Cannabinoids are compounds found in cannabis that are located within the trichomes of the plant’s flower. The most notable cannabinoid is the phytocannabinoid tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC, which is the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis that interacts with our CB1 Receptor. Cannabidiol, or CBD, is another major compound of the plant that interacts with our CB2 Receptor.
Evidence suggests that there are at least 144 different cannabinoids isolated from cannabis as well as several hundreds of secondary compounds which include terpenes and flavonoids, all of which exhibit varied effects.
Cannabidiol: CBD –
“The Medicinal Cannabinoid”
CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that’s one of the most abundant compounds in cannabis. The cannabinoid which is psychoactive is THC. Researchers are fascinated by CBD because it seems to offer many health benefits without the psychoactive drawbacks of THC. A few of the better-studied conditions CBD seems to be beneficial for include schizophrenia, epilepsy, and certain forms of cancer. There’s also great hope that CBD could help with chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia and mental conditions like anxiety and depression.
Since the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, the marketplace for this non-psychoactive cannabinoid has exploded. Some researchers estimate CBD oil sales could go over the $20 billion mark within a few years.
Tetrahydrocannabinol: THC –
“The Bad Boy Cannabinoid”
Yes, THC is the cannabinoid that makes you “high.” According to federal law, THC, or marijuana, is listed as a schedule 1 narcotic under the Controlled Substances Act and is illegal to poses, sell, or consume. While THC is federally illegal, 16 U.S. States have legalized THC for adult-use while 35 states have legalized for medicinal-use and 16 states have decriminalized cannabis.
There’s a great deal of evidence that suggests this cannabinoid could help when used in the proper proportions. It’s well known that THC has a powerful analgesic effect, which could seriously help many people suffering from pain. Recent research has also shown that THC could reduce eye pressure in glaucoma patients and help chemo patients with poor appetite. Interestingly, CBD oil was found to have the exact opposite effect on glaucoma patients, which proves that different cannabinoids need to be used for different conditions.
Cannabichromen: CBC –
“The Forgotten One”
Let’s move on to a lesser-known cannabinoid: cannabichromene (CBC). Although less studied than CBD and THC, CBC does show great promise as a therapy for numerous conditions, especially chronic pain.
Many of the studies on CBC’s effect on the human body looked into its ability to block the perception of pain. For instance, the Second University of Naples found that CBC in combination with CBD decreased pain signals in a group of mice. Another study looking into this issue discovered CBC combined with THC had a powerful anti-inflammatory effect on mice.
Although most of the press on CBC is related to chronic pain, many doctors believe that’s only the beginning of CBC’s healing potential. Other studies looking into CBC have suggested it could repair brain damage, get rid of acne, and even improve mental health.