When most of us hear the word ratio, we think of math class, right? Well, this may be a unique case in which a ratio doesn’t give you a headache but instead may subside one. When visiting a dispensary, you may have noticed a product with some numbers resembling 1:1 listed somewhere on the packaging. Typically, it means it is equal parts CBD (cannabidiol) to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). However, there are many other cannabinoids you will see out on the market with the wild new expansions of cannabis research.
Endocannabinoids vs. phytocannabinoids
Cannabinoids come from two sources. They are either produced naturally by the body (endocannabinoid) or are plant-derived (phytocannabinoid). When the body cannot reach homeostasis or balance on its terms, ingesting cannabinoids from the cannabis plant can make up the difference. So many (phyto)cannabinoids exist today that can help one achieve therapeutic results, with a wide range of ratio options including 1:1, 2:1, 5:1, and even up to 20:1.
We get it. All this information can seem intimidating but have no worries as we are here to help! Because everybody reacts differently, trial and error may be necessary to finetune a routine.
CBD and THC ratios
For now, let’s concentrate on the most common options found today in dispensaries, starting with the classic 1:1 CBD/THC products. In most cases, folks are looking for relief from day-to-day stress, anxiety, mild to severe migraines, arthritis, or to help with getting a better night’s rest. Furthermore, CBD helps to balance out the “high” feeling generally associated with consuming THC alone while still delivering the desired aid needed for comfort.
The proportions can change with higher amounts of CBD versus THC, bringing us to the second most popular ratio product known as the 2:1. People seeking to counterbalance the psychoactivity of THC further may choose this option.
Although limited research is available, other cannabinoids exist beyond the recognizable THC and CBD. Like CBD, another cannabinoid called CBN (cannabinol) offers aid with little to no head fog. Evidence shows that CBN can be used with THC to achieve heavier sedation, which may help relieve insomnia and slow the degradation of ALS (or Lou Gehrig’s disease) symptoms. When you come across CBN infused items, the ratio amounts are often higher, such as a 5:1. Typically, only smaller amounts of CBN are necessary for relief.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, we have another non-psychoactive cannabinoid called CBG (cannabigerol). This powerhouse paired with THC has promising health benefits for glaucoma by regulating the fluids in the eye that are inflamed. It doesn’t stop there. CBG also works with the body to stimulate the appetite, provide energy, increase focus, and even help reduce tumor growth (especially in colon cancer).
Scientists are regularly discovering other minor cannabinoids with varying therapeutic benefits too. They are being extracted, infused into products, and popping up more and more at hemp and cannabis retailers.
Full-spectrum cannabis products
Full-spectrum is the king of ratio products. These products have the maximum amount of helpful cannabinoid ratios altogether, usually carrying a varying percentage of CBG, CBN, THC, CBD, plus many more. Often this helps enhance and extend therapeutic benefits more than a 1:1 product but can also come with a stronger THC content.
Can there be a full spectrum ratio item with more CBD than THC? Yes! These products are best for customers who want to eliminate the majority of any high feelings related to cannabis. With that information, it’s vital to examine the ratio closely on the product packaging before purchase.
Progressive medical studies are finding cannabis can be used to control seizures, protect cells in the brain, aid in anxiety and sleep, effectively reduce inflammation, provide antibacterial properties, and many more amazing aspects still under study currently. The best way to find out what’s best for you is to speak with your doctors and budtenders. The journey may be long, but we will help you get there!
Written by Patricia, Herbal Remedies Dispensary Technician