CBD VS Marijuana: Is CBD a Drug or Medicinal?

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I am sure you have seen CBD hit the market by storm. It is literally everywhere you look. You can find it at your local gas station, at vitamin shops, and online. But, you may be a little leery because doesn’t CBD come from the marijuana plant? Isn’t marijuana a drug? The answer to both these questions is yes; however, there is more to it than just that. So, is CBD a drug or is it medicinal? Here is the low down on CBD VS Marijuana.

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CBD VS Marijuana

Only about 20-years ago, the mass majority of people thought anything to do with hemp or marijuana plants was a drug that we never wanted our teens to try. Today, this just isn’t the case! But, some are still concerned about CBD.

What is Marijuana?

Marijuana is a plant! Seriously, guys, it is a plant found within the cannabis family. We use two types of cannabis plants in our society: Hemp and Marijuana.

Cannabis Plants

It is important to know the difference between marijuana and hemp plants because many people, including our own federal government, have grouped these two different plants together as being the same plant. Although hemp and marijuana are from the same family, they are very different in nature.

Marijuana plants: THC is the main chemical component found in marijuana. It is responsible for the psychoactive effects you get when smoking it. There is 25-30% THC in the marijuana plant.

Hemp plants: Hemp on the other hand, only has a THC level of .3%. This means it is nearly impossible to feel “high” from smoking hemp. Hemp also has very high concentrations of another chemical compound called CBD.

What is CBD?

CBD is one of over 100 different cannabinoids that are found in both marijuana and hemp plants. CBD can be derived from marijuana plants, but is only legal in the states when it is derived from industrial hemp plants. CBD interacts with your body’s endocannabinoid system to give an array of medicinal benefits.

The History of CBD

Although it may seem like CBD is a new commodity, people have actually been cultivating cannabis plants since 4000 BC! In fact, we have records of King Henry VII requiring farmers to set aside 1/4th an acre per 60 acres of land for hemp cultivation.

In 1563, a Portuguese doctor realized that when he gave hemp to some of his patients that their pain decreased, they were happier, and they were eating healthier. Around the same time, another doctor in China documented the anti-nausea effects of cannabis.

With all that being said, many people will not remember the history above. But some may remember the history from the 1940s. During the 1940s, a chemist named Dr. Roger Adams isolated the CBD compound from marijuana and hemp plants. Sadly, he could not identify what he had isolated.

In the 1960s, however, Raphael Mechoulam continued Dr. Adams’ research and found that they had isolated the structure of CBD. At this point, we learned that CBD was NOT psychoactive. In the 70s, British pharmacies referred to CBD tinctures as medicinal supplements.

It was not until the story of Charlotte Figi that Americans began recognizing CBD as a medicinal chemical. Charlotte had severe epilepsy and through the use of CBD, her seizures were lessened, prolonging her life. After this story, a battle to make CBD legal started.

Today, CBD is legal in all 50 states. Many have found it to reduce anxiety, relieve pain caused by arthritis, eliminate depression, and promote sleep. But, how does it work?

How Does CBD Work

What we have found is that within each of our own bodies, we have a complex system called the Endocannabinoid System. CBD and other cannabinoids work within that system to offer us a plethora of benefits.

Endocannabinoid System

Our Endocannabinoid system is a collection of cell receptors and molecules. Receptors are found on your cells. Certain cells have receptors for cannabinoids like CBD. Receptors are kind of like a lock to your cells. They can only be unlocked when the right molecule binds to them. When molecules bind with the receptors to unlock the cell, it activates those cells to do something within your body. These molecules give the cell very specific instructions.

Within our endocannabinoid system, we have two different cell receptors on our cells. These receptors are cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2). Pretty basic, right?! This is because our body actually produces (cannabinoid) keys to unlock these receptors. We call these cannabinoids endocannabinoids because they are within the body.

Cannabinoids get their name from the cannabis plant because that is where we first found them before we realized we had a system that made them. The two endocannabinoids that we produce within our own bodies are Anandamide and 2-AG.

We first discovered that the cannabinoid THC closely resembled Anandamide. Later, we found out that CBD also resembled our endocannabinoids, but did not have psychoactive effects as THC did.

Both THC and CBD interact with our receptors, allowing our cells to give instructions to various parts of our body. In fact, the receptors we have in our endocannabinoid system are responsible for keeping our body and its functions in homeostasis.

This is how they work…….

The CB1 receptors

The CB1 receptors are found in parts of our brain. This includes the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala. They keep our nervous system, intestines, connective tissues, gonads, and other glands throughout the body in homeostasis.

So, when you receive extra cannabinoids like CBD that interact with your receptors, it can give you the following benefits:

The CB2 Receptors

CB2 receptors are found in your spleen, tonsils, thymus, immune cells, monocytes, macrophages, B&T cells, and microglia. Most of us have no idea what these things in our body are, but these receptors keep them in homeostasis.

