Cannabidiol (CBD) is a therapeutic compound residing in the cannabis or hemp plant (more on those differences later) and is just one of many phytocannabinoid compounds produced by the plant.
Let’s compare another common plant, lavender. We all know and love lavender because of its calming and relaxing properties. The major players, or compounds, in lavender, are linalyl acetate and linalool — they help us wind down and chill out.
And this is what CBD is, a specific and natural compound that is supportive to many systems and processes in our bodies. So instead of complicating things and getting all twisted and tied that it’s derived from cannabis or hemp, let’s distill this stigma and realize CBD comes from a beautiful botanic!
Many perk up when they hear the word of CBD or cannabis mainly because it’s so heavily tied with marijuana, pot, or whatever the kids are referring to it as these days!
Yes, CBD is closely connected with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) — the psychoactive, euphoric compound in cannabis — and they are also the most studied compounds in cannabis, but as we know, there are many, many others that play a restorative role.
Both CBD and THC play a vital role in the supportive properties of the cannabis or hemp plant, however, CBD is THC’s type A cousin and doesn’t leave one feeling stoned or intoxicated, typically quite the opposite!
CBD and THC act on different receptor sites and carry out different therapeutic functions.
Because CBD doesn’t produce a high and is therapeutically dynamic makes it an excellent choice for those who want the benefits of cannabis but don’t want the euphoria associated with it.
An illuminating tidbit about CBD is it can actually offset the effects of THC!
So, if you’re cautious or a little cannacurious, CBD is the gateway to healing!
Unfortunately, the history of cannabis is steeped in decades upon decades of misinformation. We’ve been through “Reefer Madness” that set the tone for the next half century or so, and since then, the cannabis industry has been recovering in its wake to rewrite the narrative of what cannabis is.
Cannabis and hemp are similar but they’re not the same.
Cannabis is a plant that has two different strains (varieties) — indica and sativa. While what we know as marijuana can be either an indica, sativa, or hybrid (blended), hemp is grown to be abundant in cannabidiol (CBD) with very low quantities of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Physically they look very different as well.
Cannabis is dense and shorter in height than hemp with rich verdant buds. Hemp, on the other hand, can grow to be very tall and is less dense than cannabis.
Chemically speaking, they are also very different.
Cannabis contains the full spectrum of cannabinoids including THC (which can contain up to 15 to 40 percent in concentration) and CBD, while hemp also contains a full spectrum, but has been bred to produce little THC — less than 0.3 percent.
It’s interesting to ponder the other types of medicines and herbs we take, do we really know what they’re doing in our bodies? Not really! For instance, do we question ibuprofen when we have a headache or do we just pop the lid to and trust that it will quell our headache?
CBD can be your go-to for headaches, but let’s build the trust in this herb a little further.
Okay, we’re going to try and break this down so it’s easily digested information, but things may get a bit science-y for a moment!
We have what is known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS) within our bodies — it’s in there, it already exists! It’s a highly-functioning system just like our nervous and immune system.
The endocannabinoid system is responsible for how we experience the effects of the cannabis plant, so lucky for us, it exists! But it goes beyond how we just experience a certain strain — it plays one of the most vital roles a system can — it’s largely responsible for our body’s natural balancing scale: homeostasis.
Homeostasis is the range in which everything within us and about us operates by a finite set of conditions — the cosmos have to align — for us to feel and perform our best.
What you need to know about the ECS:
Cannabinoid Receptors – The Hot Gossips
These are the gossips of the ECS! They sit on the surface of the cells and listen to the conditions outside the cell and report back everything in great detail.
CB1 and CB2 are the sizable cannabinoid receptors that interact with both CBD and THC.
Most notably, THC connects with CB1 receptors and CBD connects CB2 receptors.
Endocannabinoids – Our In-House Therapeutic Compounds
Endocannabinoids — “endo”= within — can be attributed to plant cannabinoids such as CBD and THC, but we produce them in-house and all on our own!
The two major players include:
Anandamide – Acts on CB1 receptors
2-AG – Acts on CB2 receptors
Both are made and packaged for exactly when they are needed.
Metabolic Enzymes – The Destroyers
The metabolic enzymes go to work in our ECS to destroy the endocannabinoids once they are used, and they include FAAH ad MAGL. Their function is to ensure we get our endocannabinoids when we need them, but absorb and keep the balance when they’re no longer needed.
Why does any of this matter?
Because the fact that our ECS exists makes it largely possible for us to experience the therapeutic effects of other cannabinoids such as CBD and THC. As we know, THC and CBD interact largely with the cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2.
Not only do these cannabis compounds interact with the ECS, but rarely do constituents only interact with one type of receptor. This is the beauty of CBD in that it interacts with a myriad of receptors to elicit many healing and therapeutic effects.
So, when we say it supports sleep, immune health, the nervous system, and inflammation balance, we know this is true because it acts upon a broad range of receptors in our bodies.
Full-Spectrum CBD Vs. CBD Isolate
Beyond just CBD, we have how it’s derived, to complicate our understanding even further! The most common ways in which CBD can be derived is in a full spectrum product or CBD isolate.
