If you’ve been browsing CBD products online, you’ve probably noticed the labels ‘CBD isolate’ and ‘full-spectrum oil’ But what do those labels mean, and what’s the difference?
Learn more about the different types of CBD oil and how to choose a high-quality product.
What is CBD?
CBD is one of over 100 chemical compounds in the Cannabis sativa plant. THC is another chemical found in cannabis, and the distinction between CBD and THC is important. THC is the chemical that produces a ‘high’ and is federally illegal, but legal in some states.
CBD does not produce a high and can be isolated from hemp and marijuana, also called CBD isolate.
Both isolated CBD and marijuana can aid with a variety of medical issues, including anxiety, sleep problems, and chronic pain.
Is hemp the same as marijuana?
Not quite. The two types of cannabis plants are related, but hemp contains less than 0.3% THC, which makes it federally legal. Most CBD products, like CBD oil, derive from the hemp plant.
If it sounds confusing what’s legal and what’s not, you’re not alone. But let’s break it down a little bit:
- Hemp and hemp products are legal everywhere in the United States.
- Marijuana and products containing more than 0.3% THC are only legal in states where marijuana is legal.
How is CBD extracted?
CBD is just one of many different chemical compounds in hemp and marijuana. In order to create CBD isolate, manufacturers can use a variety of methods.
The older method of CBD extraction involved using some pretty harsh chemicals, including butane. The more modern approach involves using carbon dioxide, which most experts consider cleaner and healthier.
What’s the difference between isolate and full-spectrum oil?
If you see the label ‘CBD isolate,’ CBD has been extracted and blended with a neutral carrier oil (like coconut). There are no other compounds from the cannabis plant.
Full-spectrum, on the other hand, does not require the same type of extraction because all of the cannabis compounds are part of the oil. Essentially, because full-spectrum oil has the full range of cannabinoids (including THC), it has psychoactive properties that can produce a ‘high.’
Which is better: CBD isolate or full-spectrum oil?
Research indicates that full-spectrum oil may provide more benefits than CBD isolate in a phenomenon known as the ‘entourage effect.’ The entourage effect hypothesis says that because the all cannabinoids are working together, you see better results.
That doesn’t mean full-spectrum oil is for everyone, and it’s certainly not legal in every state. Also, not everyone desires the psychoactive effect.
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