Cannabidiol (CBD) has been a growing trend in the health and wellness industry. Nowadays, it is a common item being sold by local convenience stores and major drugstore chains. With the growing awareness that not all CBD-products are made the same, people are starting to weight their options when choosing CBD to use.

At the moment, there are two popular classifications for the cannabis plants that produce CBD – hemp and marijuana. Both are widely use for different CBD-derived products and are legal in most states in the US.

Hemp CBD

Industrial hemp plants, which are grown primarily for fiber, seeds and more, are the main source of hemp CBD. These plants look differently from marijuana because of its skinny and scarce foliage. CBD hemp oils are also eligible for USDA organic certification.

Compared to marijuana, hemp plants have different level of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the cannabinoid the produces intoxicating properties. So, products made from hemp plants like CBD hemp extract does not produce psychoactive effects in the body unlike marijuana CBD. Click here to learn more about Delta 8 products.

As a renewable resource, industrial hemp plants can be used to produce foods, skin and wellness products. It is also a whole food resource for full spectrum plant-based nutrition.

Marijuana CBD

Cannabis plant that contains more than 0.3% THC and can induce psychotropic or euphoric effects is referred as marijuana. The term is widely used throughout American culture and is mostly misrepresented by others who think marijuana is just a form of drugs.

With its high level of THC and as a powerful psychoactive agent, it can directly affect the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) causing mind-altering, euphoric effects referred as being “high”. While marijuana is used for recreational purposes, it has a potential of being used for therapeutic applications, according to studies.

Hemp and marijuana are regulated differently under the law due to its different level of THC. Marijuana is still federally illegal in the US and treated as a controlled substance under the Controlled Substance Act. Hemp, on the other hand, was removed as an illegal substance under the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018, which legalized hemp products that contain no more than 0.3% THC.

Whether CBD is extracted from either hemp or marijuana, given the unique characteristic of each plant, it remains identical on a molecular level.

According to Jeremy Riggle, Ph. D, chief scientist at Mary’s Medicals: “The CBD molecule and its associated pharmacology are the same, whether it was extracted from hemp or from marijuana. CBD is CBD, regardless of where it was originally derived from.”

Which One to Choose?

First thing to consider when choosing between hemp and marijuana CBD is the law, following the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill. Hemp-derived CBD products are now legal in all fifty states while marijuana-derived CBD products is only legal in states where medical or adult-use of cannabis has been legalized.

Experimenting with both CBDs with different level of THC and CBD can be the key to choosing the best one for your needs. As a rule of thumb, always choose an organic product with low concentration and incrementally increase your intake to find the level that works for you.


Barbara  is a content writer at Pearl Lemon Leads who has written on a diversity of topics, from colored diamonds to SEO software. In her spare time, she enjoys singing, sketching, cooking, and video games.



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