All, CBD 101, CBD Research

What Is Broad Spectrum CBD, and What Makes It Different

what is broad spectrum CBD

Overview

What is CBD? How is it different from THC? Where does it come from? How is it used and what is the difference between broad spectrum and full spectrum CBD products?

An increasing number of people are using CBD products to benefit their health. Far from only making CBD oil, CBD companies are now producing and selling capsules, edibles, and even cosmetic products.

Yet, much confusion remains about CBD and its refining process

Here’s everything you need to know about this non-intoxicating cannabis compound.

What Are Cannabinoids?

Before getting to what broad spectrum CBD is, let’s have a quick look at what cannabinoids are.

Cannabinoids are a class of natural compounds found in the cannabis plant. Although most of us are only familiar with CBD and THC, there are well over 100 different cannabinoids.

The reason why we don’t hear much about these other cannabinoids is that they’re present in small quantities. By comparison, CBD and THC account for most of the cannabinoid content of the plant.

Fun Fact: Cannabis is not the only source of cannabinoids; our body’s endocannabinoid system also produces them. As such, cannabinoids are typically divided into two main types: phytocannabinoids (derived from plants) and endocannabinoids (made by our bodies). Additionally, scientists can also create synthetic cannabinoids in the lab.

What Is CBD?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is the most abundant cannabinoid in the hemp plant: a variety of cannabis with low THC levels. Unlike its psychotropic cousin THC, CBD does not make you high. This means CBD users won’t have to deal with the intoxicating effects of cannabis or worry about not passing a drug test. *We recommend consulting your physician prior to consuming CBD to get your questions answered.

On the other hand, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the most abundant cannabinoid in regular varieties of cannabis (marijuana). Most of us have heard about THC because it’s the compound responsible for the intoxicating marijuana high. THC is illegal in most parts of the world and under most federal laws.

What Is Broad Spectrum CBD?

Many people are confused about what is broad spectrum CBD and what makes it different from full spectrum or isolate products.

Broad spectrum CBD contains cannabidiol and other compounds found in hemp but no THC, which is completely removed in the initial extraction process.

The final product is an excellent choice for people who want to make sure that the CBD they use has all the potential health benefits but is free even from the smallest amounts on THC. 

What’s the Difference Between CBD and THC?

CBD and THC have the same molecular structure, but the way the atoms are arranged is different. As a result, their effects are not the same.

As noted above, the key difference between CBD and THC is that CBD does not cause any intoxicating or psychoactive effects for many users. However, they also differ in other ways, such as their side effects, legal status and limit, and the way they’re used.

Side Effects of CBD vs THC

The possible side effects of THC even in lower doses, include euphoria, impaired memory and reaction time, anxiety, paranoia, increased heart rate, red eyes, dry mouth, sleepiness, and dizziness. 

Meanwhile, CBD can cause diarrhea, hypotension, dry mouth, lightheadedness, and sleepiness. However, these CBD side effects were noted in studies using high dosages (300 mg and higher).

The Legality of CBD vs THC

In the United States, marijuana and THC are illegal at the federal level. However, many states allow for their medical use, and a select few states allow both recreational and medical use of THC and marijuana.

On the other hand, CBD products derived from hemp, a variety of cannabis with high CBD and minimal (0.3% or less) THC levels, were made federally legal by the 2018 Farm Bill.

Much like with marijuana, however, individual states have their own laws for regulating the cultivation and sale of hemp. In the vast majority of states, hemp and hemp-derived CBD products are legal.

Uses of CBD and THC

CBD products are mainly used to support overall health and wellness. They’re most commonly sold in the form of CBD oil

In contrast, THC products are primarily used for their recreational and medical effects.

How Is CBD Taken?

Cannabidiol can be taken in several ways. The most popular of these is sublingual, where a few drops of CBD oil are placed under the tongue to let the CBD absorb directly into the blood vessels.

CBD can also be ingested in the form of capsules, gummies, or other edibles, inhaled by vaping CBD e-liquid and applied topically to the skin.

What Is CBD Oil?

CBD oil is the most popular type of CBD product. It’s made by extracting the stalks, stems, leaves, and flowers of the hemp plant. Keep in mind that CBD oil is sometimes simply called hemp oil. It should not be confused with hemp seed oil (also often called hemp oil), which is pressed from hemp seeds and doesn’t contain CBD or other cannabinoids.

CBD oil can be made with one of three types of hemp extract: full-spectrum products, broad-spectrum, and CBD isolate. Full-spectrum CBD oil contains all of the natural constituents of hemp, such as cannabinoids (including <0.3% THC), terpenes, flavonoids, minerals, and fatty acids. These compounds work together in a synergy called the “entourage effect”. 

Broad-spectrum CBD oil is the same as full-spectrum extracts but contains zero THC. Finally, CBD oil can also be made with CBD isolate. This is a purified, CBD-rich version of hemp extract that contains >99% pure CBD and nothing else.

What Is Broad Spectrum CBD Used For?

To answer the question of what is broad spectrum CBD used for, we’ll start by reminding you of the main difference between broad and full spectrum CBD.

Full spectrum products can have trace amounts of THC

Other than that, both CBD products can also be sold in many forms, including capsules, gummies, creams, and other cosmetic preparations, vape e-liquids, and even infused beverages. 

Much like CBD oil, these products can be made with CBD isolate, full-spectrum, or broad-spectrum CBD extract.

Cannabidiol: A Beneficial Natural Compound

Cannabidiol is a natural hemp compound used for overall health and wellness.

Most people take CBD in the form of oil but it can also be ingested, inhaled, and applied topically. CBD products can be made with purified CBD or extracts containing a wide range of compounds naturally present in hemp.

We hope this article sheds some light on what CBD is, and on how you can use broad spectrum or full spectrum cannabidiol products for wellness. If you want more information, check out our comprehensive CBD guide.