How to Explain the Difference Between Marijuana and Hemp CBD to Your ParentsAamna Wasim
The CBD market is booming nowadays, and it seems that everyone is jumping on the bandwagon. Everyone, except our parents, who may be unwilling to try it because they tend to associate it with marijuana. This very misconception prevents many older people from benefiting from the several health and wellness benefits that CBD has to offer. Here’s how to explain the difference between marijuana and hemp CBD to your parents and remove all confusion!
Hemp vs Marijuana: What’s the Deal?
Simply put, hemp and marijuana both belong to the same biological categorisation of the cannabis plant. They are in no way any different kind of species, simply different names for the cannabis plant. Some people call the plant hemp, some call it cannabis. Both terminologies are correct. However, there are some important points you must remember:
- ‘Marijuana’ and ‘cannabis’ are not interchangeable and do not mean the same thing.
- Not all varieties of cannabis contain a compound called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Marijuana only refers to those varieties of cannabis that do contain THC.
- According to experts, there are more than 700 different varieties or strains of cannabis, each with a different chemical composition.
Let’s now take a look at how the law differentiates between hemp and marijuana.
Legal Definition of Hemp
A variety of the cannabis sativa plant, hemp belongs to the same family as marijuana. Several countries, however, differentiate between marijuana and hemp by the amount of THC produced as per the dry weight of the plant. THC is the psychoactive compound that is found in high quantities in marijuana. It is responsible for inducing a high or ‘euphoric’ feeling. The general effects include an altered sensory perception, impacting sound, sight, and taste.
While both hemp and marijuana contain several compounds such as different flavonoids, terpenes and other cannabinoids, the legal definition differentiating the two rests solely on the amount of THC present. For instance, in the US, hemp basically refers to cannabis that contains less than 0.3% THC. On the other hand, the European Union (EU) defines industrial hemp as containing less than 0.2% THC.
CBD, short for cannabidiol, is a compound found in hemp and marijuana strains of the cannabis plant. However, hemp contains more CBD and considerably less THC than marijuana. This is the very reason that CBD oil is mainly extracted from industrial hemp. Moreover, in the UK, CBD is only legal as long as it is obtained from an industrial hemp strain that is approved by the EU or one that comes from outside the EU. CBD products must also contain less than 1 mg of THC per finished product to be legal in the UK. Cannabis oil, which has a high THC content, is therefore not allowed, and considered illegal in the UK.
While the above facts will undoubtedly help explain the difference between hemp and marijuana to your parents, let’s consider an analogy that will be right up their alley.
Hemp and Marijuana Are as Different As a Greyhound and Pug
A dog analogy is one that will be understood immediately by your parents and everyone else you’re trying to explain the difference between hemp and marijuana to. Dogs, like cannabis, represent a broad category of canines. These can range from St Bernards to small Yorkshire terriers. Now dogs can be grouped into several categories such as gun dogs, toy dogs, hound dogs and so on. Each of these has been bred for different characteristics. For instance, greyhounds have been used by hunters for their speed and ability to track and chase prey. Others, like the pug, make good domestic pets. In the end, even with different characteristics, both greyhounds and pugs are dogs. This is the same with different varieties of cannabis. They have been bred to serve different purposes. Both marijuana and hemp are the same plant species, but they can be as different as a greyhound and pug.
One of the most famous cannabinoids found in both hemp and marijuana is cannabidiol (CBD). It is completely non-psychoactive and non-intoxicating, which means that it won’t cause a ‘high’. As mentioned before, only CBD derived from hemp is legal in the UK. So, you can tell that to your parents who might be hesitating to try CBD, just because they misperceive it as marijuana and causing a high. You can assure them confidently that one thing hemp CBD will not do is get them stoned. Rather, it may help them with a variety of different health problems they’re suffering from! It can be taken in a variety of different forms such as tinctures, capsules, gummies, balm and can also be smoked and vaped. Let’s take a quick look at some of CBD’s potential health benefits.
Potential Health Benefits of CBD
According to anecdotal evidence by CBD users as well as some medical research, the following are some of the potential health benefits of CBD:
- CBD Can Help Reduce Stress and Promote Mental Wellness:
According to various animal and human studies, CBD is noted to promote positive mental well-being and reduce stress. CBD basically interacts with the CB1 and serotonin 5-HT1A receptors present in the brain. These are responsible for monitoring anxiety-inducing behaviour. Serotonin is typically low in people suffering from stress and anxiety. CBD helps to alter these serotonin signals and produces a calming effect.
One Brazilian study suggests that a 30 mg dose of CBD significantly helped reduce stress in 57 healthy males, who took part in a simulated public speaking test. In another study, the use of CBD oil was seen to lead to a decrease in insomnia and anxiety in children suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Moreover, it has also been observed that when a person is more relaxed, they tend to sleep better. So, CBD also helps in improving sleep.
- CBD Can Help Reduce Minor Aches and Pains:
CBD has been seen to have anti-inflammatory properties and, by this mechanism, have mild pain-relieving effects. This all happens when CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid receptors. Our Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is responsible for regulating and balancing a variety of functions, such as pain, sleep, appetite and so on. A recent study shows that CBD may help alleviate everyday aches and pains by modifying the endocannabinoid receptor activity.
As well as the above-listed benefits, CBD may also benefit heart health, help reduce acne and elevate mood.
Hemp and marijuana are not two different species of the cannabis plant. Rather, they are two different strains or varieties of the same plant. If your parents are unwilling to try CBD just because they think that hemp CBD is the same as marijuana, you can explain to them that is not the case. Hemp contains extremely low levels of THC, the psychoactive compound responsible for causing a high. Marijuana, on the other hand, contains high levels of THC and incredibly low levels of CBD. CBD derived from industrial hemp is legal in the UK and has several potential health and wellness benefits.