Instead of giving your body a high, medical marijuana has the ability to give relief to life-threatening ailments. This night-and-day distinction tells the tale of two different cannabinoids that give cannabis its distinct qualities- THC and CBD.


It was the best of the times…or it was the highest of times. That’s the difference between the two main chemical components that comprise medical marijuana. One will have your body feeling relief from everyday pains, while the other…will get you high. Here are the major differences between THC and CBD.


Before medical marijuana became such a hot-button issue in the news, cannabis was widely known as a recreational drug. However, as medical marijuana has garnered more press and people have become better educated on the healing abilities of cannabis, they have learned that not all cannabis products are psychoactive.

Within the tiny hairs that grow around the buds of members of the Cannabis sativa family lives over 100 unique molecules called cannabinoids. When these cannabinoids come into contact with receptors in the brain, called endocannabinoid receptors, a chemical reaction occurs. This particular reaction depends on what ailments your body is suffering from, and what time of foreign chemicals are floating about in your body. Nonetheless, whatever the reaction may be, for the most part it will be a positive one.

While all of these cannabinoids have unique characteristics and play their own role in the healing properties of medical marijuana, there are two that stand out prominently for how influential they are in giving cannabis its distinct qualities.


What gives marijuana its psychoactive component is an isomer within the cannabinoid known as Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Anything that contains more than 0.3% of THC in it is classified as the schedule 1 drug known as marijuana.

THC is a byproduct of the earliest cultivations of cannabis. As ancestors of the human race started experimenting with fire and heating up cannabis plants, they noticed certain strains had psychoactive elements. Upon pairing like strains with one another, the female version of cannabis that has become classified as marijuana was born. Female version of cannabis contain far more THC than the other well-known cannabinoid, CBD.


While THC gives your body the “stoned” feeling often associated with cannabis, Cannabidiol (CBD) is the component lauded for the healing abilities of medical marijuana.

While working in unison with other cannabinoids that help strengthen its positive impact on the body, CBD interacts with cannabinoid receptors throughout the body. When this happens, the cannabinoids mirror the receptors, evening out any disruptions throughout the central nervous system (CNS).



It may seem like a given that CBD oil is the way to go for all your medicinal needs. Meanwhile, you can just turn to THC-heavy cannabis for your recreational needs. However, both can and should be used for the different demands in your everyday life.

THC has a stimulating effect on the hypothalamus section of the brain. This area of the brain is responsible for numerous functions. One of the most important roles of the hypothalamus is to signal your body if you are hungry or not. This is where the correlation between marijuana and “munchies” come in.

However, “munchies” isn’t just a fun event for stoners to partake in. Although, there are worse ways to spend your day. However, some people genuinely need to stimulate their appetites. THC is a powerful tool for someone with a suppressed appetite who is going through chemotherapy or to create a sense of hunger for a person battling anorexia nervosa.

This compound also releases a signal of relaxation to the receptors in the brain. Therefore, THC is a powerful molecule in combating bouts of insomnia, depression, and anxiety. It also affects pain receptors in the brain positively, providing relief to headaches and migraines.


CBD covers such a broader spectrum in terms of medical marijuana. Without the psychoactive element, CBD is more powerful in aiding the body in combating severe pain. The higher the CBD dose, the more effective it will be, for example, as a topical rubbed onto the joints of someone with arthritis pain.

As mentioned, CBD is non-psychoactive. Therefore, it is safe for anyone to use and go about their daily life without worrying about feeling high. As mentioned earlier, THC may be suitable for headaches and migraines, CBD is also fine alternative. Although CBD may not help you mentally block out the negative or stress-related thoughts that may cause bouts of headaches, insomnia, or anxiety as well as THC does, CBD still has the ability to soothe pain receptors that may lead to these same conditions.


Although CBD has the most therapeutic effects out of all the 480 plus compounds of the Cannabis sativa plant, it cannot do all the work on its own. Like CBD and THC have a unique impact on different receptors throughout the brain, all the cannabinoids, flavonoids, proteins, fatty acids, ketones, etc. within the cannabis plant has a unique interaction with CBD as well.

All of the compounds within cannabis help support CBD. In propping up this chemical, all of the other compounds giving this particular cannabinoid the strong healing qualities it contains. However, almost no other cannabinoid compliments CBD better than THC.

THC’s Entourage Effect on CBD is so strong due to the individual interactions these compounds have with the body. As mentioned before, they both have an impact on headaches. While the psychoactive element in THC can help curb the anxiety and stress that is causing tension headaches, CBD can work on mirroring and balancing out the pain receptors.

However, no CBD oil is all CBD. There needs to be other cannabinoids and compounds in the product to give CBD oil its medicinal properties. Therefore, you are not sacrificing your care for opting for a non-psychoactive version of CBD oil. Inside there will be other active ingredients in the concentration that will help boost the medicinal properties of your CBD oil.

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