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CBD Isolate vs. Full Spectrum CBD

02/22/2020 | Jhonny Vick | CBD

If you’re browsing your local cannabis dispenser then you’ve probably come across products that state CBD isolates, full-spectrum CBD, and broad-spectrum CBD. More often than not, people new to the cannabis industry may find these terms and products to be quite confusing. One important concept to remember is that a CBD isolate is completely different from full-spectrum CBD, and full-spectrum CBD is completely different from broad-spectrum CBD. So, in today’s article, we will discuss all you need to know about CBD isolates vs full-spectrum CBD.

Understanding Cannabinoids

To understand exactly how a CBD isolate differs from full-spectrum CBD, we must first understand a little bit of the chemistry behind cannabis.

What is the Entourage Effect and Why is it Important?

Before we attempt to understand how CBD isolates differ from full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD. We must first develop a strong understanding of the chemical components of cannabis and how it affects our bodies.

The cannabis plant itself contains a range of chemicals and cannabinoids. Some cannabinoids found in hemp plant include THC, CBC, CBG, and CBN. To put it into perspective, a cannabis plant can contain over 400 cannabinoids and a few terpenes, all of which interact with the body in a unique way.

Among the many molecules found in the cannabis plant, terpenes seem to be the most unique. Terpenes are chemicals that protect the marijuana or cannabis plant from insects, animals, and even fungi. Studies have shown that terpenes display anti-inflammatory, ant-bacterial, and analgesic properties. When combined with other cannabinoids, terpenes naturally increase the efficacy and effect of the other cannabinoids found within cannabis.

So, what does this mean for you? And how does it relate to the entourage effect?

To put simply, the entourage effect is a theory proposed by scientists which states that cannabis is most effective when used as a full spectrum or broad-spectrum product. This is because each cannabinoid can play an agonist or antagonistic role with the other, thereby synergizing the overall effect.

So, what does this mean for you? All this really means is that the purer the extract is, then the more health benefits you are likely to receive. For example, multiple studies have shown that CBG and CBN demonstrate excellent anti-inflammatory properties, while CBD demonstrates mild analgesic properties. The cannabinoids CBG and CBN are found mainly in full-spectrum CBD oils, and so when you consume full-spectrum CBD oil you will receive the entourage effect.

What is CBD Isolate

When we talk about a CBD isolate, we refer to the chemical compound cannabidiol in its purest form. In other words, CBD isolates will not contain other commonly occurring chemicals such as terpenes and flavonoids. In its very essence, a CBD isolate is really just a highly concentrated form of cannabidiol.

Finally, CBD isolates are extracted from the hemp plant. This is because hemp is a commercial form of cannabis which will naturally contain high levels of cannabidiol, and low levels of THC.

CBD Isolate Uses

So, now that we know what a CBD isolate is, we must ask ourselves—who should use a CBD isolate? As CBD isolates contain no THC and are considered the purest forms of cannabidiol, it is highly suitable for people who require a high dose of CBD on a regular basis. Isolates are also ideal for users who do not tolerate THC well or users who are sensitive to other cannabinoids.

What is Full Spectrum CBD 

As its name suggests, full-spectrum cannabidiol essentially contains all the compounds found within the cannabis plant. This means that during the extraction process, the cannabidiol, terpenes, essential oils, and all other cannabinoids remain preserved within the end product.

So, when we talk about full-spectrum CBD, it is important to remember that these products contain other cannabinoids like CBG and CBN. In addition, the end product will also contain small amounts of THC.

Full Spectrum CBD Uses

So, full-spectrum CBD oil tends to contain the richness of the cannabis plant. This really means that full-spectrum CBD contains a variety of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. Therefore, full-spectrum CBD may be ideal for those who require CBD for therapeutic properties this can include anti-cancer, anti-inflammation, and even analgesia. In addition to this, full-spectrum CBD contains a variety of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Making it ideal for users who would also like an immune boost.

What is Broad Spectrum CBD 

When we talk about broad-spectrum CBD, we refer to a cannabidiol product that contains other cannabinoids but no THC.

Broad-spectrum cannabidiol is very similar to full-spectrum CBD such that it also contains much of the cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. The major difference between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD is that broad-spectrum CBD will contain no THC.

Broad Spectrum CBD Uses

As broad-spectrum CBD contains an array of cannabinoids, it is ideal for users who want to receive the full benefits of the entourage effect. Broad-spectrum CBD contains no THC, and so it is ideal for those who need to take a drug test or for those who are sensitive to THC.

Final Thoughts on CBD Isolate vs Full Spectrum CBD

Understanding the difference between CBD isolates, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum can be quite confusing. So, we decided to sum up all the key points.

  • CBD isolate is the most refined form of cannabidiol. During the extraction process, all other cannabinoids, terpenes, and molecules are taken away. This leaves behind a product that contains nearly 99% of cannabidiol. 
  • CBD full spectrum is the most natural form of cannabidiol. During the extraction process, all major cannabinoids, terpenes, and vitamins remain present in the final product. In addition to this, the final product does contain small amounts of THC, which may be detectable during a drug test. Full-spectrum CBD does offer a lot more therapeutic benefits due to the entourage effect.
  • Broad-spectrum CBD is the cannabidiol product that falls in-between an isolate and a full spectrum product. Broad-spectrum CBD offers the therapeutic health benefits that are often associated with full-spectrum CBD. Finally, broad-spectrum CBD does not contain any THC, and so it is ideal for users who require frequent drug tests.

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