When cannabinoids such as CBD activate the CB2 receptors, it can have an effect on your entire body including:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Gastrointestinal disease
  • Pain
  • Cancer
  • Bone and skin health
  • Psychiatric disease
  • Neurodegenerative disease

Both THC and CBD can help keep your body in homeostasis. However, THC is a chemical that causes that “high” feeling. So, many would argue that it is not fully medicinal. But, what about CBD?

Is CBD a Drug or Medicinal

As you can see, CBD is a natural chemical that has positive effects on keeping our bodies’ in homeostasis. By isolating the CBD from marijuana or hemp plants, we have found that there are many benefits! Just a few include alleviating anxiety, helping with depression, and relieving pain. But, don’t take my word for it; check out the research (each ailment is linked to a study with CBD).

Related: Free CBD Dosage Printable

CBD Relieves Pain

CBD helps relieve pain by binding to the receptors in our nervous system. It decreases pain because the CBD tells the receptors to give instructions to the cell to reduce inflammation and stop neuro transmitting pain.

Since 2900 BC, marijuana has been used to relieve pain, but since we have been able to isolate the CBD, we are now able to relieve pain without the “high” effect of marijuana. This is because science has found that the main component that worked to relieve pain in marijuana was actually the CBD.

Studies have found that giving CBD injections to rats reduced pain responses to surgical incisions. Oral CBD reduced sciatic nerve pain and inflammation. Additionally, studies have found that Sativex (a combination of THC and CBD with higher CBD count) drastically improved pain, as well as walking and muscle spasms in those that took it.

CBD Minimizes Depression

Did you know that 16 million adults suffer from depression every year?! It is one of the most common mental illnesses among adults. Many take antidepressants which can help, but they can oftentimes make it worse. CBD, on the other hand, can minimize depression without all the added side effects.

CBD oil minimizes depression by increasing serotonin production. It does this by activating our 5-HT1A receptor which is the receptor that triggers the release of serotonin. By increasing this serotonin production and stabilizing it, CBD minimizes depression without other medication. Check out this study to see how it works!

CBD Alleviates Anxiety

Anxiety can have devastating impacts on your health and well-being. Many people with anxiety turn to anti-depressants and anxiety medications prescribed by doctors. Although these medications can be helpful, they also come with many side effects that can make it worse. In addition to side effects, medications such as benzos for anxiety can be habit-forming. This can lead to addiction, withdrawal, and ultimately other issues in life.

CBD, however, has been proven to provide a great, natural alternative to combating anxiety. This is because CBD has the ability to act on the brain’s receptors for serotonin.  In a study of 24 people with social anxiety, all of them that received CBD had significantly less anxiety and discomfort. They received 600mg of CBD.

Because CBD has so many medicinal benefits without side effects or a drugged feeling, CBD is not a drug. It is medicinal in nature!

Is CBD Right for You

With all the medicinal benefits CBD has to offer, you may be wondering if CBD is right for you. Because I am not a doctor, I cannot tell you 100% that CBD is right for you. However, I can tell you that CBD has helped many to get off prescription medications and live a happier, fuller life.

Final Word

If you are considering using CBD to help with pain, depression, anxiety, or other ailments, I highly recommend discussing it with your doctor. You should also do more research into dosages (Dosage Printable HERE) for specific ailments, the best CBD companies, and other studies on the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

Have you tried CBD oil for anxiety, depression, or pain? If so, please share with us how it made you feel in the comments below! Thanks for stopping by, please be safe and do what is right for your family concerning CBD vs. Marijuana. May God bless this world, Linda

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18 thoughts on “CBD VS Marijuana: Is CBD a Drug or Medicinal?

  • August 4, 2019 at 7:53 am
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    CBD and marijuana are both a drug and like all drugs it has medicinal value. That being said the CBD market is a mess with no possible way of knowing what you are getting.
    Probably because it’s just another excuse for folks to do what they want to do and not being focused on curing or treating.

    Reply
    • August 4, 2019 at 8:08 am
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      Hi Matt, I agree with you about the CBD market mess. I live in Utah and it’s really sad that so many state/church leaders are closed-minded on CBD and Marijuana. It comes down to doing the research which is what I did. Thanks, Matt, Linda

      Reply
  • August 4, 2019 at 9:59 am
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    I am 57 years old with arthritis in both hips and back. I struggle daily just to walk. I work at a job that requires a lot of walking and standing in one place. When I get home, all i can do is in a sit in a comfy chair or lay down in bed with a heating pad. I was taking oxycodone and norco. It allowed me to function and go to work. The CBD oils have made a world of differance. I am now off the oxy and on the lowest dose of norco possible. I get a hemp oil that is THC free from my doctors office. I have never tested positive for any drugs. I dont want to go back to living without it. My Dad has problems with his knees and has tried it. He also is doing very well now without much discomfort. He hold a temple recommendation and can now work in the temple again.

