There’s a good chance that you’ve at least heard of CBD. And perhaps you may have also heard of something very similar, called as CBDA. Despite their growing popularity, many people have no idea what CBD or CBDA actually are. Don’t worry, we’re here to help you out.
One Thing Leads to Another
First, let’s look at the basics. CBD stands for cannabidiol, whereas CBDA is short for cannabidiolic acid. Though it has a slightly longer acronym, and is probably less well known than CBD, CBDA is actually the precursor to cannabidiol. In other words, you need cannabidiolic acid to produce CBD.
To better illustrate this point, consider a piece of freshly harvested hemp. If you examined this plant under a microscope, you would see plenty of CBDA, but only scant amounts of CBD. To turn the cannabidiolic acid into CBD, heat needs to be applied to the raw hemp.
Though they are different substances, CBD and CBDA do share a few traits in common. For example, neither have a direct impact on our body’s endocannabinoid system, meaning that they do not cause the user to get the “high” so commonly associated with marijuana. In contrast, research has found that both CBD and CBDA increase activity in the brain’s 5-HT1A serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a very important chemical within the brain, as changing serotonin levels have a direct impact on a person’s mood and sleeping patterns, among other things.
Some research has found that CBD can be useful in reducing levels of anxiety. A 2011 study concluded that consuming cannabidiol allowed participants to better perform a simulated public speech. Research involving the impact of CBDA is still very much in its early stages; however, there is reason for optimism. For example, one such report determined that very small amounts of CBDA had antidepressant-like effects in rats. Other research has found that CBDA, at least in laboratory rodents, was more effective than CBD in alleviating feelings of nausea.