Many people say that CBD oil and copaiba essential oil have the same benefits. Although they have some similarities, they are very different. BCP directly binds to CB2 receptors to produce rapid and powerful changes within the body.
CBD Vs Copaiba Oil
So many times, well-meaning people do a bit of research and get carried away extrapolating data to far-fetched conclusions. I believe the CBD vs. copaiba essential oil comparison is one such case. It’s true that CBD and copaiba share some similar chemical constituents. However, it is not true that these similarities mean they have the same properties, behaviors, or side effects. The facts are interesting and shed light on the benefits of both of these natural oils, while clearly explaining the differences as well.
Let’s start with the basics
What is an essential oil?
Essential oils are natural, aromatic oils typically obtained by the steam distillation of plant material. Essential oils contain thousands of volatile compounds that evaporate quickly into the air, and the ratio of the molecules imparts the aroma to the oil.
So now that we’ve recapped that, let’s have a look at CBD.
What is CBD?
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a plant oil that is somewhere in between a fatty oil and an essential oil. Unlike true essential oils—which by definition are obtained via steam distillation—CBD must be extracted from the plant using solvents or by vacuum distillation. It is a thick, viscous oil that is not aromatic and therefore does not rise rapidly. CBD is a chemical constituent found in marijuana. Many people claim benefits of using CBD as a natural medicine for ailments such as pain, seizures, and anxiety.
Can CBD get you high?
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are the two primary cannabinoids that occur naturally in the Cannabis sativa plant, most commonly known as cannabis. Both CBD and THC interact with the cannabinoid receptors in the brain, but their effects are different.
In the brain, the CBD-2 receptor is where the beneficial effects of pain mitigation, relaxation, and anti-nausea arise. On the other hand, the CBD-1 receptor is where the psychotropic changes of elation, sensory distortion, altered sense of time, and laughter may arise.
THC engages both the CBD-1 and CBD-2 receptor and can therefore produce both psychotropic effects and the medicinal effects. CBD is different from THC because it has a weak affinity for the CBD-1 and CBD-2 receptor, and instead is a mild antagonist at the receptor. This means CBD is non-psychoactive and will not get the user high. Because of this, CBD appears more frequently in dietary and natural supplements than does THC. It may provide the beneficial effects of marijuana without the psychotropic effects.
Unlike CBD, copaiba is a true essential oil steam distilled from the resin of the Copaifera officinalis tree. Many blogs have described copaiba essential oil as very similar to—or even the same as—CBD oil. In truth, there are some commonalities.
Both of these plant oils contain the chemical constituent beta-caryophyllene (BC). BC is one of more than 30,000 different terpenes found in nature. Both CBD and BC lend aroma and flavor to their respective plants, and there is some evidence that BC brings benefits. But BC is also found in ylang ylang, black pepper, oregano, clove, lavender, basil and many other essential oils. The conclusion that CBD and copaiba essential oil have the same benefits because of this single chemical constituent is incorrect.
Think of it this way. You use eggs, flour, butter, and a handful of other ingredients to make cookies. Likewise, those ingredients are all used to bake a loaf of bread. Saying that because they have similar ingredients means they should look, taste, and feel the same is ludicrous. The same is true with the complex chemical make-up of natural plant extracts and oils. Having similar constituents simply does not make them work the same way. Not only that, but the other compounds in the oils make a difference as well. Each compound behaves differently based on its companions. That’s how chemistry works.
This is not to imply that there are no benefits of BC in a wide variety of forms. In fact, research does show promising evidence that it is effective for pain relief, as a wound salve, to prevent oxidative stress, and as an antimicrobial. It is simply important to not extend evidence from CBD to copaiba essential oil.
Copaiba Essential Oil
Now that we have that all cleared up, let’s take a look at 5 benefits of copaiba essential oil.
- Eases muscles within the respiratory system
- Supports the kidneys and helps flush excess fluid
- Thins mucous
- Therapeutic and softening to the skin
How do you weigh in?
What are your thoughts on the CBD vs. Copaiba debate?
Check out this post for a DIY Boo Boo Balm with Copaiba essential oil.
If you are looking for even more research-based, unbiased, hype-free health and wellness education, then come on and check out !
Copaiba vs. CBD: What’s the Difference?
Using natural plant products in traditional health has been a practice for centuries. Mother Nature has provided some of the most diverse, complex compounds still used today to promote wellness and address a variety of concerns. When presented with so many essential oil options, you might pose the common question: What’s the difference? How do you compare Lemon and Lime? Lavender and Clary Sage? Cassia and Cinnamon Bark? Or, in this case, CBD and Copaiba?
