benefits of cbd and thc together

Benefits of CBD with THC


If you're a fan of CBD, then you're probably already aware of its many potential benefits. Cannabidiol (aka CBD) can support healthy sleep, improve mood, reduce everyday stress, and even relieve occasional aches and pains from exercise-related inflammation.

But did you also know that taking CBD with THC can enhance those benefits?

In this article, we'll explore how CBD and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) work together in the body, why CBD with THC is so much better than CBD by itself, and more.

First, let’s cover a few cannabis basics.

The Cannabis Plant

Cannabis, marijuana, hemp.

These words are sometimes used synonymously, but they don't mean the same thing.

Hemp vs. Marijuana vs. Cannabis Sativa

Hemp and marijuana are both varieties of cannabis sativa. They both have stems, leaves, and flowers, and are very similar in appearance and smell. There is, however, one very important difference — the amount of THC each plant contains.

CBD-Rich Hemp Plants

Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized the cultivation of hemp on a federal level, cannabis extracts containing 0.3% THC or less also became legal under federal law.1 These special cannabis sativa plants were cultivated to have far more CBD and far less THC than conventional marijuana, and it's this low-THC cannabis variety that we refer to as hemp.

Unlike the marijuana plant, hemp doesn't contain enough THC to get you high or to produce the other psychoactive effects associated with marijuana — such as paranoia, distorted perceptions, and hallucinations.

However, the small amount of THC that hemp does contain is capable of something rather special, which we'll get into in just a bit.

THC-Rich Marijuana Plants

From the recreational to the medical, cannabis plants with a THC content that exceeds 0.3% are officially considered marijuana, which remains a highly controlled substance in much of the United States. Marijuana's THC content is much higher than that of hemp and, in addition to ushering in a sense of calm and relaxation for some, it can also bring about some unpleasant psychoactive reactions (like the ones listed in the section above).

The Cannabis Sativa Plant: Nature's Pharmacy

For thousands of years, cannabis sativa has been used by different civilizations for medicinal, recreational, and even spiritual purposes, due to its unique effects on the body and mind. While historical peoples understood little about how cannabis created the effects that it did, we now have a much better understanding of this special plant and all its "magical" parts.


You may have heard the term "cannabinoid" before. It refers to a special type of compound found in cannabis. It's these cannabinoids that make cannabis such a unique plant. CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the two major cannabinoids which make up most of the cannabinoid content in hemp and marijuana. But there are more than 100 other minor cannabinoids present in cannabis as well.

Most cannabinoid studies have focused on CBD and THC. However, in recent years, researchers have begun to delve into the realm of minor cannabinoids as well, and it's likely that the list of benefits attributed to cannabis will grow as research continues.

Terpenes and Flavonoids

Terpenes and flavonoids are compounds naturally found in fruits, vegetables, and other plants. They're responsible for a plant's flavors, aromas, and colors. Terpenes, in particular, have played an interesting role in natural remedies, and some (such as curcumin) have been widely used in folk medicine. Terpenes are also the most common type of compound found in plant-based essential oils (which explains why they smell so nice).

Cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes are all considered "phytonutrients" ("phyto-" meaning "plant") and, when taken together, these three special compounds bring about "the entourage effect."

The Entourage Effect: The Benefits of CBD and THC Together

While studies have shown that CBD alone offers many therapeutic benefits, it's been observed that when CBD is taken alongside the full spectrum of hemp's active compounds (including THC), those benefits increase significantly. This phenomenon is called the "entourage effect," whereby CBD is the "star" and the other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids act as its "entourage," tagging along and boosting CBD and its beneficial effects.

This metaphorical entourage may be small in size, but it’s large in diversity — and in effect.

A 2015 Israeli study showed that whole-plant CBD (containing CBD as well as other cannabis compounds) was more effective than pure CBD (aka CBD isolate). The study's authors found that pure CBD had a smaller therapeutic range than CBD and THC combined, which made it difficult to find an accurate effective dose for CBD isolate.

On the flip side, full spectrum hemp extract (which contains the full range of cannabis compounds) was observed to have a much broader dosing range. Plus, the CBD and THC extract worked just as well as CBD isolate at only a quarter of the dosing!2

The gist: Taking a CBD supplement that includes THC and other cannabis compounds will produce greater results than CBD taken by itself.

