Copaiba Vs CBD: Everything You Need to Know
Copaiba essential oil is all the rage among aromatherapy enthusiasts, and for a good reason. Its long history of use as a folk medicine in South America is now under intense study. Its therapeutic properties are similar to those found in cannabidiol, or CBD oil, and many people are wondering what the difference is between copaiba and CBD.
CBD and copaiba oil have many similarities, but also some fundamental differences. Essential oils have meaningful benefits for the mind, body and soul, but with that said, there is much confusion on many popular essential oil blogs about exactly what copaiba can and cannot do. Copaiba is absolutely not a CBD oil replacement, but it's often sold as such. It definitely has some beneficial properties, but in most articles, it's not clear how those compare to the ones in CBD oil.
Let’s take some time to clear up the confusion between the two oils. Especially for anyone who is new to either of these all-natural substances, it is beneficial to see them compared side by side. Understanding each of their nuances, their benefits and any risks will lead to better overall decision making for your own health and wellness.
An Introduction to Copaiba Oil
Copaiba essential oil comes from the Copaifera tree, found throughout South America. The tree exudes a resin, ranging anywhere from clear to dark brown, that historically was used for lacquers and varnishes. When the balsam is steam-distilled, the end product is copaiba essential oil.
Recently, copaiba oil has come under some intense scientific exploration. Studies are so far only in the preliminary stages, but there is nevertheless evidence of its healing capabilities. For example, researchers have thus far uncovered its antibacterial wound-healing properties and its powerful its anti-inflammatory properties.
It’s these anti-inflammatory qualities that are causing many to start proclaiming that it's the new CBD oil. Copaiba owes its medicinal potential in large part thanks to a little-known substance called beta-caryophyllene. Interestingly, beta-caryophyllene is also in CBD oil.
Since the copaiba oil research began in earnest, the essential oil industry is abuzz with the miraculous anti-inflammatory properties of this new oil. But is it as beneficial as all the hype has led us to believe?
And Now, An Introduction to CBD Oil
Cannabidiol oil is a cannabinoid sourced from the cannabis sativa genus of plants. Most commonly derived from industrial hemp plants, it is also a popular product within the medical marijuana industry. Despite its relation to THC (they are both cannabinoids), CBD is non-psychoactive. Unlike THC, it does not trigger a ‘high,’ anxiety or euphoria. Instead, CBD triggers a mild sense of relaxation, if any sensation is noted at all.
The medicinal properties of CBD hemp oil are thanks to both terpenes and cannabinoids. Especially in whole-plant extracts, CBD oil may contain dozens of different compounds, all with unique and nuanced effects on the endocannabinoid system. For anyone unfamiliar with the endocannabinoid system, you can read up on it here.
Through its interaction with the endocannabinoid system, CBD has thus far demonstrated tons of potential for the treatment of a myriad of health issues, including anxiety, depression, autoimmune disorders, chronic pain, cancer and many more. Like copaiba, CBD's most well-known characteristic might be as an anti-inflammatory. Cannabidiol contains beta-caryophyllene, the same terpene as copaiba. But, its influence over the endocannabinoid system goes much deeper than just one terpene.
What is Beta-Caryophyllene?
Although some essential oil websites mistakenly refer to beta-caryophyllene as a cannabinoid, this is false. Beta-caryophyllene is actually a terpene. Terpenes are similar in some regards to cannabinoids because there are now thought to have many medicinal properties in their own right, and some terpenes interact with our cannabinoid receptors. Terpenes are aromatic compounds responsible for a myriad of pungent smells.
Beta-caryophyllene is one of the terpenes that stimulates the endocannabinoid system, and why many have drawn comparisons between copaiba and CBD oil. Both oils contain very high levels of this same terpene.
Copaiba locks directly into the CB2 receptor, and there is some recent research into just how powerful an anti-inflammatory copaiba might be. But, while some blogs claim, “copaiba essential oil is the most powerful anti-inflammatory ingredient on the planet,” this is entirely an over-exaggeration.
What Are the Benefits of CBD Vs. Copaiba Oil?
Beyond copaiba’s beta-caryophyllene, it just doesn’t live up to the high standards set by CBD oil. Why? Because CBD targets inflammation in many different ways, beyond the beta-caryophyllene terpenes . A CBD isolate reduces inflammation in some respects, but its anti-inflammatory capabilities shine through when in whole plant extractions.
Copaiba’s health benefits come only from its beta-caryophyllene contents. Whole-plant CBD oil benefits from a synergistic effect between all the complex compounds, like the cannabinoids and terpenes. Study after study confirms the various compounds in CBD are stronger when working together, instead of as a sum of their parts.
Are There Any Risks?
There is some risk associated with any form of medicine, natural or otherwise. However, the side effects of CBD are so mild that it's incredibly safe to use under most reasonable circumstances. The upper limits of dosing are tested often on humans in a laboratory setting, but in most cases, even the higher doses are well tolerated. The Known Side Effects of Cannabidiol are temporary and incredibly rare.
Copaiba is a unique essential oil because it is safe to use internally in low doses. However, it's most often used for external applications, such as in skin creams and massage oils. Unfortunately, it has a very strong taste, and it's only recommended for consumption via capsules, and no more than three times a day.
There is no recommended maximum dosage for CBD oil, with some acute treatments using upwards of 1,000 mg of CBD oil a day. Ingesting too much copaiba oil will trigger nausea, vomiting and gastrointestinal distress, an experience similar to food poisoning.
So Which is Best: Copaiba or CBD oil?
Cannabidiol has much broader applications, across a wide range of health issues. Research is showing its benefits for everything from fighting cancer to reducing social anxiety. Plus, its almost always safe to use, even in high doses. Nobody denies that the beta-caryophyllene found in copaiba is a potent anti-inflammatory agent, but its overall capabilities pale in comparison to those of CBD oil.