If you’re looking to harness the power of marijuana for its healing and calming properties, but don’t want that psychoactive buzz associated with a cannabis high, then strains loaded with the non-psychoactive compound cannabidiol (CBD) might be right for you.
Marijuana varietals that are higher in CBD than they are in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive facet of cannabis) tend to produce feelings of calm and serenity, and have actually been proven to also contain anti-anxiety characteristics.
CBD first gained widespread notoriety in 2013 after neurosurgeon and medical reporter Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s CNN documentary Weed: Special Report revealed the use of CBD to treat the severe epileptic seizures of a young girl named Charlotte Figi. The substance has since been touted as a remedy for medical issues ranging from inflammation to neuropathy.
With none of the mind-altering or hallucinogenic qualities of traditional cannabis, CBD can be administered without the fear and paranoia sometimes associated with marijuana highs. However, it’s important to find strains with ratios of CBD-to-THC that are in ranges that produce the desired effect, without the high.
Due to CBD’s popularity as a beneficial healing agent, there are many such strains available on the market today, each offering varying degrees of CBD-to-THC ratios. A few of the current stars are listed here.
This strain is very high in CBD — with an imperceptible amount of THC, at less than 0.3 percent — and was first created specifically for Charlotte Figi, the young epilepsy patient and medical cannabis consumer who experienced severe recurring seizures before trying the cannabis remedy. Made from industrial hemp, the strain has since spurred a wave of innovation in CBD plant breeding, giving us many of the high-CBD strains on this list.
Named for CBD trailblazer and cannabis activist Lawrence Ringo, this hybrid of the popular CBD strains Harle-Tsu and ACDC has an average CBD-to-THC ratio of 24:1. While conferring all the therapeutic aspects of cannabis, it comes with an unnoticeable amount of the THC high.
Blue Dragon Desert Frost
A newer strain to the CBD scene, this varietal packs a powerful CBD wallop, at nearly 17 percent CBD, and an imperceptible 0.6 percent of THC. The focus here is all CBD healing. This strain has been said by consumers to relieve the pain and swelling of fibromyalgia and arthritis, without any of the stoned marijuana high.
One of the higher ratios, Valentine X has a staggering 25:1 CBD-to-THC ratio. Named after St. Valentine, who is recognized in the Christian world as the patron saint of epilepsy, patients tout this strain as a go-to for a host of health issues, including seizure disorders and cancer.
With cannabinoid content averaging at 20:1 CBD-to-THC, this strain has a trace amount of THC, making it an outstanding cohort for daily medical use for consumers seeking to relieve tension, anxiety and pain.