The Definitive CBD Glossary of Terms

Like any community or industry, the world of CBD can play host to insular jargon – words, phrases, and acronyms (often used for the sake of brevity) that are unfamiliar and difficult for outsiders to understand.

In this glossary, we’ll cover the waterfront to list and define the various CBD-related terms that you’ll likely regularly encounter. By the end, you’ll be on your way to becoming a bona fide CBD expert!


First, let’s explore the various remarkable bodies called cannabinoids.

Cannabinoids are unique compounds that occur in nature exclusively in the cannabis plant. Cannabinoids are the source of the multiple health benefits of cannabis that are special to the crop.

Here are the key cannabinoids in cannabis.

Cannabidiol (CBD)

In terms of proven health benefits via research, CBD is the king of cannabinoids.

In the last few years, CBD has gone mainstream within the medical community, resulting in a cascade of new research assessing the medicinal value of the compound. The various demonstrated benefits of CBD include:

  • Treating epilepsy and other seizure disorders
  • Fighting chronic pain – especially pain resulting from inflammatory conditions such as arthritis
  • Reducing anxiety
  •  Inducing sleep

Optimized cognitive function (used as a so-called “nootropic”)

Unlike CBD’s cousin, THC, it does not produce a “high” – so it’s safe, for example, even for children or for workers who must submit to drug screenings.

CBD is fully legal in the state of Georgia and across the US – provided it does not contain more than 0.3% THC.

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

THC is the cannabinoid that exerts psychoactive effects, producing euphoria or a “high.” THC captured the 20th-century public consciousness and made cannabis famous in the Cheech and Chong era.

Delta-9 THC content (the predominant form of THC in cannabis) in cannabis products is tightly regulated by federal and state authorities. THC-rich cannabis products containing more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC are illegal in Georgia and nationwide – although many states have begun to decriminalize and in many cases, fully legalize THC.

Check out our article on where Delta-9 THC is legal in the United States.

Another form of THC called Delta-8, however, which is virtually identical to Delta-9 THC in every way except the location of the double-bond on the carbon atom, is legal everywhere. Learn more about the differences between Delta-8 and Delta-9 THC.

To learn more about the differences between THC and CBD, we also have an article about that.

Cannabigerol (CBG)

CBG has gained more and more attention among researchers and cannabis entrepreneurs. Most cannabis strains contain relatively low concentrations of CBG compared to other cannabinoids, but they can be engineered to pack higher quantities of CBG.

Because CBG serves as a precursor ingredient to facilitate the synthesis of other cannabinoids like THC and CBD, it has earned the moniker the “Mother of All Cannabinoids.” It has similarly been described as a cannabinoid “stem cell” for the same reason.

Cannabis Strains and Species

Uniquely named cannabis strains – for example, Sour Diesel, Monster Kush, and literally thousands of more – are genetic variants of cannabis species that result from the intentional breeding of selected plants.

Let’s discuss the two main species of cannabis used in cultivation: Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica.

Cannabis Sativa

Cannabis sativa is indigenous to the East Asia region of the world. It’s now grown worldwide. The amazing cannabis plant is so versatile that it can thrive in multiple different climates, enabling its widescale production across the globe.

The sativa plant is skinny and tall. Its leaves are very light shades of green

Cannabis Indica

Cannabis indica got its name from the French naturalist. Jean-Baptiste Lamarck in the 18th century. It originates from the area around the Indian subcontinent – hence the name “Kush” after the Hindu Kush mountain range spanning Pakistan and Afghanistan –and has large, broad, dark-green leaves.

The Difference Between Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica

Most strains either disproportionately contain sativa or indica genetics; some are hybrids. Sativa and indica strains are different in important ways.

Here are the key differences between sativa-heavy and indica-heavy cannabis strains:

  • Sativa tends to have a stimulating, energy-enhancing effect while indica induces relaxation.
  • Due to the differences in effects, many users prefer to use indica at night to relax before bed; on the other hand, many cannabis enthusiasts use sativa in the morning to get pumped for the day.
  •  Indica strains tend to naturally have higher THC content.
  • Users often describe sativa as causing more of a “head high” whereas indica tends to cause a “body high,” or “stoned,” feeling.

CO2 extraction

To turn raw cannabis plant material into usable oil, the good stuff inside (the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids) must be efficiently extracted, or pulled out of the plant to be concentrated in an oily solution.

Carbon-dioxide extraction, or CO2 extraction for short, is the process of grinding the plant material down and placing it into an extracting vessel. Pressured carbon dioxide then pulls out the important compounds. The result is the amber-hued oils that we sell at Georgia Hemp Company.

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is a category of CBD product that indicates the content to be 100% pure CBD. The other compounds of the cannabis plant have been purified, leaving undiluted CBD.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full-spectrum CBD contains CBD plus all the other powerful cannabinoids and compounds contained in the cannabis plant – including terpenes and flavonoids. Taken together, these compounds work in concert to deliver the synergistic so-called “entourage effect.”

Entourage Effect

The entourage effect occurs when the various components of cannabis extracted into a full-spectrum CBD product interact with one another to complement and intensify their therapeutic benefits when humans consume them. The entourage effect is described in clinical literature as the “positive contribution derived from the addition of terpenes to the effect of cannabinoids. This means that the entirety of the effect is greater than the sum effects of its contributing parts.”

Contact Georgia Hemp Company to Learn More About CBD and All Its Associated Terms

We endeavored to cover as much of the constellation of CBD-related terminology, but there’s much more to explore. If you have any questions related to a CBD term you’re not familiar with, contact Georgia Hemp Company, your definitive Georgia hemp leader, for authoritative answers. 

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