Although CBD has become quite ubiquitous within the past decade, the positive attributes of the cannabis plant from which it is derived have been known for thousands of years. Long ago in ancient China, cannabis was put to a variety of uses — including the production of rope and clothing, as well as traditional folk remedies. Currently, three different types of cannabis have been identified: Cannabis Sativa, Cannabis Indica, and Ruderalis. Hemp, which is a kind of Sativa, is considered by many to be the most industrious of all cannabis strains, due to its incredible versatility. Hemp can be eaten, worn, and sheltered under; it can even be used to make paper and plastic.
Including ancient China, researchers have discovered numerous references to cannabis use that span throughout history. Thomas Jefferson once said, “Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth and protection of the country.” Even first drafts of the United States constitution were written on Dutch hemp, although the final copy was written on parchment paper.
Looking back, it is puzzling to conceive that the cannabis plant was ever banned in the first place — after millennia of human use, it was suddenly considered illicit contraband. It is hard to discern the true meaning for this, as current generations have been subjected to heavy indoctrination against the use of cannabis. Yet, despite the onslaught of negative propaganda that permeated throughout the 20th century, humans could not escape their reliance on such a valuable resource.
The reasons for cannabis prohibition seem ostensibly due to the psychotropic effects that are induced from the ingestion of THC, a popular compound that is prominent in certain strains of cannabis, commonly known as marijuana. Although there is little botanical differentiation between recreational marijuana and hemp, the two strains are very different in terms of what purposes they are generally used for.
When users consume marijuana with higher percentages of THC, it engenders an intoxicating state of mind that in turn motives the desire for continual marijuana ingestion. While users may typically feel a state of euphoria and care-free, THC can also produce anxiety, and studies have shown that it could also possibly precipitate latent mental illness.
While THC is the primary compound found in recreational marijuana, CBD is dominant in hemp. If a person were to smoke a hemp flower, they would not experience the psychotropic effects that a recreational marijuana flower would generate. This begs the question: Why was hemp banned along with marijuana? Hemp can be used to make such a huge variety of goods, so it stands to be reasoned that the motivations for outlawing
cannabis may have had less to do with the potential harms of THC, and more with the special interests of those who manufactured goods that were made out of materials that compete with hemp, including petroleum based plastic, tree pulp paper, and cotton.
The United States finally legalized hemp with the 2018 Farm Bill, and it was a huge victory against the unnecessary prohibition against cannabis. Now that the government has finally recognized the difference between recreational marijuana and hemp, a whole new field of research and study has opened up, which in the years to come may possibly yield insight on further advantages of the hemp plant.