CBD and THC Together: Benefits, Effects & How They Work

CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) are the two most abundant cannabinoids in the hemp plant. 

They’re also some of the most beneficial; THC has been researched for its potential benefits for pain, inflammation, and more, while CBD has been studied for use with pain, anxiety, epilepsy, and sleep, among other things. 

But what if you used them at the same time? In this article, we’ll look at the benefits and effects of using CBD and THC in combination, and we’ll discuss how these cannabinoids work together. 

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CBD edibles that actually work.

You deserve the best. That's why you won't find weak, ineffective, or dangerous CBD edibles on our (online) shelves. Only lab-tested, high-strength, American-made CBD edibles.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a cannabinoid that naturally occurs in the hemp plant. It is not psychoactive, so it won’t cause a head high. Nevertheless, it has beneficial mental and physical effects, and it’s been researched as a treatment for a variety of acute and chronic conditions. 

What is THC?

Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is also a cannabinoid that naturally occurs in hemp. THC is most popular as the psychoactive component in weed, however, it’s also been heavily researched for medical uses in the form of medical cannabis. In addition to its recreational benefits, THC is a highly effective therapeutic. 

Key Differences Between CBD and THC

Before we discuss how CBD and THC work together to create amplified benefits, let’s first look at the main differences (and similarities) between these cannabinoids. 

Source

Both CBD and THC naturally occur in the hemp plant, and they are extracted directly for use in products due to their high abundance. 

Effects

CBD renders mild mental relaxation, as well as physical benefits. Most people describe CBD as calming, but report that its benefits aren’t particularly overt – rather, CBD may make discomforts feel less obvious and apparent. 

THC, on the other hand, is quite noticeable. It is psychoactive, so it will get you high. Most people report that THC is euphoric, relaxing, and, depending on the dose, mildly sedating. 

Legality

Both CBD and THC are federally legal when derived from hemp as of the 2018 Farm Bill. Hemp is cannabis that contains less than 0.3% THC by dry weight. 

However, many states have imposed individual restrictions on these cannabinoids, particularly THC – in your state, CBD and THC may only be legal in specific forms, so it’s important to check before purchasing them online or in-store. 

On Drug Tests

CBD will not cause you to fail a drug test, as it is neither a target analyte (a drug that tests are screening for) nor is it capable of being perceived by tests as something that is. 

THC, however, will show up on standard drug tests –  even in its legal, hemp-derived form – as tests screen for THC due to its presence in cannabis, which is illegal in many states. 

Woman holding natural ways CBD gummies

What is the Entourage Effect?

The entourage effect is a scientific theory that says taking different compounds in the hemp plant together can deliver unique and elevated benefits when compared to taking cannabinoids in isolation. Compounds in hemp include cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. 

The entourage effect is the basis for how CBD and THC, as well as other cannabinoid concombinations, are often more beneficial than isolated cannabinoids. 

The different compounds in hemp, of course, naturally occur together. Full-spectrum CBD products are products made with unadulterated, unfiltered cannabinoids: in addition to CBD, full-spectrum blends also contain small amounts of THC, CBG, CBN, and CBC, along with many other things.  

Due to the entourage effect, full-spectrum CBD products are generally more beneficial than CBD isolate, which, per its name, is just CBD. 

What Research Says About the Entourage Effect

Although researchers have generally found the entourage effect to be valid, looking at a specific example can help us better understand its importance.  

A 2011 research review found that using cannabinoids and terpenes in combination may be beneficial for pain, anxiety, inflammation, epilepsy, cancer, and fungal infection. 

Of course, CBD and THC are still beneficial for many of these things by themselves, but researchers have found that using them in combination with each other, and with terpenes, renders them more effective for therapeutic use. 

Benefits of Using CBD and THC Together

There are a few key benefits of using CBD and THC in combination:

More Therapeutic Benefits

As we mentioned, CBD and THC both have a variety of therapeutic benefits. Some of them are similar – CBD and THC have both been researched for pain, inflammation, and sleep – while others are unique (e.g. CBD may help with epileptic seizure).

By taking these cannabinoids together, you may experience the benefits that both cannabinoids have to offer – the ones you can feel, and the ones you can’t. 

Reduced Negative Side Effects from THC

Many people like the relaxation and euphoria that THC brings, but they also find that it creates some negative side effects, as well. 

Side effects of THC use include red eyes, dry mouth, memory loss, increased heart rate, a reduction in motor coordination, and feelings of anxiety or paranoia.

Taking CBD with THC won’t reduce all of these effects, but research suggests it may help with many of them:

  • Research suggests CBD may reduce the detrimental effects that THC has on motor coordination and memory
  • Studies show CBD may mitigate THC-induced anxiety and paranoia
  • Studies suggest CBD may lower THC-induced increases in heart rate

CBD may also generally reduce the psychoactive effects created by THC, giving you a high that’s relaxing, but not overwhelming. 

