It’s no surprise that we have reached a point where the synthesizing of the hemp plant’s many attributes can happen in a lab. Over the past few decades, horticultural advances have also experienced an increasing demand for GMOs. So, what’s the comparison between synthetic CBD and the real thing? Before you buy any cannabidiol product, you need to know precisely what you’re paying for and its differences. If you, by any chance, happen to buy from Tanasi, don’t worry. All of Tanasi’s CBD products come with a guarantee that they are all-natural!
CBD Vs Spice – Differences Between Synthetic CBD And Natural CBD
In some contexts, the term ‘synthetic’ sometimes refers to CBD isolates. However, this is incorrect because isolates can come from both synthetic and natural sources. Although all CBD synthetics are essentially isolates, not all isolates are considered synthetic.
In other words, synthetic CBD is an API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient) chemically similar to the naturally created hemp-derived CBD. Like many isolates, it takes a form of a crystalline powder that will require combining with a carrier oil later on.
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is among the many different cannabinoids existing in plants from the Cannabis genus. Inside CBD, the primary psychoactive substance in Cannabis, THC, has a negligible presence. Thus, all-natural CBD will not get you ‘high’ as Marijuana does.
Cannabinoids such as CBD not only just exists in the cannabis plant. Typically, our body creates its own cannabinoids, often known as endocannabinoids. In fact, cannabinoids are available in different biological systems and are not unique to hemp plants.
If we already know that the synthetizing of cannabinoids occur in both plants and within our bodies. Then, the question becomes whether we could artificially synthesize them ourselves and, in fact, we can. The first overall synthesis of a cannabinoid (THC) happened in 1965.
Illegal Synthetic CBD: What the Government Says
The promise of hemp CBD’s therapeutic effects causes greedy companies to produce a synthetic CBD version. ‘Spice’ is the name of one of those synthetics. They claim that their process does enhance efficacy, potency, and pharmacokinetics. They also make substantial profits from a naturally-occurring substance that has holistic benefits.
Government agencies such as the CDC, the DEA, and FDA continue to research and publish the benefits of natural hemp CBD. Therefore, the government acknowledges (to some extent) the potential health benefits of CBD. However, they also understand the dangers of quick-profit businesses manufacturing synthetic CBD products.
Cannabis is legal to grow and carry in many states, but it isn’t legal in all of them. In fact, this is one of the reasons why most sellers opt for synthetic CBD instead of the naturally-derived kind. In other words, selling it won’t put them in potential legal jeopardy. However, synthetic CBD also has a prolonged list of side effects that natural, hemp-derived CBD does not.
Based on a 2015 study, the most prevalent side effects of synthetic cannabinoids, according to CDC’s report, include:
- Drowsiness or lethargy
- General confusion
- Tachycardia (unusual rapid heart rate)
- There have also been 15 reported deaths linked to synthetic cannabinoids.
In most cases, state-sanctioned labs manufacture synthetic CBD. Yet again, providing the exact synthetic CBD type that the government wants to protect us from. Therefore, they more or less do enable side effects that caused the panic in the first place to continue happening.
What Is Spice/K2?
These days, there is a considerable percentage of teens self-reporting to have tried Marijuana. However, it is still illegal in many states and is forbidden for minors to purchase and carry it. Some teens will turn to Spice as an alternative to experience the same effects of Marijuana. But, Spice (also known as K2) isn’t the same as Marijuana and could be much more harmful.
Spice is essentially a synthetic marijuana that isn’t regulated. But the active ingredients of Spice are not simply just the same as Marijuana’s active ingredient, which is THC. Most times, synthetic marijuana ingredients are unidentified to the consumer and could be harmful. Even so, teens often use Spice and do so legally.
Marijuana vs. Spice
When comparing synthetic Marijuana to the real deal, there are many significant differences. These might include their appearance, where they come from, and their effects on users.
Marijuana typically comes from dried leaves or certain parts of the cannabis plants. Cannabidiol (CBD) and THC are the active ingredients existing naturally within the plant. In contrast, Spice comes from plant extracts usually sprayed with synthetically made cannabinoids. There are numerous different types of cannabinoids. But the kind used to create Spice is not subject to any regulations in its manufacturing.
