CBDA vs CBD – Let’s Explore the Differences and Similarities


CBD is not the only compound found in cannabis with promise for health and wellness. Enter CBDA (Cannabidiolic acid), a naturally occurring compound found in raw cannabis plants that is gaining recognition for its potential benefits. With the rising interest in CBDA, it is essential to understand how it compares to CBD and what sets them apart.

This article will explore the differences and similarities between CBDA and CBD to help you decide which suits your needs. We will discuss the potential health benefits, the differences and similarities, usage, and some tips for using CBDA vs. CBD

First, let’s find out!

What is CBDA vs. CBD?

Having various chemical structures and properties, CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) and CBD (cannabidiol) are two distinct compounds found in the cannabis plant. CBDA is the acidic precursor to CBD. It is abundant in raw, unheated cannabis plants, especially CBDA-A (cannabidiolic acid A). When the plant is exposed to heat or undergoes decarboxylation, CBDA converts into CBD. This decarboxylation process occurs when you smoke, vape, or cook the cannabis.

CBD, on the other hand, is the non-acidic, neutral form of cannabis. It results from converting CBDA through decarboxylation or extracting CBD directly from cannabis plants through various extraction methods. However, CBDA and CBD have similar chemical structures. The amount of carboxylic acid group substantially impacts both compounds’ characteristics and potential health benefits.

The research on CBDA is still in its early stages, So understanding its effects and benefits is evolving. CBD has been the subject of numerous studies and is more widely recognized for its potential therapeutic properties

What makes CBDA similar to CBD?

Despite having different chemical compositions, CBDA and CBD (cannabidiol) are similar. Both substances are cannabinoids that are naturally present in the cannabis plant.

They are safe to use without the natural “high” associated with cannabis because they do not have a psychoactive impact and do not make you intoxicated. These cannabidiols share several similarities despite their distinct chemical structures and properties. Here are some of the similarities between CBDA and CBD:

– Origin: 

Both CBDA and CBD are naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis plant. Along with other well-known substances like THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), they are one of the many cannabinoids found in the plant.

– Non-intoxicating: 

Like CBD, CBDA does not produce a psychoactive effect or a “high” sensation commonly associated with THC. Therefore, CBDA and CBD can be used without the mind-altering effects of cannabis consumption.

– Potential Health Benefits: 

It is believed to share some potential health benefits with CBD. Both substances are linked to potential effects that are analgesic (pain-relieving), anti-inflammatory, and anxiolytic (anti-anxiety). Similarly, they might be antioxidants and can interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which controls many physiological procedures.

– Safety: 

Like CBD, CBDA is generally considered safe and well-tolerated by most individuals. Both compounds have minimal side effects, with rare reports of mild adverse reactions such as drowsiness or dry mouth.

What is the difference between CBD and CBDA?

CBDA vs. CBD differ in several key aspects, including their chemical structures, mode of formation, and potential effects on the body. The differences between CBD and CBDA:

Chemical Structure: 

CBD is the neutral form of the compound, while CBDA is its acidic precursor. CBDA has a carboxylic acid group (COOH) attached to the molecule, whereas CBD does not. This slight difference in the structure influences their behaviour and interactions with the body’s receptors.


CBDA is the predominant cannabinoid in raw, unheated cannabis plants. It is synthesized through a process called biosynthesis within the plant’s trichomes. When the plant material is heated, exposed to light, or undergoes decarboxylation, CBDA converts into CBD. This decarboxylation process involves the removal of the carboxylic acid group, transforming CBDA into CBD.

Potential Effects: 

CBD has gained recognition for its possible therapeutic effects. It has undergone extensive research and is related to various advantages, such as pain relief, reduced anxiety, anti-inflammatory properties, and potential neuroprotective effects. CBDA, although less checked than CBD, has shown potential anti-inflammatory, anti-nausea, and possible anti-cancer effects in preliminary research.


CBD is considered more bioavailable than CBDA. Bioavailability refers to the amount of a substance that enters the bloodstream and is available for the body to utilize. The body readily absorbs CBD, and it has been used in various delivery methods, including oral tinctures, capsules, topicals, and more. CBDA, on the other hand, has lower bioavailability and may require specific extraction techniques or formulations to enhance its absorption and effectiveness.

Effectiveness of CBDA and CBD

Researchers are still examining the efficacy of CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) and CBD (cannabidiol) in ongoing studies. 

