If you’ve spent any amount of time looking at CBD products, you’ve probably seen your fair share of CBD gummies.
Of course, it’s easy to see why: they hold appeal not only for CBD enthusiasts, for anyone with a sweet tooth!
Though CBD gummies are still as popular as ever, there’s a new tasty treat entering the market: CBD + THC gummies take all the benefits of CBD, and combine it with a small amount of THC.
Yet with all the excitement that comes with new things, there’s a chance it’s left you a little overwhelmed.
So which gummies should you buy, then: traditional CBD gummies, or CBD + THC gummies?
Before you buy, here’s what you need to know.
First of All, What Are CBD Gummies?
At this point, you may be fairly familiar with CBD gummies, but if you haven’t, this quick summary should help!
CBD gummies are a tasty treat infused with CBD, typically available in a wide variety of flavors and shapes.
CBD + THC gummies, meanwhile, aren’t too much of a stretch: they’re tasty, chewy gummies infused with not only CBD, but THC, as well. And with the increasing popularity of delta-8 and delta-10 THC, they’re becoming more common in CBD + THC gummies.
What’s the Difference Between CBD and THC?
CBD and THC are both part of the same group of compounds, known as cannabinoids, and they make up a pretty big family. In fact, it’s estimated that there are at least 113 different types found in cannabis alone!
CBD’s really had the spotlight for the past few years, but THC has an exceptionally long history, due to its recreational and medicinal usage.
And while these cannabinoids have a lot in common, they share a few key differences, as well, including the following:
The chemical structure of CBD and THC is virtually the same, with 21 carbon atoms, 30 hydrogen atoms, and 2 oxygen atoms. The difference, however, is in the arrangement of the atoms, which creates the different effects in the body.
CBD and THC take effect in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which maintains homeostasis in the body through cannabinoids. When CBD and THC enter the body, they interact with the cannabinoid receptors, causing neurotransmitters to release in the brain.
While the chemical structure of CBD and THC are fairly similar, their psychoactive effects are quite different.
THC is especially known for its ability to get the user high by binding to CB1 receptors in the brain, creating a rush of euphoria. And while CBD doesn’t have this same effect, there’s a misconception that it’s not psychoactive. And to be clear, CBD is psychoactive, but not in the same way as THC.
While CBD won’t create the same kind of high that’s characteristic of THC, it’s been shown to help manage cognitive functions related to depression, anxiety, and seizures.
When it comes to cannabis, laws in the United States are constantly evolving.
With the Farm Bill’s signing in 2018, hemp has since been made federally legal, and all hemp products (like CBD gummies) can legally be manufactured, bought, and sold as long as they contain less than 0.3% delta-9 THC.
Delta-9 THC is still heavily controlled in the United States, and has bans in several states. Delta-8 and delta-10, however, are isomers of THC with similar effects. And while the laws are somewhat vague, manufacturers have interpreted that delta-8 and delta-10 are legal, as long as they’re in a state that doesn’t place specific bans.
While the benefits for both CBD and THC are still being researched, it’s often agreed that they have similar benefits, and may be used to help manage many of the same conditions.
Typically though, CBD is most often sought out by customers for chronic pain, inflammation, seizures, anxiety, and depression, while THC is often used for pain, anxiety, insomnia, and low appetite.
What Happens When You Combine THC and CBD?
In many cases, sticking with CBD on its own may be the best option for the individual, but it’s becoming increasingly popular to use it combined with THC, as well.
There is some research suggesting that taking CBD with THC, as well as other compounds from the plant like terpenes and flavonoids, may be more beneficial than taking CBD alone, and this is all because of the entourage effect.
The entourage effect refers to the theory that all the different compounds in cannabis work together in harmony, creating a unique type of synergy with amplified effects.
For example, combining CBD and THC may help reduce side effects often caused by THC, like anxiety, and THC’s psychoactive effects are slightly lowered. It’s also been suggested that when combined, CBD and THC sedative effects are increased, creating an even more relaxing experience.
With all of this in mind, it’s worth noting that the entourage effect is still a theory, and more research is still needed for us to understand the extent of its benefits.
Should You Buy CBD Gummies or CBD + THC Gummies?
As CBD + THC gummies become more widely available, it’s understandable to wonder if they’re worth buying, or if they’re actually better than your typical CBD gummies.
And it begs the question: “should I buy CBD + THC gummies, or CBD gummies?”
So what is the correct answer?
Like anything in hemp, it all depends on the user.
When choosing between CBD + THC gummies and CBD gummies, consider the following factors:
While it’s not always best to go for the cheapest option, cost is still an important factor. And with that in mind, CBD + THC gummies are usually going to be more expensive due to lower supply, but they can still be worth it for many individuals.
Legality in Your State
Of course, legal status is a huge thing to consider when choosing between CBD gummies and CBD + THC gummies—it goes without saying, but it’s important that the gummies you buy are legal where you live!
Thanks to the Farm Bill of 2018, hemp products are legal as long as they’re made from industrial hemp and contain less than 0.3% delta-9 THC. And this allows not only CBD, but delta-8 and delta-10.
While this law’s made it possible for many customers to buy THC in states with marijuana bans, keep in mind that some state lawmakers are catching onto this loophole, and are on the move to change this. That’s why it’s important to double-check the laws in your state.
Reason for Taking Gummies
Cannabinoids have garnered a reputation for being versatile, which is probably why we’re seeing customers buy them for so many reasons. As of 2021, customers have reported taking CBD gummies for a number of purposes like soothing pain, easing stress, and managing anxiety.
While the evidence on their medical benefits are limited, it’s been indicated that CBD and THC may have a more sedative effect when taken together, which may be especially beneficial for those looking to manage pain or stress.
It may take some trial and error when choosing the right gummies for you, but going in with a goal and a little bit of research can make a serious difference in your journey.