    Reply
    • August 4, 2019 at 11:11 am
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      Hi Dayle, oh how I love hearing this! Off the oxy, that is awesome!! I have really bad arthritis throughout my body and have had since a young child. I’m so glad to hear you are getting some relief without having to use so mmany BIG pharma drugs!! This is wonderful news. Linda

      Reply
  • August 4, 2019 at 1:08 pm
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    Thanks for this thoughtful article, Linda. So many have been brainwashed against this wonderful plant, and I was one of them until my kind nurse recommended cannabis for my muscular dystrophy-caused pain, depression & lack of appetite. CBD alone didn’t work for me; I have to have some THC as well, so it’s fortunate that I live in one of the many states which recognize its medicinal value. This God-given plant has replaced all the dangerous pharmaceutical painkillers & antidepressants they tried to give me, so call me Grateful Granny!

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    • August 4, 2019 at 3:55 pm
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      Hi Roxanne, what a great comment! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. It really is a God-given plant and I’m glad you live in a state that understands the need for the natural growing plant. I love the title of Grateful Granny! When Utah gets their act together I will call myself Grateful Granny #2! Hugs, Linda

      Reply
  • August 4, 2019 at 7:52 pm
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    I’ve used both CBD and THC for pain and sleep issues. Both have worked like a charm and completely changed my life. I’ve always looked for natural sources for sleep because of my fear/disdain of pharmaceuticals. I started researching both CBD and THC for my Mother’s extreme anxiety, due to her dementia. Although I didn’t have access to either for her, I’ve used both with great success particularly for my insomnia. I sleep like a baby and wake up refreshed. I’m old enough to realize that common sense always prevails and in time, this too will become not only acceptable, but the norm.

    Reply
    • August 4, 2019 at 8:31 pm
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      Hi Becky, oh how I love your common-sense comment! It means the world to me, my friend! I’m very anxious for it to be the norm because there are so many people in Utah and other states that can safely use this over big pharma products. Thank you, hugs! Linda

      Reply
    • August 5, 2019 at 5:08 am
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      Hi Dutch Natural Healing, wow I love your website! Thanks for stopping by, Linda

      Reply
  • August 5, 2019 at 7:55 pm
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    I have 4 kinds of arthritis, the worst being psoriatic which is now creeping from the hips into the spine. My doctor recommended I try certified pure hemp CBD oil. It has seriously reduced the pain, helped me get a good nights sleep, and my wife said helped my disposition, Ha. I have been on injections for 5 years, I am now on taltz injections after trying two other types. CBD is not a cure, there is no cure for arthritis, but Pure CBD oil is the best pain relief I have found, yes I have been on pain meds that raised my blood pressure, as well as caused stomach problems. I now have much, much less pain, normal blood pressure, no stomach problems, and get out of bed and go, no pain meds. I have blood work every four months to make sure the taltz is not messing with any vital organs, the CBD does not show up in the results. I now walk without the crutch’s or the cane, 30 mins. a day on the tread mill, my advice is to try certified pure hemp CBD oil if anyone has serious pain, what do you have to lose ????

    Reply
    • August 6, 2019 at 10:45 am
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      Hi Hearl, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your comment!! I will start using it once Utah gets their act together. If we could only get people to do the research and get big pharma out the picture we will once again be able to live with natural remedies. Good comment, Linda

      Reply
      • August 7, 2019 at 10:53 am
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        Linda, my Rheumatologist recommended I try CBD oil, he believes that people need to try natural remedies whenever possible. He believes people need to get away from Pharmaceutical meds as much as possible, those med are chemicals, while helping certain types of ailments can create other serious problems because the chemicals are a foreign substance not contained, manufactured, or accepted by the body
        The Psoriatic is by far my worst enemy, the Rheumatoid that affects the joints is greatly helped by the CBD oil by reducing pain by as much as 90 %. The Gout is a form of Arthritis that is too high a level of Uric that I have also, but can be stopped dead in it`s tracks with treatment. My Rheumatologist has done a great amount of study on CBD, it is not a chemical, but a natural substance that has ingredients the body needs and also activates beneficial substances in the body to help heal and fight off illness. There are many web sights, and outlets for CBD, be careful where you purchase it, only buy it from a trusted source, CBD is taking the nation by a storm, and as in any other product, there are many “watered down” versions of CBD.

        Your articles, your information, your will to inform and help people are second to none, keep up the great work, God Bless you…..

        Reply
        • August 7, 2019 at 12:19 pm
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          Hi Hearl, I work really hard to get good information to my readers. I’m still looking for sources to buy CBD here in Utah. The ones I see bloggers selling is not what I want. I will keep looking. Great comment, let’s inform the world, Linda

          Reply
  • August 6, 2019 at 10:13 pm
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    I actually found that CBD helped my son who has ADHD. When using it, he did so much better in school! I will stand by this stuff until the end.

    Reply
    • August 7, 2019 at 7:50 am
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      Hi Ashley, you are not the first person I have heard say this, great comment! Linda

      Reply

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