The majority of cannabis users describe the high from using THC as a pleasant sensation. They often report sensory stimulation, elevated mood, euphoria, a clear state of mind, and even signs of improved cognition. In low and moderate doses, these feelings are well balanced. However, when you take THC in very high doses, you can experience the so-called THC backfire that may lead to anxiety and paranoia.
CBD, on the other hand, doesn’t cause intoxication, and its range of emotional effects is triggered less directly. CBD can ease your mind, reduce anxiety, and improve your response to daily stressors. To make things even better, CBD can counter a strong reaction to THC. Recreational cannabis users often take CBD as a counterweight to THC’s high.
But, both compounds affect your mind in some way, don’t they?
Doesn’t that mean they’re both psychoactive?
In a way, yes.
Every substance, event, or even person that can impact your emotions falls into the definition of “psychoactive.”
Does your laundry machine make you angry when it glitches?
Guess what: it’s psychoactive.
A better way to describe the differences between CBD vs THC is “intoxication.” The marijuana high involves an array of intoxicating effects, such as the aforementioned euphoria and a giggly mood. Therefore, THC is both psychoactive and intoxicating.
CBD doesn’t induce the euphoric high, so it’s not intoxicating. However, it is psychoactive because it changes your anxiety levels and helps you maintain emotional stability.
How do CBD and THC Affect the body?
CBD products are better if you’re looking for more of a body-centered experience. It reduces inflammation, relieves tension, helps people overcome anxiety, and reduces the amount of stress experienced throughout the day.
The effects of THC-rich products depend on their cannabinoid profile as well as the ratio between different terpenes. Some cannabis strains are more body-focused whereas others produce more of a cerebral high. Usually, Sativa strains are more energetic and focused in the brain; Indica strains produce a body high. Both types of effects from THC can be highlighted by adding more CBD to your routine.
CBD vs THC: Potential Therapeutic Applications
THC and CBD affect different parts of the endocannabinoid system. THC stimulates CB1 and CB2 receptors by binding to them and producing an array of its effects. CBD has little effect on both. Instead, it works on multiple receptor-independent pathways to regulate the endocannabinoid system.
Health Benefits of CBD and THC
THC and CBD can support each other when it comes to their health benefits. However, they have a completely different way of engaging with your body.
CBD has strong anti-inflammatory effects, bolstering the immune system, and helping patients manage a variety of ailments. Many health conditions involve inflammation, so lowering this state can contribute to the effectiveness of CBD supplementation.
THC has neuroprotective properties and its benefits are mostly associated with mental health. It can also reduce pain, help patients fight insomnia, eating disorders, and reduce the number of malignant cells in the body.
CBD vs THC: Mental Effects
CBD has proven to effectively reduce anxiety and help individuals cope with stress. Furthermore, CBD is often used to relax the body after a difficult day, which supports healthy sleep cycles. Similar to THC, CBD has been shown to have neuroprotective properties that keep the brain in good shape.
Studies suggest that THC has neuroprotective effects too. Scientists have started to investigate these properties in preventing and treating Alzheimer’s Disease with THC. The cannabinoid can also improve a person’s focus and elevate mood when taken in low and moderate doses.
CBD vs THC: Physical Effects
Both CBD and THC are known to alter pain transmission to the brain. They can reduce the discomfort caused by inflammation, migraines, and injuries. Moreover, CBD brings up a relaxing sensation to your body, but it doesn’t produce a mellow body high linked to using THC.
On the whole, both cannabinoids can benefit your health, but they use different channels for it.