WHAT IS CBD?
CBD is a naturally-occurring chemical found in the Cannabis sativa plant. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cannabis is a plant genus that contains many different compounds that can have different effects on the body.
Two different cannabis plants are marijuana and hemp. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) are two of the chemicals found in those plants. Marijuana has higher levels of THC and lower levels of CBD. In comparison, hemp has higher levels of CBD and lower levels of THC. Unlike THC, which creates a "high" when used, CBD is not psychoactive, according to the CDC. Therein lies the major difference.
So, CBD Won't Get Me High?
The short answer: Nope. While cannabis plants contain hundreds of compounds (called phytocannabinoids), there are two main players: CBD and THC, according to the CDC. "CBD is the non-psychoactive portion of the plant, so what that means is you won't have any effects like euphoria," explained Junella Chin, DO, an osteopathic physician and a medical cannabis expert for cannabisMD.
According to Dr. Chin, about 5% of people say they feel altered after taking CBD. This is uncommon but for unknown reasons, some people simply react differently to CBD. "Usually, they're the same people who have side effects from Advil or Tylenol," Dr. Chin noted. You never know how your body will react to any new supplement, so when taking CBD for the first time, do so safely with medical supervision. It's also crucial to buy third-party-tested CBD for quality assurance. Because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn't regulate over-the-counter CBD, buying a product that is more or less potent than advertised or even contains small amounts of THC is possible. And while it doesn't regulate CBD products, the FDA will issue warning letters to companies who violate certain laws, such as those producing products containing THC or making false medical claims on their labels.