The new Farm Bill: What is the Difference Between CBD and THC?

Now that the new Farm Bill is approved by congress in the US, CBD will truly go mainstream. There is still a moral issue for some people since they confuse CBD with THC. The law moved to keep up with scientific research and modern practices and was long overdue. Here is what consumers should know:

Cannabis contains more than 100 cannabinoids. The most abundant and most researched cannabinoids are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD and THC are chemically similar to the human body’s endocannabinoids which is why they can interact directly with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The endocannabinoid system is a network of receptors that interact with both endocannabinoids and cannabinoids introduced from outside. Cannabinoids benefit the body when they interact with the receptors. So far scientists have uncovered two types of receptors:

  • CB1 receptors found in the brain and responsible for body processes such as emotions, high cognition, memory and motor coordination.
  • CB2 receptors found throughout the central nervous system and the immune system.

Below I discuss the major differences between CBD and THC which will help most people make choices when they buy products.

Natural sources:

CBD is the major cannabinoid found in the hemp (or cannabis sativa) plant. It is generally available in the form of gels, gummies, oils, supplements, extracts, and more. Hemp produces both CBD and THC but it has a higher concentration of CBD, making it the ideal source of CBD oil. CBD oil naturally contains small amounts of THC. Products sold at Terravidaonline are made from CBD oil and they have a typical THC range of between 0 and 0.03%.

The “pot that gets one high” is essentially THC, the major cannabinoid found in marijuana. It can be consumed by smoking marijuana but it is also available in oils, edibles, tinctures, capsules, and more. Marijuana contains both CBD and THC but it has a higher concentration of THC (about 12%) than CBD. It is critical to distinguish the difference so as to avoid moral misconceptions about CBD. Clearly, CBD is not pot.

Chemical Structure

THC and CBD are identical in their molecular composition (21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen atoms, and 2 oxygen atoms) but they differ in how one atom is arranged. Because of this slight chemical difference, THC and CBD have different effects on the human body which we discuss below.

Psychoactive Effects

THC can bind directly with CB1 receptors, creating signals that are sent to the brain, resulting in the psychoactive effects known as “getting high.” While THC provides great health benefits, this psychoactive effect is not desired by everyone.

CBD does not bond directly with the CB1 and it tends to neutralize the bond between THC and the CB1 receptors, reducing or neutralizing THC’s psychoactive effects.

Legality

Before buying marijuana and its extracts, check out the laws of the nation where the plan is to buy. If a consumer is in the United States, then they should find out what the state laws say about marijuana and THC. In those states where cannabis is illegal, be aware that marijuana and THC are prohibited. In those states that have legalized medical marijuana with high levels of THC, the marijuana must be prescribed by a licensed physician. If consumers use it for medical purposes without a prescription they will face legal problems. In those states where recreational use of marijuana and THC is legal, be aware that at federal level this is still illegal.

Medical Benefits

CBD and THC share a number of medical benefits, but THC is problematic due to side-effects. The main difference is that THC will give the euphoric effect while CBD does not give that euphoric effect. Here is a list of CBD research released by prominent universities and researchers.

CBD is used to relieve or heal many conditions such as:

  • Pain.
  • Seizures.
  • Inflammation.
  • Nausea.
  • Inflammatory bowel syndrome.
  • Psychosis or mental disorders.
  • Migraines and headaches.
  • Depression and anxiety.
  • Glaucoma.
  • Muscle spasticity.
  • Insomnia.
  • Low appetite.
  • Anxiety.

Side Effects

CBD does not have any known side effects. Any problem that is may cause is most likely due to interaction with other drugs that you might be taking. Talk to your doctor first if you are taking certain medications.

THC is known to have the following temporary side effects that are related to its psychoactive properties:

  • Memory loss.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Red eyes.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Coordination problems.
  • Slow reaction times.

Long term use of high levels of THC can have long term negative psychiatric effects such as schizophrenia. Fortunately, neither of the two compounds is fatal.

Drug Testing

Both CBD and THC are stored in the body’s fat and they show up on drug tests weeks after they have been used. Most standard drug tests are sensitive to THC so if you use marijuana or THC as an extract, it will show up in drug screenings. CBD-sensitive tests are available but not every drug test will detect CBD. As mentioned above, hemp also produces low levels of THC in addition to CBD so when you take or use our CBD products, you just might test positive for THC. If you are an athlete who uses our products for medical reasons, make sure enough time elapses before you participate in competitions in which you will be tested.

At Terra Vida, we sell a variety of products made from CBD oil extracted from hemp. All our products contain very low levels of THC (ranging between 0 and 0.03%) so they will not give you a high. Here are some of the most popular products already selling on the US market:

  • CBD oil drops that are available in various strengths from 250mg to 5000mg.
  • CBD tinctures.
  • Our skin care range based on CBD oil.
  • Wellness and health support CBD oil products.
  • Pet products.

Conclusion:

CBD that is produced in the US, free from pesticides at strictly non-GMO certified, may become an integral part of what Doctors use to treat a wide variety of chronic illnesses. As Eddie Mamane, the CEO of Terravidaonline said: “We help businesses sell some of the purest CBD hemp products and enable consumers to take better care of themselves. The unprecedented opportunity created by the new Farm Bill, should not be exploited by those who produce inferior quality products: US producers should lead the world in quality and reputation.” Finally, as CBD goes mainstream, America has a chance to further reduce the severity of the opioid crisis with a more viable alternative for some chronic illnesses, including pain management.

Melissa Thompson writes about a wide range of topics, revealing interesting things we didn't know before. She is a freelance USA Today producer, and a Technorati contributor.