Cannabis has a long, convoluted history, and it’s only in the last decade or so that CBD products are entering the mainstream in the form of wellness supplements like oils and additives.
These days CBD seems to be everywhere, from health shops to yoga studios. But its soaring popularity has produced a surplus of information, some of which can be extremely misleading. Therefore, it’s crucial to get your information from a trusted source who are passionate about this wonderful cannabinoid.
So, if you’re looking for the true lowdown on CBD, you’re in the right place. Read on as we reveal ten essential facts to boost your CBD knowledge.
1. CBD doesn’t get you high, THC does
Despite the global surge in CBD’s popularity, relatively little is known about the cannabinoid. One question that’s asked time and time again is, ‘does CBD get you high?’
Simply put, the answer is no. It doesn’t.
The psychoactive compound associated with the marijuana high is THC. CBD, on the other hand, has an entirely different effect on the body, which typically involves pain relief and seizure control.
However, that doesn’t mean that CBD is not psychoactive.
2. CBD is actually psychoactive
Regularly classified as ‘non-psychoactive’ and ‘non-psychotropic’, many CBD ‘facts’ out there can be very misleading. What people are trying to convey when using these terms – inadvertently or otherwise – is that CBD doesn’t cause the euphoric effects observed in THC users. However, while CBD certainly won’t get you ‘high’, it does influence the ECS, which is one of the body’s major regulatory systems. In doing so, CBD alters neurotransmitter release throughout the body, thus aligning with the official definition of ‘psychoactive.’
In light of these real facts, it’s perhaps more accurate to refer to CBD as ‘non-intoxicating.’
3. The human body produces cannabinoids – and CBD helps
As we discussed in BP1, our endocannabinoid system (ECS) relies on endocannabinoids that are produced naturally in our bodies. One example is anandamide, or the ‘bliss molecule’; deriving its name from the Sanskrit word for happiness, joy or bliss. It’s named this as it binds to the CB1 receptor; the activation of which results in higher thought processes and depression relief.
CBD, on the other hand, is a phytocannabinoid derived from plants, namely hemp and marijuana.
Russo (2001) posited a theory suggesting that plant-based cannabinoids like CBD could be the answer to redressing our ECS system, in a similar way to how fruit and vegetables are required to maintain a healthy, balanced diet.
4. CBD negates the addictive effects of other drugs
A 2013 study conducted on rats found that CBD can potentially block the addictive effects of highly addictive opiates such as codeine and morphine by nullifying their pleasurable effects.
Moreover, a recent report in the journal, Substance Abuse: Research and Treatment, found that American states that implemented medical marijuana programs observed a 25% reduction in opioid overdoses.
5. Cannabis growers are cultivating high CBD plants
As we explained in BP1, not all cannabis strains are created equally. A growing number of cannabis cultivators are using the method of crossbreeding to create strains that contain high CBD levels for those who seek the compound’s natural effects, while remaining lucid.
6. The entourage effect
The entourage effect is a phenomenon where the 400+ compounds in the cannabis plant work together to produce a synergistic effect on the body.
Another example is that of Vitamin C supplements. Numerous Vitamin C supplements come in the form of ascorbic acid; however, this is just one of many compounds that comprise Vitamin C. For optimal effectiveness, Vitamin C must exist alongside many other compounds.
In the case of CBD, it’s been suggested that the entourage effect could augment its potential health benefits. Here at Canavape, you’ll find a huge range of full spectrum CBD products, including terpene infused wax crumbles, strain specific e-liquids with CBG, and more.
7. The method of extraction determines CBD quality
CBD is extracted from the leaves, flowers and stalks of cannabis plants, and is most commonly done so via solvent extraction.
Generally, a solvent is passed through the plant to separate the active compounds into bulk plant materials. The compounds yielded – cannabinoids, terpenes, and more – are then collected as oil and further processed.
The extraction method used directly impacts the quality of the product produced, and ultimately, the product you purchase. Below are two common forms of CBD extraction, from high-end to low- end.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) extraction is widely regarded as the premier process to create CBD-rich extracts. The method exerts high pressure on the CO2 while maintaining a low temperature. The high pressure causes the gas to transform into a liquid, before passing through the plant material and producing a totally pure oil extract with an average 90% extraction efficiency rate.
The most common low-grade solvents are ethanol and butane. While the former does extract the plant’s full range of cannabinoids and terpenes, it also extracts chlorophyll, which can be problematic as humans don’t have the enzyme to metabolise this compound. And while it is possible to filter the extract to remove the chlorophyll, this tends to lead to a severe reduction in the oil’s potency.
Butane, on the other hand, produces a more potent oil than ethanol, but is more likely to contain irritable solvents that affect the lungs.
The extraction process of the above solvents entails the addition of the liquid to the plant, causing it to strip away the cannabinoids and flavour from the plant. During this process, however, the green colouring is often lost.
Therefore, the low-end methods are just that, as they produce less potent, potentially irritable products.
8. Celebrity CBD advocates are on the rise
The number of celebrities that use CBD is on the rise. But few have spoken so passionately about the compound as the following triad of advocates.
Having recently launched his own cannabis company, Houseplant, in his native Canada, Seth Rogen’s advocation of marijuana-based remedies continues to grow. As well as being a cannabis and CBD connoisseur, Rogen’s non-profit organisation, ‘Hilarity for Charity’, raises awareness for the progress being made regarding CBD’s potential treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
Did you know Forrest Gump himself is a passionate CBD campaigner? Hollywood royalty Tom Hanks first tried CBD oil to soothe his anxiety, later claiming that, ‘the benefits of CBD oil are unlike anything any pill or medication can do.’
What’s more, in 2018 Hanks teamed up with a research team at Cornell University to study how CBD can help those with Type 2 diabetes.
An avid cannabis and CBD advocate, Whoopi Goldberg recently co-founded a medical CBD brand, Whoopi & Maya, that provides women with relief from menstrual discomfort.
Goldberg stated: ‘I used to be under the table with my cramps, and my daughter and granddaughters are the same way. With all these different [CBD] products, there wasn’t something for women. That says a lot about us as a nation.’
In one fell swoop, Whoopi used her celebrity status to propel the CBD movement forward while simultaneously empowering women across the globe.
9. CBD isn’t just for treating ailments
People tend to incorporate CBD into their lives when facing health issues. However, CBD’s botanical properties support regulation of the ECS.
Moreover, CBD oil is a natural source of many vitamins and minerals, such as B complex vitamins, vitamin C and magnesium, while it also contains essential protein and fatty acids.
Therefore, supplementing the ECS with cannabinoids like CBD is a potential way to maintain optimal health.
10. There are a wide range of ways to take CBD
You don’t have to vape to introduce CBD into your life. In fact, there are more ways than ever before to benefit from its positive effects as the cannabinoid becomes more and more popular. Some popular methods of taking CBD include using CBD oil, oral capsules, wax for dabbing, and topical cream.