August 20, 2022 5 min read


What are CBD edibles? What are some of the side effects of CBD edibles when consumed? How effective is CBD edible when consumed? Does the consumption of CBD edibles make an individual’s eyes red? This article explains if CBD edibles make an individual’s eyes red.

Red eyes are among the side effects associated with using marijuana. Cannabidiol (CBD) is derived from either hemp or marijuana plant, the main cannabis variants. Marijuana constitutes high tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a psychoactive compound responsible for eye redness, but hemp contains high cannabidiol contents, with health benefits.

Cannabidiol (CBD) is an active cannabis compound that produces many health benefits. Cannabis has two major types, including marijuana (cannabis sativa) and hemp plants. Marijuana constitutes high tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), a psychoactive molecule responsible for red eyes in consumers. However, hemp contains high amounts of essential cannabidiol contents. CBD edibles include all consumable foods, beverages, snacks, gums, and brownies infused with cannabidiol compounds. The inability to distinguish between marijuana- and hemp-CBD-derived infused edibles has caused people to misunderstand the side effects. Do you still inquire whether CBD edibles make your eyes red?

Cannabidiol (CBD), Marijuana, and Eye Redness

Marijuana can assist in calming various medical symptoms, and conditions lack sufficient evidence. Cannabis plants differ significantly, especially in their chemical composition, but typically, CBD and THC are major cannabis compounds that influence human physiology greatly. According to Smith et al. (2018), tetrahydrocannabinol is responsible for red eyes as when it penetrates the human body; it de-escalates blood pressure. It thus widens blood vessels, including small ones behind your eyes. As a result, the blood movement towards your eyes elevates significantly. It decreases pressure accumulation and explains why high-tetrahydrocannabinol cannabis is utilized for glaucoma. It includes all THC consumption, such as high-THC oils and edibles that will generate equally eye redness as smoking. The escalated blood flow towards the eyes leads to watery, puffy, irritated, red-looking eyes. This condition has become stereotypical, particularly in marijuana consumers, over a long period. However, there are mechanisms to remove eye redness. Strategies for mollification and avoiding cannabis sativa-induced blood-like eyes include premium eye drops and proper hydration.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is an active compound derived from either marijuana (cannabis sativa) or hemp plants, the major cannabis varieties. CBD molecule has potential health benefits, and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a psychoactive substance responsible for high effects in consumers. Marijuana contains high tetrahydrocannabinol contents, while hemp is rich in cannabidiol. In 2018, the Farm Bill federally-authorized industrial hemp cultivation and consumption. However, only CBD products containing below 0.3 percent THC were legalized for individuals. (2019) stated that marijuana-derived products are still banned in most states across the nation while others allow only recreational and medical use. CBD products like edibles are legal in most States since consumers experience many health benefits with insignificant side effects. CBD comes in different formulations, including isolates, broad-and full-spectrum. Isolate edibles are the purest CBD varieties because they exclusively contain cannabidiol contents without other cannabis compounds. Full-spectrum constitutes all cannabis substances like essential oils, cannabinol, tetrahydrocannabinol, and terpenes.

In contrast, broad-spectrum includes all these ingredients in full-spectrum counterpart except the tetrahydrocannabinol molecule. These products are safe and cannot cause eye redness or psychoactive feelings. However, ensure that you purchase high-quality products below 0.3 THC to avoid experiencing intoxicating effects.

How Does CBD Works?

CBD edibles contain certain amounts of cannabinoids which interacts with body systems to yield the anticipated effects. Every human being has an endocannabinoid system (ECS). This complex neurochemical system modulates homeostasis (a state of body balance) in other organs and systems. Freundt-Revilla et al. (2017) stated that the endocannabinoid receptors CB2 and CB1 are scattered in the human body, particularly skin, immune cells, brain, peripheral, and central nervous system. The endocannabinoid system modulates homeostasis by releasing endogenous cannabinoids. Such substances interfere with main biological body function, including sensory perception, circadian rhythm, energy metabolism, neuroprotection, immune response, fertility, body temperature, appetite, memory, and mood. Chayasirisobhon(2019) stated that cannabidiol communicates with the endocannabinoid system by indirectly binding the cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2). This mechanism sustains enough body endocannabinoids’ concentration, therefore, deterring imbalances between various systems and safeguarding people from mental and physical ailments. Cannabidiol functions to stabilize such imbalances and restore your body equilibrium when the system destabilizes. THC and CBD interact with body endocannabinoid receptors differently. Tetrahydrocannabinol interacts directly with CB1 and CB2 receptors, where it dilates blood vessels due to increased blood pressure, thus causing high reddening. Also, CBD interacts indirectly with these receptors to promote the normal functioning of the endocannabinoid system, thus restoring the body's homeostasis.

Does CBD Cause Red Eyes?

After the hemp legalization in 2018, most individuals assumed that cannabidiol had become lawful throughout the United States. Specifically, the law allowed hemp products with high cannabidiol, and low THC content as hemp-sourced cannabidiol products like edibles are accessible in most regions within the United States. Customers purchase these products because they have no intoxicating effects, as CBD products have potential health advantages. According to  Piper et al. (2017), enthusiasts with sleeping disorders, pain, anxiety, and stress reported positive impacts after consuming CBD edibles. Abernethy (2019) explained that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had approved Epidiolex drugs to diagnose epilepsy. However, marijuana is among the schedule 1 compounds in the United States.

For this reason, its possession and usage are prohibited by the federal constitution. Conversely, certain States decided to legalize it in various forms as they have allowed the substance for recreational use while others have medicinal use. Consumers should keep informed about certain cannabis laws.


Most people within the cannabis industry wonder whether consuming CBD edibles cause eye-reddening. Luckily, the cannabidiol compound has potential health benefits rather than intoxicating effects. CBD edibles include any consumable food, drink, and brownie infused with CBD contents. Consuming hemp-derived edibles will offer therapeutic benefits without interfering with normal eye color. However, marijuana-derived products contain high THC molecules responsible for eye reddening. When tetrahydrocannabinol enters the body, it dilates blood vessels, including those behind your eyes, causing the reddening. Hemp-derived edibles indirectly interact with the endocannabinoid system, restoring the body to homeostasis. Therefore, CBD edibles are not responsible for eye redness.


Abernethy, A. (2019). Hemp Production & 2018 Farm Bill. US Food and Drug Administration.

Chayasirisobhon, S. (2019). Cannabis and neuropsychiatric disorders: an updated review. Acta Neurol Taiwan28(2), 27-39.

Freundt-Revilla, Kegler, Baumgärtner, & Tipold (2017). Spatial distribution of cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) in the normal canine central and peripheral nervous systems. PLoS One12(7), e0181064.

Smith, Alden, Herrold, Roberts, Stern, Jones, & Breiter, (2018). Recent self-reported cannabis use is associated with the biometrics of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. Journal of studies on alcohol and drugs79(3), 441-446.

Piper, Beals, Abess, Nichols, Martin, Cobb, & DeKeuster (2017). Chronic pain patients’ perspectives of medical cannabis. Pain158(7), 1373.

VanDolah, H. J., Bauer, B. A., & Mauck, K. F. (2019, September). Clinicians’ guide to cannabidiol and hemp oils. In Mayo Clinic Proceedings (Vol. 94, No. 9, pp. 1840-1851). Elsevier.