do," said Boldin.

The FDA hasn't approved CBD oil as a standalone medication. It can be recommended, but not prescribed by a doctor.

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But before you buy, pharmacists ask you talk to them first, because CBD oil interacts with a lot of common and daily medications.

Boldin explained CBD oil is broken down by enzymes in your liver. During that process, it can block those same enzymes from breaking down other medications.

"If we do that, sometimes we can get toxic levels or too much of our other medications in our systems," said Boldin.

She said some drugs for anxiety, cholesterol, seizures, blood thinners and heart medicines can all interact negatively with CBD oil.

"Maybe if it's a blood thinner, [it makes] your blood too thin," said Boldin. "With the cholesterol medicines, it can cause increased muscle pain and muscle breakdown."

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That's not to say avoid CBD products all together.

"We've seen a lot of people who've had a lot of success with it being able to cut back on their opioid medications or being able to cut back on medications that help them sleep," said Boldin.

She asks you talk with your pharmacist before combining remedies.

"A lot of people think, you know, if a little bit is good more is better, but that's not always the case."

Also make sure you're purchasing CBD from a reliable source. Many local hemp shops tell their customers to consult with a doctor or pharmacist before purchasing their products.

Because there are no prescriptions necessary, it falls on the user to do their own research, too.

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