12 High-CBD Cannabis Strains to Ease Anxiety
Cannabis is a go-to remedy for some folks living with anxiety. But not all cannabis is created equal. Some strains can actually bring on or worsen anxiety.
The key is to choose a strain with a high CBD-to-THC ratio.
Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the main active compounds in cannabis. They’re both similar in structure, but there’s one very big difference.
THC is a psychoactive compound, and CBD is not. It’s THC that causes the “high” associated with cannabis, including the anxiety and paranoia that some people experience.
While not a treatment for anxiety, using high-CBD strains might help ease certain symptoms, especially when combined with other tools, like therapy.
We combed through Leafly’s strain explorer to find 12 CBD-dominant strains worth trying if you’re looking for something on the mellower side.
Keep in mind that strains aren’t an exact science. The effects aren’t always consistent, even among products of the same strain.
Remedy is a 14 percent CBD strain that produces little to no psychoactive effects.
It’s got a lemon-pine scent. Most users recommend it for its ability to mellow you out without the intense head and body effects of high-THC strains.
This is another 14 percent CBD strain preferred by people looking to relieve stress, anxiety, and pain without feeling stoned.
It contains no relevant amount of THC. The two most common words used to describe its effects are “relaxed” and “happy,” according to reviews on Leafly.
Lifter is a newer player in the cannabis game. It averages around 16 percent CBD with next to no THC.
Its aroma is described as “funky cheese with a hint of fuel” (weird flex, but OK). It’s uber-relaxing effects won’t put a damper on your focus or function.
This is one of the best-known high-CBD strains. It contains around 13 percent CBD with little to no THC.
It’s used in several health and wellness products to help ease anxiety, pain, and depression without any psychoactive effects.
If you like the smell of wine and cheese, Cherry Wine’s your strain.
It averages around 17 percent CBD with less than 1 percent THC. According to user reviews, it relaxes your brain and muscles without mind-altering effects.
This CBD strain has an average CBD-to-THC ratio of 13:1, but strains as high as 20:1 can be found.
Ringo’s Gift is a cross of two high-CBD strains: ACDC and Harle-Tsu, which is actually next on our list.
Users report a big improvement in anxiety and stress levels after using this strain. Improved sleep is another effect users rave about.
This award-winning strain averages around 13 percent CBD but often tests much higher.
It was named best CBD flower at the 2014 Emerald Cup. Lab tests found it to contain 21.05 percent CBD and 0.86 percent THC.
This ratio makes it a favorite for people looking to lower anxiety and boost their mood and focus.
This was one of the first high-CBD strains ever bred and remains a fan favorite.
It has an average CBD:THC ratio of 13:1 or even lower THC. Users report feeling relaxed and happy without that “heavy body” feeling.
Elektra averages around 16 percent CBD with less than 1 percent THC. Some user reviews say it’s tested as high as around 20 percent CBD.
Its pungent smoke and aroma get mixed reviews, but people love it for its relaxing effect that doesn’t totally wipe you out.
This high-CBD strain has some sour notes as far as aroma, but it gets props from people who use it to relieve symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Sour Space Candy has an average of 17 percent CBD and only a trace amount of THC.
Suzy Q isn’t as high in CBD as some other strains. It comes in at about 11 percent CBD with little to no THC.
It’s considered a good choice for helping to relax an anxious mind and tense muscles without getting you high or knocking you out.
This strain contains more THC than the others we’ve listed, making it a good option if you’re still looking for a light buzz. It can contain anywhere from 4 to 7 percent THC and 8 to 10 percent CBD.
According to user reviews, people who don’t generally do well with THC find that this strain relaxes and calms without causing a green out.
Even if you’re going with a high-CBD strain, most still contain some THC, even if just a trace amount. Still, since it’s hard to predict exactly how any amount of THC will affect someone, a little caution is always a good idea.
Here are some tips that can help make your experience a little safer when trying a new strain:
- Go low and slow by choosing a strain with the lowest THC you can find. Give it ample time to work before considering having more.
- Consider nonsmoking methods, like CBD oils, to protect your lungs. Cannabis smoke contains a lot of the same toxins and carcinogens as tobacco smoke.
- If you do smoke, avoid deep inhalation or holding your breath to limit exposure to smoke’s harmful byproducts.
- Don’t drive for at least 6 hours after use, or longer if you’re still feeling any effects.
- Avoid cannabis entirely if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
Also keep in mind that individual states have their own legislation regarding legal levels of CBD and THC. Check your state’s legislation for specific information. Be mindful of other state laws when traveling with cannabis.
Research continues into cannabis, specifically CBD, as a potential way to manage anxiety. While it isn’t a tried-and-true remedy, some people do find it helpful for easing some of their symptoms.
If you want to give high-CBD strains a try, just be sure to keep up with any anxiety treatments prescribed by your healthcare provider.
Adrienne Santos-Longhurst is a freelance writer and author who has written extensively on all things health and lifestyle for more than a decade. When she’s not holed up in her writing shed researching an article or off interviewing health professionals, she can be found frolicking around her beach town with husband and dogs in tow or splashing about the lake trying to master the stand-up paddle board.
Cannabis and anxiety have a complicated relationship. For some, cannabis works wonders for their symptoms, but for others, it ramps them up. If you're looking to use cannabis for anxiety, high-CBD strains are probably your safest bet.
Cbd-Rich Cannabis Strains
CBD is a highly sought after cannabinoid. Find out what constitutes a ‘CBD-rich cannabis strain’, and check out our latest recommendations for CBD-laden cannabis genetics.
Traditionally, the THC content has been the sole indicator of a strain’s potency and quality, but this is changing as the merits of the other cannabinoids, and particularly CBD, are being scientifically recognised. THC is the cannabinoid largely responsible for the psychoactive effects of cannabis, and is still the most sought after compound by recreational users for its trippy qualities. For this reason, most breeders have focused on pushing THC levels, but neglected other cannabinoids such as CBD.
THC has been shown to hold its own qualities, but it is CBD that has moved into the spotlight for its wide range of qualities. Particularly the absence of any psychoactive effects makes CBD attractive for a wide range of applications, as it has been successfully given to people without causing a high. As a result, cannabis seed breeders are now producing many new strains that exhibit high levels of CBD.
With mainstream media picking up CBD stories, awareness about the potent qualities of this cannabinoid is spreading. The legalisation of recreational cannabis in a number of U.S. states has further made CBD rich stains widely available. However, not all users are lucky enough to buy from dispensaries or coffeeshops. For this reason, many take it into their own hands and grow their own supply, from which they create their own tinctures and concentrates.
What Is Considered A High Cbd Strain?
CBD is the abbreviation for cannabidiol, the second most prevalent and important cannabinoid found in cannabis, after THC. When looking at a strain’s cannabinoid content, it is quite common to find a THC content ranging from around 12 – 25 percent, with anything at 20 or more being considered very strong. This is not the case when it comes to CBD; any CBD content level that is 4 percent or higher is considered a high CBD strain. While already 1% CBD is much better than nothing, strains with upwards of 20% CBD have emerged in the last few years.
What Does Cbd Do?
Initially, it was always thought that CBD only acted to modulate and dampen some of the effects of THC – giving breeders good reason to cast it aside. It is true that CBD alters the way THC interacts with our body, but not necessarily in a negative way. It counteracts some of the unwanted side-effects that can come with high doses of THC, as well as prolonging its effects.
Furthermore, CBD has no negative side effects, does not damage the body or mind, is not addictive, and cannot be overdosed on.
Rich In Cbd – The Ultimate Strains
The following 5 strains are ones that have been shown to have a very high CBD content, and are well suited for those who are looking to produce their own CBD-product. They are highly recommended.
This strain has been specifically developed to produce very high CBD-levels with a minimum amount of THC. Candida (CD-1) produces up to 20% CBD, which is absolutely insane. The THC-levels fall below 1%, which means that this strain doesn’t develop significant psychoactive effects. Candida (CD-1) is a mix of two famous CBD-rich strains, ACDC and Harlequin.
Candida (CD-1) exhibits two main phenotypes. The first one is an indica-dominant pheno that develops a significant amount of CBD and tends to grow an abundance of buds. The second pheno is sativa-dominant, which can be slightly harder to grow, but it still produces a quality product when treated correctly. The average indoor yields amount to 400g/m², and the flowering phase lasts for 9 weeks.
Sweet Pure Cbd
Professional breeders gathered ‘round and reached an accord to hybridize a high-quality Diesel strain with a CBD-rich plant. This resulted in a super sweet strain coined as Sweet Pure CBD. It’s a sativa-dominant plant that provides growers with a solid amount of CBD ranging between 8–15%. The THC-levels are very low, reaching 0.4–1% depending on the phenotype.
Indoor growers shall be blessed with 400–500g/m² of Sweet Pure CBD buds. Outdoors, this variety produces approximately 375–600g/plant. The flowering phase lasts for around 9 weeks, which is required to develop those perfectly ripe buds, drenched in cannabinoids. Outdoor growers should harvest this strain during the end of September.
To produce this strain, breeders hybridized Cheese, Juanita La Lagrimosa, and ruderalis plants into a single autoflowering hybrid. Fast Eddy develops around 9% of THC, which is a small amount, but significant enough to induce psychoactive effects. It also develops high CBD-levels, which complements the experience with superb entourage effects.
From seed to harvest it takes Fast Eddy only 8–9 weeks to produce ripe buds, filled with amazing cannabinoids and terpenes. No wonder Fast Eddy received its name. Indoor growers will receive around 400–450g/m² of buds, while outdoor growers shall receive around 80–130g/plant. It’s a short plant, that delivers high-quality bud.
Cbd Fix Auto
If one wishes to grow some weed to receive a solid CBD fix, this strain is the perfect fixer. CBD Fix Auto, as the name suggests, is an autoflowering variety that develops a solid amount of CBD that reaches 7-15%. The plants contain less than 1% of THC, making this strain virtually non-psychoactive. The parent strains of this variety are Northern Lights Auto and a CBD-rich phenotype.
Indoors, CBD Fix Auto develops approximately 325g/m² of bud. Outdoor cannabis gardeners shall obtain around 120g/plant. It’s a relatively short plant that reaches 60–120cm in stature, depending on the phenotype and environmental conditions. It takes this sativa-dominant autoflower 7 weeks to finish its lifecycle, from seed to harvest.
Dinamed CBD is a very desirable strain that produces 10-14% CBD and only 0.5% THC. It’s a perfect CBD-rich strain that doesn’t induce significant psychoactive effects. It has been produced by breeding two Pure CBD 4 phenotypes with each other. The sweet orange aromas exuded from the buds are absolutely delicious.
It’s a sativa-dominant plant that reaches up to 300cm in stature in outdoor environments. Needless to say, it’s a very tall variety that should be mostly included in outdoor gardens, where Dinamed CBD produces up to 1000g/plant of superb buds. The flowering phase lasts for 8 weeks, and the plants need to be harvested during the end of September when grown outdoors.
What constitutes a CBD-rich cannabis strain? Find out all you need to know about CBD strains and discover five varieties that produce an abundance of CBD.