Cannabis has become a prominent fixture among people interested in holistic wellness. As cannabis continues to make its way into the mainstream, users claim it helps promote wide-ranging emotional and physical wellbeing. Still, it’s essential to note cannabis-related products like CBD do not have the FDA stamp of approval at the time of this writing. Despite this, there is no question that the popularity & visibility of cannabis products are on the upswing.
Are you new to the world of cannabis? If so, you’ll find there’s a lot to learn when it comes to the varieties of cannabis plants and the products derived from them. In this article, we’ll explain the differences between cannabis and hemp, and two of their important components: CBD & THC.
Let’s dive in.
Cannabinoids: the Building Blocks of Cannabis Plants
Cannabis plants have more than 100 components. These are known as cannabinoids. Many of these are the active cannabinoids people recognize when they talk about cannabis plants, including THC and CBD.
Both THC and CBD come from raw cannabis plant material. These components work in the human body by interacting with our native endocannabinoid system. While many people don’t realize it exists, the endocannabinoid system is an advanced biological mechanism designed to maintain internal stability and govern processes like hunger and sleep.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a unique communications system in the brain and body that affects many essential functions. The natural chemicals produced by the body that interact within the ECS are called endocannabinoids. These cannabinoids interact with receptors to regulate body systems. Endocannabinoids activate the same receptors as the phytocannabinoids found in cannabis. This explains why there is enormous medical potential for the use of phytocannabinoids; our bodies possess an endogenous system that responds to what is already present in our bodies and plants.
Put simply, the endocannabinoid (“endo” means originating within the body) system connects to many different physiological and neurological functions. As such, it is relatively easy to throw the system off balance. Diet, exercise, and stress all influence your body’s endocannabinoid system. Phytocannabinoids (“Phyto” means plant) serve to enhance the body’s natural ability to relax and restore harmony in the endocannabinoid system. If you’re wondering about the specific science behind this process, we plan to cover it in a future article.
CBD is one of many cannabinoids produced by the cannabis family. Unlike THC, CBD is not psychoactive. This means it doesn’t impact the brain’s cognitive ability. In other words, it will not make the user “high” like marijuana products would.
There are several varieties of the cannabis plant family. Each variety, including hemp, produces cannabinoids. While CBD and THC are two of the most well-known cannabinoids, there are many different types.
According to LiveScience:
“Our brains have specific receptors designed to accept cannabinoids, known as CB1 and CB2. These receptors are responsible for the assimilation of cannabinoid molecules into your system, resulting in the psychoactive and immune responses correlated with cannabis consumption.“
Today, CBD is typically distilled into oils and tinctures. It can be taken sublingually or ingested in gummies, candies, edibles, capsules, and beverages. Topical CBD products are also available.
THC, (also known as Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol), is the psychoactive compound in cannabis. It binds to receptors in the brain, which is why those who consume it report feeling “high.”
THC is a compound present in resin secreted from the marijuana plant’s glands, most of which are found near the plant’s reproductive organs. This resin also contains cannabinoids, which are compounds unique to marijuana. One cannabinoid, CBD is non-psychoactive, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, and can block the high associated with THC.
While some users choose to avoid THC altogether, others believe consuming trace amounts in concert with CBD makes their CBD products more potent. The laws regarding the legality of THC are complex, and users will want to understand the discrepancies between federal and state legitimacy before they decide which compound to use.
Cannabis (The Umbrella Term)
Cannabis is a family genus of plants, which comprises both marijuana and hemp plants, among other varieties. When someone says “cannabis,” they could be referring to hemp or marijuana.
Here’s the difference between each:
Marijuana (High-THC cannabis)
The term marijuana is used to classify varieties of cannabis that contain more than 0.3% THC and is known for causing psychotropic or euphoric effects on the user.
It’s also worth noting that, while marijuana contains CBD, they are not mutually exclusive. Instead, people who want to consume CBD on its own can find it in hemp-derived products.
Hemp (THC less than .3%)
The term “Hemp” is used to classify the varieties of cannabis that contain 0.3% or less THC content (by dry weight).
In general, the term hemp describes non-intoxicating cannabis commonly harvested to make a variety of products, including textiles and rope. Today, much of the commercial CBD on the market comes from hemp plants, since hemp is easy to grow and not subject to many of the legal complexities of marijuana.
While THC is still present in hemp plants, it exists only in trace amounts. Consumers who want to avoid THC and its psychoactive effects can do so by choosing broad-spectrum CBD or CBD isolate.
If you’re concerned about the possible level of THC in a hemp-based product you want to purchase, look for a certificate of analysis or COA on the website you plan to purchase from. The COA is a document produced by a third-party testing lab and allows you to ensure you’re buying a clean, safe product with your desired levels of CBD and THC. All reputable firms will include them on their site.
Choosing the Right Product for You
If you’re interested in adding cannabis products as a supplement, you need to understand which will provide the desired effects. Choose from our family of products that will support your lifestyle and gives you a variety of options to fit your needs.
“The Drop” primes you for focus, performance, and success for the rest of the day, “The Shot” will enhance your competitive edge and is the perfect pregame primer before your next tennis match, round of golf, or important business meeting. “The Cap” allows you a great night’s rest, waking up feeling rejuvenated and free from grogginess or nagging workout pains.
If you have additional questions about the varietal that’s right for you, don’t hesitate to reach out. Here at Remedy+, we specialize in producing high-quality, proprietary blends of CBD, rich in terpenes, cannabinoids, and other health-promoting compounds. Our team is happy to walk you through our selection so you can select the supplement that best suits your lifestyle and goals.
Ready to learn more about our compounds and find out which could be right for you? Shop our selection now.