Some CBD basics

To understand what to expect from full spectrum CBD, you need to have a general understanding of CBD. So, let’s get into it.  

Plants that are members of the cannabis family, like hemp and marijuana, have chemical compounds that are called cannabinoids. There are many of these compounds, with over 113 that researchers have identified so far. CBD is one of these cannabinoids. But one cannabinoid tends to stand out from all the others. It is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).  

THC’s fame is drawn from its psychoactive effects on people. This means that it is what causes the inebriating high that is often associated with cannabis. CBD often gets thrown in with THC in people’s minds, causing them to believe that it causes the psychoactive effects as THC. However, it does not cause any sort of high or any psychoactive effects.  

Even though you can find CBD in both marijuana and hemp, most companies will make their CBD products using hemp rather than marijuana. There are many reasons for this, but one is simply eased of extraction. Hemp has high levels of CBD and less than 0.3% THC content. This makes it so the extract is much richer in CBD than THC. Marijuana, on the other hand, contains very high THC levels and concentrations of CBD that vary wildly. This makes marijuana less than ideal for extracting CBD.    

But ease of extraction is not the only reason that CBD manufacturers prefer hemp. In 2018 a new version of the Farm Bill was passed that allowed for the growth and sale of hemp across the country (with restrictions in individual states). The Farm Bill was able to accomplish this because it affects all things agricultural in the United States. Every five years, this bill is reviewed and passed again. The 2018 version federally legalized hemp, among other things. Meanwhile, marijuana is still federally illegal in the United States. There are a handful of states that have legalized hemp on one level or another, but it is still illegal in most.  

In the last decade or so, there has been a significant increase in the number of studies on CBD. Most of them have been aimed at trying to figure out what benefits the cannabinoid may be able to offer people. Though this research is still very new, it is also fascinating. For example, some studies, like this one, have shown that CBD may be able to help its users achieve a higher state of calm. While other studies, like this one, have suggested that CBD could be useful in improving joint health.  

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