The terms full spectrum, broad spectrum and isolate probably sound familiar. While they sound like marketing buzzwords, they actually tell you critical information about the cannabinoids found in every CBD product. Let's jump in!
Cannabinoids refer to the class of chemical compounds that interact with our endocannabinoid system (ECS). Humans (and most animals) have these ECS to regulate functions like managing moods, memory, appetite and so much more. There are two types of cannabinoids, endocannabinoids (our bodies create naturally) and phytocannabinoids (derived from cannabis and hemp like CBD, THC etc)
Also known as “whole-plant extract”, full spectrum extracts contain CBD plus everything else found in the plant. This includes flavonoids and terpenes, ingredients that bring added therapeutic effects, scent, and flavor. Plus, a wide assortment of cannabinoids, like CBD (obvi), low levels of THC (legal/no high limit of 0.3%) and CBG, CBN and more.
All of the ingredients in full spectrum products join forces and become more effective than if isolated. This term is called the ‘entourage effect’
This is pure CBD which is produced by removing every other compound found in the plant. It’s usually an odorless, tasteless powder and with no THC. Isolates are heavily processed because it is difficult to strip away everything naturally occurring in hemp.
Recent studies show that CBD isolate is only effective with a very specific dose that varies for each individual. Any amount under, or over and you hardly see effects. It’s likely if someone complains about taking CBD and feeling nothing, that it was a CBD isolate product.
Like a hybrid of the last two, Broad Spectrum extracts have no THC, which ais removed during the extraction process. It does retain other cannabinoids and terpenes, enhancing its therapeutic potential.
For people who must avoid THC, broad spectrum products are a useful option. However, full spectrum is widely believed to be the most effective CBD extraction method.