Interest in cannabidiol is skyrocketing. You can now buy CBD oil anywhere. Ever since federal legalization of hemp under the 2018 Farm Bill, this compound is garnering much attention in the cannabis world, even taking center stage. It is not the only cannabinoid in hemp plants, however. There are others too, also worthy of praise. All cannabinoids have their own unique medical properties.
In fact, scientists are still discovering the compounds in hemp plants, some just as therapeutic as CBD:
Hemp plants contain an abundance of CBD. This cannabinoid is undoubtedly the most popular: It is fast becoming a household name. It is non-psychoactive and highly effective as a therapeutic agent. Conservative predictions estimate that the CBD market could easily surpass $20 billion by 2025. It is valuable medicinally, but without any of the psychoactive risks of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC.
THC is what makes users “high.” In hemp plants, this cannabinoid exists in quantities less than 0.3 percent, which is miniscule. It is not enough to feel stoned. However, despite its healing properties, cannabidiol works best with other cannabinoids, synergistically. It is effective on its own, but with other cannabinoids, its effect is even more powerful. For this reason, full spectrum CBD is always good choice.
CBD is not available naturally in hemp plants. It requires activation first, a process called decarboxylation. This is not unique to CBD: Most cannabinoids require this, which simply involves exposure to heat or UV light. Its original compound is cannabidiolic acid, which is naturally present in hemp plants. This inactive compound is what converts into CBD under decarboxylation.
Once activated, CBDA becomes CBD as we recognize it today. However, CBDA has its own venerable properties, which is why many health experts recommend eating raw hemp. CBDA, many argue, is purer unheated, and for treating some medical conditions, some scientists believe CBDA more effective than CBD, particularly for those who do not wish to decarboxylate by smoking.
Because of CBD’s prominence in mainstream society, many confuse it with cannabinol, or CBN. CBN is distinct. It has its own value. It has its own unique properties. Interesting, CBN derives from oxidized THC. Despite this, laboratory tests prove it non-psychoactive. CBN converts from THC after plant maturation. You only find it in plants left long past harvest. Today, many growers do this purposefully.
Of course, THC is only available in minute amounts in hemp plants. This is why CBN is not overly abundant in hemp either: It is also available in trivial quantities. For this reason, most CBN harvesters and researchers use marijuana plants to extract it. CBN is particularly useful as a sedative. It also helps with appetite problems. Studies are still underway and science continually finds more uses for it.
Although cannabigerol measures less than one percent in most hemp plants, it is debatably the most important cannabinoid. Its significance is because its original form, cannabigerolic acid, or CBGA, is the original compound: It is where both tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, or THCA, and CBDA originate. Without CBGA, there would be THCA, CBDA, THC, or CBD. It is the parent of some important cannabinoids.
As hemp plants mature, various enzymes break CBGA down into THCA, CBDA, and a few other acids. What this means is that the higher the CBD concentration in a hemp plant, the less CBG it will have by harvest’s end, since most of it will convert into CBD. To increase CBG content for extraction, growers are not harvesting in the early stages of flowering, when plants start budding. This is when CBGA is highest.
Of course, when CBGA is available abundantly, it will convert into CBG through decarboxylation, or exposure to heat. Because CBGA is the precursor to such a variety of highly prominent, in demand compounds, growers can use the structure of CBGA to grow plants with higher quantities of specific cannabinoids. Further, CBG is also promising medicine. It, for example, treats glaucoma effectively.
Cannabichromene is another lesser-known compound with immense therapeutic promise. Scientists first isolated it over half a century ago. This cannabinoid is non-psychoactive and derives from decarboxylation of cannabichromenic acid, or CBCA. Climate plays an important role in CBC production. In tropical areas with a warmer climate, levels are higher than when it grows in colder areas.
Regardless of where one grows hemp plants, CBC will never exceed levels of one percent. It is not particularly abundant, but it is important, especially for medicinal use. Scientists find CBC responsible for the calming, anxiolytic effects of hemp, making it ideal for treating anxiety and depression. It has a notably positive effect on mood, especially when paired with THC, and CBD.
Scientists very recently discovered cannabicyclol. Researchers do not yet know too much about this cannabinoid, other than the fact it grows very well in hemp plants left to mature for a long time. It is also available in higher concentrations in older strains, such as those found in China and Pakistan. It seems CBL existed in greater quantities in days gone by. However, it still exists in trace amounts.
It appears that CBL works to affect the efficacy of other cannabinoids. On its own, scientists found no discernable effects in low doses. In slightly higher doses, it appears to improve focus, breathing, and sleeping patterns, but suffice to say, more research is urgently necessary. Scientists have much study ahead unravelling the mysteries of its prospective uses and potential risks.
Nobody yet knows just how many cannabinoids exist in hemp plants. Recent estimates indicate more than 100, and while CBD remains the most famous of them, plenty others exist too, and each with their own healing potential. Hemp plants are complex. Their compounds are useful alone, but even more effective combined. If you are considering CBD therapy, full spectrum will offer the most benefit.
The best place to buy hemp oil is online. You can buy CBD oil almost anywhere these days, but not all of it meets safety and quality standards. It is wiser to buy from licensed suppliers who send their products to an independent laboratory for testing. That way, you know exactly which cannabinoids you are getting, and in their exact quantities. In this way, you can treat yourself effectively.