THC vs. CBD
Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the two main ingredients in the marijuana plant. Both CBD and THC belong to a unique class of compounds known as cannabinoids.
While many strains of marijuana are known for having abundant levels of THC, high-CBD strains are less common. CBD allows you to medicate without the feeling of a “head high” while high THC products do give you the “high” feeling.
What is THC? The technical term is Tetrahydrocannabinol which is the intoxicating element of Cannabis.
Most people know of THC because of its ability to induce euphoria, or a high. Interesting enough, THC does not always have this effect on its own.
That’s because THC is mostly present in the cannabis plant as THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid), its acidic precursor. THCA is not psychoactive, which is why ingesting cannabis raw is unpopular among recreational users. On the other hand, medical users commonly take raw preparations, since THCA possesses some of the same therapeutic benefits as THC.
THCA is typically converted to THC when exposed to heat, through a reaction known as decarboxylation. However, when plants are stored, small amounts of the acid may be converted to THC over time.
CBD is another name for Cannabidiol which is found within the Marijuana plant.
CBD is a key ingredient in cannabis
CBD is one of over 60 compounds found in cannabis that belong to a class of molecules called cannabinoids. Of these compounds, CBD and THC are usually present in the highest concentrations, and are therefore the most recognized and studied.
CBD and THC levels tend to vary among different plants. Marijuana grown for recreational purposes often contains more THC than CBD.
However, by using selective breeding techniques, cannabis breeders have managed to create varieties with high levels of CBD and next to zero levels of THC. These strains are rare but have become more popular in recent years.
Types of Marijuana
Sativa plants are tall, loosely branched and have long, narrow leaves. They are usually grown outdoors due to their longer growth cycle. Sativa plants can reach heights of up to 20 feet.
Indica plants are short, densely branched and have wider leaves.
Hybrid cannabis strains provide the best of both worlds. Expert breeders select the top sativa and indica strains and combine them into super strains that maintain the best aspects from both parents. Hybrids can be sativa or indica dominant and have the effects to match.