CBD’s popularity has grown over recent years, with more and more users raving about the health benefits they experience. According to one study, 62% of CBD users said they used the compound to treat various health issues, such as depression and anxiety.
However, CBD research is still in its infancy. We recommend approaching CBD use with as much information as possible due to the lack of research. One of the hot topics right now in the CBD world is Full-spectrum vs Broad-spectrum CBD. Let’s take a closer look at these two different types of CBD products, comparing and contrasting their differences and respective benefits.
How Is CBD Extracted?
CBD extraction processes are essential to manufactures. There are specific processes that extract different compounds. Since the method used during extraction determines the resulting type of CBD, we thought this was the perfect place to start.
Many people think that cannabis plants have only contained THC and CBD compounds. However, this could not be any further from the truth. While THC and CBD are the most abundant compounds, a cannabis plant contains several hundred more.
Manufacturers extract CBD from cannabis in four different ways:
- Carbon dioxide extraction
- Steam distillation
- Solvent extraction
- Lipid extraction
Carbon Dioxide Extraction
This popular extraction method creates several CBD products, owning its ability to produce high CBD concentrations successfully. In this extraction method, manufacturers use carbon dioxide to extract CBD oil from the cannabis plant.
Though not as effective as carbon dioxide extraction, this method is still a popular option, especially when extracting essential plant oils. In this method, manufacturers use steam to help separate the oil from the rest of the plant material.
Despite the fact that this is an effective extraction method, manufacturers prefer not to use it. Manufacturers choose not to use this process because it may pose potential health risks. Also, the extraction method can impact the flavor of the extract.
Lipid extraction is a method that is gradually gaining popularity. Due to the process, more and more companies prefer it because it does not require solvents or carbon dioxide.
Each of the following extraction methods yields full-spectrum CBD oil. Following the extraction, the manufacturer will process the extract further to obtain broad-spectrum CBD and CBD isolates.
What Is Full-Spectrum CBD?
Full-spectrum CBD is a type of CBD that contains all the compounds found in the cannabis plant. It has a high cannabinoid profile and also includes vitamins, essential minerals, fatty acids, chlorophyll, fiber, flavonoids, proteins, and terpene, which is the compound that gives the cannabis plant its scent.
This CBD also contains trace amounts of THC. However, full-spectrum CBD does not have enough THC to induce any psychoactive effects. People who wish to avoid as much THC as possible in their product prefer this type the most.
State and federal laws restrict and regulate the sale of THC products. According to the law, CBD cannot contain more than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis. For this reason, most CBD products are sourced from hemp because the plant offers a THC concentration of 0.3% or less.
On the other hand, full-spectrum CBD with higher THC levels is still available, especially when you opt for the concentrates. For instance, there are specific tinctures available today that contain up to two milligrams for every milliliter of THC, which causes a euphoria effect in some people.
What Is Broad-Spectrum CBD?
Broad-spectrum CBD is a CBD type that falls somewhere between full-spectrum and isolates, the third type of CBD product. Broad-spectrum CBD lacks certain compounds, and THC is one of them. It does, however, contain flavonoids and terpenes, just like full-spectrum CBD.
Though full-spectrum THC’s content is low, you can still detect it, depending on the user’s biome and how their body processes CBD. Since broad-spectrum CBD does not contain THC, it is often the preferred choice among users subjected to drug tests because of their line of work.
What Are Their Differences?
The main difference between full-spectrum CBD and broad-spectrum CBD is their compound composition.
A full-spectrum CBD product contains several naturally occurring marijuana plant extracts like THC, terpenes, and many other cannabinoids. Although broad-spectrum CBD products contain several cannabis plant compounds, they are entirely THC-free.
However, since the FDA does not regulate CBD as prescription medication and supplements, some broad-spectrum CBD products could contain trace amounts of THC. Also, the terms full-spectrum and broad-spectrum are frequently misused or used interchangeably.
Another difference between the two is their manufacturing process. To get broad-spectrum CBD products, further refining full-spectrum CBD will extract all traces of the THC.
They also differ in terms of the benefits. Users choose products that fulfill the health benefits they need.
What Are the Benefits of Full-Spectrum CBD?
Some people believe that when a CBD extract contains more marijuana plant compounds, it increases the CBD product’s health benefits. Researchers refer to this mentality as the entourage effect.
Since full-spectrum CBD contains many cannabis compounds, this type of CBD might enhance the entourage effect, enabling users to enjoy certain potential health benefits such as:
- Pain relief
A 2018 review also found that the terpenes and flavonoids that full-spectrum CBD has might have neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory effects. It might also help users relieve muscle spasms and alleviate symptoms associated with certain psychotic conditions.
What Are the Benefits of Broad-Spectrum CBD?
Broad-spectrum CBD contains fewer compounds than its counterpart. It retains cannabis plant compounds, such as terpenes, cannabinol, and cannabichromene. According to reports, the cannabinol found in this type of CBD has might have the following health benefits:
Also, since some broad-spectrum CBD products contain trace amounts of THC, users could still benefit from the entourage effect.
Which One Should You Choose: Full-Spectrum or Broad-Spectrum?
When deciding on which type of CBD product to purchase, consider certain factors like efficacy and taste. However, it all comes down to your personal preferences. Some people prefer unscented products that have no taste, while others do not mind different flavors.
Choosing Broad-Spectrum CBD
Several broad-spectrum CBD products have more hemp-forward flavor that some users might or might not enjoy, especially when taking CBD as a tincture or oil.
If you are new to CBD, broad-spectrum CBD products might be suitable for you. You might find the best broad-spectrum product to suit your specific needs.
Choosing Full-Spectrum CBD
Full-spectrum CBD products are better suited for users who are familiar with how their bodies process CBD. Also, you may prefer this if you are looking for more product options.
However, we must mention that, since manufactures do not refine this type of CBD in the same manner as broad-spectrum, you must exercise additional caution when buying it.
We recommend only buying your CBD from reputable brands. These brands are committed to testing their products, not just for cannabinoid content but also for potential contaminants.
On top of this, you must also consult with your physician before using any CBD product, whether it be full or broad-spectrum. It’s important to talk with your doctor because CBD can potentially affect other conditions or interact with other medications you are already taking.
A Brief Mention of CBD Isolates
While the focus of this article, so far, was full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD, there is a third type of CBD available. The third type is called CBD isolates.
While both full-spectrum and broad-spectrum products contain several cannabinoid compounds, CBD isolates only contain CBD. Essentially, isolates are the purest form of CBD you can get since they do not have any additional compounds found in the cannabis plant.
This type of CBD is ideal for users who wish to avoid THC altogether or for those who want to determine how effective CBD alone is at easing their ailments.
While additional research is needed, early evidence suggests that both full- and broad-spectrum CBD have promising potential in the health realm.
However, with the lack of extensive regulation, not all CBD products disclose all their contents on their product labels. Fortunately, certain reputable companies, such as The Other Path, provide their customers with the reliable CBD sources they need.
The Other Path
At The Other Path, we offer customers legal, hemp-sourced full-spectrum CBD products to provide them with the holistic healing they need.
We ensure that every vetted and laboratory tested product we carry includes certified test results. These results help us guarantee our customers that they are getting reliable, high-end products.
In our efforts to build a sustainable CBD community, we partner with reputable brands, combining our efforts to ensure that we provide you with the very best options.