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If you’re starting to experiment with CBD oil, you may be wondering… does CBD oil get you high?
To some people, CBD is associated with marijuana, and marijuana is associated with… well, getting high. The smell of CBD reminds many people of marijuana, and the two industries have had intertwined histories for a long time.
So it’s completely understandable that when you first start to learn about CBD, you may be asking yourself, “if I take a CBD product, am I going to feel the same high that people attribute to marijuana?”
Learning about the cannabis industry can feel overwhelming at first. There’s new vocabulary to learn constantly, and there are a ton of different brands and products.
But getting the basic facts straight is important if you are considering adding CBD products to your wellness routine.
So, the big question: does CBD oil get you high?
The short answer is no.
But the long answer, which we’ll explore below, will help you understand all the background information you need to know about CBD, marijuana, and the science of cannabis. So keep reading to get the big picture.
To understand the full background of CBD oil, you need to start at the beginning: where CBD oil comes from. Or, to be more exact, the plant that CBD oil comes from.
Both hemp and marijuana are types of cannabis sativa plant, a genus of flowering plant in the Cannabaceae family. These two plants are related, which means they’re grown similarly and they usually look and smell the same.
Plants from the cannabis family contain more than 100 natural compounds, called cannabinoids. While all of them interact with your body in different ways, there are two famous cannabinoids in particular.
Cannabidiol, known by the acronym CBD, is one of the many cannabinoid compounds. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound that is non-intoxicating, and widely recognized for its therapeutic effects on the body.
Another famous cannabinoid compound found in cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the compound responsible for the characteristic “high” that many people associate with marijuana. It has psychoactive properties, leading to feelings of intoxication.
Keep in mind that both plants contain CBD and THC. Technically, you could extract some CBD from either plant.
However, when you buy a product with CBD oil in the United States today, it is made with hemp-derived CBD oil. To understand why next you need to learn about the concentrations of the two famous compounds in each plant.
The major difference between hemp and marijuana is clear when you examine the CBD versus THC concentration in each plant.
Hemp plants generally have a high concentration of CBD and a low concentration of THC. In terms of numbers, hemp plants contain no more than 0.3% THC.
Marijuana plants usually have low concentrations of CBD and high concentrations of THC. Some cannabis plants contain upwards of 30% THC. While there are some exceptions, with varieties that can produce higher yields of CBD, the specific marijuana cannabinoid and terpene mix is less appealing for CBD oil than what is found in hemp.
With a larger concentration of CBD found in hemp plants, as well as the beneficial mix of cannabinoids, the CBD oil yield from hemp plants is generally higher. This natural concentration is one of the reasons the CBD oil products you’ll find in stores are made from hemp-derived CBD.
In addition to the CBD concentration, CBD oil products also use hemp-derived oil because of the different legal status of hemp and marijuana.
Civilizations have been growing hemp as an agricultural crop for thousands of years. Hemp is known as an incredibly strong natural fiber, so it was used to make clothing, rope, housing material, paper, and more. In the United States, it was a versatile crop that was at one point commonly found on most farms.
However, because hemp and marijuana are in the same plant family, there has always been confusion around the association between the two. Starting with the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, hemp and marijuana were grouped together and placed under certain legal restrictions.
Then, in 1970, the Controlled Substance Act completely ignored the difference between the two plants. Hemp and marijuana were lumped together under a Schedule I drug category, classified as illegal substances. Under the eyes of the law, they were not considered any different.
Today, restrictions are still in place for marijuana, and any associated products (like marijuana-derived CBD). On the federal level, marijuana and any other products are not widely legal. There are many states that have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use, but there still is no federal recognition.
However, for hemp, the story is different. Congress passed a new Agriculture Improvement Act in 2018 (known as the Farm Bill) that recognized the difference between hemp and marijuana. The 2018 Farm Bill decriminalized the agricultural production of hemp, as well as CBD derived from the plant.
Currently, CBD derived from hemp, with less than 0.3% THC, is now legal across the country. Any products made with hemp-derived CBD can be purchase normally, in stores, or online.
We give all this background so that you can understand why virtually all CBD products on the market today use hemp-derived CBD oil.
When a brand says CBD oil, they almost always mean hemp-derived CBD oil. This hemp-derived CBD oil is 100% CBD, terpenes, and cannabinoids, and it contains less than 0.3% THC.
With almost untraceable amounts of THC, hemp plant products aren’t likely to cause any feelings of intoxication. As we talked about above, the “high” feeling associated with marijuana comes from the THC compound, not the non-psychoactive CBD compound.
Hemp plants, with 0.3% THC, compared to marijuana plants with THC concentrations upwards of 30%, have completely different effects on the body. CBD oil comes from the cannabis plant (hemp), but it doesn’t create the same high as THC.
So, to return to the original question: no, CBD oil doesn’t get you high. There isn’t enough THC to create a feeling of intoxication. CBD generates feelings of calm, focus, and balance, without psychoactive effects.
When you take a CBD oil, you get the benefits of CBD interacting with your body’s endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system helps regulate body functions like mood, pain, stress, and sleep.
Your body naturally produces some cannabinoids. However, some people have relatively low natural levels of these cannabinoids, which can impact their body’s balance. Adding CBD oil products into your routine can help reinforce a natural balance in your endocannabinoid system.
CBD oil doesn’t give you a high but instead provides a ton of different benefits. With CBD’s therapeutic effects, you can turn to CBD products to help with your health and wellness goals.
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