HEMP FLOWER and MARIJUANA: WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
Cannabis is trending. You’ve heard a lot about its potential benefits, and now you want to give it a try. There’s just one problem, however: there’s a ton of options out there! So how and where exactly do you get started? The first step is determining what exactly you want to get out of it, and how you’re comfortable with consuming it.
Marijuana is the same thing as a hemp flower, except instead of being derived from a hemp plant, the flower comes from a marijuana plant, Cannabis sativa indica. These flowers are commonly referred to as “buds”. Marijuana buds are rich in delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), containing 5-20% THC on average. However, they can contain up to 30% THC.
Marijuana is primarily used as a drug and has been used as a drug for hundreds and possibly even thousands of years. The high levels of THC in marijuana create an intoxicating ‘high,’ with effects such as euphoria and relaxation. It can also be used medically, but this is less common.
Marijuana is illegal on the federal level, and each state has its own laws on marijuana. Where legal, marijuana is typically smoked on its own or inhaled through a dry vape system. Glass pipes and wrapping papers are also used to smoke marijuana, similar to rolling and smoking a cigarette. Smoking marijuana allows its effects to come on immediately because THC gets absorbed directly into the blood from the lungs instead of having to pass through the digestive system.
Some people use marijuana in baking or cooking because cannabinoids are fat-soluble. This means it’s easy to make marijuana-infused butter or oil in just about any dish. These are generally known as “edibles”.
When you think of a flower, you probably think of tulips and roses and other colorful flowers that you see by walking by the floral section of your local grocery store. But flowers don’t have to be colorful or showy to be considered flowers. In fact, all a flower is the seed-bearing part of a plant. And hemp flower is the seed-bearing part of the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa Sativa.
When harvested, hemp flowers in particular are rich in cannabidiol (CBD) and other cannabinoids. Because the whole flower is sold to consumers, it doesn’t have to go through the same rigorous extraction process as CBD oil. This means that it contains a much greater quantity of hemp’s naturally occurring compounds compared to any other CBDdelivery format. It is speculated that hemp flower could offer more benefits for this reason.
Unlike its cousin, marijuana, it’s impossible to get high from hemp flowers. In fact, legally grown, federally regulated industrial hemp plants must contain less than 0.3% THC according to the 2018 Farm Bill. Instead, hemp flowers are used for their anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety effects, as well as neuroprotective properties.
Hemp flower can be taken in the same way as marijuana. It can be smoked like a cigarette or inhaled via dry vape system. Like marijuana, smoking hemp flower delivers CBD directly to the user’s bloodstream via the lungs, allowing for more immediate effects.
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