CBD vs. THC: What’s the Difference?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is the second most common active component in marijuana (marijuana). As a component of medicinal marijuana, CBD is either extracted from the hemp plant (a relative of marijuana) or produced in a lab. On the other hand, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is one of the several substances detected in the resin produced by marijuana glands. Dopamine is released in the brain as a result of THC's ingestion. Both CBD and THC are only two of the many cannabinoids found in marijuana. Some people often mistake CBD with THC. Below are the major differences between CBD and THC.

CBD vs THC

What is the overall difference between CBD and THC?

The overall difference between CBD and THC is that CBD does not produce the “high” sensation and is available in a variety of forms, including gels, gummies, oils, supplements, and extracts. THC is the primary psychoactive component in cannabis and is responsible for the euphoric effects of marijuana. To ingest it, you’ll need to smoke a joint or take THC products in the form of oils, foods and tinctures, as well as pills and tablets. Endocannabinoid systems are activated by both chemicals, but their effects are vastly different.

1.  Chemical Structure

When it comes to their chemical structure, CBD and THC are identical. They both contain 21 carbon-to-to-30 hydrogen-to-2 oxygen atoms. The atoms in your body are structured in a little different way, and this is what causes the different results. There is a molecular similarity between CBD and THC and the body’s own cannabinoids. Your body’s cannabinoid receptors are able to interact with them. Neurotransmitters are released in your brain as a result of the contact. There are a variety of functions for neurotransmitters, which include transmitting signals between cells, as well as regulating pain, immunity, stress, and sleep.

2.  Psychoactive Components

Even though CBD and THC have similar molecular structures, they don’t have the same intoxicating effects. CBD has a psychoactive effect, but not in the same way as THC. CBD, on the other hand, can address multiple issues such as anxiety, depression, and even seizures. THC induces a feeling of exhilaration or ecstasy by engaging the user’s cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptors.

Since these CB1 receptors can only bind to CBD in an extremely weak manner or not at all and may need the assistance of THC for proper binding, some of the undesired psychoactive effects of THC, such as euphoria or drowsiness, may be reduced by CBD.

3.  Medical Benefits

For the most part, the health advantages of CBD and THC are the same. Many of the same ailments are alleviated by their use. CBD, on the other hand, does not have the same euphoric effects as THC.  The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Epidiolex, the first prescription drug containing CBD, to treat rare symptoms of epilepsy that is difficult to control.

THC is used for the following medical purposes:

  • Glaucoma-related pain and muscle spasms
  • Insomnia
  • Low-calorie intake
  • Nausea
  • Anxiety

CBD is used to treat a variety of ailments, including:

  • Psychosis or other mental diseases such as epilepsy
  • Inflammatory bowel syndrome
  • Nausea
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

4.  Side Effects

Large dosages of CBD are well tolerated. It is probable that any negative effects associated with CBD usage are caused by drug-to-drug interactions between CBD and any other drugs you may be taking. Long-term detrimental psychological consequences may be linked to heavy THC consumption. Adolescents who use substantial levels of THC are more likely to develop mental health issues like schizophrenia, even though there is no solid proof that cannabis usage causes these conditions.

The possible side effects of THC include:

  • Coordination issues due to an increase in heart rate
  • Sour breath and swollen eyes
  • Response times are slower
  • Concern over losing one’s memories

CBD’s possible adverse effects include, but are not limited to:

  • Changes in appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness caused by weight loss
  • Diarrhea

5.  Legality

CBD, unlike THC, does not appear on the UK’s list of restricted drugs. As a result, CBD is completely legal in the United Kingdom. Even though CBD is legal in the United Kingdom, there are still restrictions, such as the following:

  • The THC content of CBD products cannot exceed 1 mg per container.
  • Industrial hemp strains that have less than 0.2 per cent THC may only be used to produce CBD products in the EU.
  • Novel foods authorization from the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) must be obtained beginning March 31, 2021, for the production of CBD-based products.

