Cannabidiol, or simply CBD, is a natural cannabinoid compound that’s typically derived from the hemp plant. It’s actually only one cannabinoid out of 124 different known ones. One of the most common questions we get are: does CBD oil get you high? Can CBD get you high?
In this article, we’ll discuss exactly why CBD oil cannot, and will not, get you high, and compare it to the properties of THC.
TL;DR – It is not scientifically possible for CBD oil to get you high. Cannabidiol (CBD) is non intoxicating. The way it reacts with CB receptors does not, and cannot, result in feeling sensations of being high.
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Does CBD Get You High?
First of all, no, taking CBD oil can not get you high.
The products are mostly promoted as a natural way to reduce anxiety. Anxiety is a common problem among a lot of people. According to research, CBD oil has been found to have the properties that help with reducing anxiety and depression related symptoms.
Related: What Do The Letters CBD Stand For?
Despite being able to do that, it’s still not comparable to the intoxicating effects that recreational marijuana gives.
Nevertheless, when you consume very high concentrations of CBD products, or have more than the recommended dose, it might cause some side effects like nausea or headaches. Some of the more common side effects you might experience from taking high doses of CBD oil include: dizziness and lethargy.
CBD is often infused with edibles, tinctures, oils, and a few other products that include little to no THC (approximately 0.3%).
That said, many people still assume that CBD oil causes the same effects as marijuana. This is not true, at all, and is a common misconception.
Most individuals think that because they’re both derived from the same plant, they have the same mind altering effects. However, CBD alone can’t get you high.
It’s non-intoxicating, so you won’t get “high.”
Related article: Is CBD Addictive?
CBD oil products are mostly derived from hemp, since hemp must contain less than 0.3% THC, by law. Several states have only legalized hemp derived CBD oil. According to the law, these products should not have more than 0.3% THC.
Again, that amount of THC isn’t enough to cause any psychoactive effects.
Can CBD Oil Make You Feel Euphoric?
No, it cannot. This is largely because of how cannabidiol interacts with CB receptors within our body.
Unlike THC, CBD doesn’t bind to CB1 or CB2 receptors. CBD products might be capable of reducing the ability of other cannabinoids, including THC, to bind to CB1 receptors.
That can actually lead to a reduction in the intoxicating effects that THC may cause. It can also lead to an increase in the number of circulating cannabinoids.
Related: CBD Oil for Depression
According to a 2018 review in Surgical Neurology International, it was found that CBD oil products may help reduce inflammation in the brain through indirect binding with CB2 receptors, not the CB1 receptors that have the ability to get you high.
Risks and Side Effects of CBD Oils
CBD reacts differently from person to person.
The majority of people usually experience beneficial results from the compound, but there’s a slight chance it can also lead to adverse side effects for others. While these side effects aren’t necessarily horrible, they still offer discomfort.
For this reason, it’s important to consult your healthcare providers before you decide to start using CBD oils.
Some of these side effects of CBD include:
● Higher risk of sedation, or drowsiness
● Drowsiness and fatigue
My CBD Oil Makes Me High – Why?
If you bought hemp-derived CBD oil, and you got high, it is because the CBD oil was mislabeled. Since it isn’t possible for CBD to get people high, there must have been a larger amount of THC in that product than allowed by law.
Unfortunately, there are some instances where people bought products like these and didn’t realize it. This is why we cannot stress enough that you need to buy CBD from only reputable organizations. Just because something is super cheap, or looks fancy, doesn’t mean it is a great product – especially in this industry.
THC largely comes from marijuana, which is a controlled substance in the United States by federal law. Prior to 2018, hemp and marijuana were considered the same thing.
However, in 2018, Congress lifted the prohibition on hemp derived CBD, and other hemp derived products. This made CBD legal within the US. They distinguished a difference between hemp and marijuana.
Therefore, CBD that’s derived from hemp is legal in the United States – unless it’s outlawed at the state level.
According to the law in states where recreational or medical marijuana is legal, all CBD products are not allowed to have more than 0.3% THC. You can also find CBD derived from marijuana, which will most likely get you high.
The Laws Surrounding Hemp CBD Oil
Hemp has a rather interesting history. Did you know that even though hemp is completely non-intoxicating, it was criminalized in 1970 via the Controlled Substances Act?
People assumed that since hemp looked like marijuana, and smelled like marijuana, that is should be banned. While they do look strikingly similar (look at the picture below), they are different.
As you now know, they are very different plants.
It took 48 years for hemp to become removed from this list of controlled substances. The Farm Bill of 2018 (also known as the Agriculture Improvement Act) legalized hemp and hemp derived products. This legislative act makes most CBD legal, as long as it comes from hemp.
Can CBD Oil Get You High? Only if it Contains Illegal Amounts of THC
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the primary cannabinoid found in the marijuana plant. THC is the primary psychoactive compound people feel the effects from when smoking marijuana.
