By now, most of us who use CBD products are at least vaguely familiar with the properties that make this compound so unique. Most of us also know about THC, which is a psychoactive cannabis compound that’s present in very small amounts in the hemp plant. But, what about all of the other compounds? We know that hemp is naturally rich in a wide array of fascinating compounds that each have their own unique properties. So, why are these other compounds so rarely discussed? To help remedy this lack of information, today’s topic about CBDA will introduce you to this interesting and useful hemp compound.
CBDA is highly unique in that it is a precursor cannabinoid, and we will be explaining what that means shortly. Moreover, by the end of this article, you’ll have a new appreciation for this particular compound that most rarely hear about.
How Cannabinoids Interact with the Human Body via the Endocannabinoid System
Before we talk about what makes CBDA so unique in comparison to other hemp compounds, we first have to have a brief discussion about cannabinoids, and how they work with the body. Cannabinoids refer to a class of compounds native to the cannabis plant. However, cannabinoids also include CBD, THC, CBG, CBC and, of course, CBDA, which is what we are discussing today. So, why are cannabinoids so special? Interestingly, it all has to do with the endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system plays a unique role in the body’s well-being by managing homeostasis via chemical reactions that occur thanks to cannabinoid receptors all throughout the body. What’s interesting about cannabinoids is that recent discoveries show that the body produces it. Therefore, cannabinoids that come from the hemp plant are technically referred to as phytocannabinoids, meaning that they derive from plants.
Cannabinoids are capable of bonding with cannabinoid receptors all over the body. This allows chemical reactions that trigger the regulation of the bodily processes that are so important to our health. These processes include everything from pain levels to mood. However, when we don’t make enough of our own cannabinoids, we can simply grab them from the hemp plant.
Next, CBD, and THC, being cannabinoids, have unique effects on the endocannabinoid system, in that this system uses them to produce specific chemical reactions. But, the other cannabinoids are equally in use by the endocannabinoid system. Therefore, it’s so important that we understand all of them.
What Exactly is CBDA?
Again, CBDA is a precursor to both THC and CBD. Essentially, exposure to heat causes CBDA to turn into both THC and CBD. Therefore, CBDA is simply these compounds in their rawest forms.
Interestingly, the large majority of hemp products currently on the market come from hemp extracts that are decarboxylated. This fancy word essentially means that the extract that’s rich in plant compounds gains exposure to a specific temperature so that the compounds become more bioavailable. Next, bioavailability is important, because it determines how easily our body absorbs the compounds. But, some now believe that consuming the raw compound, CBDA, may have its own unique effects that are lost when heat is applied to it.
What Can CBDA Do?
So, what makes CBDA unique? For one thing, it doesn’t actually bond with any cannabinoid receptors. This is due to the fact that it does not activate via the decarboxylation process. What it does do, however, is inhibit the release of specific enzymes associated with inflammation, and again, this is done via the endocannabinoid system.
Fascinatingly, a series of new studies suggests that CBDA may be uniquely capable of boosting the release of serotonin. Meanwhile, the cannabinoid is also under research for its effects on pain, due to what we said earlier about its rare ability to block the release of inflammation-producing enzymes.
How is CBDA Produced?
What’s also unique about CBDA is that it doesn’t need to be produced, per se. That’s because it already exists in nature, and we have easy access to it. Therefore, CBDA is consumable in the form of raw plant material, or in the form of an extract in which the manufacturing process does not include heat.
Where Can I Find CBDA?
If you’re interested in giving CBDA a try, simply seek out hemp products that are not decarboxylated (AKA raw CBD). Due to the rising interest in this cannabinoid, it’s easier than ever to find a wide array of raw CBD products that are naturally rich in CBDA. CBDA-rich products are now available in the form of tinctures, edibles, topicals and so much more.
But, be aware that you must carefully store your raw CBD products as exposure to heat changes the chemical composition of the product, essentially breaking down the CBDA so that it’s no longer in its raw, pure and unadulterated form. Also, there are talks of developing CBDA isolate products that provide the body with an extremely concentrated dose of pure CBDA without any of the other plant compounds in hemp.
CBDA Has Its Purpose
CBDA is an important precursor to two of the most popular plant compounds in existence, CBD and THC. As you can easily see, this raw version of a cannabinoid is just as exciting as the ones that are more familiar. Now that you know about CBDA, you can decide whether or not you wish to seek it out as part of your hemp experience.