Full Spectrum CBD vs. CBD Isolate: What's the Difference?
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Full Spectrum CBD vs. CBD Isolate: What’s the Difference?

If you’re somewhat new to CBD, or maybe cannabis products in general, it can be confusing to figure out the difference between the types of CBD products that are available. You may see products called CBD oil, full spectrum CBD oil, cannabis oil, hemp oil, hemp seed oil, or CBD isolate. Some of these names may refer to the same products, others will be referring to a different type of product entirely. The difference between them mainly involves the plant materials used in their production but the extraction techniques can play a role as well.

What Is CBD?

To start, it’s important to know what exactly CBD is. CBD is short for cannabidiol, which is a phytocannabinoid found in cannabis. It’s quite different from THC, the other main cannabinoid in cannabis, because it does not create the psychoactive high associated with marijuana. It has also been shown to help treat a wide range of ailments, including anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, nausea, epilepsy, arthritis, pain, and inflammation. The uses and effects of CBD are still being studied but from everything we know so far, this compound can can do some pretty amazing stuff. One of its most attractive attributes is that it’s a safe, non-toxic, and non-addictive treatment option.

What Is CBD Oil

CBD oil is made through extraction methods using cannabis plant material to produce a product containing extracted CBD. The oil produced may be referred to as full spectrum CBD oil, hemp extract CBD oil, hemp oil, or cannabis oil, depending on the plant materials used. While some of these terms could refer to a product that does not contain CBD, knowing what each one might mean will help you to navigate the potentially confusing CBD marketplace.

What Is Full Spectrum CBD Oil?

The term “full spectrum” refers to a product that contains the full range of compounds that are found in the cannabis plant used to make the oil. The specific cannabinoids and terpenes may vary between different strains and may be founds in different amounts. This means that a full spectrum profile will be different from one cannabis plant to the next. Full spectrum means that you’re receiving everything that plant has to offer and this creates what is known as the entourage effect. The entourage effect is a premise that all of the cannabinoids and terpenes in a plant can work together to provide a wider range of therapeutic effects and can offer superior results.

What Is Hemp Extract CBD Oil?

Cannabis may refer to both hemp and marijuana plants. Marijuana will typically have higher levels of THC and may be cultivated in different strains to provide varying ratios of CBD to THC. Hemp plants, on the other hand, must contain under 0.3% THC to be classified as “industrial hemp”. Oils made from a hemp extract will naturally contain very little THC while still containing all of the other cannabinoids and terpenes that occur in that strain of hemp.

What Is Cannabis Oil?

Cannabis oil may refer to any oil made from cannabis. While the term could refer to a hemp extract CBD oil, it is usually used when talking about oils made from marijuana, which would contain varying levels of THC. Cannabis oils made from marijuana will generally have an indication of the mg/ml or % of both the CBD and THC contained in the oil. Oils with equal amounts or higher levels of CBD should not create the psychoactive side effects of THC because the CBD acts to negate these effects. Higher levels of CBD than THC can block the THC from binding with CB1 receptors. This prevents the feelings of intoxication and euphoria the THC usually can cause.

What Is Hemp Seed Oil?

Hemp extract CBD oil may sometimes be referred to as hemp oil but this can be confusing because oils made from pressed hemp seeds do not actually contain any CBD or THC. Hemp seed oil contains omega-6 and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, as well as vitamin E, and comes with its own beneficial properties. This edible oil can be used in cooking or may be found in skin care products but be aware that a product made from hemp seeds will not contain CBD. Both products can be referred to as hemp oil so pay attention to what the product was actually made from and if it contains any CBD or not.

Which CBD Product Is Better?

Full spectrum CBD oil and a CBD isolate both come with their own reasons why one may be more preferable over the other. Because a CBD isolate contains no THC, this option is very appealing for those who do not what any THC in their system whatsoever. A possible reason for this may may be strict drug testing policies in the workplace, or could just be a personal preference.

Hemp and CBD are not federally regulated the way medical marijuana is so while hemp extract CBD oil should contain only trace amounts of THC, it can be hard to tell exactly what is in any given product. In hemp extract CBD oil, there shouldn’t be enough THC to even show up on a drug test but it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly how much is an any given product or how much may accumulate in your system even if taken in such a low amount. A CBD isolate eliminates this worry for some people.

Now, on the other hand, a CBD isolate does not come with all of the other terpenes and cannabinoids that are present in the plant material. These elements all come with their own beneficial properties. Receiving the full spectrum of these compounds creates an “entourage effect” which is a theory that all of the cannabinoids and terpenes in cannabis work together to provide superior medicinal results.

This scientific abstract discusses the limits of a CBD isolate when treating inflammation in comparison to using a full plant extract. The pure CBD exhibited a bell-shaped dose-response, meaning it was only effective within a certain dosage range. Alternatively, the whole plant extract showed increased effectiveness when administered in higher doses.

When it comes to choosing which type of CBD product is the best, it really just comes down to which is the best for you. A cannabis oil with equal amounts of CBD and THC may be preferable to some people because it may be more effective for their pain, while a CBD isolate is the ideal option for someone else because they feel more comfortable taking something with zero THC. Everyone’s body chemistry is different, the symptoms they’re treating are different, and the results they hope to achieve may all be different. No one type of product is necessarily better or worse than another, it just offers a different range of results.

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The CBD SEARCH website’s primary focus is on CBD education. We also have informative reviews of CBD companies and products. CBD SEARCH also interviews CBD experts and industry professionals. Our main focus is on educating our readers in all areas of the benefits of CBD and research-backed news.

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