Last modified: 06/22/2021
TYPES OF CBD
Full Spectrum Vs. Broad Spectrum Vs. CBD Isolate
If you are among the 40% of people who have tried or are curious about trying hemp-derived CBD then chances are you’ve already done some research and seen different types of CBD formulations. Namely, products described as Full Spectrum CBD, Broad Spectrum CBD and CBD Isolate. Knowing the difference between a full spectrum CBD product versus a broad spectrum CBD product versus a CBD isolate product may be important for some people primarily because some CBD products have THC in them and others do not. Below, we cover the main differences between the types of CBD formulations, but let’s first generally describe what CBD is and is not.
What is CBD?
CBD is short for cannabidiol and is one phytocannabinoid among the 120+ phytocannabinoids naturally occurring in the hemp plant. The terms “phytocannabinoid” and “cannabinoid” are interchangeably used in the industry when talking about CBD. The term “phytocannabinoid” means that the cannabinoid comes from an external source (i.e., the hemp plant) and is not internally produced by the body. Technically, CBD is a phytocannabinoid because your body does not actually produce CBD. However, the body does produce endocannabinoids. The term “endocannabinoid” refers to cannabinoids that are internally produced by the body. Phytocannabinoids and endocannabinoids are both capable of influencing your body’s Endocannabinoid System to promote a state of balance across the body’s other systems and functions. The endocannabinoid system has a primary duty of maintaining balance of your body’s systems and functions, including the central nervous system, immune system, how pain is perceived, responses to stress, mood, energy, focus, pleasure and reward, and appetite, among others.
⇒ Recommended reading: How CBD Enhances the Endocannabinoid System
How is CBD different than THC?
There are four major differences between CBD and THC as follows:
- CBD has no intoxicating side effects and will not get you “high”
- CBD has no potential for abuse and is not addicting
- CBD does not have any withdrawal symptoms when CBD usage is stopped
- CBD is not tested on drug test because it is non-intoxicating
⇒ Recommended reading: 21 CBD Facts and Myths
Now that you know the main differences between CBD and THC, let’s dive into the general differences between full spectrum CBD, broad spectrum CBD and CBD isolate.
Full Spectrum CBD | Hemp Extract Full Spectrum
A Full Spectrum CBD product contains a high potency of CBD and varying detectable and non-detectable amounts of other phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids) along with terpenes and flavonoids naturally occurring in the hemp plant. Other cannabinoids include Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), Cannabigerol (CBG), Cannabinol (CBN), and Cannabichromene (CBC).
Scientific research and clinical studies have, for all intents and purposes, recently begun to better understand how these cannabinoids work, what therapeutic and medicinal properties they carry, and all the potential health benefits they may have. Some research has shown the following:
- Cannabidiol (CBD) contains anti-inflammatory properties, analgesic properties, anti-anxiety properties, sleep aid properties, anti-depressant properties, immune supporting properties, brain health properties, and antibacterial properties.
- Cannabigerol (CBG) contains anti-inflammatory properties, analgesic properties, brain health properties, and anti-acne properties, and may be a promising cannabinoid for potentially fighting cancer.
- Cannabinol (CBN) contains anti-inflammatory properties, analgesic properties, brain health properties, sleep aid properties and may be promising for anti-bacterial properties.
- Cannabichromene (CBC) containing anti-inflammatory properties, analgesic properties, antibacterial properties, anti-depressant properties, brain health properties, and supports migraine relief.
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) contains analgesic properties, anti-inflammatory properties, antiemetic (preventing vomiting) properties, anti-seizure properties, and anti-anxiety properties. Note that THC is the one among all here that is capable of producing a “high” feeling. In full spectrum CBD type product, a non-detectable or detectable trace amount of THC may exist. Te be legal. the trace amount of delta-9 THC cannot exceed 0.3 percent.
Individually and collectively, these cannabinoids work to help promote stability of bodily systems and functions and to support your overall mental and physical wellbeing.
