Knowledge is power, and it’s no different when it comes to being an informed cannabis buyer. The more knowledge you have about the different components of marijuana and their effects, the more power you have to buy products that will best suit your needs. There are many, many different types of cannabinoids. So many in fact that if we were to discuss all of them we’d fill this page three times over. Instead, we’ll look at the two primary ones in THC and CBD.
A strain’s THC to CBD ratio will determine if you get high, or if your body receives medical relief from CBD. All depending on whether there’s more of one cannabinoid than the other. If you’re a recreational user, you’ll likely want a strain that has a THC CBD ratio that’s heavier in THC (tetra-hydro cannabinol) than CBD (cannabidiol). But, most people using medicinal marijuana will want a strain with a ratio that has a high CBD content. And if you’re one of those who’s looking for a little bit of both then a strain with a balanced THC to CBD ratio should be ideal.
But what’s exactly in these CBD THC ratios? Let’s take a look at a few different strains and ratios.
Different Folks, Different Strains
There are some people who genuinely enjoy experiencing the psychoactive punch from marijuana. While there are some people who find the intoxicating effects of THC to be overbearing, for some cannabis connoisseurs this kind of ‘blitzing’ is exactly what they’re after. There are many strains that have the 18+% THC content that produces a powerful high, but that’s not to say it doesn’t also contain a high CBD content.
It is true that most strains that have a high THC percentage tend to have low CBD levels, and the opposite tends to be true as well. CBD-rich cannabis strains usually don’t have high levels of THC either. Exceptions to this do exist, but what we’ve seen is the scientists who engineer these strains focus on one cannabinoid or the other.
All cannabis users want to get the best response from their product, but how this is achieved depends on the ratio of THC and CBD, and the strain. THC binds with CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the body while CBD binds with CB2 receptors. This means that a perfectly balanced strain would be the only way to get the results you’re after if you want to experience the effects of both THC and CBD.
Another thing to consider when understanding why THC-heavy strains typically don’t have much CBD is because CBD can actually work to counter THC’s effects, and very much so depending on the terpenes that are also featured as part of the strain.
Understanding CBD THC Ratios
It’s standard to list the CBD content number before the THC one, as in the numerical value of CBD to the numerical value of THC. Accordingly, a THC-heavy strain will start from a CBD THC ratio at 0:1 and move up from there. If your aim is to get a nice pleasurable buzz on, you’ll be perfectly fine if the CBD THC ratio is heavier towards THC.
If you don’t want to get high but want to experience the ‘entourage effect’ that occurs when cannabinoids and terpenes work in conjunction with each other – then you’ll be looking for a strain with a CBD THC ratio that’s frontloaded with CBD.
Finding the best THC CBD ratio for you is often a try-and-see process for most people. Here’s some standard THC CBD ratio guidelines and information for what you might expect to experience with each.
0:1 – This ratio is for people who are looking to get high. Along with pure psychoactive punch, strains with this type of a cannabinoid ratio can expect to experience appetite stimulation, inflammation reduction, and mental stimulation in some cases depending on the strain itself. Adverse effects may include tachycardia (elevated heart rate), anxiety and paranoia.
For obvious reasons, if you are new to enjoying cannabis then you’re best to avoid strains with a very large THC content.
1:3 – A CBD THC ratio of this sort is often the most desirable one for a lot of people. The psychoactive nature of the THC is in place, but the lesser CBD content works nicely to counteract some of the common adverse effects listed above. This type of a THC CBD ratio is good for reducing anxiety, relieving stress, and promoting less inflammation.
In addition, strains with this type of ratio will often be an advanced pain reliever.
1:1 – This is your balanced THC CBD ratio. When you have a strain that is equal parts CBD and THC then it becomes less appealing to user looking to get ‘high’ exclusively, while becoming more appealing to people who enjoy the added benefit of a buzz but are really ingesting the cannabis to gain therapeutic benefits.
You can expect very effective pain relief and analgesic benefits from strains with this balance. They are good for relief of anxiety, spasticity, fibromyalgia, insomnia, nausea, and appetite stimulation.
2:1 / 3:1 – With these strains we now shift the predominance from THC to CBD, and as you might imagine the interest becomes more for therapeutic benefits and less for getting high. There is less of the psychoactive response seen with THC-dominant strains, and more of the calming and restorative effects of CBD.
These types of THC CBD ratios may be effective at combatting autoimmune disorders, gastrointestinal issue like IBD, and Crohn’s and Colitis, arthritis, and even psoriasis among other conditions.
1:0 – as is the case with THC-dominant strains above where the numerical values are reversed, these CBD-dominant strains have been engineered for individuals who are using cannabis and cannabis product exclusively for therapeutic relief aims. They are best for treating high anxiety, depression, seizures, psychosis, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and neurodegenerative conditions like Parkinson’s and Huntington’s disease.
Finding the best THC CBD ratio for you will probably be a very self-exploratory process. For some people, it will be an enjoyable one. For others, however, and especially those who are wary of getting too high, it will be beneficial to ask around to find out what ratio you should start with. Legalization makes all of this more possible than ever before, so if you need to know more before moving forward then do go ahead and visit a cannabis retail location and ask as many questions as needed.