THC. The effects of high THC cannabis, Tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol.
THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the most well known cannabinoid in the cannabis plant, its primarily (but not exclusively) responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis. But it isn't the only cannabinoid, there are dozens of them and we are only just discovering how they work together and effect the recreational and medical cannabis experience.
Most people that buy cannabis seeds online are looking for a THC-rich variety which offers pleasurable smoking/vaping. However many people prefer the cannabidiol (‘CBD’) rich cannabis varieties, to be classified as CBD-rich they need to have 4% (or more) CBD in the dried cannabis buds. CBD-rich varieties tend to offer a stronger body-stone and less intense psychoactive effects. than THC-rich cannabis. CBD-rich varieties tend to be slightly more popular with medical cannabis users. But at Dutch Passion we see plenty of recreational cannabis growers enjoying the ‘smoother’ smoking experience of CBD-rich varieties.
These days you can buy feminized cannabis seeds online which will grow into mature female plants with varying levels of THC and CBD. Good quality indoor cannabis seeds generally produce plants with around 15-20% THC and under 1% of CBD. Other cannabinoids such as CBC, CBG, CBL etc tend to be present in trace quantities of around 0.2% or lower. Buying a CBD-rich cannabis seed variety will allow you to increase the amount of CBD in the dried buds to over 4%.
Much debate is ongoing in the cannabis community about the specific individual benefits of each cannabinoid. THC mimics the effect of the bodies natural anandamide, the so called ‘bliss’ molecule. CBD relieves convulsion, inflammation, anxiety, and nausea in animal studies. CBD may also counter the cognitive impairment caused by THC. CBG (Cannabigerol) is non-psychoactive but still influences the overall effects of Cannabis. CBG has been shown to promote apoptosis in cancer cells and inhibit tumor development in mice. Apoptosis is process of ‘self destruction’ in cancer cells, so cancer researchers are also interested in the use of cannabis. And there are many more cannabinoids that still need full investigation.
One real bonus to emerge from cannabis legalisation across the world is the chance to fully scientifically investigate the different effects of the cannabinoids. The scientific approach will not be easy since some of the cannabinoids are thought to amplify the effects of others. And some cannabinoids are thought to suppress the effects of others.
The result of this research will influence the future of cannabis breeding. Breeders will enjoy the challenge of selectively breeding new varieties to be rich in specific blends of cannabinoids.
The scientific research into cannabis and its numerous constituents will continue, but for now THC remains the molecule most closely associated with the effects of cannabis. It can increase appetite, which can be important to medical users, for example people undergoing chemotherapy. THC can also reduce nausea, another important medical benefit. And if you have too much THC-rich cannabis you can feel very sleepy, which is a crucial benefit for some medical users. And of course THC helps produce the wonderful feeling of relaxation which is so adored by recreational cannabis users. For many cannabis lovers, THC-rich cannabis is the best natural anti-anxiety herb on the planet.