The Endocannabinoid System: Cannabinoids in Action

Have you ever wondered why CBD and other cannabinoids seem to make such a difference in supporting general wellness? Most people agree that plants are good for you, but why does this plant appear to be so useful? The answer lies inside your body (and everyone's body) — in the endocannabinoid system (aka the ECS).

What Is the Endocannabinoid System?

Endo- means "within." So, endocannabinoids are cannabinoid-like compounds produced within the body (yours, mine, your dog's, everybody's). These endocannabinoids were named after cannabinoids, which were discovered first, because scientists observed similarities between the two.

The endocannabinoid system (or "ECS" as it’s more easily called) is a vast network of enzymes, cannabinoid receptors, and endocannabinoids located all throughout the body. Each element of the ECS plays a key role in supporting overall balance in the body.

  • The endocannabinoids interact and/or bind with ECS receptors to produce particular results and assist in regulating vital functions within the body's other systems.

  • The enzymes break down endocannabinoids that have completed their function.

An interesting thing to note is that the receptors in the ECS aren't called endocannabinoid receptors — they're called cannabinoid receptors. This is because they don't only interact with endocannabinoids, but with cannabinoids as well. Hemp and marijuana compounds, such as CBD and THC, can bind with or otherwise influence ECS receptors just like endocannabinoids.

That's why THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids have the potential to produce such impressive benefits across various physiological systems.

THC and CBD: Differences in Action

THC is the cannabis compound responsible for the psychoactive effects of marijuana. It binds directly to special cannabinoid receptors in the brain, influencing mood and pain perception.

CBD appears to interact with the body in a different way. Instead of binding with receptors directly, CBD delays the breakdown of cannabinoids, allowing them to further interact with the body's receptors and produce heightened benefits.

Hemp-Derived CBD Products vs. Marijuana-Derived Products

CBD products derived from hemp may contain up to 0.3% THC, and are fully legal in most parts of the country. This small amount of THC isn't enough to produce psychoactive effects, but it is enough to contribute to the entourage effect.

Marijuana-derived products, on the other hand, remain heavily regulated under the Controlled Substances Act. These products typically have THC levels that far exceed the 0.3% limit imposed on hemp. However, they are legal in some states for recreational purposes, and in others under certain circumstances (e.g., medical marijuana).

Does CBD Make THC Weaker or More Manageable?

If you're worried that taking CBD with THC will produce unwanted psychoactive effects, you can put your mind at ease. Not only is the THC level in hemp-derived CBD too low to produce these effects, but the CBD itself actually mitigates them.

One of the best ways that CBD balances THC can be seen in how it affects THC’s ability to make a person feel “high.” According to anecdotal reports, CBD can make THC’s psychotropic effects much more manageable. It’s well-known among cannabis enthusiasts that one of the best ways to come down from feeling too high is to take some CBD.

CBD With THC: Achieving Complementary and Integrative Health

Now that we've covered how THC can help to maximize the benefits of CBD, let's take a look at how you can put this data into practice and experience the benefits for yourself!

Taking CBD and THC Together the Right Way

Zoom in on the flowering buds of a mature hemp plant and you’ll see something interesting: thousands of small, white, hook-like structures called "trichomes."

Researchers refer to these trichomes affectionately as “phytochemical factories.” Why? Because it’s within the trichome that hemp’s most important ingredients are created — the cannabinoids. CBD, THC, and pretty much every other cannabinoid is made right here in the hemp flower.3

Full spectrum CBD with THC is considered by many to be the most effective type of CBD you can take, due to its ability to produce the entourage effect. And, when it comes to full spectrum products, those made from the flower only, which combine CBD and THC in the highest legal ratios, are the best of the best

Now that you know what to look for, let's explore five common hemp-derived products that combine CBD and THC the right way.

1. Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Full Spectrum CBD Oil can have a pleasant non-bitter flavor and a nice floral aroma (although this will depend on the quality of the product itself). You can find varieties that are packed with up to 2 mg of THC per serving (which is within the legal limit of 0.3%). You want to look for organic whole flower CBD oils that contain no additives, artificial flavors, or preservatives.

2. Full Spectrum CBD Gummies

Full Spectrum CBD Gummies

Full spectrum CBD gummies with THC typically have a fruity flavor and a chewy consistency. They're a fun and tasty way to incorporate CBD and THC into your wellness routine.

While many CBD gummies on the market contain high-fructose corn syrup, gelatin, and artificial colors and flavors, it's possible to find healthier options. Look for organic full spectrum CBD gummies made with all-natural ingredients and fruit pectin instead of gelatin.

3. Full Spectrum CBD Capsules

Full Spectrum CBD Capsules

CBD soft gels combine CBD, THC, and other minor cannabinoids with a carrier oil in a convenient capsule. This is a great option for those who find the earthy flavor of CBD oil less than pleasant. Look for capsules that contain an organic full spectrum extract and one of the better carrier oils (like MCT coconut oil).

4. CBD Lotion

cbd topicals for relief

Looking for a topical CBD product? Then you may want to try a CBD lotion. The full spectrum versions contain a powerful botanical blend of CBD, THC, and terpenes that can help support healthy skin. As always, look for organic CBD extract on the label and avoid products with unnecessary additives.

5. CBD Balm

CBD Balm

Full spectrum CBD balm is another great topical product made with a potent blend of CBD and THC. Some balms will include additional ingredients (such as peppermint, menthol, or arnica) to provide even greater relief for sore and aching muscles (such as from exercise-induced inflammation).

6. CBD Oil for Pets

CBD Oil for Pets

You can even find CBD oil for pets that contains the perfect amount of CBD and THC for your furry friend. These can be very beneficial for cats or dogs who seem anxious or have trouble settling down at night. Opt for the organic options to achieve the best results.

Why Organic Matters When It Comes to CBD and THC

You may have noticed several notes in the list above regarding choosing organic over non-organic CBD products. This is because hemp is very good at absorbing contaminants (like heavy metals and pesticides) from the soil. In fact, it's sometimes used to do just that — purify contaminated soil.

The problem with this is that contaminated hemp results in contaminated CBD and THC — which is not something you want to introduce to your body.

By only using organic CBD and THC products (which are grown without the use of pesticides), you can avoid inadvertently introducing harmful toxins into your system.

Finding the Best CBD with THC

At Cornbread Hemp we believe in trusting nature’s wisdom, which is why many of our products feature our USDA certified organic Flower-Only™ full spectrum extract, which contains both CBD and THC in one of the strongest ratios available.

Accessing the very best that hemp has to offer is as simple as finding a full spectrum product that combines the therapeutic powers of CBD, THC, and the rest of the gang. Because, when it comes to cannabinoids, there's strength in numbers.

Visit our online store to shop our full spectrum CBD supplements.

About the Author
Jim Higdon, Co-Founder

Jim is a native of Lebanon, Kentucky. He holds degrees from Centre College, Brown University, and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Jim published Cornbread Mafia in 2012 before co-founding Cornbread Hemp. Full author bio here.


While recorded history of the benefits of CBD and THC is still relatively short, we do know that these cannabinoids work amazingly well together. When both cannabinoids are present in proper ratios, they become even more powerful.

That depends on what you want from your medicine. If you need relief from pain, stress, or anxiety, higher levels of CBD will likely be appropriate for your needs. But if you’re looking for more of a mood boost, THC may be the better option.

There are many products available today that contain both CBD and THC in proper ratios to make them even more beneficial than either cannabinoids on its own. You can buy these products at Cornbread Hemp or find them in your local dispensary.


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  2. Cox-Georgian, D., Ramadoss, N., Dona, C., & Basu, C. (2019). Therapeutic and Medicinal Uses of Terpenes. Medicinal Plants: From Farm to Pharmacy, 333–359. 
  3. Masyita, A., Mustika Sari, R., Dwi Astuti, A., Yasir, B., Rahma Rumata, N., Emran, T. B., Nainu, F., & Simal-Gandara, J. (2022). Terpenes and terpenoids as main bioactive compounds of essential oils, their roles in human health and potential application as natural food preservatives. Food chemistry: X, 13, 100217. 
  4. Gallily, R., Yekhtin, Z., & Hanuš, L. O. (2015). Title of the article. Pharmacology & Pharmacy, 6(2), 75-85. 
  5. Gallily, R., Yekhtin, Z., Hanuš, L. O. (2015). Overcoming the Bell‐Shaped Dose‐Response of Cannabidiol by Using Cannabis Extract Enriched in Cannabidiol. Scientific Research Publishing.
  6. Andre, C. M., Hausman, J. F., & Guerriero, G. (2016). Cannabis sativa: The Plant of the Thousand and One Molecules. Frontiers in plant science, 7, 19.