Study: CBD has no effect on emotions

CBD has no effect on how emotions are processed, according to a new study from the University of Chicago. This confirms what has already been thought about cannabidiol: the psychoactive effect of the substance is negligible.

Various studies into the harmfulness of (long-term) cannabis use show that the emotions of young people are muted if they smoke a lot. If the young people get stoned, they are no longer concerned with emotions such as anger or sadness, is the idea behind it.

The development of young people can therefore stagnate when they use cannabis for a long time. Weed allows them to maintain a living environment that they actually don’t like. Ultimately, this can lead to neglect, anxiety or even depression. For politicians such as Madeleine van Toorenburg (CDA), it is precisely these harmful effects that are an important point in arguing against the legalization of cannabis. There are concerns about the health effects of marijuana.

Research into emotions

Two researchers from the University of Chicago wanted to investigate whether CBD has such an effect on emotional housekeeping. To find out, 38 volunteers were given a pill. That pill contained 900 milligrams, 600 milligrams, 300 milligrams, or 0 milligrams of CBD. Subsequently, various psychological tests measured the emotional response to both negative and positive stimulation. Neither the researchers nor the subjects knew who was given which pill.

The tests show that CBD has a minimal effect on the emotional household of the test subjects. They responded more or less the same to emotional stimuli as they would without CBD. At the highest dose of CBD (900 milligrams), a slight effect on the emotional responses of subjects was measured. But that dose is so high that it is unlikely that people will ingest that much CBD. In comparison: for 900 milligrams of CBD you would have to consume about forty grams of fiber hemp buds.


The researchers emphasize that CBD does have an anti-anxiety effect. From a dose of 30 milligrams per day, the substance is said to have a somewhat sedating effect. In other words: CBD oil will not get you stoned , but it does have a slightly calming effect. It may even act as a mild anti-depressant . But more research is needed to draw definitive conclusions.

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