What to Know About CBD and Cannabinoids
Cannabidiol (CBD) is the most widely-researched compound of the cannabis plant, which is famous for its powerful analgesic properties. CBD is recommended for the treatment of pain, anxiety, sleep disorders, seizures, etc. People battling with fatigue and low libido can also benefit by adding CBD into their routines.
Besides its use in the health and wellness space, CBD is also popular in various other industries too.
You can find CBD-infused edibles in the food and beverage industry, CBD-enriched ointments in the beauty and skincare industry, and CBD-based supplements in the sports and fitness industry.
The pet care industry isn’t left behind either, as there are plenty of CBD products you can use to manage various conditions for your furry friend.
Bottles of hemp-based CBD oil
Is CBD The Only Compound In Cannabis?
While cannabidiol is the most widely-researched compound of the cannabis plant, it isn’t the only one. There are over 480 compounds that have been identified so far and these compounds are broadly categorized into two groups, namely cannabinoids and terpenes.
Also known as phytocannabinoids, cannabinoids refer to cannabis extracts, which account for the plant’s therapeutic properties. On the other hand, terpenes, also known as terpenoids, are cannabis compounds that enhance the distinctive flavors of cannabinoids.
Some of the most common terpenoids include:
- Alpha-pinene and Beta-pinene
- Delta 3 Carene
How Are Cannabinoids Distinguished?
Researchers have been able to distinguish more than 140 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. In addition to the best CBD oil, the following are other common cannabinoids you’ll likely come across:
- CBV (cannabivarin)
- CBC (Cannabichromene)
- CBCV (Cannabichromevarin)
- CBDV (Cannabidivarin)
- CBDA (Cannabidiolic acid)
- CBE (Cannabielsoin)
- CBG (Cannabigerol)
- CBGM (cannabigerol monomethyl ether)
- CBGV (Cannabigerovarin)
- CBL (cannabicyclol)
- CBT (cannabicitran)
- CBN (cannabinol)
- THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol)
- THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin)
- THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)
If you look at the nomenclature of the above cannabinoids, one thing is clear. The names of these compounds begin in either a CB- or TH-.
All of the compounds that begin with TH- carry both psychoactive and intoxicating effects. On the other hand, cannabinoids whose names start in CB- are neither psychoactive nor intoxicating.
Before purchasing any cannabinoid from retailers like CBDMEDIC, you should first establish the chemical properties of the plant. Particularly, its psychoactive properties. To do that, always look out for the labels ‘isolates’, ‘broad-spectrum’, and ‘full-spectrum’.
If a cannabinoid is marketed as an isolate, it essentially means that the product is formulated with only that particular compound. For instance, CBT isolate refers to a product that contains cannabicitran and no other cannabinoids.
Additionally, broad-spectrum refers to cannabis-based products that contain various cannabinoids, except the mind-altering tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). As THC is the most popular psychoactive cannabinoid, broad-spectrum products are essentially products that do not carry psychotropic effects.
Lastly, full-spectrum products are those that contain various cannabinoids, including euphoria-inducing ones like THC.
How to Consume CBD and Other Cannabinoids
Some of the popular methods of consuming cannabinoids include:
- Dripping oil tinctures underneath your tongue and then swallowing
- Topically applying cannabinoid-enriched beauty and skincare products
- Swallowing cannabinoid-infused pills and ointments
- Vaping cannabinoid-based e-juice
- Smoking cannabis flower and buds
- Cannabinoid edibles, such as gummies, baked goods, beverages, etc.
It’s worth noting that each of the above methods of administration comes with its own benefits and drawbacks. For instance, vaping and sublingual tinctures have a faster onset time and a higher bioavailability compared to swallowing cannabinoid-based pills and edibles. However, the effects of consuming cannabinoid edibles tend to last longer compared to vaping or administering the products sublingually.
How Do Cannabinoids Interact With Your System?
In order to understand how cannabinoids affect your body, you’ll first need to be acquainted with the endocannabinoid system. Basically, the endocannabinoid system refers to a complex cell-signaling system within the body, whose primary role is the regulation of homeostatic functions.
The endocannabinoid system is responsible for activating various body’s defense mechanisms that result in relief from several medical conditions like pain, anxiety, seizures, etc. To work effectively, the system relies on its own cannabinoids, known as endogenous cannabinoids or simply endocannabinoids. These endocannabinoids continually bind to a series of endocannabinoid receptors, particularly CB1 and CB2 receptors.
When you consume any cannabis-based product, the cannabinoids in the product enter your body and impact your endocannabinoid system. Generally, non-psychoactive cannabinoids interact with CB2 receptors, whereas psychoactive cannabinoids bind to CB1 receptors.
But what’s the difference?
Now, CB1 receptors are expressed near your brain and central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are more widespread throughout your peripheral cells and tissues. Any compound that affects the chemical structure of your CB1 receptors also alters your state of mind, ultimately leading to euphoria.
What Health Benefits Can Cannabinoids Help?
Non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBD are mostly used for therapeutic purposes. On the other hand, psychotropic cannabinoids are popular among recreational marijuana users. That said, all cannabinoids pack distinctive health benefits.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a powerful analgesic that’s used to treat pain and anxiety, as well as relieve inflammation, insomnia, seizures, and mood swings. CBD can also help to treat mental, psychological, and neurodegenerative conditions.
Cannabichromene (CBC) produces therapeutic effects that are nearly similar to those of CBD. So, you can also use it to treat pain, anxiety, mood swings, fatigue, poor appetite, etc. However, CBC is more remarkable for its anti-inflammatory properties. In one study, this cannabinoid proved more effective than common anti-inflammatory drugs like phenylbutazone.
Cannabigerol (CBG) inhibits the activities of the brain chemical, GABA, thereby producing antianxiety and mood-elevating effects. CBG also boasts immense antitumor and anti-inflammatory properties and might help with diseases like cancer.
Cannabinol (CBN) comes with antianxiety and sedative properties. It can calm a racing mind while also helping to induce sleep. Other studies cite CBN’s ability to relieve eye conditions like glaucoma.
Though CBD and THC are the most popular cannabinoid, they aren’t the only ones. Cannabis teems with over 100 cannabinoids, each of which packs its unique therapeutic effects.