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CBD oil comes in various forms, with different combinations of cannabinoids in different types. In this article, we discuss the difference between Full Spectrum CBD oil and a CBD Isolate, in addition to the pros and cons of each type. Also discussed: the endocannabinoid system’s role in the body, what cannabinoids are and why they’re crucial for maintaining optimal health.
You know how the old saying goes: a dropper a day keeps the doctor away. If you’re interested in trying CBD, you’ve probably wondered what kind of CBD you should take. Should you use an oil? What about gummies? How can you tell the quality of an oil? Should you use an isolate or full spectrum? What the heck do those things even mean?!
Before you start stressing out and give up on your search for the perfect CBD solution, read this article for more information on what CBD is, what it does in the human body and an overview of the two main types of CBD oil you’ll encounter during your research. And if you already started stressing out…you definitely need to learn more about CBD.
To understand the difference between a Full Spectrum CBD oil and CBD Isolate oil, we have to first understand what the endogenous cannabinoid system is, its function in the human body and how cannabinoids activate this system.
The endogenous cannabinoid system (ECS) is one of the most recently discovered systems in the human body and one of the least known about. Scientists stumbled upon the endocannabinoid system while researching the effects of marijuana, specifically THC, in the human body. This biochemical communication system plays a crucial role in regulating our physiology, mood and everyday experiences. The endocannabinoid system works to bring the body to a state of homeostasis, or state of balance. This system of cannabinoid receptors, which are naturally occuring in the body (anandamide works on these receptors), is located throughout the body.
Cannabinoids are naturally occurring molecules most notably found in the Cannabis family of plants. To date, there are over 100 known phytocannabinoids in existence. These cannabinoids act as “keys” in the human body, unlocking receptors as they travel through the bloodstream. Each cannabinoid shares its own host of health benefits. The most well-known cannabinoids out there are Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD).
The most notable difference between these two cannabinoids are their psychoactive effects. While ingesting THC makes one feel “high,” ingesting CBD does not produce these same effects. To the contrary, while THC often exacerbates anxiety and creates paranoia, CBD has the exact opposite effects and could actually mitigate the effects of taking too much THC.
Check out the graphic below to see a quick breakdown of which cannabinoids produce which health benefits.
As you can tell from this chart, all of these phytocannabinoids have different benefits in the human body. When combined, you maximize the health benefits of all these cannabinoids.
Once cannabinoids hit your bloodstream, they make their way through the body, lighting up different receptors as they pass through. These receptors then turn on and begin working in the human body, regulating various bodily functions such as:
Naturally, our bodies make a cannabis-like chemical called anandamide, or the bliss molecule. CBD intake naturally elevates the levels of this endocannabinoid. Increasing anandamide in the body and brain has anti-inflammatory effects, while also affecting other activities at other receptors.
In fact, CBD can work together with a variety of the 100 phytocannabinoids and 500 compounds in hemp plants to produce particularly powerful health benefits. But before we get into all of that, let’s explain a little more about CBD itself and why it’s such a big deal.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a proven antioxidizing, anti-inflammatory compound, rich in fatty acids and vitamins/minerals. Some of its benefits include:
On its own, CBD packs a powerful punch combatting many ailments. However, when you combine CBD with the other compounds found in the hemp plant, such as cannabinoids and terpenes, you create a whole-plant product that is proven to be more effective at easing a wider variety of everyday maladies.
There are over 500 compounds and 100 phytocannabinoids naturally occurring in the buds of the hemp plant. In addition to the active cannabinoids in the plants, terpenes, the compounds that give cannabis its unique scents, have anti-inflammatory effects on the human body. In fact, many different components of the hemp plant offer a wide range of health benefits. Combining these various components of the plant together is much more effective at easing certain symptoms than using pure CBD alone.
Some CBD products are isolates, which mean the CBD was extracted from the hemp plant in the form of a powder and added to some type of oil as a base, usually MCT oil. Other products are labeled as full spectrum, which means there are other cannabinoids and terpenes in the mix aside from CBD. However, rest assured, there is always a THC content lower than 0.3%, but will still be a much higher content than a CBD isolate product (which generally has a THC content of 0%). Products labeled as broad spectrum signal a CBD distillate containing no THC.
Below, let’s take a closer look into the difference between a CBD isolate and full spectrum CBD oil.
