Interest in the therapeutic effects of cannabidiol (CBD) is increasing at a rapid pace. Known for its mystifying ability to treat depression, addiction, nausea, and a number of other ailments, it would be unwise to at least give CBD a thought. Like any product, however, it is never a good idea to buy the first product you see on the shelves.
In any case, it’s better to first do some research into the advantages and disadvantages of the different forms of CBD. Likewise, it is vital to know the key terminology associated with each product. What does “full spectrum” mean? What about when there is a tincture labeled “CBD isolate”? That way, you’ll have a much better idea of what you’re using, and have a much better chance of experiencing beneficial effects!
While choosing your CBD product, one of the most important distinctions to understand is that between full spectrum and isolate. This difference may play a significant role in how you feel the effects of CBD and how much of a product you need to use, especially considering the recent research into the entourage effect and the impact of molecules like terpenes. Read on to learn more about these forms of CBD to find out what kind is right for you.
What is Full Spectrum CBD?
Full spectrum CBD products are accompanied by all the other naturally-occurring chemicals in marijuana. This can include but is not limited to terpenes and all of the different types of cannabinoids. This means the product will contain not only the CBD molecule, but also significant concentrations of cannabinol (CBN), tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV), and low amounts of THC as well.
This isn’t to say that any full-spectrum product will get you high, however. Depending on how the CBD is extracted from the plant and how much THC was in the cannabis to begin with, there will be different levels of THC in the resulting CBD product. Remember that, although THC is the psychoactive component of marijuana, the low concentrations found in CBD products that claim to be full spectrum are negligible, and you will almost certainly be unable to tell there is any THC at all In short, there’s no need to worry about getting high from full spectrum CBD products!
CBD products have a number of potential advantages. First off, the presence of many different cannabinoids means that one can take advantage of all their medicinal benefits instead of just the benefits of CBD alone. For example, the cannabinoid THCV is said to be able to stimulate bone growth and suppress appetite.Cannabigerol (CBG) is theorized to aid in sleep and slow the growth of bacteria, among other things. Below are some other notable cannabinoids and their potential effects on the body.
CBN: Provides pain relief, aids sleep, and reduces muscle spasms
CBC: Acts as an anti-inflammatory, provides pain relief, promotes bone growth, and has antibacterial properties
CBC-A: Has antibacterial properties and can be used to treat fungal infections
CBG: In addition to the benefits discussed in the previous paragraph, CBG can also act as an anti-inflammatory and promote bone growth
Many of these cannabinoids, despite being similar to CBD in molecular structure, are not the same chemical as CBD. Hence, they have differing effects. Also, remember that among all the different cannabinoids found in cannabis, CBD is the most versatile of them with a much-wider range of potential medical benefits. Thus, if you’re trying to decide between a CBD product and a CBD product artificially mixed with one or two other cannabinoids, there may not be that much of a difference simply because of how many benefits CBD provides! This may be especially applicable advice in the event that there exist notable price differences.
Additionally, one must always consider the entourage effect when looking into which CBD product to buy. In brief, the entourage effect is the idea that all the various chemicals naturally-occurring in cannabis together have the potential to enhance the medicinal properties of CBD compared to using pure CBD alone. As implied, full spectrum CBD, having these additional molecules from the whole cannabis plant, would have an associated entourage effect with the potential to provide stronger feelings of relief as opposed to products with only CBD. For more information about the entourage effect and its potential benefits, feel free to read our article on the potential benefits of terpenes in CBD products.
What is Isolated CBD?
Isolated CBD, as you may already be able to guess, simply refers to a product that only contains the CBD molecule as opposed to the variety of other substances one would find in cannabis. These kinds of products are made by first extracting an oil from the marijuana plant and then crystalizing it. The crystals are then ground up into a powder that can be infused into a variety of different substances. For example, any CBD pill you see on the market is likely to be this pure, isolated form of CBD.
What Product is Best for Me?
Although intuition may tell there isn’t a point to using CBD isolate since the entourage effect provides so many potential added benefits, this isn’t necessarily true. In cases where one’s medical condition would cause unwanted side-effects from the use of a particular cannabinoid found in full spectrum CBD, it may be wise to use pure, isolated CBD instead. Furthermore, the higher concentrations of cannabinoids such as THC may cause unwanted side effects, such as:
- Light headedness
- Dry mouth
As always, in the event that you are affected by serious medical conditions, always consult a doctor before using CBD. It is also important to remember that even if the entourage effect isn’t present in CBD isolate, you’ll still be taking advantage of all the potential benefits associated with CBD itself!