Improved Circulation & Absorption of Both Cannabinoids

Research suggests your endocannabinoid system may interact better with CBD and THC if they’re used together. 

Anecdotally, people have found that their body’s absorption of these cannabinoids improves when they use them in combination.

One idea that’s been explored is that CBD can slow your body’s metabolism of THC, thereby increasing the amount of it that’s able to render effects, as opposed to being processed out of your body. However, more research is needed on how CBD enhances THC’s benefits.

Woman holding natural ways CBD delta 9 gummies

What is the Best Ratio of CBD and THC?

If you’re looking to combine CBD and THC, you’re probably wondering how much of each cannabinoid you should take. 

But there is no “best” ratio of CBD and THC – it all depends on the effects and benefits you’re going for. Below, we discuss a few common CBD:THC ratios people use, and what each is good for. 

1:1 CBD:THC

A 1:1 CBD:THC product contains equal amounts of CBD and THC. This ratio is ideal if you need a lot of THC but don’t want to feel as strong of a high.

You will still get high after taking a 1:1 product, but it won’t be the same experience you get from taking THC alone.

4:1 CBD:THC

A 4:1 CBD:THC product contains four times as much CBD as THC, and it’s perfect if you want the therapeutic effects of both CBD and THC, but don’t want to feel too high in the process.

You may experience some psychoactive effects, but they won’t be very strong unless you have a low THC tolerance.

Full-Spectrum CBD (>10:1 CBD:THC)

Full-spectrum CBD products are mostly CBD, and they contain a small amount of THC and other cannabinoids— typically, they’ll have a ratio of CBD greater than 10 to 1. 

You won’t get high after using full-spectrum CBD, but you’ll still receive more benefits than if you took CBD isolate, due to the entourage effect. 

CBD and THC Dosage

For most uses and scenarios, you’ll want to start with a low-strength dose of CBD and THC together. 

You can calculate your dose using the following formula:

(0.1) x (your weight in lbs.) = your daily CBD + THC dosage in mg.

Your dose will be the same regardless of the ratio you use; for example, if you’re using a 1:1 product and your dosage comes out to 20mg, this means you’ll take 10mg each of CBD and THC. If it’s a 5:1 product, you’ll get more CBD than THC.

This formula is best for products that are either equal in ratio or CBD-dominant.

If you’re taking a very THC-dominant product, you can still use this formula — just avoid taking a dosage of more than 10mg of THC at a time to prevent unwanted side effects.

Once you’ve taken your dose a few times, gradually adjust it up or down depending on how it’s working for you. 

Man taking CBD tincture

Is CBD Still Beneficial Without THC?

While adding THC can give CBD a boost in effects and benefits, CBD alone still has many research-backed benefits:

  • Pain – Scientific and anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD has powerful supportive effects for when dealing with various types of pain.
  • Sleep – CBD promotes feelings of calm without getting you high. As a result, CBD may help you get to sleep sooner and stay asleep for longer.
  • Stress & Anxiety – CBD’s relaxing properties make it effective for mental health support during bouts of anxiety.
  • InflammationA number of scientific studies have shown CBD to have anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Epilepsy – CBD has been shown to be effective at addressing some forms of epileptic seizure. In fact, CBD is FDA-approved for some forms of epilepsy in the form of the prescription Epidiolex. 

And Vice Versa?

Like CBD, THC has many benefits by itself. You will still receive the therapeutic effects, as well as feelings of euphoria and relaxation – it just won’t be blunted by CBD (so be sure to dose it sparingly). 

Conclusion: A Powerful Combination

Many people who would otherwise enjoy THC end up not liking it because it’s too powerful, which then reduces the beneficial effects it has. 

CBD has been an answer for people who find themselves in this situation, as it can help you enjoy the beneficial parts of THC without experiencing the detrimental ones. And it has a host of its own benefits, so you’ll be getting a more well-rounded experience. 

CBD and THC Together: Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions our customers frequently ask us about using CBD and THC together. 

Is it OK to take CBD with THC?

Not only is taking CBD with THC safe, but it’s also very beneficial. In addition to getting the therapeutic benefits of both cannabinoids, CBD dampens many of THC’s adverse effects. 

What is the best combination of THC and CBD for pain relief?

Although the best CBD:THC ratio for everyone will vary, many people using this combination for pain relief use a 1:1 ratio of CBD:THC. 

What happens if you take THC and CBD together? 

When you take THC and CBD together, you’ll experience a head and body high, but it won’t be as overwhelming as if you took THC alone. CBD and THC together will also render far more benefits than using either cannabinoid by itself.

CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) are the two most abundant cannabinoids in the hemp plant. 

They’re also some of the most beneficial; THC has been researched for its potential benefits for pain, inflammation, and more, while CBD has been studied for use with pain, anxiety, epilepsy, and sleep, among other things. 

But what if you used them at the same time? In this article, we’ll look at the benefits and effects of using CBD and THC in combination, and we’ll discuss how these cannabinoids work together. 

24webp
CBD edibles that actually work.

You deserve the best. That's why you won't find weak, ineffective, or dangerous CBD edibles on our (online) shelves. Only lab-tested, high-strength, American-made CBD edibles.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a cannabinoid that naturally occurs in the hemp plant. It is not psychoactive, so it won’t cause a head high. Nevertheless, it has beneficial mental and physical effects, and it’s been researched as a treatment for a variety of acute and chronic conditions. 

What is THC?

Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is also a cannabinoid that naturally occurs in hemp. THC is most popular as the psychoactive component in weed, however, it’s also been heavily researched for medical uses in the form of medical cannabis. In addition to its recreational benefits, THC is a highly effective therapeutic. 

Key Differences Between CBD and THC

Before we discuss how CBD and THC work together to create amplified benefits, let’s first look at the main differences (and similarities) between these cannabinoids. 

Source

Both CBD and THC naturally occur in the hemp plant, and they are extracted directly for use in products due to their high abundance. 

Effects

CBD renders mild mental relaxation, as well as physical benefits. Most people describe CBD as calming, but report that its benefits aren’t particularly overt – rather, CBD may make discomforts feel less obvious and apparent. 

THC, on the other hand, is quite noticeable. It is psychoactive, so it will get you high. Most people report that THC is euphoric, relaxing, and, depending on the dose, mildly sedating. 

Legality

Both CBD and THC are federally legal when derived from hemp as of the 2018 Farm Bill. Hemp is cannabis that contains less than 0.3% THC by dry weight. 

However, many states have imposed individual restrictions on these cannabinoids, particularly THC – in your state, CBD and THC may only be legal in specific forms, so it’s important to check before purchasing them online or in-store. 

On Drug Tests

CBD will not cause you to fail a drug test, as it is neither a target analyte (a drug that tests are screening for) nor is it capable of being perceived by tests as something that is. 

THC, however, will show up on standard drug tests –  even in its legal, hemp-derived form – as tests screen for THC due to its presence in cannabis, which is illegal in many states. 

Woman holding natural ways CBD gummies

What is the Entourage Effect?

The entourage effect is a scientific theory that says taking different compounds in the hemp plant together can deliver unique and elevated benefits when compared to taking cannabinoids in isolation. Compounds in hemp include cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. 

The entourage effect is the basis for how CBD and THC, as well as other cannabinoid concombinations, are often more beneficial than isolated cannabinoids. 

The different compounds in hemp, of course, naturally occur together. Full-spectrum CBD products are products made with unadulterated, unfiltered cannabinoids: in addition to CBD, full-spectrum blends also contain small amounts of THC, CBG, CBN, and CBC, along with many other things.  

Due to the entourage effect, full-spectrum CBD products are generally more beneficial than CBD isolate, which, per its name, is just CBD. 

What Research Says About the Entourage Effect

Although researchers have generally found the entourage effect to be valid, looking at a specific example can help us better understand its importance.  

A 2011 research review found that using cannabinoids and terpenes in combination may be beneficial for pain, anxiety, inflammation, epilepsy, cancer, and fungal infection. 

Of course, CBD and THC are still beneficial for many of these things by themselves, but researchers have found that using them in combination with each other, and with terpenes, renders them more effective for therapeutic use. 

Benefits of Using CBD and THC Together

There are a few key benefits of using CBD and THC in combination:

More Therapeutic Benefits

As we mentioned, CBD and THC both have a variety of therapeutic benefits. Some of them are similar – CBD and THC have both been researched for pain, inflammation, and sleep – while others are unique (e.g. CBD may help with epileptic seizure).

By taking these cannabinoids together, you may experience the benefits that both cannabinoids have to offer – the ones you can feel, and the ones you can’t. 

Reduced Negative Side Effects from THC

Many people like the relaxation and euphoria that THC brings, but they also find that it creates some negative side effects, as well. 

Side effects of THC use include red eyes, dry mouth, memory loss, increased heart rate, a reduction in motor coordination, and feelings of anxiety or paranoia.

Taking CBD with THC won’t reduce all of these effects, but research suggests it may help with many of them:

  • Research suggests CBD may reduce the detrimental effects that THC has on motor coordination and memory
  • Studies show CBD may mitigate THC-induced anxiety and paranoia
  • Studies suggest CBD may lower THC-induced increases in heart rate

CBD may also generally reduce the psychoactive effects created by THC, giving you a high that’s relaxing, but not overwhelming. 