 The country’s effort to classify CBD as a novel food shows that the regulatory environment is always changing. Cannabis legislation in the United Kingdom is clearly antiquated and was not designed to accommodate hemp-derived CBD products. It’s unnecessary to limit hemp products to only one milligram of THC per container, as this is much below the 0.2% maximum THC level of hemp plants. On the other hand, CBD’s status as a narcotic is now being contested by the European Commission of the European Union. The only option is to buy CBD products from trustworthy firms that can produce third-party lab test results to prove their safety and legality.

6.  Drug Testing

The fat cells of the body stores cannabinoids like THC and CBD in reserve. Even after you stop using them, they might still show up on a drug test for many days or even weeks. CBD-sensitive tests are available, although not all drug tests will be able to identify them. As with most routine drug tests, the use of THC or marijuana may be detected in screening. Hemp produces THC, so even if you haven’t used it a test for THC might still come out positive. If you’re taking a drug test, you should avoid using any CBD or THC products weeks before since items that claim to be THC-free may not really be THC-free.

7.  Product Type

CBD and THC can be taken in multiple product types that suit the needs and intake capacity of the user.

It’s possible to get CBD in a number of ways. These are some examples:

THC is also available in a variety of forms, such as:

  • Smokable products
  • Oils
  • Tinctures
  • Brownies and powders
  • Capsules

What does THC content in CBD mean?

The THC content in CBD is the amount of THC left in the CBD product after being processed in laboratories. There are three types of CBD products, depending on the purity of the CBD and the quantity of THC they contain:

  • Full-spectrum CBD:  Cannabis plant components, including THC, are preserved in this form of CBD. THC is still present in full-spectrum CBD products, even though legally regulated full-spectrum CBD products contain less than 0.3 per cent THC.
  • Broad-spectrum CBD:   Except for THC, it contains all of the original cannabinoids in the cannabis plant.
  • CBD isolate. This is a pure version of CBD, with no additional cannabinoids present.

THC concentrations in today’s cannabis strains range from roughly 12% to 13%. CBD oil may include very few amounts of THC since its source – the hemp plant – has trace quantities of THC.

Are There any THC-Free CBD Products?

Yes. Both broad-spectrum and CBD isolates are free from THC content. However, traces of THC may be observed in broad-spectrum products since some of these are derived from hemp. Always go for isolates to prevent ingesting any unwanted traces of THC. Companies like ZenBear uses all-natural ingredients to ensure that all of their CBD products such as the CBD gummies are certified THC free.

Which one is better for pain, CBD or THC?

CBD works better for pain, as it targets the source of inflammation and pain source across the body. CBD may be able to alleviate pain in a variety of physical ways. CBD’s ability to reduce inflammation helps as well in targeting localized sources of discomfort. THC works in pain management by managing pain perception in the brain. However, it provides a false sense of security since the user will not be able to determine pain signals from across various parts of the body.

Which one is better for anxiety, CBD or THC?

THC is better for anxiety than CBD. A study found that CBD had no impact on anxiety, even at large levels. THC has been proven to reduce anxiety at lower doses and increase it as the dosage rises. In theory, CBD might make you uneasy if it has a high concentration of THC. THC levels aren’t a concern if they are low.

Which one is better for diseases, CBD or THC?

The effects of CBD and THC for various diseases are different. In one study, CBD didn’t improve blood sugar and lipid levels in people with type 2 diabetes, but a variation of THC did. CBD did lower insulin resistance and boost gut hormone levels among diabetic patients. THC has recently been shown to decrease the development and/or death of cancer cells in laboratory dishes. Certain cannabinoids may also decrease the development and spread of various cancers in animal studies. Despite the fact that cannabinoids have been shown to be safe in the treatment of cancer, there is no evidence that they are effective in halting or curing the illness. Cancer patients who rely only on marijuana for cancer therapy risk major health complications.