Broad Spectrum CBD | Hemp Extract Broad Spectrum
A Broad Spectrum CBD Hemp Extract consists of all the cannabinoids contained in a full spectrum minus any amount of THC whatsoever. In other words, the THC content in a product labeled as broad spectrum should be zero. A CBD broad spectrum formulation is ideal for those seeking a version of the entourage effect with no THC content.
A broad spectrum CBD product is typically described as “THC Free“, “0.00% THC“, or “0.00mg THC“. In some of those cases, no amount of THC exists in the CBD product. In other cases, however, the CBD product may actually contain a trace amount of THC that was not detected under laboratory testing and reported as “N/D”, which stands for non-detectable, on the CBD product’s lab report. This might be important to you if, for example, you may be subject to a drug test or have a sensitivity to THC. While a trace amount of THC is considered inconsequential, because it does not produce a “high” feeling or cause any other intoxicating effects, using a CBD product containing a trace amount of THC overtime may build up the THC in your liver and eventually into your bloodstream that might just be enough to trigger a positive test result for THC.
CBD Isolate | Hemp Extract Isolate
CBD Isolate means the product contains only CBD and no other cannabinoids or terpenes or flavonoids naturally occurring in the hemp plant. A CBD isolate product is ideal for people who do not want any THC whatsoever in the CBD product including those that have a sensitivity to THC.
Which Type of CBD to Choose?
As a new CBD user, deciding between a full spectrum CBD, a broad spectrum CBD and a CBD isolate product may seem overwhelming. The ideal choice for you depends on whether you are okay with having a trace amount of THC in the product or not. If you desire a CBD product that is certain to have no amount of THC in it, your best choice is a CBD isolate, also referred to as “Hemp Extract Isolate” product. Alternatively, a broad spectrum CBD product is the next choice. Otherwise, if you are okay with a trace amount of delta-9 THC in the product, a full spectrum CBD product is an ideal choice.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Quality CBD Product
Here are 4 suggestions when shopping for a quality CBD product.
#1: Access to the CBD product’s lab report
Ensure you have access to the lab report for your CBD product so you can check the cannabinoid content, potency and that it’s been tested for contaminants and is safe to use. Florida and some other states legally require a CBD lab report to be made available to consumers.
#2: Be aware of THC Free claims
If the CBD product is described on the label or elsewhere to be “THC Free”, “Zero THC”, “0.00% THC”, or “0.00mg THC”, be aware that some CBD products may nevertheless have a trace amount of delta-9 THC that simply was not detected under laboratory testing. Unfortunately, the industry has seen some CBD products claiming to be THC free when they allegedly are not.
A true THC free CBD product undergoes a process where all THC is removed from the oil so that the final product will not have any THC in it whatsoever. This includes removing all amounts of delta 9-THC, delta-8 THC, delta-10 THC and all other isomers of THC. For example, a CBD Isolate product undergoes a process to remove everything but CBD so that the final product contains only CBD and no other cannabinoids, terpenes or flavonoids.
#3: Warning disclosures
Reputable brands will include cautionary statements on the product’s label, packaging and/or product’s description. Such warning disclosures include “This product contains 0.3% or less THC”, “Do not use if you are pregnant or nursing” and “Keep out of reach of children.”
#4: Hemp Oil – is it CBD oil or hemp seed oil?
There are many hemp oil products being sold online that, without research, appear to be hemp CBD oil when, in actuality, they are hemp seed oil. Hemp-derived CBD oil and hemp seed oil are not the same. Hemp CBD oil is extracted from the stalks, leaves and/or flowers of the hemp plant and contains a high concentration of CBD. Hemp seed oil comes from only the seeds of the hemp plant and does not contain any CBD or any other cannabinoids or terpenes or flavonoids naturally occurring in the hemp plant.
While hemp seed oil is rich with amino acids and omegas 3, 6 and 9, hemp seed oil does not provide the varying therapeutic benefits that users have reported experiencing with hemp CBD oil.