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  • August 26, 2022 4 min read


    CBD is slowly gaining popularity among many users, with the hemp industry hitting new yearly highs. THC and CBD are the two widely recognized cannabinoids, even though over one hundred other cannabinoids are natural and synthesized.

    CBD is mainly extracted from hemp, although marijuana, which is closely related to hemp, can also be used to produce CBD. Hemp is highly favored due to its low levels of THC, which is still categorized as class A by the Federal government. However, some governments have legalized it for recreational use. Khaleghi (2020) suggested that CBD is more known to have positive body effects such as pain modulation and anti-inflammation properties. It can reduce over-dependence on substances for drug addicts and various psychological diseases. This article discusses whether CBD can make one high.

    Does CBD Make One High

    CBD interacts with the body through the endocannabinoid system through various receptors that can bind to CBD. According to Battista et al. (2012), the endocannabinoid system is a widespread neuromodulatory system involved in the central nervous system development, synaptic plasticity, and the response to endogenous and environmental insults. The ECS comprises cannabinoid receptors, endogenous cannabinoids (endocannabinoids), and the enzymes responsible for endocannabinoid synthesis and degradation. CB1 cannabinoid receptors are the most abundant, but cannabinoids also engage CB2 cannabinoid receptors, transient receptor potential (TRP) channels, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs). CBD mainly interacts with TRP and PPAR receptors responsible for linking various endocannabinoid receptors, particularly the CB1 receptor, highly concentrated in the brain. Wu (2019) suggested that, unlike THC, CBD works by promoting the connection between these receptors, even though it has a low affinity for them compared to THC. This enhancement makes it suitable for rerouting signals in the brain, especially for people with various psychological disorders. This enhances the optimized production of various hormones such as serotonin, dopamine, and cortisol, which affect the brain's mood, attitude, focus, and stress levels. In addition, CBD promotes optimal responses by body organs in different environmental conditions through these receptors. It controls the secretion of sebum, which, when overproduced, would lead to the formation of spots and eventually acne in extreme cases.

     THC has a high affinity for CB1 and CB2 receptors. This cannabinoid has similar chemical and structural properties to anandamide, an endogenous enzyme utilized by the ECS to modulate connections between ECS receptors. THC has numerous lipophilic structures, making it highly affinity for these receptors. Therefore, THC binds to these receptors, especially with CB1 receptors, numerous in the brain and found in the areas responsible for mood, memory, locomotor functions, and attention. Binding to receptors in this region inhibits the transmission of neuron signals from one neuron to another. This eventually slows down brain activities, creating a euphoric feeling for the user. 

    Therefore, CBD cannot make one high because it binds to different receptors than THC. In addition, CBD has the opposite effect to THC, as it is an antipsychotic when used together because THC inhibits receptor connection, CBD enhances these connections.

    Types of CBD Extracts

    Various extraction methods can be used to obtain CBD from hemp. CBD is mainly extracted from leaves, flowers, flower buds, stems, and stalks of the hemp plant, unlike hemp seed oil harvested from mature hemp seeds. The various methods yield different products with different components. There are three main types of CBD oils:

    Broad-Spectrum CBD Oil

    Broad-spectrum CBD products contain various cannabis plant compounds and cannabinoids, such as cannabichromene (CBC), cannabinol, and terpenes like myrcene and limonene. THC is absent from broad-spectrum CBD. However, some products contain trace amounts. CBD can be extracted from the cannabis plant in various ways, including solvent extraction through steam distillation,

    CBD extraction is through supercritical carbon dioxide, extraction through phospholipids. CBD's composition may be affected by the strain of the cannabis plant, its classification, and the extraction process. Broad-spectrum CBD is a hybrid of full-spectrum CBD and CBD isolate. Although broad-spectrum CBD contains various compounds, it typically does not contain THC. It is suitable for individuals who want the benefits of hemp extracts without ingesting THC.

    Full-Spectrum CBD Oil

    Full-spectrum CBD oil, also known as whole plant extract or full-plant extract, contains CBD and other cannabinoids (including THC), terpenes, and fatty acids found in the cannabis plant. Full-spectrum CBD oil undergoes a filtration process, but no cannabinoids or other compounds are removed. While full spectrum CBD contains THC, it is not enough to get you high. However, it will most likely be detected by a roadside mouth swab test. According to Maayah et al. (2020), the many chemical compounds and cannabinoids in a full-plant extract have healing properties, one of the advantages of full-spectrum CBD oil.

    CBD Isolate

    CBD isolate contains only CBD and no other cannabinoids, terpenes, or healthy fatty acids from the plant. Most companies sell isolate as a crystal or powder, but some also sell it as an oil. It is created using the same extraction method as other CBD oils. The distinction is that after the cannabinoids have been extracted, the CBD is filtered out. It is then subjected to a chilling process known as winterization, removing other compounds. CBD isolate is frequently used for vaping and is administered sublingually in crystal or powder form. The advantages of isolate are that it is less expensive and contains no THC. The disadvantage is that you are missing out on the potential benefits of the entourage effect.


    CBD interacts with the ECS through TRPV, PPAR, and other receptors. It works by enhancing connections between receptors to enhance the working of ECS in the central nervous system. CBD cannot get one high, although overdosing has shown that it can cause some mental sedation. Only two CBD extracts do not contain THC, even in trace amounts, broad-spectrum and CBD isolates.


    Battista, N., Di Tommaso, M., Bari, M., & Maccarrone, M. (2012). The Endocannabinoid System: An Overview. Frontiers In Behavioral Neuroscience, 6, 9.

    Khaleghi, M. (2020). New Arthritis Foundation Guidelines On CBD Use Could Be The First Of Many More To Come. Alternative Therapies In Health And Medicine, 26, 8-11.

    Maayah, Z. H., Takahara, S., Ferdaoussi, M., & Dyck, J. R. (2020). The Molecular Mechanisms That Underpin The Biological Benefits Of Full-Spectrum Cannabis Extract In The Treatment Of Neuropathic Pain And Inflammation. Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta (BBA)-Molecular Basis Of Disease, 1866(7), 165771.

    Wu, J. (2019). Cannabis, Cannabinoid Receptors, And Endocannabinoid System: Yesterday, Today, And Tomorrow. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica, 40(3), 297-299.