The name says it all! CBD isolate oil is produced by separating and extracting CBD from the other cannabinoids and compounds present in the hemp plant. This process works well to rid CBD of everything else, but isn’t foolproof yet. Some trace amounts of cannabinoids, like THC, could still remain. However, to be sold legally, all oils can only contain a THC content of 0.3% or lower. Most isolates contain no THC at all. Isolate CBD is available in a range of purity levels, indicating to users the amount of “pure CBD” in the actual product.
Most isolate products are 99.9% pure CBD. Keep in mind: the lower the percentage of pure CBD in the products, the higher the amount of other cannabinoids in that product. For example, products labeled as 99.5% pure CBD isolate contain higher traces of THC and other cannabinoids than a product labeled as 99.9% pure. Though there’s still a small risk for testing positive in a drug test, isolate products are the choice for users who face regular drug testing and want to be on the very, very safe side. Isolates are ideal for those who want to try out CBD to see how it makes them feel or who aren’t quite ready to invest in a full spectrum just yet.
Full spectrum CBD oils come from the stems and seeds of the hemp plant. They contain highly concentrated and potent cannabidiol, along with trace amounts of other cannabinoids found naturally in the hemp plant (including up to a .3% THC content). If you know you’ll be drug tested soon, use full spectrum CBD oil with caution. Though the THC content in these products is not enough to get you “high” and therefore, in theory, not enough to fail a drug test, small traces of THC could still be picked up, resulting in a positive drug test. It honestly comes down to how much CBD you’re taking each day, and the amounts of THC contained in these products. Most people won’t have to worry about this problem, and the health benefits from full spectrum products far outweigh the risk for many.
The Entourage Effect describes the process of various compounds and cannabinoids contained in the hemp plant coming together to maximize the effectiveness and potential health benefits of a CBD product. The term “full spectrum,” when referring to CBD products, indicates the array of compounds found in that particular product. Some of these compounds include cannabinoids, flavonoids, terpenes and fatty acids found naturally in the hemp plant. When these compounds come together, they provide more health benefits than using only one or two of these compounds by themselves.
A full spectrum CBD oil contains less pure CBD, but contains a greater variety of compounds to maximize its overall effect on the human body. Just as CBD increases the effectiveness of the naturally occurring anandamide, when used in conjunction with cannabinoids like THC, for example, its effects are also amplified.
Recently, studies show terpenes are vital for amplifying the benefits of CBD. As mentioned earlier, terpenes create cannabis’ unique scents and exist in all plants. Terpenes are responsible for the energizing smell of a tangerine, or the soothing scent of lavender wafting through the air. The terpene myrcene reduces resistance in the blood-brain barrier allowing CBD to absorb at a higher rate.
Common terpenes include limonene, which is found in citrus fruits, and linalool, which is found in lavender. These compounds have therapeutic effects on the human body, which is the base for aromatherapy.
CBD also combines with flavonoids, which are the phytonutrients responsible for the vivid non-green colors seen in plants. Apples are red; blueberries are blue; some peppers are red, some are green. The difference in colors is due to their unique flavonoid makeup.
Common flavonoids include the catechins found in green tea and quercetin, which is found in cannabis, fruits and vegetables. Flavonoids have antiviral, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, especially those found in cannabis.
When it comes to easing specific maladies, understanding how different cannabinoids and compounds work together to produce certain benefits is vital for maximizing your CBD experience. As more research is done and various new combinations are discovered, many more lives will be touched by the health benefits of these combos.
However, if you’re already using a CBD isolate and it’s doing the trick for you, there’s no real reason to switch to a full spectrum CBD oil. In some cases, people suffer from certain issues an isolate alone doesn’t effectively ease. When in doubt, go with an isolate until you’re ready to branch out and try something new.
Ultimately, the type of CBD oil you use depends on the benefits you want to get from its use. If you’re looking for to benefit from the effects of pure CBD oil, an isolate is the right choice for you. However, if you’re looking for something a little bit more and want to maximize the effects of CBD, a full spectrum CBD oil is in store for you. Before you go, visit the Regenefi shop page to check out our line of CBD products – isolates, full spectrum, gummies, dog treats, balms and more.
Browse Regenefi‘s premium, high-quality CBD oil and products. 100% Organically Grown & GMP Compliant. CBD oil extracts from our organically grown Industrial Hemp restore balance to your body, packed with many powerful benefits. From gummies to dog treats to oils, Regenefi CBD products renew your life: mind, body and soul. What are you waiting for? Try out CBD for yourself today!
FDA Disclaimer: The statements regarding these products are not evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products is not confirmed by FDA-approved research. These products do not diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not a substitute for or alternative to information from healthcare practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product.