CBD vs THC: The Difference Explained
With a rising demand for natural medicines, cannabis compounds, like CBD and THC, are becoming increasingly popular due to their wide range of health benefits. While the close relationship between the two compounds may lead some to assume that both have the same impact on the body, a comparison between the molecular structure of CBD vs THC reveals the exact opposite.
The Difference Between CBD and THC
If you didn’t already know — CBD and THC have the exact same chemical makeup: 21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen atoms, and 2 oxygen atoms.
The two are nearly identical twins.
What differentiates the two compounds, however, is the arrangement of a single atom, which you can observe in the illustration below.
For any of you who weren’t paying attention in chemistry class — an atom is about a million times smaller than a human hair…so we’re talking about a microscopic difference here.
Now you’re probably wondering, with such a microscopic difference, how different can CBD and THC be?
The short answer — very, very different — but let’s go over the details.
Cannabinoids and the Endocannabinoid System
Before we dive in, it’s important to understand what cannabinoids are and how they work with the body.
There are currently 85 known cannabinoids found in the Cannabis plant, the most prominent of which are Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD).
A cannabinoid is a compound that interacts directly with our body’s Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which in short, is a network of receptors that interact with cannabinoids to maintain vital functions throughout our body.