Spice is usually sold in foil packaging or plastic bottles and found on the internet or brick and mortar stores. Needless to say, weed remains illegal in most states. However, street selling of it is widespread even in states that ban its consumption. When it comes to states where cannabis use is legal, specialty stores that only sell Marijuana are available. However, that does not mean street dealing is out of the picture. Far from it, some state-approved dispensaries are exclusively for medical use by prescription. Users looking for it for non-medicinal purposes still search the streets to find it.
When comparing the effects of Spice versus weed, both drugs could cause mind-altering effects. These could make the user relaxed, alter their perceptions, and improve their mood. Cannabinoids in Spice typically act on the same brain’s receptors as THC from Marijuana but differently. It’s believed that Spice’s cannabinoids do attach to these receptors in a different way. Thus, providing them a much intense effect, which could be harmful.
Why Should Teens Avoid Using Synthetic Marijuana?
The association between the detrimental impacts of Marijuana and teen brain growth is known. However, Spice’s effects on teenagers might be even more damaging. Synthetic Marijuana’s ingredients are not regulated. Thus, it is very common they have more powerful effects than Marijuana in most cases. In general, this makes the usage of Spice in teenagers very dangerous. The following are some of the things that make Spice riskier to use when compared to Marijuana:
Among the many Spice’s dangers is that the synthetic cannabinoids’ potency could be extraordinarily high. Labels on the product are also not known for being very specific about their final potency. If a teenager smokes weed, they should at least have a clue of how much they are taking. With Spice, the effect it would have on them might much stronger than expected.
More intense effects
Theoretically, Spice’s effects on the body are the same as those of Marijuana. They interact with the same brain’s receptors as the THC from Marijuana does. But Spice’s effects are usually much more intense. Meaning, the psychoactive effects are more likely to cause the user to have a ‘bad trip.’ That includes increased chances of experiencing the aforementioned side-effects more frequently. Likewise, their intensity rises, making them dangerous for, say, people with heart conditions.
Lack of regulation
One of the things that draw teens to it is that it is much readily available. Spice has no regulations placed upon it. In fact, you can legally use all kinds of synthetic Marijuana. However, the concentrations of synthetic cannabinoids inside of them is a concern. So far, there’s also no regulation placed on the amount of synthetic cannabinoids used. Meaning, it is legal to consume something potentially deadlier than the safer, natural alternative.
Other Health Effects of Synthetic Cannabinoids – Are They Addictive?
People who have tried out synthetic cannabinoids and ended up in an emergency room have shown severe side-effects. These include vomiting, racing heart rate, suicidal thoughts, and violent behavior.
Yes, you can get addicted to synthetic cannabinoids. Users quitting might experience various withdrawal symptoms, such as irritability, depression, and anxiety. So far, there have been no tests of behavioral treatments and therapies for treating addiction to them.
Yes, you can also overdose on synthetic cannabinoids. In simple terms, an overdose happens when an individual uses too much of a drug. The resulting reactions ultimately lead to severe symptoms or even death. In general, the use of synthetic cannabinoids could cause different disorders. Among those, seizures, kidney damage, elevated blood pressure, and toxic reactions. Again, since Spice and other synthetics are more potent than Marijuana, side effects are likelier to happen.
CBD vs Spice – The Takeaway
Synthetic cannabidiol is much affordable to manufacture. Thus, there is no doubt that we will come across a rapidly growing portion of the market made up of synthesized CBD products. Generally speaking, as a community, we should ensure that we ask the right questions about what that actually entails.
At Tanasi, we have faith in hemp’s qualities and the fusion of natural methods with the scientific process. Still, we are always open to trying new approaches to get there. Right now, we merely want to start a conversation.
If you want to know how synthetic CBD is unique, you only need to understand how the hemp plant actually works. Here at Tanasi, you have many blog entries at your disposal that cover the subject. These range from CBD oil tinctures, lotions, salves, CBD capsules, and so on. If you have any questions regarding cannabinoids, we will provide you with all the info available on it.