Which part of the plant does CBD come from?
What is CBD?
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Hemp has an amazing ability which is great for the planet, but not so great for CBD lovers. And this ability is why we need to be careful about where the plant is grown. Here at The London Botanists, we only use European farms with the highest standards in ethical, sustainable, organic farming techniques.
That amazing ability? Hemp is able to draw impurities out of the soil – many farmers across the world use it to ‘clean’ their soil of pesticides and chemicals before planting food crops. But this means that impurities in the soil end up in the plant, and therefore in the CBD extract. Which is why it’s vital to ensure our farms have the highest soil standards to start.
Which part of the world does CBD come from?
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of at least 113 naturally-occurring compounds (‘phytocannabinoids’) found in the Cannabis Sativa L. plant. CBD is distinct from THC, the intoxicating compound that produces the famous high. Concerns over CBD arise from the confusion between Cannabis, Hemp and Marijuana. Hemp and Marijuana are both species of Cannabis, however Marijuana is bred to have high levels (25% in some cases) of THC- the substance associated with illegal highs. CBD is extracted from Hemp that contains less than 0.2% THC.
While THC is found throughout all of the aerial parts (i.e the sugar and fan leaves) of a marijuana plant, it is found most abundantly in the flowers of female marijuana plants. As we discussed above, these flowers are coated in small resin glands called trichomes.
THC, known as tetrahydrocannabinol, is the psychoactive ‘counterpart’ to CBD. It is responsible for the high associated with cannabis. Unlike cannabidiol, THC is a cannabinoid receptor agonist. This means it directly binds to the receptors in a lock-and-key formation.
There are several different extraction methods used to pull CBD from the raw cannabis plant material. The most commonly used extraction techniques are solvent-based methods. Here, solvents such as butane, propane, and ethanol (among others) are used to extract CBD from the plant material.
Where Is THC Found?
As far as where THC and CBD are found in various forms of cannabis, they actually both exist throughout the aerial parts of the plant, but are usually most concentrated in the flowers. Let’s take a closer look.
A more advanced solventless extraction method is the Supercritical Fluid Extraction (SFE) process, which uses carbon dioxide (CO2). During the SFE process, a specialized extraction machine freezes and compresses carbon dioxide until it reaches a supercritical cold liquid state. This liquid then passes through the plant material, which extracts the cannabinoids and terpenes from it.
There are generally three types of CBD oil for sale on the market today.
What About THC?
CBD (cannabidiol) appears to primarily influence the CB2 receptor. Research suggests that it has positive effects on symptoms of seizures/epilepsy, and in fact it is an FDA-approved medication for two rare forms of epilepsy. Research also suggests that CBD may have a positive impact on depression, chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, insomnia, MS, arthritis, and numerous other ailments and medical challenges.
The principal cannabinoid receptors in humans are the CB1 and CB2 receptors. These help to maintain homeostasis within the body, and may help regulate functions relating to sleep, mood, immune activity, inflammation, pain management, and a multitude of other conditions.
As CBD becomes more well known, there is growing awareness that not all CBD products are made the same, nor are they even necessarily derived from the same kind of cannabis plant.
For instance, in China there are few regulations enforced on the agricultural industry, leading to the production of hemp-based CBD products that tend to contain high levels of contaminants. Studies have shown that, due to the country’s mining activities, the water and soil in some regions of China are contaminated with heavy metals.
To break it down: hemp seed oil and hemp-derived CBD oil both come from the same plant and they both have potential health benefits. However, hemp seed oil comes from the hemp seed only and does not have any cannabinoids. Hemp-derived CBD oil is extracted from leaves and buds with the clear purpose of delivering CBD.