If you haven't heard yet, my new gig is selling CBD products manufactured by a local, San Diego company, called Pure Ratios. And, before I go any further, it's important that you know the difference between Hemp and Marijuana.
Although Hemp and Marijuana come from the same species of plant, Cannabis sativa, their effects and medical conditions that they treat are very different. Cannabis sativa can contain a wide spectrum of cannabinoid concentrations, including wide ranging compositions of THC and CBD. However, there are many practical differences between hemp and marijuana, and clear lines drawn between the two.
In practical use, “hemp” is the term used to describe the food and fiber variety of the cannabis plant, and “marijuana” is cannabis that’s grown to enhance the chemicals that make you feel high or stoned.
Cannabis Sativa has both male and female plants. When growing marijuana, male plants are removed and only female plants are cultivated. This is because when cannabis is fertilized, it lowers the concentration of THC–the main chemical that gets you high. Thanks to selective breeding over many years, ideal concentrations of THC in marijuana range from 10% to as much as 30%.
Marijuana is usually grown indoors so that conditions can be monitored very closely. Marijuana is encouraged to become short and bushy and grow lots of flowers. That’s because THC is concentrated mostly in the trichomes — little resin-filled glands — on the flowers of the plant. Although you can find THC throughout cannabis, it is the flowers or “buds” that are harvested for recreational marijuana.
Hemp, on the other hand, is as close as you can get to how cannabis grows naturally. Hemp is grown all over the world for food, oil, and fiber — so, the whole plant can be used, not just the flowers. With the hemp type of cannabis, male and female plants are sown very closely together, allowing for easy wind pollination and easily crowding out weeds. This results in very tall, hardy plants with less branching that look very different from the short, bushy marijuana plants.
Another key difference between hemp and marijuana is that hemp naturally has almost no THC. Its flowers must contain just 0.3% THC — which is 33 times less than the least potent marijuana. Meaning, it’s impossible to get high from hemp, although many people have tried! Hemp also has more CBD than THC naturally, making it an ideal source of CBD from cannabis and one of the reasons why hemp oil is the preferred source of natural CBD for thousands of people.
CBD and THC are the two most abundant of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis. They both interact with the endocannabinoid system but elicit different natural effects.
Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the two most prominent cannabinoids found in Cannabis, the plant genus that includes both hemp and marijuana. While there are over 100 different cannabinoids so far identified in cannabis by scientists, CBD and THC are by far the most extensively studied and best understood.
CBD and THC both interact with the body through the endocannabinoid system, a vital signaling system responsible for regulating a wide array of functions, some of which include:
- Immune response
- Cycles of cellular life and death
Their chemical makeups are similar to the body’s own endocannabinoids, which allows them to interact with the endocannabinoid system’s cannabinoid receptors to alter the release of neurotransmitters in the brain.
Major Differences between THC and CBD:
Despite their similarities, CBD and THC have distinct differences that influence how they interact with the endocannabinoid system and subsequently the natural effects they elicit.
Psychoactive Vs. Non-Psychoactive: One of the key differences between CBD and THC is whether the cannabinoid will cause a euphoric effect, or “high,” when consumed.
THC is the cannabinoid people think of when they think of marijuana. It is a direct agonist of the endocannabinoid system’s cannabinoid 1 receptors (CB1), found primarily in the brain and the central nervous system. The psychoactive effect that most associate with recreational or medical marijuana use is exclusively brought about by activating CB1receptors.
CBD doesn’t bind with CB1 receptors and is actually is considered an antagonist of CB1agonists. This not only means that CBD can never cause a high, no matter how much is consumed, but that it also acts to suppress the CB1-activating qualities of compounds like THC.
Now that I've cleared up all the confusion, you can now share your new found clarity and knowledge with your friends and family. For it is only through education will we be able to start to incorporate the magical and medical properties of Cannabis and let go of all the fear and ignorance that currently surrounds it. It's time that we all change, heal and move forward!