Improved Circulation & Absorption of Both Cannabinoids

Research suggests your endocannabinoid system may interact better with CBD and THC if they’re used together. 

Anecdotally, people have found that their body’s absorption of these cannabinoids improves when they use them in combination.

One idea that’s been explored is that CBD can slow your body’s metabolism of THC, thereby increasing the amount of it that’s able to render effects, as opposed to being processed out of your body. However, more research is needed on how CBD enhances THC’s benefits.

Woman holding natural ways CBD delta 9 gummies

What is the Best Ratio of CBD and THC?

If you’re looking to combine CBD and THC, you’re probably wondering how much of each cannabinoid you should take. 

But there is no “best” ratio of CBD and THC – it all depends on the effects and benefits you’re going for. Below, we discuss a few common CBD:THC ratios people use, and what each is good for. 

1:1 CBD:THC

A 1:1 CBD:THC product contains equal amounts of CBD and THC. This ratio is ideal if you need a lot of THC but don’t want to feel as strong of a high.

You will still get high after taking a 1:1 product, but it won’t be the same experience you get from taking THC alone.

4:1 CBD:THC

A 4:1 CBD:THC product contains four times as much CBD as THC, and it’s perfect if you want the therapeutic effects of both CBD and THC, but don’t want to feel too high in the process.

You may experience some psychoactive effects, but they won’t be very strong unless you have a low THC tolerance.

Full-Spectrum CBD (>10:1 CBD:THC)

Full-spectrum CBD products are mostly CBD, and they contain a small amount of THC and other cannabinoids— typically, they’ll have a ratio of CBD greater than 10 to 1. 

You won’t get high after using full-spectrum CBD, but you’ll still receive more benefits than if you took CBD isolate, due to the entourage effect. 

CBD and THC Dosage

For most uses and scenarios, you’ll want to start with a low-strength dose of CBD and THC together. 

You can calculate your dose using the following formula:

(0.1) x (your weight in lbs.) = your daily CBD + THC dosage in mg.

Your dose will be the same regardless of the ratio you use; for example, if you’re using a 1:1 product and your dosage comes out to 20mg, this means you’ll take 10mg each of CBD and THC. If it’s a 5:1 product, you’ll get more CBD than THC.

This formula is best for products that are either equal in ratio or CBD-dominant.

If you’re taking a very THC-dominant product, you can still use this formula — just avoid taking a dosage of more than 10mg of THC at a time to prevent unwanted side effects.

Once you’ve taken your dose a few times, gradually adjust it up or down depending on how it’s working for you. 

Man taking CBD tincture

Is CBD Still Beneficial Without THC?

While adding THC can give CBD a boost in effects and benefits, CBD alone still has many research-backed benefits:

  • Pain – Scientific and anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD has powerful supportive effects for when dealing with various types of pain.
  • Sleep – CBD promotes feelings of calm without getting you high. As a result, CBD may help you get to sleep sooner and stay asleep for longer.
  • Stress & Anxiety – CBD’s relaxing properties make it effective for mental health support during bouts of anxiety.
  • InflammationA number of scientific studies have shown CBD to have anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Epilepsy – CBD has been shown to be effective at addressing some forms of epileptic seizure. In fact, CBD is FDA-approved for some forms of epilepsy in the form of the prescription Epidiolex. 

And Vice Versa?

Like CBD, THC has many benefits by itself. You will still receive the therapeutic effects, as well as feelings of euphoria and relaxation – it just won’t be blunted by CBD (so be sure to dose it sparingly). 

Conclusion: A Powerful Combination

Many people who would otherwise enjoy THC end up not liking it because it’s too powerful, which then reduces the beneficial effects it has. 

CBD has been an answer for people who find themselves in this situation, as it can help you enjoy the beneficial parts of THC without experiencing the detrimental ones. And it has a host of its own benefits, so you’ll be getting a more well-rounded experience. 

CBD and THC Together: Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions our customers frequently ask us about using CBD and THC together. 

Is it OK to take CBD with THC?

Not only is taking CBD with THC safe, but it’s also very beneficial. In addition to getting the therapeutic benefits of both cannabinoids, CBD dampens many of THC’s adverse effects. 

What is the best combination of THC and CBD for pain relief?

Although the best CBD:THC ratio for everyone will vary, many people using this combination for pain relief use a 1:1 ratio of CBD:THC. 

What happens if you take THC and CBD together? 

When you take THC and CBD together, you’ll experience a head and body high, but it won’t be as overwhelming as if you took THC alone. CBD and THC together will also render far more benefits than using either cannabinoid by itself.

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