Marijuana research says CBD will enhance a THC high

Published Apr 14, 2019 11:17 a.m. ET

Most people who use marijuana know that THC is responsible for that euphoric sensation you feel after smoking or consuming the cannabinoid in one form or another. What many don’t realize is that THC is not the only element that has the potential to impact the high you will get from using a THC product like dry herb or concentrates. There are other influences like the terpenes (scent and flavor), and other cannabinoids that are present within the plant flowers.

Cannabis plants have the potential to produce well over 100 different cannabinoids, but the two primary most active and researched of them are THC and CBD. For the longest time, it was the general assumption that THC was the only cannabinoid that has the potential to induce psychoactive effect and that CBD was strictly medicinal and mainly used for inflammation. Due to this incredibly widespread myth, CBD has been almost entirely eradicated from newer strains that were bred strictly with the focus on THC production. Now it appears they are learning that they should have done things a little differently.

The study

The European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience conducted this research over six months while conducting an experiment involving 36 females and 31 males and the effects of the consumption of these two primary cannabinoids (THC and CBD). To control any possible randomized interferences with results, only half of those selected were given the doses of CBD and THC, while the others received a placebo along with THC. The effects were then gauged to see how the different variations of cannabinoids might affect the intensity of an experience after consuming marijuana.

The goal:

To find out if CBD has any psychoactive potential.

The Research: Each one of the controlled doses werespread out by 7-10 days to give plenty of time for the subjects to fully recover. All participants were given 8mg of THC combined with either a placebo or CBD which would be slowly increased from a low 5mg per dosing to 400 mg of CBD per dose in the final week.

The results:


The outcome of this study was a lot more complicated than researchers had originally anticipated. To explain they divided the CBD effects measurements into three different categories.

Low CBD- When participants were given a low 8 mg dose of CBD along with THC over 50% reported an increase the felt effects when compared to a pure THC introduction.

High CBD- The high doses of CBD actuallyappear to decrease the potency of the THC by anywhere from 30%-50%.

Infrequent Users- It was noted that those who were most likely to report a heightened euphoric sensation due to the introduction of low amounts of CBD were also more likely to be infrequent or inexperienced marijuana consumers, with very littleexperience with the cannabinoids to begin with.

Control Group- One group of individuals which was randomized weekly received a placebo. 10% of those who were given the placebo reported an increased high quite consistently.


Though there is still plenty of marijuana research needed to understand precisely how these variations of cannabinoids will affect us, and why they will influence each person slightly different than the next, there is enough data to confidently say that CBD is shaping into a psychoactive inducing category as long as it is consumed at the same time as THC and in minimal amounts. Though that may have changed, CBD still will not get you stoned from consuming it alone, as it appears to be the delicate balance of both cannabinoids that is required for the magic to work properly.



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