Does CBD Oil Get You High?
Does CBD Get You High?
The psychotropic disparities between CBD and THC lie in their chemistry. Interestingly enough, they share the same chemical makeup and are identical—except for the placement of a single atom, which alone accounts for the multitude of very discernable differences between the two.
When a person ingests THC, it directly binds to CB1 and CB2 receptors in that person’s endocannabinoid system, causing a chemical reaction in the brain and subsequent “high.” CBD, on the other hand, binds imperfectly with these receptors, causing different reactions that have medicinal value but do not induce euphoria. CBD is known to even reduce the psychoactive effects of THC by blocking THC molecules from attaching to these receptors.
While there are some strains of cannabis that contain both THC and CBD, the genetic makeup of the plant prevents both compounds from being present in high percentages in the same strain. THC and CBD are the two most abundant cannabinoids in cannabis, but there are many other compounds required for the plant to survive. Too high a percentage of both CBD and THC in one plant wouldn’t leave enough real estate for these essential compounds. Because of this natural limit, growers typically focus on either high-THC strains or high-CBD strains.
The rising market for CBD and the evolving legal status of cannabis, in general, are two of the more exciting industry shifts we see today. While many users enjoy combining both CBD and THC for an enhanced “entourage” effect, CBD offers far more value for those who aren’t seeking a psychoactive experience but still seek the medicinal benefits of cannabis.
With the legal marijuana business booming throughout the country, nearly everyone has become familiar with the psychoactive compound that makes it so popular: tetrahydrocannabinol. THC is the star of the show with legal pot, and selective breeding has produced strains with up to nearly 40% of it. Concentrated marijuana products are even more potent, with some products containing more than 80% THC.
Although arguably the most popular, THC is just one of over a hundred known cannabinoids present in cannabis—another of which is cannabidiol, or CBD. CBD is THC’s non-psychoactive cousin, and while it doesn’t get you high, it provides a wealth of therapeutic benefits.
The market for CBD is rapidly growing, but unfortunately, much of the public remains uninformed about the differences between the two compounds. This, coupled with a rocky legal history of all cannabis in the US, has caused some of the lingering negative stigma surrounding pot use to cross over into the CBD space.
Corporate cash grabs to tap into the CBD market also add to the confusion, such as the recent announcement by Carl’s Jr. of a “420” CBD-infused burger known as the “Rocky Mountain High” burger--despite containing no THC whatsoever. Irresponsible campaigns like this, which blur the line between THC and CBD by utilizing “stoner” vernacular and culture for marketing purposes, only perpetuate the misinformation surrounding cannabis use.
- APC Collaborator