CBD vs THC: Mental and Physical Effects

It’s a question we’re asked a lot. What’s the difference between CBD and THC? Will CBD get me high like marijuana or THC? Which one is better for my pain?

A complete answer will involve understanding a little cannabis terminology. After reading this short post you’ll be a little more enlightened about all things cannabis.

What is Hemp?

Let’s start with the basics. Hemp and Marijuana come from the same genus, Cannabis. In fact, they come from the same species within that genus, Cannabis Sativa

In a similar way to how corn has been selected for and bred into different varieties, cannabis has been bred over the years for desirable qualities. 

(Sweet corn for example, is the soft and sweet corn you eat on the cob. Dent corn is a hard corn that’s processed into taco shells, plastics, and high-fructose corn syrup. They’re both the same species of plant, zea mays.)

Similarly, Hemp is Cannabis Sativa that has been bred for minimum Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content (<.03%),


Marijuana is Cannabis Sativa (or Cannabis Indica) typically bred for higher THC content.

Growers continue to push the envelope on THC content and develop stronger strains as the commercial market for legal marijuana continues to expand.

Now maybe you understand why your Uncle Larry complains that pot is way stronger than it used to be. 

Phytocannabinoids and the Endocannabinoid System

THC is one of many phytocannabinoids in cannabis and is the one responsible for the psychoactive effect (or high) associated with smoking or otherwise ingesting marijuana.

In the late 1980s, scientists discovered that the human brain has receptors that correspond to the phytocannabinoids in cannabis. In fact there are more cannabinoid receptors in the brain than any other type of neurotransmitter receptor.

These receptors have their own naturally produced neurotransmitters called endocannabinoids. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) has been found to regulate relaxation in the human body. After a stressful event, the ECS will produce a chemical response that helps the body return to normal.

THC is not the only phytocannabinoid in the Cannabis genus of plants. There have been over 80 other phytocannabinoids identified in the plant, including the focus of the next section of this article and the star of our show: CBD.

What is CBD and will it get me high?

While some other plants have been found to contain phytocannabinoids, none beside cannabis have been found to contain Cannabidiol (CBD). CBD is present in both medical marijuana and agricultural hemp, meaning you could get your CBD with or without psychoactive effect. (In the case of our CBD oil, there is no psychoactive effect) 

To restate that another way, CBD oil does not get you high.

If you take a quality CBD you are likely to feel relaxed and pain may be reduced or relieved altogether. Many people say they sleep better and experience reduced effects of stress and anxiety.

When it comes to pain, CBD and THC both have effect but tend to work on different types of pain. Research seems to suggest that CBD is better for inflammation and nervous system pain, where THC seems to work best on spasm and cramp pain.

There has been a great deal of research done on conditions that CBD may help with but we aren’t permitted to share this research because of the FDA’s rules on supplements.

Taking the Plunge

If you are curious if CBD might help you, there’s really only one way to tell. For mild relief we recommend our 1000 mg oil. For individuals in need of a stronger oil, our 4000 mg is one of the strongest CBD oils on the market, and is universally beloved by our customers who use it.

We at Shah think that understanding what you put in your body is important. As a reward for educating yourself we’d like to offer you $20 towards your next purchase, and free shipping. Just enter your email below!