As CBD aka cannabidiol continues to rise in popularity across the U.S., more individuals are using it to improve the quality of their lives. How? CBD offers pain relief, is an anti-inflammatory, calms anxiety and comes from cannabis but will not get you high. Yes, you read that right.
Although CBD is a fiber of the cannabis plant—the same plant that can also be used to get high—it's completely non-intoxicating. This is because cannabis contains a diverse range of active chemical compounds known as cannabinoids. In addition to CBD, there are currently over 100 cannabinoids found in cannabis. One of which is THC aka tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive compound responsible for producing the euphoric “high” associated with cannabis.
CBD vs THC in Medical Studies
Historically when it came to understanding the difference between CBD vs THC, there was a much deeper focus on THC due to its psychoactive properties. But the rising demand for CBD products and its federal legalization has increased the amount of public information and research available on the full spectrum of its effects.
As a result, the U.S. National Library of Medicine has over 11,000 medical research articles about CBD. And, The National Institutes of Health (NIH)—a branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—has funded more than 2,800 studies on CBD. THC, on the other hand, has been researched far less. The exact number of studies to date isn't clear. But in the fiscal year of 2017, the NIH supported 70 projects examining the therapeutic properties of cannabinoids, including THC.
You might be wondering, why medical research on THC is so slight compared to the number of studies on CBD. This is due to the current federal prohibition of marijuana, which limits federally funded scientific and medical studies on THC. Still, the medical studies on cannabis and CBD that do exist prove cannabinoids have a place in modern medicine. And as more studies emerge, the more we’ll learn about the full scope of their potential.
CBD vs THC: Chemical Structure
The main reason why CBD will not get you high is that it has a slightly different chemical structure than THC—by exactly 1 atom. This might seem like a virtually insignificant difference, but it's actually major and affects the way your body processes each. Cannabinoids interact with your body's endocannabinoid system, a series of specialized receptors that regulate pain, mood, memory, appetite, stress and the immune system.
Scientists first discovered the endocannabinoid system in the early 1990s. They also identified two types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are primarily found in the brain and central nervous system in areas associated with higher cognition, motor coordination, memory, appetite, and emotions. CB2 receptors are associated with our immune system and are mainly located in the gut, liver, spleen, heart, bones, kidneys, blood vessels, and reproductive organs.
The way cannabinoids like CBD and THC interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors is what makes it possible to experience the benefits of each, such as pain and anxiety relief, appetite stimulation and more. Since THC and CBD have different molecular structures, they don't have the same interaction with CB1 and CB2 receptors. This means the effect each has on your body will be different.
CBD Vs THC: Health Benefits
CBD is known for its ability to treat inflammation and provide pain relief through cellular regeneration. It's already being used to help with a variety of health conditions such as anxiety, depression, arthritis, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, cancer treatment relief and more.
Hemp vs. Marijuana: What's The Difference?
CBD can be extracted from both hemp and marijuana. Now, you may be asking yourself, “Aren’t they the same thing?” The short answer is no. They are simply two different members of the cannabis family. Hemp is a legal, non-intoxicating fiber of the cannabis plant, and is often used to make clothing, rope, and paper, but can also be used for its seeds and therapeutic oil. Marijuana is a psychoactive plant with THC levels anywhere from 12% to 30% and around 10%+ of CBD, depending on the strain.
But when CBD is extracted from cannabis, there's a chance that it could contain some amount of THC. On the contrary, hemp contains less than 0.3% THC and 20%+ CBD. This is why it's considered the best option for anyone looking to experience the benefits of cannabis without the intoxicating side effects of THC.
Here at Curaleaf Hemp, we offer a variety of pure, lab-tested, THC free CBD products made with the highest quality CBD and premium essential oils. Your wellness is our passion and we’re proud to offer the best hemp-derived CBD to help you live life well.
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Natural, non-intoxicating products for a better quality of life. That’s the promise of CBD, and Curaleaf Hemp is your source for the most effective CBD products that meet the strictest quality standards in the industry.