With CBD and medical marijuana becoming increasingly popular alternative remedies for several health conditions, many people are looking for new ways to consume them with enjoyment. One of the most popular new ways is through edibles. Here, we will take a look at exactly what marijuana and CBD edibles are, the differences and purposes of both types, and their legality.
What Are “Edibles?”
In cannabis lingo, an “edible” is any food, such as candies, cookies, and brownies, that contains CBD and/or marijuana. Historically speaking, marijuana has been consumed orally for thousands of years. In fact, smoking marijuana is a relatively modern form of intake, having only become popular as a practice in the 16th century.
Why Eat CBD?
For many people wishing to consume marijuana or CBD, edibles are an easy alternative to other routes of administration, such as vaping and smoking. In addition, certain users cannot or simply choose not to consume their marijuana in whole leaf form. Some people don’t like the taste or have respiratory issues that prevent them from inhaling smoke or vape, etc.
Edibles are also a good way to take very high, potent doses of CBD, depending on the health condition you are targeting.
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CBD Edibles vs. Marijuana Edibles
When making cannabis edibles, there are generally two ingredients you can use: marijuana and a CBD isolate. With marijuana edibles, both THC and CBD are present and can produce a psychological effect, such as euphoria or less pleasant anxiety and paranoia. This will depend on how much cannabis is added.
On the other hand, CBD edibles’ effects exclude psychoactivity, as they contain little to no THC.
That said—research seems to suggest that there’s a unique synergy between the different cannabinoids, called the entourage effect. This means that CBD, THC, and other cannabis compounds work better together than when isolated. 
With CBD and marijuana edibles, it’s important to know the dosage that you are consuming. This will improve your ability to monitor your reaction and learn the ideal dosage for your body.
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Why CBD Doesn’t Cause a High
The reason CBD is not psychoactive is that the compound does not bind directly to the receptors in the brain most likely responsible for marijuana’s psychoactive effects. Instead, research seems to suggest that CBD activates regions in the brain that reduces “autonomic arousal and subjective anxiety.” 
The receptors are known as CB1 and CB2 and comprise one of the body’s largest regulatory networks, the endocannabinoid system (ECS). These receptors are located throughout the body. 
Because CBD is not psychoactive, it is used solely for its health benefits and medicinal properties. While THC does offer its own impressive health benefits, the psychoactive effects are often undesirable for many users.
A good CBD preparation will not contain a lot of THC, though—only enough to ensure that its optimal health benefits are still obtainable.
Benefits of CBD
Studies so far have found that CBD offers numerous medicinal benefits, such as:
- Antiemetic (reduces nausea and vomiting)
- Anticonvulsant (suppresses seizure activity)
- Anxiolytic (combats anxiety)
- Analgesic (relieves pain) 
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Side Effects of Edibles
The side effects of your edibles will depend largely on whether they are made solely with CBD or with high-THC marijuana. CBD-only edibles will have little to no side effects. The reported ones have been minimal and include dry mouth, somnolence, and mild digestive upset. For the most part, CBD consumers report relief from symptoms as well as general feelings of calm and relaxation. 
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However, marijuana edibles with high THC content will be psychoactive and may produce several unpleasant side effects. Most consumers report a euphoric feeling, though some have reported unwanted physiological and psychological effects, such as increased heart rate, paranoia, and anxiety.
Are Edibles Legal?
Just as with the side effects, the legality of your edibles will depend on their THC content. CBD products also have variability. Marijuana-derived CBD typically still contains THC and is illegal at the federal level.
So, CBD edibles made with hemp-derived CBD are completely legal in all states of the U.S. Marijuana edibles and marijuana-derived CBD edibles are typically legal only in states where medical and/or recreational marijuana is legal.
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Overall, CBD edibles are a great way to consume your dose of this healthy cannabinoid. Though there are differences between marijuana and CBD, both offer many health benefits with numerous medicinal properties.
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