While Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is responsible for getting you high, basing your purchase solely on THC levels is like buying wine or beer solely based on its ABV. As such, let’s give cannabidiol, or CBD, a closer look to see what a narrow focus on THC misses.
Tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol are both the main components of a marijuana plant, belonging to a class of compounds known as cannabinoids. Cannabis contains at least 85 different types of cannabinoids, although the psychoactive THC has long been the main focus in consumers’ purchasing decisions regarding strains. This in part could be because of the illicit market, where cannabis was simply viewed as a vehicle for getting customers ripped.
CBD, admittedly, differs from THC in one obvious domain: psychoactive properties. As a result, CBD is non-psychoactive and is essentially unable to get individuals high. Still, it’s responsible for a number of other factors, many of which can help provide a well-rounded, as well as medically beneficial, smoking experience.
In the medical marijuana field, a strain’s CBD percentage is often a factor patients will strongly consider. One of the most well-known benefits of CBD include anti-epilepsy effects. In fact, the strain Charlotte’s Web was cultivated by Colorado’s Stanley Brothers specifically for having a high CBD percentage with practically zero psychoactive effects, due to a low THC percentage, for a young epileptic patient named Charlotte in Colorado suffering from Dravet’s Syndrome. Charlotte would have 300 seizures a week, but when she started taking a CBD extract, that number went to to one seizure a week.
Other conditions that CBD has proven fruitful in assisting include Crohn’s Disease, PTSD, and multiple sclerosis. The chemical compound functions as an anti-inflammatory and has painkiller-like properties. Additionally, it provides anti-anxiety benefits without the “stoned” feeling; some believe that the compound actually was designed to counteract THC’s less-than-pleasant side effects of paranoia and panic.
When looking at the numbers, you’ll notice that CBD percentages by volume are much, much lower than THC. Typically, the market views any strain with over 20 percent THC as insanely strong; for CBD, your average strain has less than 4 percent, so anything above that is considered a healthy amount.