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Delta 8 Effects THC and CBD Types of Cannabinoids

The Difference Between CBD and THC

Much of the interest in cannabis is centered around two main cannabinoids; CBD and THC. This happens even though there are more than 113+ cannabinoids found in the plant and hundreds of different cannabis strains to choose from.

Nevertheless:

CBD and THC together, seem to be at the top of mind of most cannabis consumers on planet earth. But why is this?

The answer to this question might be more complex than we might expect. With plenty of money to be made in the growing legal cannabis industry, the exposure that components like THC and CBD are getting might be fueled by the opportunity to make money that companies face. 

Since the passing of the 2018 farm bill, suddenly cannabis companies stood to make a lot of money from a substance (CBD) and a plant (hemp) that had not been at the forefront of American economy for a long time. Which explains why many of them shifted their marketing communication towards CBD, and many of them even became CBD or hemp companies.

Not to say that CBD doesn’t have a large array of potential benefits that actually shows results and has the masses excited at the idea of being able to consume it legally.

On the other hand:

THC has been around for a very long time. With the boom of marijuana in the 1960s, many U.S. citizens became acquainted with the effects of THC; the main psychoactive ingredient in the cannabis plant. 

Decades later, we now live in a time where the medical and recreational use of THC is legal in many states across the country. While some people seek relief from specific symptoms, others are just looking for a fun substance to consume. Both reasons for any company in the cannabis industry to be interested in its production and distribution.

The point is, THC and CBD both have plenty of reasons to be at the forefront of cannabis-derived consumables. While we’ll leave those reasons for another discussion, we do want to understand what it is that makes both of these cannabinoids what they are, what sets them apart, and how you should go about consuming them.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

How to Consume THC and CBD

What Is CBD?

What Is THC?

Psychoactive Properties of THC and CBD

Conclusion

How to Consume THC and CBD

Unfortunately, this is something that we can’t really answer in an undeniable way. And here’s why:

As we continue to learn and expand our knowledge about cannabis and all the components it contains, we understand that consuming cannabis is a highly customizable activity. Consuming any cannabinoid can be about a number of different things, from pain, to stress, or bad sleep, it’s up to the consumer to decide why they want to consume a substance, any substance, not just cannabinoid extracts.

That said, there has also been a long list of potential benefits and effects linked to both THC and CBD [1]. Effects that have also been demonstrated to be dependent on dose size and the symptom being treated [2].

In other words:

The reason why one person consumes THC or CBD could be entirely different from that of the next person in line. Likewise, the amount of THC and CBD consumed could also have a huge impact on the effects the dose delivers.

How to Consume THC and CBD

That said:

THC and CBD can both be found in a wide variety of product categories that range from drinks, edibles, and tinctures, to topicals, capsules, and vape products. So, not only do you have to decide on reason, dose, and time to take your cannabinoid of choice, you’ll also have to decide on the type of product that suits you best.

In our experience, different product categories tackle different needs. But that’s up for you and a licensed professional to sort out as we can’t officially give out any advice regarding this, nor do we want to, because as we’ve mentioned before, cannabinoid consumption is highly customizable.

What Is CBD?

The cannabis plant has hundreds of different strains to choose from, each one with its own unique combination of cannabinoid content. Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of those cannabinoids.

While CBD can be found in the marijuana plant (a psychoactive variety of the cannabis plant), it is a lot more prevalent in the hemp plant (a non-psychoactive variety of the cannabis plant). CBD itself is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is sold legally as a supplement within U.S. borders since 2018. Although, this federal legal label is only true if the CBD consumed is extracted from the hemp plant and contains no more than 0.3% THC.

What Is THC?

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the 113+ cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. THC is the main psychoactive ingredient found in the cannabis plant and is more predominant in the marijuana variety than it is in hemp.

Although THC can still be found in hemp, most hemp-derived products try to leave THC content to a maximum potency of 0.3% per unit of dry weight. The reason for this is simple; any hemp-derived product with more than 0.3% THC is not considered federally legal.

Nevertheless:

THC is considered legal for medical and recreational use in some states (but not all).

Psychoactive Properties of THC and CBD

THC and CBD both interact with the human body by means of the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). The ECS has multiple receptors located throughout the body and brain, when a cannabinoid attaches to one of these receptors its effects are activated or other functions of the receptor may be inhibited [3]. This is a very vague and very broad explanation of how the ECS works.

Nevertheless:

It gives us a general idea of how and why the psychoactive properties of THC and CBD vary so broadly. While THC attaches to some receptors, CBD attaches to different ones. There is also a running theory that says that CBD attaches to some of the same receptors THC uses, which inhibits the effects of THC in the body and suppresses them [4].

Conclusion

Consuming THC and CBD is a highly customizable experience. There are many running variables when consuming either of the two cannabinoids; dose, time, frequency, tolerance, and many more. Consuming CBD and THC together is also an option and carries its own list of benefits and complexity.

THC and CBD are both cannabinoids that can be extracted from the same family of plants; Cannabis Sativa. However, THC is more prevalent in the marijuana plant (a kind of cannabis) and CBD is more prevalent in hemp (a non-psychoactive variety of the cannabis plant). The difference between CBD and THC can be summarized by the difference in their psychoactive profile and chemical composition, which as you might be able to guess, makes THC highly psychoactive and CBD the contrary.

Hemmfy articles and blogs are meant to entertain and educate. However, we are not medical professionals and do not intend to give medical advice through them.

The knowledge around CBD and other cannabis-derived products is growing and constantly changing, as does their legal status. Hence, we recommend checking with your local authorities and a licensed physician prior to consumption.

References

[1] Larsen, C., & Shahinas, J. (2020a). Dosage, Efficacy and Safety of Cannabidiol Administration in Adults: A Systematic Review of Human Trials. Journal of Clinical Medicine Research, 12(3), 129–141. https://doi.org/10.14740/jocmr4090

[2] McCartney, D., Benson, M. J., Desbrow, B., Irwin, C., Suraev, A., & McGregor, I. S. (2020). Cannabidiol and Sports Performance: a Narrative Review of Relevant Evidence and Recommendations for Future Research. Sports Medicine - Open, 6(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40798-020-00251-0

[3] Cannabinoid Receptors and the Endocannabinoid System: Signaling and Function in the Central Nervous System. (2018). International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 19(3), 833. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms19030833

[4] Niesink, R. J. M., & van Laar, M. W. (2013). Does Cannabidiol Protect Against Adverse Psychological Effects of THC? Frontiers in Psychiatry, 4. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2013.00130             

Simon Cartagena

Simon Cartagena is a full-time cannabis copywriter. This has led him to write for companies like Hemmfy.com where he acts as Senior Content Writer and other world-renowned cannabis publications. Simon has created Content Marketing strategies and articles that have helped company revenues increase by up to 1,000%. Simon’s goal is to help people understand cannabis in an industry where misinformation seems to be predominant.