The difference between THC and CBD

Updated: May 14, 2019

With the legalization of marijuana and other cannabis products in Canada, more and more consumers are becoming more curious about which one to choose between cannabidiol (CBD) or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD and THC are two natural compounds found in Cannabis genus plants. THC can be consumed by smoking marijuana, and it is the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana. While CBD is found primarily in extractions from the hemp plant and can be consumed in the form of oils, supplements, gels, gummies, tinctures, capsules, extracts, oils, edibles, and more. Both compounds create different effects on the body as they interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system. Read on to learn about these two compounds and their differences.




What Is CBD?


CBD is just the opposite of THC and is only one of around 400 compounds in marijuana. Even though the molecule found in CBD is almost like that of THC, it doesn't get users high as THC does. CBD has many health benefits and uses. CBD can help with issues like stress, anxiety, epilepsy, and depression. CBD is supported by many medical fields for its therapeutic properties because it is a non-psychoactive compound.


Retail and medicinal markets over the years have maximized its benefits and have created different products that include medicines, skincare, oils, vapes, and drinks. For example, cannabinoid oil is a favorite product created from CBD. Various studies have even used CBD for dogs to treat conditions like heart disease, anxiety, and mobility. In recent years products like dog treats and oils have become popular and are often recommended by veterinarians.


What is THC?


Tetrahydrocannabinol better known as THC is a psychoactive component of marijuana, and just as we stated earlier on, THC molecule is similar to CBD. THC is somewhat less accepted for medicinal use than CBD because it makes you high. Even with this THC still has its benefits like helping to treat asthma, pain, nausea, and even anorexia nervosa.


CBD vs. THC: How Each Affects the Body


Even though CBD and THC both bind to the CB2 receptor, they still interact with the CB1 receptors differently. THC can bind directly with CB1 receptors because of its molecular structure; and when this occurs, it creates reaction signals that are sent to the brain, resulting in the psychoactive effects of “getting high.”


However, in the case of CBD, research shows that it does not bond directly with the CB1 receptor, and it can even neutralize the psychoactive effects induced by THC. Different THC research shows that it offers tremendous health benefits, but it offers the mind-altering effects that some people may not like. CBD, on the other hand, offers almost the same benefits but it does not induce any psychoactive effects.


CBD vs. THC: Medical benefits


CBD and THC have many of the same medical benefits. CBD is used to help with various conditions, such as:


• depression

• migraines

• seizures

• inflammation

• anxiety

• pain

• psychosis or mental disorders

• nausea

• inflammatory bowel disease


THC is used to help with conditions such as:


• anxiety

• pain

• nausea

• glaucoma

• insomnia

• muscle spasticity

• low appetite


CBD vs. THC: What’s the Difference?


• Side effects

• Chemical structure

• Psychoactive components

• Medical benefits

• Further clarification

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