It usually binds with CB1 (cannabinoid 1) cannabinoid receptors that are found in the brain and are associated with inflammation, pain sensation, memory, learning, and movement.
These are part of a complex bodily system called the endocannabinoid system. Taking CBD can offer positive effects that are because of this system.
Apart from the CB1 receptors, it also binds with CB2 receptors that are found in the hippocampus and brainstem of the central nervous system. They are linked to emotions and memory.
Related article: Comparing THC and CBD
Other endocannabinoid system cells that contain CB2 receptors include: bone cells, immune cells, spleen, and liver. One of the reasons why THC produces very powerful psychological and physical effects is because of the widespread distribution of cannabinoid receptors.
The most common effects of the compound are the psychoactive effects when consumed via recreational marijuana. THC gives you a “high”, which is an altered state of mind where you feel pleasure, euphoria, and sometimes increased sensory perception.
The main difference between the two cannabinoids is that CBD doesn’t cause a “high” like THC. CBD is used by many because of all the benefits it offers.
It helps with conditions such as depression and anxiety. If your goal is to get “high,” then CBD won’t work for you.
Why Does THC Make You High?
Information provided by the National Institute on Drug Abuse states that, when THC binds to CB1 receptors, it stimulates a dopamine release after activating the brain’s reward system.
Related: THC vs CBD for Anxiety
When there’s a sudden rush of dopamine, you experience a euphoric “high”, associated with recreational use of marijuana. Other common effects associated with THC include:
Comparing Hemp and Marijuana
Related: Hemp vs Marijuana
Both the cannabis and hemp plant contain both THC and CBD together, along with over 540 other substances like terpenes and essential oils.
The main difference is the amount of THC and CBD present in each plant. Cannabis has three standard varieties: indica, ruderalis, and sativa.
A range of hybrid plants exist which also have properties from these strains. Those types of cannabis plants usually have much higher and varying levels of THC compared to hemp plants.
Marijuana plants contain MUCH more THC, as well as less CBD in comparison to hemp. However, over the years, those ratios have substantially changed.
The average potency of marijuana plants has risen from 4% in 1995, to near 28% in 2020. The average CBD levels in marijuana had dropped from 0.28% in 2001 to less than 0.15% in 2014.
This is because people who produce marijuana to get you high aren’t as concerned with CBD, since CBD does not get you high. Hemp, on the other hand, is a specific variety of cannabis plants. Hemp has been grown for centuries and people use it to make food, ropes, sails, clothes and a wide variety of other items.
Industrial hemp has been popular in the United States for a long time. The 2018 Farm Bill considers sativa plants with less than 0.3% THC as industrial hemp.
It can be legally grown by producers across the United States, except in three states. However, they’re still subject to strict regulations.
The hemp plants contain THC, but very low levels. Some processed hemp products, such as gummies, tinctures, or capsules, can still have residual THC levels of up to 0.3%. This is not enough to get you high, though.
An important thing to note is that the benefits CBD oil offers do not change, no matter if it’s derived from hemp or marijuana. That’s because the chemical composition of CBD remains the same.
The amount of CBD that’s available for extraction does depend on which plant it’s derived from. There’s simply more CBD in the hemp plant.
Frequently Asked Questions About CBD and Getting High
Let’s go over some of the more common questions when it comes to getting high, and cannabidiol (CBD).
How Long Does a CBD High Last?
There is no such thing as a CBD high, as you have probably figured out by now. On the other hand, if you happen to get accidentally high from excess THC in your CBD products, you can expect for the high to last for about 2 hours, give or take.
How Long Do the Effects of CBD Oil Last?
People report feeling the effects of CBD for several hours. Keep in mind, though, that you can’t necessarily feel euphoria, or a high, or anything like that.
When people say they feel the effects of CBD, they are referring to the calmness, or pain relief feelings.
How Long Do You Stay High on CBD Gummies?
Again, you can’t get high from CBD gummies unless there is a higher amount of THC in them than reported on the label. Just like CBD oil, CBD gummies can only contain up to 0.3% of THC. This isn’t enough to get you high.
However, if you ate some THC gummies on mistake (thinking they were CBD gummies) you can expect to stay high for about 3 hours, or even longer. THC is processed differently when you eat it. Some people report the effects of THC are stronger when eaten, and last longer.
Summary – Does CBD Oil Make You High?
CBD has been rapidly growing in popularity because of the many health benefits it apparently has. However, there’s still not enough scientific evidence to fully support these claims, but the results currently available, are promising.
The hemp and marijuana plants are both different varieties of the cannabis plant species. Hemp, naturally, contains more CBD and a very small amount of THC.
Federally legal CBD products are always made from hemp plants. That’s because they contain less THC and more CBD. There aren’t any psychoactive effects when you use these products.
It’s important for individuals who are considering using CBD oil to help with physical or mental issues, to consult with their doctors first. It’s smart to make sure it won’t negatively react to other medicines they are taking, or any unique physical conditions they may have.