What is the difference between CBD & THC?
We dig into the truth behind these two famous compounds.
There is a lot of misinformation about CBD & THC. There has been a huge CBD craze the last couple of years. You may be wondering- “what’s the big fuss about CBD? Why are so many people going crazy about CBD? And does it really work?”
You may also be wondering- “what’s the difference between CBD & THC? Why do you need cannabis, when you can just get CBD from amazon, right?”
There is a lot you need to know about this subject, and we felt it was important that people are educated about this. In this article, we are going to go over the differences between CBD & THC, along with important info that you need to know if you are interested in taking CBD or cannabis.
1. WHAT IS CBD?
Let’s start off with the basics- what in the world is CBD anyways? Well, CBD stands for Cannabidiol, a compound found inside the cannabis plant. CBD is one of hundreds of different cannabinoids found inside the plant. CBD has become famous lately because of it’s healing, anti-inflammatory effects.
In fact, CBD has been found to provide therapeutic effects for a variety of conditions, most notable, children with Dravet syndrome seizures. The thing that has made CBD so attractive is that it has no psychoactive effects, unlike THC. In fact, CBD has been shown to reduce the high, psychoactive effect that THC produces.
2. WHAT IS THC?
THC is also a cannabinoid found inside the cannabis plant just like CBD. THC stands for Tetrahydrocannabinol and it’s famous for giving people the “high” feeling when they consume cannabis. Although THC has gotten a bad rap, it’s not completely justified. THC actually has been shown to be more important in some circumstances for providing therapeutic effects than CBD. That’s a shocker for a lot of people, because they think that CBD is the compound that has all the healing properties.
Well, THC has a lot of therapeutic properties as well. THC is also an anti-inflammatory just like CBD, but THC has been shown to be more effective for pain relief, as well as insomnia. The reason THC has gotten such a bad rap is because people do not take THC in moderation, or they consume just THC with no CBD. You see, if you want to experience therapeutic effects, it’s best to take THC & CBD together. In fact, when you look at some of the key medical studies that show cannabis helping with chronic pain, or chemotherapy induced pain, patients are taking cannabis, not just CBD. It’s the combination of CBD, THC and terpenes that is providing the therapeutic benefits for patients.
We don’t want to forget about terpenes- and we are going to cover terpenes in depth at a later time. But just know that terpenes are very important for patients, and critical for cannabis providing therapeutic effects for patients.
3. THE REASON YOU DON’T NOTICE RESULTS WITH CBD
This is a common occurence- you have a friend that swears by CBD, then you have another friend that tries it and literally it doesn’t do a thing. Well, there is a reason behind that. A recent study found that over 85% of CBD products available online or in store shelves actually do not contain any CBD. That would explain why some people experience relief from using CBD, and others don’t. There are many people out there taking advantage of others by selling stuff with no actual CBD in there. What a shame!
Another big problem is that a lot of the CBD in products is derived from Chinese hemp. The problem with this is that low quality hemp from China can contain harsh chemicals and pesticides that make it unsafe. So next time you think about using CBD, you need to verify that it’s a trustworthy company that grows in the US and is lab tested for potency and safety. We are happy to recommend some brands, just give us a visit. (https://elixinol.com/ is a very reputable company).
4. WHY YOU MAY NEED THC
If you suffer from chronic pain, or another severe condition, CBD may not cut it for you. CBD may help, but you need THC. In fact, what’s best is both. There is a lot of research showing that CBD & THC work together in a very unique and powerful way. This is being referred to as the entourage effect. What people observe is that they experience greater relief or therapeutic effect when they take a product that has equal parts of THC & CBD. When these compounds are taken together, then actually work together to enhance therapeutic effects. There are also compounds called terpenes that play an important role in providing therapeutic effects for patients.
In fact, what researchers and patients are observing is that full-spectrum medicine, or products derived from the entire plant, are providing superior therapeutic benefits for patients. A lot of products are made from concentrate, which means they extract just the THC, or the CBD and use that oil in a product. The problem is that you are missing out on the other various cannabinoids and terpenes that work together to provide a more effective therapeutic effect.
5. WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU
If you are looking to experience the most therapeutic relief, what you should consider using is a balanced product with equal amounts of THC & CBD.
What About the high effects of THC?- Here is the thing- a balanced THC/CBD product is not going to get you nearly as high as if you just took a high THC only product. Like we mentioned before, CBD helps counteract the high feelings from THC. Most people have prioritized high THC cannabis flower and products, and they are missing out on the true therapeutic benefits on cannabis. For some extreme cases, high THC products are the only solution. But for the large majority of people, a balanced CBD/THC product is going to provide excellent relief with few adverse side effects that some people want to avoid (paranoia, dry mouth, intoxicating feeling).
If you need relief during your work day and want to be sure you will be 100%, then you can take low THC, high CBD products. In fact, this is where we suggest that patients start out. Low THC, High CBD flower or products are going to produce little to no side effects, but will still provide beneficial effects for people needing to control pain, inflammation, anxiety, or other chronic conditions.
TO WRAP UP
CBD has long been praised as the medically beneficial component of cannabis, and there is no doubt that CBD is an incredible medical discovery, and will continue to impress researchers and help patients. But there is more to the story that just CBD.
Dr. Donald Abrams, a leading researcher in cannabis and integrative oncologist at the University of California San Francisco’s Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, points out that CBD may be receiving too much credit for it’s medical benefits. “Everybody’s espousing CBD for wellness,” Abrams mentions in an interview with Live Science magazine. “I just think it’s gotten a little bit out of proportion to the evidence.”What About the high effects of THC?- Here is the thing- a balanced THC/CBD product is not going to get you nearly as high as if you just took a high THC only product.
Like we mentioned before, CBD helps counteract the high feelings from THC. Most people have prioritized high THC cannabis flower and products, and they are missing out on the true therapeutic benefits on cannabis. For some extreme cases, high THC products are the only solution. But for the large majority of people, a balanced CBD/THC product is going to provide excellent relief with few adverse side effects that some people want to avoid (paranoia, dry mouth, intoxicating feeling).
Dr. Abrams has led some of the nations most profound and respected clinical trials on cannabis. His studies provide some of the best information we have on the medical benefits of cannabis, and we are going to dive into his studies in the near future, so be sure to stay tuned!
Please let us know what you thought of this article in the comments. Let us know if you have any questions. And as always, you can always visit Dr. Z Leaf for a personal consultation with a cannabis consultant. We are a professional and friendly medical cannabis dispensary located in Tulsa, Oklahoma.