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3 Types of CBD

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3 Types of CBD

When you first step into the CBD scene, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the wide variety of products. Not only are there CBD oils, tinctures, crystals, powders, salves, creams, and edibles, but there are also different kinds of CBD within those categories, as well as varying degrees of potency, among other distinctions. What does it all mean? We’ve got you covered. 

What Is CBD? 

First thing’s first. What is CBD? 

Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of more than 100 cannabinoids, or phytochemicals, found in the hemp plant. The hemp plant is a type of cannabis plant that contains mostly CBD in terms of its cannabinoid content. Marijuana, also a member of the cannabis tribe, contains mainly THC, CBD’s more famous (and often misunderstood) cousin. 

Unlike hemp seed oil, CBD is extracted from the plant’s stalks, flowers, and leaves. Hemp seeds don’t contain any CBD oil, although they do contain nutrients similar to flax seeds. 

What is CBD?

Since before The Beatles were toking up and writing songs about octopi and submarines, THC was the focal point for researchers and cannabis enthusiasts. But in the 1980s, CBD started to get more attention. However, it has only been in the past few years that the scientific and health communities have really begun to take CBD seriously. We now know CBD offers many of the same benefits as THC, along with many distinct attributes, without any of the “high.” 

Today, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized industrial hemp nationwide, as well as evolving perceptions and increasing knowledge about cannabis, people all over the country are using CBD for a variety of purposes. 

The 3 Kinds of CBD

What can be extracted from hemp?

OK, so CBD is a cannabinoid extracted from the hemp plant. But what’s full-spectrum vs broad-spectrum vs isolate?

These categories indicate what kinds of hemp compounds (besides CBD) are in the product. Basically, they tell you whether CBD is surrounded by its posse or going solo and, if it is with its pals, whether THC is there or not. Here’s a bit more detail on each.

Full-Spectrum

Full-spectrum products contain all the goods the cannabis plant has to offer. This includes the full range of therapeutic cannabinoids, such as CBD, THC, CBG, CBN, and CBC, as well as flavonoids, terpenes, and essential fatty acids. All of these chemical compounds offer distinct benefits. They also help CBD work more effectively, and research indicates that it can produce higher levels of relief than broad-spectrum or isolate products.

Full-spectrum is the only type of CBD product that contains THC. However, those from hemp only contain 0.3% or less. While this is enough to produce the benefits of the entourage effect (more on that here), it’s not enough to produce the characteristic “high” associated with THC-dominant marijuana. However, there is a slight chance that it could create a false positive on a drug test if you take a high dose of full-spectrum CBD every day for an extended period.

Broad-Spectrum

Broad-spectrum CBD contains all the hemp plant’s naturally-occurring phytochemicals except for THC. The initial extraction process is the same as that for producing full-spectrum products. But afterward, the THC is isolated and removed.
With broad-spectrum, you get most of the synergistic benefits of the entourage effect mentioned above, as well as the attributes of the various other non-THC cannabinoids, flavonoids, terpenes, and enzymes.

Isolate

CBD isolate is pure CBD. Nothing more. Nothing less. It’s the only type that does not contain any other cannabinoids, terpenes, or fatty acids from the hemp plant. It’s often sold as a crystal or powder, but it can also come in oil form. While full and broad-spectrum products have the advantage of the entourage effect, CBD isolate is still beneficial.

Making CBD isolate is much the same as making broad or full-spectrum products. However, once the cannabinoids are extracted, the CBD is isolated. It then undergoes a chilling process that removes all other chemical compounds.

CBD isolate is usually cheaper than other forms. It’s also legal in all 50 states. While no CBD products contain more than 0.3% THC, per federal regulations, isolate does not have any whatsoever, which can be beneficial for anyone allergic to THC or other cannabis compounds.

In its liquid form, isolate is often used for vaping. In crystal or powder form, it’s often taken sublingually. As with other types, you can use powder or crystals in baking and cooking.

Bottom Line

All three categories of CBD can produce significant health benefits. The type of CBD product that’s best for you will depend on various factors, from your health and lifestyle to your location.

There is ample scientific evidence showing CBD’s efficacy in supporting overall wellbeing, corroborated by countless anecdotal reports. Several studies currently underway aim to help us better understand how CBD, in its various forms, works in the body.

It’s important to remember that what works for one person may not work for you. It may take some trial and error to find the perfect fit, but it’s worth the wait. For more tips on starting with CBD, click here. Or, to see how CBD has benefited people, click here.



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