Extraction of Cannabis
The purpose of cannabis extraction is to create a product with a high concentration of cannabinoids (cannabis’ active components) for potential therapeutic application.
Timothy Welty, chair of the clinical sciences department at Drake University’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Des Moines, Iowa, argues that “CBD (a cannabinoid present in cannabis plants) is a problematic medicine to administer since it is poorly absorbed orally. Orally, less than 20% of the medication is absorbed. If it is not prepared properly, you may not receive an adequate dose of medication into your systemic circulation.”
Methods of Cannabis Extraction That Are Frequently Used
When extracting active compounds from cannabis plants, a variety of procedures are used. Several of the more popular ways include the following:
Extraction of Solvents
Cannabis trimmings are steeped in ethanol for this process. The ethanol is evaporated, leaving behind the botanical extracts.
Extraction of CO2
This is a highly sophisticated procedure, yet it produces the most effective outcomes. Supercritical CO2 dissolves the extracts as it passes through plant trimmings. After that, the extracts are separated from the CO2.
Extraction of Ice Water
This technique produces what is popularly referred to as a “Bubble Hash.” Marijuana trimmings are blended with ice. Add water and strain the mixture through multiple layers of mesh.
CBD verses THC
Cannabis extracts of high quality include a high concentration of cannabinoids. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol are the two primary cannabinoids (CBD). Simply put, THC produces the “high,” but CBD is frequently sought after for its alleged therapeutic benefits.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the psychoactive compound found in cannabis plants. As previously stated, it is present in higher concentrations in cannabis. Apart from producing a “high,” THC can induce feelings of lethargy and dysphoria and may potentially exacerbate anxiety and seizures.
Cannabidiol (CBD) does not produce the same level of intoxication as THC. CBD oil is frequently utilized in the treatment of epilepsy and chronic pain. According to some, CBD alleviates insomnia, sadness, anxiety, and other mental health concerns. It may even act as a counter-balance to THC’s euphoric effects. CBD use has been associated with adverse effects such as decreased appetite, weariness, weakness, and difficulty sleeping.
Marijuana vs. Hemp
Each and every cannabis extract begins with a cannabis plant. While the terms cannabis, cannabis, and hemp are sometimes used interchangeably (for example, CBD oil is frequently referred to as cannabis oil), it’s critical to understand the distinctions between the three if you want to understand cannabis extracts.
Cannabis is a plant family. Marijuana and hemp are two distinct plant species that belong under the cannabis umbrella. While cannabis contains a higher concentration of THC, hemp contains a higher concentration of CBD.
Typical Applications for Cannabis Extracts
There is a dearth of research on the health advantages of cannabis extracts. However, studies have shown that extracts, notably CBD oil, can aid in the treatment of the following symptoms and diseases:
The only ailment for which strong scientific data supports CBD as a feasible therapy option is epilepsy. Three independent clinical trials have demonstrated that pharmaceutical-grade CBD significantly lowers seizure frequency with little negative effects. Epidiolex is now being used to treat two uncommon kinds of epilepsy: Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.
While sufficient human trials have not been conducted to demonstrate CBD’s effect on pain and inflammation, animal studies show that it may be an effective treatment. CBD has been shown in several studies to lessen chronic inflammation in rats and mice.
According to certain human clinical trials, CBD may be a useful treatment for anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, obsessive–compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
According to an article published in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, CBD can inhibit the spread of cancer cells. While additional research is necessary to substantiate this claim, CBD’s anticancer capabilities are now being investigated across the United States.