How your CBD is derived is important and will likely be a personal choice. Each different type comes with a diverse set of factors each person must consider, so understanding the differences is crucial to tailoring CBD to your specific needs.
There is also the extraction method, but we’ll save this topic for discussion later on down the road!
Depending on how the CBD is extracted, and from what source (cannabis or hemp), the cannabinoid profile will differ. And, depending on what the final extraction will be formulated for, companies will choose a cannabinoid profile that fits within their perimeters.
Once a first-run extraction has been completed, this is where the CBD can be refined into what we know as full spectrum, broad spectrum, and CBD isolates.
An isolate is just that — it’s isolated from all other compounds found in a substance. Just like we have vitamin C isolates that have removed other compounds such as flavonoids or glucose, we have CBD isolates that are separated from terpenes, THC, and other plant constituents.
People who want to take and benefit from CBD but who work for the government or are truck drivers (regular mandated drug tests) tend to choose a CBD isolate because the THC has been completely removed.
Full Spectrum CBD
A full spectrum CBD products keep all the beautiful and supportive compounds together including other cannabinoids and terpenes. This is a comprehensive CBD derivative that people embrace for its “entourage effect.”
What is the “entourage effect”?
We can’t talk about CBD without mentioning the entourage effect. The entourage effect is experienced in a full spectrum CBD product because the theory behind it is, the whole is better than the sum of its parts.
Because the cannabinoids, terpenes, and essential oils are preserved, they are able to work together and amplify the therapeutic effects of the CBD. Each constituent of the extraction plays a different role and they come together to support your health in a myriad of different ways.
CBD works synergistically with your body — remember the ECS? — so taking a full spectrum or CBD isolate product is an individual choice, and claiming which is better is hotly debated, so we’ll bow out of that conversation at this point!
Who said you can’t have the best of both worlds? Have your cake and eat it too? A broad spectrum CBD product can do just this! It preserves that naturally occurring compounds while removing the THC! You can have the entourage effect and amplify all the good things, while steering clear of THC.
The excitement of trying CBD for the first time occurs with a considerable amount of anticipation — will this help me and when will it work? Not to sound convoluted or wishy-washy but CBD works differently for each individual, so there is no standard answer that fits for everyone.
For CBD to begin its healing journey, it has to be absorbed through your bloodstream so it can interact with your ECS and other receptor sites.
So, how quick is the absorption, may be your next question. This too depends on the individual. CBD is fat-soluble so taking it with a fat is always advantageous (most CBD tinctures are in an oil for better absorbtion). Other factors that will affect the way it is absorbed in your body composition, weight, and metabolic rate.
Body weight can also factor into how you process CBD — naturally, a larger person will require more of a product and it also tends to take longer to experience the effects.
Because you’re unique in what you eat, drink, and take (medications and herbs), this affects your body and how it can process CBD. Different factors may slow or alter how CBD fucntions in your body. Think about it, if you’re overly stressed (CBD is great for this) it affects the homeostasis of your body — everything such as your enzymes and such could be thrown off, or if you are managing a specific health condition, this also affects how CBD interacts with you.
Your metabolic rate is specific to you as well. It is your metabolism and how your body goes about different functions and processing compounds.
The beginning may be a little trial and error.
The delivery method will also greatly affect how quickly it’s absorbed.
Vaping or smoking CBD is one of the fastest modes for our bodies to absorb and then utilize the compounds and put them to work. The compounds go straight to the lungs and into the bloodstream. 10 to 20 minutes is typically how long it takes go into effect.
Under the Tongue
Using a CBD tincture is perfect for administering orally and under the tongue. This area is extremely venous and easily absorbs into the salivary glands, to the veins, and into your bloodstream. This takes roughly 15 to 25 minutes.
Orally (Edibles, Drinks, Capsules)
Whether you’re eating, drinking, or swallowing your CBD, it enters through digestion in the GI tract and takes about 20 to 30 minutes.
Topically (Lotions and Salves)
When you apply a CBD product topically, it is absorbed the skin and into the bloodstream in about 25 to 45 minutes.
The adage in the industry is “start low and go slow.” The beauty of CBD is you can adjust the dosage pretty easily in a CBD tincture. It may also require a little trial and error as we mentioned earlier.
Start with a specific amount and then check in with yourself and see how you feel. If you could use a little more, do that, or if you’ve found some relief, stay there!
Try starting with a couple of smaller doses throughout the day instead of one big, high milligram dosage. Try this for a couple of days and see where you’re at — if necessary, adjust the amount.
Let’s talk about the biphasic effects of cannabis compounds for a minute. Biphasic effects, what is this? This equates to opposite effects — so a small amount of CBD can be stimulating, while a larger dose can cause more of a sedative state. Just keep in mind, less is more when it comes to cannabinoid compounds such as CBD.
We bring pure, natural products to those who are ready to heal on a deeper level.
MADE IN USA
Love what our land can produce. Unparalleled CBD quality is our specialty.
Completely legal with no high — only elevated health. Shop for yours now.
Certified and compliant with Vegan Standards.