What's The Difference Between THC and CBD?
Of the 70-80 cannabinoids found in marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are the two most prominent. When you are shopping for buds at your local dispensary, you’ll likely notice some of the product labeled the percentage of THC and CBD. These are the two most important and influential compounds in marijuana, as a higher content translates into a better quality bud. But while most people know the importance of THC and CBD, few people know the unique characteristics of these compounds. For a closer look at the differences between THC and CBD, keep reading.
Pain Relieving Effects
Strains with a higher amount of THC are generally considered to be better choices for pain relief. THC is a psychoactive compound that binds to nerve receptors throughout the body, resulting in pain relief benefits. It’s important to note, however, that THC doesn’t bind to the same opiate receptors as morphine, hydrocodone and oxycodone.
THC is also known to promote the release of natural pain-relieving chemicals in the body known as dopamine. When you consume marijuana — hopefully through edibles or vaping — your body will produce more dopamine, which in turn reduces pain while giving you a sense of euphoria.
I think most people are familiar with the sensation of hunger presented from marijuana. When you smoke or vape a bowl of marijuana, the THC stimulates pleasure receptors in the brain, including the receptors which are responsible for sending feelings of hunger. If you consume a strain that’s high in CBD and low in THC, however, you probably won’t experience this same level of hunger.
A recent study performed in 2010 found that consuming cannabis with high amounts of THC resulted in temporary memory impairment. Participants in the study were less likely to answer questions based on memory after consuming high amounts of THC. However, this same study found that consuming marijuana with high amounts of CBD and low amounts of THC did not produce this same temporary memory impairment.
There’s still loads of research that needs to be done on the potential health benefits of CBD and THC, but several patients swear by using CBD as a medicine to treat seizures. In fact, there was even a marijuana strain engineered specifically for a young girl suffering from epilepsy named Charlotte. The strain, rightfully named Charlotte’s Web, contained one of the highest concentrations of CBD while possessing an incredibly low concentration of THC.