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CBD Oil Spectrums Explained

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between full spectrum , broad spectrum, and CBD isolate? Or maybe these are new terms to you?



We know the hemp plant makes over 100 phyto-cannabinoids. The Merriam-Webster definition of cannabinoids is: "any of various naturyally-occurring, biologically active, chemical constituents of hemp or cannabis including some (such as THC) that possess psychoactive properties."


By now most of us have heard of #CBD, #CBG and #THC, but these are only three cannabinoids produced by the hemp plant.


Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Full spectrum CBD oil refers to oil derived from hemp that has a high concentration of CBD (cannabidiol) and also contains ALL of the cannabinoids the hemp plant has to offer. Full spectrum CBD is the most pure, unprocessed, and unfiltered hemp

extract which contains all of the hemp plant's beneficial nutrients: cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids as well as naturally occurring essential vitamins, minerals and fatty acids. Since full spectrum hemp extract (CBD or CBG oil) contains all of the cannabinoids the hemp plant produces, it also means there is a trace amount of THC. This is a key component to create a holistic and synergistic effect known as the entourage effect (more on that later).


Legally any product we offer cannot contain more than 0.3% THC by weight. For reference hemps cousin, marijuana, can produce upwards of 20% THC. The trace amount of THC in a product derived from hemp does not cause a psychoactive effect but can result in a failed drug test.



Broad Spectrum CBD Oil

Broad spectrum CBD oil contains all the cannabinoids found in the hemp plant, however the amount of THC is non-detectable via lab testing. The THC has either been removed through further processing or the oil has been diluted enough to result in a non detectable level. However, since it has only been removed to a "non-detectable" level there still could be some THC present which could accumulate over time resulting in a failed drug test.


CBD Isolate


CBD isolate could be thought as the most purest form of CBD but it is also the MOST processed. During this process, CBD is isolated from all other parts of the hemp plant. The result is a powder of only CBD without any other cannabinoid, terpene or essential oil. While a product with CBD isolate will still provide benefits, research has shown the user may require a higher dose to achieve the expected results. This is because research has shown the benefits from the cannabis plant comes from all of the cannabinoids and terpenes working together in what is know as the entourage effect.


Entourage Effect


This therapeutic effect can only take place when the wide variety of cannabinoids within hemp are working together to maximize the most therapeutic benefits. "In 1998, Professors Raphael Mechoulam and Shimon Ben-Shabat posited that the endocannabinoid system demonstrated an “entourage effect” in which a variety of “inactive” metabolites and closely related molecules markedly increased the activity of the primary endogenous cannabinoids, anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (Ben-Shabat et al., 1998). They also postulated that this helped to explain how botanical drugs were often more efficacious than their isolated components (Mechoulam and Ben-Shabat, 1999). (1)"


RESEARCH STUDY In 2015, researchers published a study directly evaluating the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects of whole plant cannabis extract containing high amounts of CBD with the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects of CBD isolate.

The findings concluded "that CBD in the presence of other plant constituents improve the dose-response are supported by some recent reports showing that CBD in a standardized Cannabis sativa extract is more potent or efficacious than pure CBD" (isolate). These results revealed that the whole plant extract was significantly more efficient for relieving pain than the CBD isolate. The results also showed a correlation between dose-response on inflammation. Higher doses resulted in greater anti-inflammatory effect whereas, in contrast, higher doses of CBD isolate had less of an effect on inflammation.

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(1) Russo EB. The Case for the Entourage Effect and Conventional Breeding of Clinical Cannabis: No "Strain," No Gain. Front Plant Sci. 2019;9:1969. Published 2019 Jan 9. doi:10.3389/fpls.2018.01969

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