CBD has garnered significant attention and shows promise in various areas. It has been studied extensively and has demonstrated potential effectiveness in pain relief like chronic pain, arthritis, and multiple sclerosis., anxiety, and depression management, certain types of epilepsy treatment, inflammation reduction, and sleep improvement

On the other hand, CBDA is a newer focus of research, and its potential effectiveness is still being investigated. Preliminary findings suggest that CBDA may have anti-inflammatory properties, alleviate nausea and vomiting, and even possess anti-cancer effects. Initial studies indicate that CBDA may possess anti-cancer properties and could inhibit the growth of certain types of cancer cells.

But individual responses and factors like dosage and specific conditions can influence the effectiveness of both CBDA and CBD. As research progresses, consulting healthcare professionals and relying on reputable sources for information is advisable when considering CBDA vs CBD for specific health concerns.

Usage of CBD vs. CBDA

Remember, CBD or CBDA should be personalized and based on individual needs. It’s crucial to approach their usage cautiously, seek professional advice when necessary, and prioritize your safety and well-being. Here are the general steps to consider when using CBD (cannabidiol) or CBDA (cannabidiolic acid):

CBDA Usage:

CBDA is primarily found in raw, unheated cannabis plants. While it is still being studied, here are some potential usage considerations:

Raw Cannabis Consumption: 

CBDA is abundant in raw cannabis, particularly in the leaves and flowers. Some individuals incorporate fresh cannabis leaves into their diet or consume raw cannabis juices to access the potential benefits of CBDA. However, it’s important to note that the bioavailability of CBDA in raw form is lower than CBD.

Anti-Inflammatory Effects: 

Preliminary research suggests that CBDA may possess anti-inflammatory properties. It is a complementary approach for managing inflammation associated with arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, or neuroinflammatory disorders. More studies are must to establish its efficacy and optimal dosage.

Nausea and Vomiting Relief: 

CBDA has shown promise as an antiemetic that may help alleviate nausea and vomiting. It could be explored as a natural treatment for chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting symptoms.

Experimental Research: 

Due to the limited availability of CBDA products and the ongoing research surrounding its effects, CBDA is often used in experimental or research settings. Scientists and researchers may study its potential applications, mechanisms of action, and therapeutic benefits.

CBD Usage:

CBD has gained significant attention for its potential therapeutic properties. Here are some common usage considerations:

Wellness and General Health: 

CBD is widely used as a wellness supplement to support overall health and well-being. It can be taken orally as tinctures, capsules, edibles, or infused into various products such as beverages or skincare items.

Pain Management: 

CBD is sought after for its potential analgesic properties. It may help alleviate different types of pain, including chronic pain, arthritis, muscle soreness, and neuropathic pain. CBD-infused topicals can also be applied directly to the affected areas for localized relief.

Anxiety and Stress Relief: 

CBD has potential anxiolytic effects and may help reduce symptoms of anxiety and stress. It can be taken orally as capsules or tinctures, vaped using CBD-specific vaporizers, or used in other inhalation methods for quicker relief.

Epilepsy Treatment: 

The FDA has approved CBD as a treatment for some forms of epilepsy, including Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, following extensive research in this area. CBD-based medications prescribed by healthcare professionals are commonly used for this purpose.

Sleep Improvement: 

CBD has been explored for its potential to improve sleep quality and manage sleep disorders. It can be taken in the evening or before bedtime as tinctures, capsules, edibles, or other forms specifically formulated for sleep support.


In conclusion, exploring the differences and similarities between CBDA vs. CBD provides valuable insights into the potential applications and benefits of these cannabinoids. While CBDA and CBD originate from the same source, the cannabis plant, they exhibit distinct properties and effects on the body. CBD has been extensively researched and is well-known for its potential in pain management, anxiety relief, epilepsy treatment, and overall wellness support. On the other hand, CBDA is a newer focus of research, with preliminary studies indicating potential anti-inflammatory and antiemetic properties.


Q: Is CBDA more effective than CBD?

Scientific research on the effectiveness of CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) in comparison to CBD (cannabidiol) is still ongoing. Therefore, it is currently being determined whether CBDA is more effective than CBD. 

Q: What are the benefits of CBDA?

Preliminary studies suggest that CBDA may have anti-inflammatory and antiemetic properties, potentially beneficial for managing inflammation and nausea/vomiting.

Q: How does CBDA make you feel?

The CBDA’s effectiveness makes you feel more relaxed when consumed to deal with nausea and vomiting. 




Rebecca is a professional writer at CBDBlogs.com. With a passion for health and wellness, exploring the benefits of CBD and educating others on its many uses. Through extensive research and experience, she provides valuable insights and advice for those seeking to improve their overall well-being with CBD. Her writing style is approachable and informative, making the work accessible to readers of all levels of familiarity with CBD.

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