Skip to main content

Study Finds That CBD May Offset THC-Induced Anxiety

anxiety depression anxiety depression

The cannabis plant is one of the most versatile plants on earth, and quite possibly could be the most versatile plant on the planet. Although, that can prove to be a two-edged sword of sorts, in that when cannabis’ complexities interact with human biology it can yield some undesirable consequences.

To be clear, I am not stating that cannabis is harmful in the manner that cannabis prohibitionists describe. However, it is a fact that when some people consume cannabis, particularly if they consume an amount of cannabis that exceeds what they are usually comfortable consuming, it can contribute to the person experiencing some level of anxiety.

It is never fun to experience anxiety, whether it’s a little anxiety or a lot of anxiety. Typically, the effects of THC are responsible for the person experiencing an increased level of anxiety, and fortunately, another cannabinoid appears to be able to offset those effects to some degree according to a recent study out of The Netherlands. Below is more information about it via a news release from NORML:

Maastricht, The Netherlands: Subjects who consume cannabis containing equal amounts of THC and CBD report experiencing less anxiety than they do after consuming THC-dominant cannabis, according to trial data published in the journal Psychopharmacology.

Dutch investigators assessed perceived anxiety levels in a cohort of 26 subjects following single doses of vaporized cannabis. Subjects vaporized cannabis samples that were either high in THC (13.75 mgs), high in CBD (13.75 mgs), contained equal amounts of both CBD and THC, or that contained no cannabinoids.

Investigators reported that THC-dominant and THC/CBD equivalent samples significantly increased participants’ self-rated state of anxiety compared to placebo, but subjects reported less anxiety after consuming the latter. Specifically, they reported, “Combined treatment of THC and CBD delayed the onset of … anxiety, reduced its magnitude and shortened its duration compared to inhalation of THC alone.”

The study’s findings are consistent with those of prior studies documenting CBD’s anxiolytic effects, and determining that subjects who consume cannabis flowers containing equal ratios of THC and CBD are less likely to report experiencing adverse effects, such as feelings of paranoia.

Authors concluded: “The present study showed that cannabis containing equivalent concentrations of THC and CBD induces less self-rated … anxiety compared to THC-only cannabis in healthy volunteers. … The THC/CBD combination might be more favorable in clinical settings, and it may be a reasonable public health strategy to encourage cannabis breeds containing THC/CBD mixtures where recreational use of cannabis is now legal.”

Full text of the study, “Cannabis containing equivalent concentrations of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) induces less state anxiety than THC-dominant cannabis,” appears in Psychopharmacology.

CBD, the Netherlands