The Difference Between CBD and THC and Why it Matters

Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are both compounds found in the resin of the Cannabis sativa plant. Each is commonly extracted and marketed for their varying properties and both have the ability to interact with the cannabinoid receptors found in the human body. But there are some major differences between CBD and THC that are essential to know about when it comes to understanding the market for cannabis extracts.

Two Cannabis Compounds — Two Sets of Effects

CBD and THC are two different molecules both found in the Cannabis herb. One of the main differences between the two is that THC gives the “high” when consumed, while CBD has other, subtler effects and most importantly — no intoxication. When we speak of marijuana, we often are referring to THC — the mind altering compound found in the Cannabis sativa plant. Specifically, THC is an agonist, meaning it binds to the receptors of the endocannabinoid system found in the brain and central nervous system. Psychoactive effects associated with THC and recreational marijuana are caused by the binding and stimulation of these receptors.

Understanding CB1 and CB2 Receptors

There are two known types of cannabinoid receptors present in the endocannabinoid system throughout the human body, CB1 and CB2. Both are found in the central nervous system, but CB2 exists also in certain peripheral tissues. These receptors are designed for binding to cannabinoids, but there’s a major difference in how this plays out with CBD and THC.

THC fits directly with the CB1 receptors, thus binding to the endocannabinoid system and unlocking the psychoactive properties. CBD, on the other hand, does not fit directly, and does not bind. Instead, it simply stimulates activity in both receptors without binding to them.

Since CBD doesn’t bind with the CB1 receptors, it cannot produce the “high” that THC creates. This important difference between CBD and THC opens a whole new window of opportunity for the medicinal cannabis extracts industry. CBD products can now be bought and used freely without the stigma associated with getting high. Additionally, medical marijuana has seen increased legalization throughout the world in recent years, adding to a new demand for cannabis extracts.

How CBD is Different

Because it does not provide the psychoactive properties found in THC, CBD enables the use of its medicinal qualities to be delivered to people in need without the worry of altering consciousness. Extraction facilities are able to separate the molecules of THC and CBD, leaving just the latter. Because of its perceived medicinal properties, CBD can now be prescribed to patients for the following reasons:

Reduces psychotic symptomsRelief from convulsionReduces seizuresDecreases anxietyDecreases inflammation and pain

In addition to having these positive medicinal qualities, CBD also bypasses the negative side effects of THC, such as impaired cognitive abilities, reduced ability to reason, and decreased control over impulses.

Why CBD is Better Positioned for Market Opportunities

Even with all the increased legalization of medical and recreational marijuana, to many people, there is still a line to cross when using THC that is not there with CBD. In fact, CBD extracts are becoming more and more mainstream as additional scientific studies are carried out, and as more people are able to benefit from their medicinal effects.

But while medical marijuana legalization is spreading across the globe, policies to regulate these new-to-market products have yet to catch up. Cannabium’s unique marketplace provides a blockchain solution that covers that gap by offering a cannabis extracts trading platform that ensures all transactions are secure, with all regulations met.