Cannabis is one of the fastest-growing trends ever seen in the health & wellness industry.
CBD or Cannabidiol is one of the significant phytochemicals (chemicals active in plants) of the cannabis plant and undoubtedly the shining star of this trend.
Even with a global pandemic underway, financial projections estimate that the market for CBD and other cannabis-derived products will cross $25 billion in 2 or 3 years.
Cannabis was once referred to as “the weed that hippies smoke when they run out of mushrooms. Today Cannabis has been scientifically proven to be effective against epilepsy, depression, anxiety & even schizophrenia, with the help of clinical trials involving humans. What’s even more impressive is that these beneficial effects of cannabis on psychological disorders indicate an entirely new therapeutic pathway previously unknown to medical science. Cannabis seems to treat psychological disorders without any risk of dependency or withdrawal common to mainstream antipsychotic medications.
Pre-clinical or cell-based trials also indicate that cannabis may be one of our best allies in the fight against our oldest & greatest enemy, “Cancer.”
But after years of stigmatization, cannabis, undeservingly, has attained a sort of taboo status. Naturally, there is a lot of confusion regarding the varied terminology used to refer to cannabis and its derived products.
With that in mind, we have created this post to act as the definitive guide to all things Cannabis.
This post will compare CBD VS Hemp oil VS Marijuana based on what they are and their reported effects (beneficial or otherwise).
So if you want some clarity regarding these three or anything in between, here are the basics, “no high required.”
Let’s Begin With a Definition of Cannabinoids from Cannabis Plant
Cannabinoids exist in nature as two distinct families of bioactive compounds. There are the Phytocannabinoids that occur in Cannabis plants. And, then there are Endocannabinoids, which are a class of neurotransmitters active in our bodies.
Yes, our bodies were designed by nature to interact with cannabis components. That says something…., doesn’t it?
Moving on….the cannabinoids that we mostly hear about are the two major compounds of the cannabis plant. They are: Cannabidiol (CBD) and Delta-9 TetraHydroCannabinol (THC).
THC is the primary psychoactive compound of Cannabis plants.
CBD – Cannabidiol – The Active of Cannabis
There is a reason why CBD is the shining star of the cannabis trend. That reason is approachability.
CBD can evoke its many beneficiary effects, both topical and systemic, without ever making you high. CBD does not have a psychoactive component.
Hence, CBD attracts millions of wellness enthusiasts who want to avoid the euphoric effects commonly associated with Cannabis.
Most of the clinical studies which have proven cannabis to be effective against multiple psychological and neurological disorders have used CBD as the test compound.
Moreover, CBD has little to no side-effects. A fact the World Health Organization corroborates that.
Mostly sold as oils and creams, but also as gummies and chews.
In terms of composition, CBD preparations are of THREE types.
- Full-spectrum preparations contain CBD and all other compounds found in cannabis plants (including THC, but in minimal amounts).
- Broad-spectrum preparations contain several non-cannabis compounds along with CBD but not THC.
- CBD isolate preparations, which, as the name suggests, contain only the pure CBD molecule.
Hemp & Hemp Oil
Hemp plants vary the Cannabis plant family with an extremely high CBD content and an almost negligible percentage of THC (< 0.3%).
Obtained mainly from Hemp plants due to high concentration of CBD, the vast majority of commercial CBD can be quickly grown under various conditions.
The term ‘Hemp Oil’ generally refers to Hempseed oil, prepared by crushing seeds of the hemp plants and then extracting the oil in a process similar to the extraction of seed-based cooking oils.
Due to the source and manufacturing process, hemp oil or hempseed oil has a shallow content of CBD or any other cannabinoid and should not be confused with CBD oil extracted from the plant’s flowers and leaves.
However, hemp seed oil has a very high content of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, making it an ideal component of dietary supplements to improve cardiovascular health.
Some of the other reported health benefits of consuming hemp seed oil include:
- Strengthening the immune system.
- Relieving constipation.
- Evoking anti-aging effects.
- Improve skin conditions
A few consumers had digestive issues after consuming hemp seed oil, but this side effect seems rare, and no connection was observed.
Marijuana plants are another variety of the Cannabis plant family, but one with a very high percentage of THC and moderate to a low percentage of CBD.
CBD preparations made from Marijuana plants are mostly full spectrum in nature since they contain both CBD and THC.
Full-spectrum CBD preparations evoke mild psychotropic effects due to the presence of THC.
Apart from the euphoric effects, THC boosts the impact of full-spectrum CBD preparations in alleviating neuropathic pain and anxiety and stimulating the appetite. A few physicians, such as Dr. Tishler, believe that THC never works alone. The presence of this combination of cannabinoids, including THC & CBD, produces the desired effect. Something Dr. Tishler refers to as the “Entourage effect.”
Smoking Marijuana does have adverse effects common to any kind of smoking. The smoke produced by burning Marijuana contains a host of harmful chemicals that can potentially result in respiratory disease.
However, Marijuana in its whole flower form is entirely edible, and consuming it eliminates any adverse effects of smoking.
In the end, whatever you decide, be sure to discuss it at length with your physician and agree upon the best form and dosage for you.
It’s hard to argue that Cannabis seems to be opening the door to an entirely new health and medicine field and who knows what we will discover in the coming years about this extraordinary natural remedy.
Meanwhile, the rules and policies regarding its usage on a state and federal level keep changing. So make sure you’re up to date and remain on the right side of the law. Click here for a detailed description of State level Cannabis laws.