The Endocannabinoid System
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a hot term in complementary and alternative medicine, and for good reason. It plays a fundamental role in managing many modern and prevalent concerns, including mood, inflammation, appetite, and relaxation. This biological system, composed of receptors, cannabinoids, and enzymes, is found throughout the central and peripheral nervous system and acts as a regulator for countless physiological processes. What that means is the ECS helps maintain internal balance in a world that is constantly changing.
CB1 and CB2 Receptors
Within the ECS, there are two primary receptors, cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2). The brain and spinal cord contain CB1 receptors, whereas CB2 receptors are predominately found in our immune system. Due to residing in different parts of the body, activation of these receptors can have very different effects. For instance CB2 activation supports healthy nervous and immune system function, while activating its counterpart (CB1) receptors can modulate mood, memory, or even perception of pain. While binding to the CB1 receptors positively influences many brain functions, research has shown that it may also have some unwanted psychoactive effects 1 .
There are three groups of molecules that can greatly affect the function of the ECS: endocannabinoids (produced by the body), phytocannabinoids (produced by plants), and synthetic cannabinoids (produced in a lab). Phytocannabinoids are different because they are produced naturally by plants, such as Cannabis, Black Truffle, and Cacao, and found within essential oils such as Copaiba, Black Pepper, and Melissa.
Literature suggests that these ECS-influencing substances tend to be selective in the receptors they activate 2 . This means they tend to activate either the CB1 or CB2 receptors, and they do so directly or indirectly depending on their chemical makeup. Furthermore, the stronger or more directly the molecule adheres to its receptor, the quicker it will produce a physiological effect. This is precisely why Copaiba is such a valued essential oil, it is high in a phytocannabinoid called beta-caryophyllene (BCP). Beta-caryophyllene has the ability to bind directly to CB2 receptors to affect the ECS.
The Advantages of Copaiba
At the 2019 Together Convention, doTERRA’s Director of Education and Training, Scott Johnson, said, “Copaiba and CBD work within the same biological system, so people naturally want to compare them, but it’s not really a fair comparison[…]Copaiba has benefits that can’t be achieved with CBD.”
Because BCP directly binds to CB2 receptors, it produces rapid and powerful changes within the body. On the other hand, CBD doesn’t effectively bind to either receptor so it indirectly affects the ECS. In fact, despite having the unique ability to bind (indirectly) to both CB1 and CB2, CBD’s interaction is not nearly as intense as that offered by other compounds.
Exemplifying doTERRA’s commitment to Pursue What’s Pure, Copaiba is a product born from that standard. Unlike CBD, essential oils rich in BCP, such as Copaiba, are easily tolerated compounds that offer countless benefits to the human body. At this year’s convention, Scott highlighted other possible targets and pathways for BCP outside the ECS such as the CD14 receptor, the μ-Opioid receptor, and the α7-nACHRs receptor.* These receptors affect pathways associated with healthy inflammatory response 3 , overall body comfort, and cognitive function.
The Limitations of CBD
Because CBD does not bind directly to receptors, you can expect slower cellular responses. Scott Johnson said it best at convention describing CBD as a “helper molecule that signals the ECS to work more efficiently and modulate our responses to the molecules that do directly bind to our receptors.” Furthermore, as doTERRA’s in-house GCMS testing has shown, CBD—which is an isolate extracted from the cannabis plant—is often mixed with carrier oils, so absorption is limited and the effect is further decreased. In fact, a recent review of clinical data on CBD revealed internal usage may come with potential unwanted risks 4 .
In addition, according to a study published in 2017, 69% of CBD products were mislabeled and found to have higher levels of THC than are currently permitted by regulations 5 . This poses regulatory challenges and also increased risk for unwanted side effects. Not only can formulations of CBD contain some amount of THC 6 , but as previously mentioned, CBD is not an essential oil, it’s an isolate extracted from the cannabis plant. For doTERRA, the fact that it is nearly impossible for CBD to meet CPTG Certified Pure Tested Grade™ standards for purity and potency is reason enough to keep it out of the product line.
With its fast and direct bonding to CB2, beta-caryophyllene is a powerful constituent with potential to support well-being in a variety of ways. Try taking Copaiba orally to support a healthy inflammatory response 7 , apply topically to help reduce blemishes, or use aromatically to create a calm and relaxing environment.* As Scott Johnson says, “When used daily, Copaiba helps you live a longer and healthier life with greater periods of homeostasis.”
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.