*Updates August 2019*
Not everyone likes getting high. Even less people enjoy the panic attacks, laziness and munchies that often come with it.
We all experience highs a little differently, so whatever your personal reason, if you’re looking to get the benefits of marijuana without as strong of a high —read onward, friend.
But first, some Cannabis 101. If you’re already a cannabis expert, feel free to scroll past it, smartypants.
The Six Words of Cannabis
CANNABIS, HEMP, MARIJUANA, CANNABINOIDS, CBD, THC
Cannabis is a plant genus, which (scientifically) branches off into three species: sativa, indica and ruderalis. If you’ve been to a medical marijuana dispensary, you’ve likely seen those terms (with the exception of ruderalis; that one doesn’t get much love). These three species have slightly different looking leaves, and contain different cannabinoid and terpenoid profiles.
Confused? Don’t worry, it’s far more common to branch cannabis off into two simple categories: hemp and marijuana.
Originally, “cannabis” was the only word that existed. “Hemp” and “marijuana” were adopted much later.
So, technically, it’s 100% accurate to call hemp and/or marijuana, “cannabis.”
But let’s be honest, people are going to assume you mean marijuana. A lot of people don’t realize hemp is a type of cannabis.
In the future, I’m sure we’ll start referring to everything as cannabis, with an indication of it’s THC:CBD ratio. Let’s just hope that doesn’t come in the form of ridiculous marijuana strain names, like “Alaskan Thunder Fuck.”
As funny as marijuana strain names may be, they certainly aren’t the reason people are finally starting to take cannabis seriously.
Next, we have marijuana. This refers to cannabis plants that are psychoactive.
Some people (and cannabis companies) refuse to use this word. If you look at its history, it was created by Harry Anslinger who used the era’s racist tendencies to propel his anti-cannabis propaganda.
“There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the U.S., and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others.” -Harry Anslinger
Yeah, so that happened.
Moving on, to less cringe-worthy facts…
Hemp looks extremely similar to marijuana, but is typically grown outdoors in conditions that allow it to reach impressive heights.
The biggest difference between hemp and marijuana is that hemp won’t get you high. Even if you smoked an entire field of hemp, you wouldn’t get high.
I mean, you’d probably have a pretty bad day, because that’s completely mental. But you wouldn’t get high.
The reason hemp doesn’t get you high is because of its cannabinoid profile. Cannabinoids are a class of chemical compounds.
Did you notice that? “Canna” binoid?
Cannabinoids were first found in cannabis, so that’s where the name comes from. But don’t let that fool you, they’re found in other plants and some are even produced within the body. (To read about your Endocannabinoid System, click here and scroll to the last section.)
There are 80+ different cannabinoids. That seems like a daunting number, but I want to stress that nearly all of them are found in extremely small amounts. I’m sure there are other beneficial ones, but only two are found in large quantities and studied frequently: THC and CBD.
THC puts the “medical” in “medical marijuana.” Well…and the “marijuana.”
Shoot, that didn’t work at all.
THC gives medical marijuana its name and most of its benefits.
It’s the one and only (as far as we know) intoxicating cannabinoid. So, THC is the reason marijuana makes you high.
It’s worth noting that different strains of marijuana can affect you differently depending on other factors —mainly, which terpenes are in it. We won’t get into terps here, so delve into that later if you’re interested.
CBD, obviously, does not get you high since THC claimed that role.
What’s not so obvious is that CBD has antipsychotic properties.
That means CBD can actually counteract the “high” effects of THC.
CBD offers even more benefits for some people than THC does. It has its own laundry list of properties, the big two being anti-anxiety and anti-inflammatory.
(Side note: CBD from marijuana is only available in certain states under their MMJ laws, while CBD from hemp is legal.)
The Entourage Effect
Marijuana is grown primarily for its THC content, but some strains also contain a decent amount of CBD. We’ve even seen 1:1 ratios, which is huge for people with certain wellness issues.
Sure, we can isolate cannabinoids and terpenes and study their individual properties and effects. But it’s believed that they actually work best when there’s a wide-spectrum present.
In other words, CBD alone (which is only possible to achieve by filtering out everything else in the oil, leaving a CBD crystalline behind that can be crushed into a fine powder/isolate) —breathe— isn’t always as effective as a cannabis oil or bud that has all of those naturally occurring cannabinoids, terpenes, and phytonutrients.
Cannabis will always, naturally, contain a unique profile of terpenes and cannabinoids, with countless possible variations.
THC and CBD are the driving force of cannabis, but not the only force.
When those compounds work together, they have what’s called an entourage effect.
I guess you can say we’ve…weeded through the confusion. Now it’s time to jump into the main event, which we’ll keep short and sweet.
THE MAIN EVENT
What Do You Do with CBD Isolate?
CBD isolate is a crystalline (typically crushed down into a fine powder) that is 97-99% pure CBD. It’s a powerful tool, as you’ll see.
CBD isolate sometimes gets a bad rap because it doesn’t offer the entourage effect of a full-spectrum CBD oil. It does, however, still help a lot of people. For instance, one of my personal favorite products for anxiety is Alternate Vape, which is made with CBD isolate.
CBD isolate can be added into existing cannabis products to boost the CBD content.
If you missed it earlier, CBD has been found to have antipsychotic properties. This means it counteracts some of the psychoactive effects of THC.
By sprinkling CBD isolate onto cannabis buds or wax, many find they can drastically weaken the “high”, while getting the therapeutic benefits of THC and CBD.
You can buy CBD isolate online, and little goes a long way so remember to use it sparingly. It’s 97-99% CBD. That’s incredibly potent. Experiment to find what amount works best for you.
It can also be sprinkled over food or added to beverages. Unlike CBD oil or cannabis oil, it blends well into just about everything.
We hope you’ve found this information helpful. This information is not meant to replace your own research or advice from your doctor. It’s just some friendly tips and tricks from me to you!
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