The term "CBD" is a nickname for cannabidiol, which is one of several cannabinoids, or chemical compounds, that are found in cannabis and hemp plants. Of course, the most famous cannabinoid is tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which is the main psychoactive component in marijuana (aka, the part that gets you high). Because CBD is not psychoactive, it does not create the same buzzy effects typically associated with marijuana when ingested.
The Health effects of cannabis and cannabinoids: the current state of evidence and recommendations for research. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine; Health and Medicine Division; Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice; Committee on the Health Effects of Marijuana: An evidence review and research agenda. Washington, National Academies Press, 2017.
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Roocroft explained his company’s low dose by saying, “Everyone’s different, so when it comes to microdosing, they can control their cup of coffee, which is a 6-ounce serving per brew.” He’s not the only person I talked to who used the term “microdosing.” Blessing says he’s misusing the term. Microdosing means using very small amounts of very powerful drugs; sometimes, this can have extremely mild or even totally different effects from what is considered a full dose. But the key is microdosing still has a provable effect.

Hemp-derived CBD definitely had an effect on me. At Caffeine Underground, I ordered a CBD oat milk latte—smooth and delicious with no trace of CBD flavor—and toast made with CBD-infused jam. After two hours plugging away on my laptop with full concentration, I was still so completely blissed out, the walk back to the train in 30-degree weather felt like it took no time at all.


Selective breeding of cannabis plants has expanded and diversified as commercial and therapeutic markets develop. Some growers in the U.S. succeeded in lowering the proportion of CBD-to-THC to accommodate customers who preferred varietals that were more mind-altering due to the higher THC and lower CBD content.[58] Hemp is classified as any part of the cannabis plant containing no more than 0.3% THC in dry weight form (not liquid or extracted form).[59]
Scientists have made a lot of progress in understanding how CBD produces its calming, pain-reducing, anti-inflammatory effects in the body—and there’s still more to learn. We know that CBD interacts with many different receptors, proteins, and other chemicals in the brain. These interactions create changes in the activity of neurotransmitters, hormones, and other cells throughout the brain and body. Through these interactions, CBD appears to be able to affect many of the body’s functions, from sleep-wake cycles and emotional regulation to inflammation, pain perception, and seizures.

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