cbd versus thc
4 min.

✓ Evidence Based

4.9/5 - (8)

Last updated on 30 September 2021

What is THC?

THC is the common name for Tetrahydrocannabinol which is a psychotropic compound found in cannabis. It is the ingredient responsible for making users feel “high” and euphoric. This relaxing feeling is achieved by targeting cannabinoid receptors in the brain. This affects things like coordination, pleasure and cognitive abilities. It also increases the appetite by triggering the hypothalamus section in the brain which sends signals of hunger.

This property makes THC effective in mitigating a loss of appetite and nausea. This is the reason THC is useful in cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. Also, like CBD it has effects on our brains making it ideal for curing headaches or migraines, depression, anxiety, and insomnia. However, THC is illegal in most countries whereas hemp and CBD are legal in many places.

A larger dose of THC means you’ll get more “high”. You should be advised that overdosing is risky. A THC overdose causes the following:

  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Paranoia

What is CBD?

CBD or cannabidiol is the non-psychotropic cannabinoid in Cannabis Sativa. People who use CBD do not experience high sensational levels like THC users. CBD has little or no effect on your brain or mind while you are under its influence.

If you suffer from chronic body pain, a high CBD strain of cannabis is preferable because it won’t inhibit you from normal daily activities. For people who suffer from chronic pain due to an illness, CBD is recommended because it curbs the discomfort without tampering with their ability to function.

Difference between THC and CBD

THC and CBD are the most common cannabinoids. However, the two are very different. CBD is not psychotropic and it will not leave you feeling “high”. THC is the psychotropic cannabinoid which is responsible for the euphoric feeling that users often feel. This is mainly because it binds to cannabinoid 1 receptors in the brain. This alters how the brains functions and causes the “high” feeling. However, CBD does not bind to the cannabinoid 1 receptors. For this reason, it doesn’t have a psychotropic effect like THC. On the other hand, CBD has many effects on our bodies and minds. CBD can be used as an antidepressant or antipsychotic because of the way it reacts with other brain receptors.

Physical Interactions

CBD and THC cannabinoids react with the body differently. While CBD has indirect effects, THC is responsible for activating CB1 and CB2 receptors. Since THC binds with CB1 easily, it stimulates the body. This results in the following:

  • Fatigue
  • Increased hunger
  • Altered senses
  • Relaxation

CBD interacts with CB1 receptors indirectly in a process called modulation. The reason why CBD is popularly used is its ability to influence a number of receptors throughout our bodies.

Medical Use

While CBD and THC have many benefits and uses, the two cannabinoids are used differently. The different uses include the following:


  •  Painkiller
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Neuroprotective
  • Anti-tumoral
  • Anti-convulsant


  • Muscle relaxant
  • Appetite stimulant
  • Euphoria and relaxation
  • Anti-emetic
  • Painkiller
  • Drowsiness and sleep

What is Entourage Effect?

Entourage effect happens when natural components from a plant interact together with the body to form a stronger influence. The influence is stronger than when one of those components is used alone. It’s a synergistic effect when multiple compounds are combined in their natural state. It gives a multiplying effect and not a sum effect. The entourage effect makes the overall plant to have more effect in treating medical symptoms. We can feel the entourage effect more when we compare the effects of THC, the cannabis plant’s psychotropic compound with the effect of using the whole plant.

How does CBD work without THC?

Most people wonder if they can use cannabis without THC. The answer is that they can and the results can be excellent. This is a relief for people who would want to use cannabis without experiencing the euphoric feeling of THC. CBD oil contains essential minerals and vitamins, fatty acids, chlorophyll, fiber, proteins, and flavonoids. CBD without THC works wonders for thousands of users.


THC and CBD have several benefits and it can be difficult to decide which one to use. It all boils down to personal preference and your reason for using either THC or CBD. Also, the legality of the two comes to mind when choosing which one to use.

In most countries, the use of cannabis and THC is restricted but the use of pure CBD is less so. In order to achieve the euphoric effect known as “high”, people usually look for cannabis products containing THC. On the other hand, people who want to use cannabis purely for its medicinal properties and avoid the “high” feeling, should look for products containing CBD only.

Is CBD Better Than THC?

We cannot conclusively say that CBD is better than THC. The use of the cannabis plant has different effects on different people. Things like genetic make-up, for example, drug use history and personal expectations dictate preference.

However, research shows that THC is very potent compared to CBD. The catch is here though; research shows that the low potency of CBD could also mean that it has little clinical benefits.

No single component of the cannabis plant can conclusively be labeled as good or bad. So for us to say that CBD is better than THC; a lot of research is required. It is most important to note that CBD has very little side effects. Apart from some people complaining of a dry mouth, the side effects of CBD is very minimal compared to the clinical benefits of CBD.

On the other hand, THC has a higher number of side effects. The side effects include anxiety and paranoia. CBD can be used to cure psychotic disorders. THC cannot be substituted for CBD and be used to mitigate psychotic disorders.


When used together, the two cannabinoids can treat a wider variety of diseases. For example, the combination of CBD oil and THC can be used to cure depression, migraines, and arthritis. It’s better not to think either THC or CBD is better than the other but use each for its intended use. This approach will make us realize the full benefits of these cannabinoids.

Will show on drug testPossibleYes
Side effectsPossible, but minimalPsychoactive side effects
Gives a highNoYes
Helps with depressionYesNo
Eases painYesYes
Eases migraineYesYes
Interacts with the endocannabinoid systemYesYes
Helps with anxietyYesYes
Reduces seizuresYesNo
Helps with insomniaYesYes
Helps with nauseaYesYes
Helps with psychosisYesNo

Recommended articles: Is CBD legal in all 50 states? & In What Countries Is CBD Legal?


CBD Expert | View posts

With close to two decades of successful stint in the Media industry, I felt I was surely missing a piece in my life puzzle. I took a break and set out to seek the purpose of my life. I travelled, lived out of a suitcase, let things flow into life without resisting, and after five challenging years, I found my rhythm. I love to write about Cannabis and Health and try my best to simplify esoteric concepts into simple ideas for life.

Connect with CBD users on Facebook

Do you want to benefit from the experience of other CBD users? Do you have questions about CBD? Check out this active CBD group on Facebook.


  1. Pingback: Marijuana Legalization Workgroup for New Mexico | Hemppedia

  2. Pingback: What are Terpenes? | Hemppedia

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *