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CBDA (cannabidiolic acid)

CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) is the raw form or precursor of the well-known cannabinoid CBD (cannabidiol), and is a compound widely found in CBD-rich cannabis cultivars. When CBDA is exposed to heat or UV light, decarboxylation takes place and the compound is converted into CBD. Although CBD is well-known for its therapeutic properties, CBDA boasts health benefits of its own.

“I juice raw cannabis every morning to soak up nutrient-dense CBDA.”

“Emerging research suggests CBDA offers powerful benefits in the treatment of anxiety.”

What is CBDA?

All cannabinoids in cannabis initially appear in an acidic form in the plant; these are sometimes called raw cannabinoids, one of which is CBDA. When CBDA is heated, exposed to UV light, or left to its own devices to age, it undergoes a chemical process known as decarboxylation. This process removes the acidic or carboxyl group from the compound, transforming it into its better-known cannabinoid counterpart, CBD. 

What are the benefits of CBDA?

So far, most researchers have focused on the neutral (non-acidic) forms of cannabinoids. Interest in the potential therapeutic applications of acid cannabinoids is growing, however.

Research suggests that CBDA may offer an impressives sweep of medicinal benefits. For example, CBDA has 100 times the affinity for 5-HT receptors compared to CBD, which could render it more potent and effective in the treatment of nausea, vomiting, and depression. 

CBDA also appears to be a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. The compound has a molecular structure extremely similar to NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen. Both CBDA and NSAIDs appear to inhibit COX-2 receptors, a certain inflammatory pain receptor. 

Research is also currently underway that indicates CBDA holds promise as a powerful seizure suppressant.

What is CBDA used for?

Scientists are presently engaging in research into CBDA to unpack the therapeutic and medicinal benefits of this little-understood cannabinoid.

Health food consumers and cannabis connoisseurs have recently sparked a trend in raw cannabis juicing. Juicing cannabis plants rich in CBDA offers an easy way to incorporate this cannabis compound into one’s daily diet. A sprinkle of raw hemp flower rich in CBDA can also be integrated into smoothies or cooking.