One thing that new consumers find both daunting and exciting about the cannabis market is just how large it is. There are all kinds of cannabis products, from traditional blunts and vape pens to edibles, tinctures, and capsules. Such products incorporate either cannabidiol (CBD), the cannabis ingredient that’s responsible for its pain-relieving and anxiety-relieving properties, or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabis’s psychoactive ingredient. Some items, in fact, contain a mixture of both.
That said, if you’re a new buyer, how can you distinguish the different products from each other? Moreover, how do you decide which one of them is best for your needs?
This article details the differences between three types of CBD product that you may see in shops today: full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate. Here’s what you should know before you plan your first herb delivery.
Full-Spectrum CBD, Broad-Spectrum CBD, and CBD Isolate: Key Differences
Consumers who gravitate towards cannabis’s anxiolytic and analgesic properties may already know to seek out CBD products over THC products. But even if you narrow it down to wanting CBD, there’s still a pretty broad umbrella of CBD products to choose from. They typically fall under one of these three types:
Products that are advertised as having the “full spectrum” CBD contain more than one component of the cannabis plant in their formulation. This includes THC, the psychoactive ingredient that induces cannabis’s high.
Full-spectrum CBD products that fit US federal laws will always contain less than 0.3% of THC by dry weight, and consuming these won’t get you high. But if cannabis is fully legal in your state, you’ll be able to find products with a THC formulation that’s higher than what’s federally permissible.
What full-spectrum CBD products and broad-spectrum CBD products have in common is that they both contain several components of the cannabis plant at a time, like flavonoids and terpenes. That means that neither can be considered 100% CBD.
However, unlike full-spectrum products, broad-spectrum products do not contain THC. That accounts for the semantics of the labeling: there are several compounds present in a broad-spectrum CBD product, which makes its formulation broader, but it does not contain the “full” spectrum that includes THC.
CBD isolate, in simple terms, is CBD in its purest form. A product advertised as “CBD isolate” will contain no other compound or component of the cannabis plant except for CBD itself. Save for products that are labeled as such, a CBD isolate item will come with no additional flavors or odors.
For buyers who want to experience the relieving qualities of CBD—and nothing more—pure, unadulterated CBD isolate is likely what they’re looking for.
What Are the Benefits Associated with the Different Forms of CBD?
How you experience CBD depends on which form you choose to take it in. Below are the benefits that are unique to each type of CBD product:
Full-Spectrum CBD Products: The Entourage Effect
Many fans of full-spectrum CBD products attribute their enjoyment to what’s called the “entourage effect.” They believe that the different components of a cannabis product interact in a certain way and therefore heighten the overall experience.
Are you comfortable about introducing a little THC into your system as well as CBD, and are you looking to savor the taste and smell of cannabis as well as its analgesic and anxiolytic properties? If so, then full-spectrum CBD products may be for you.
Broad-Spectrum CBD Products: A Little Bit of Everything, Save for the High
Sans the THC, a broad-spectrum CBD product may help you enjoy the different qualities of the cannabis plant, including its unique aromatic and flavor profiles. Broad-spectrum CBD products are considered the safe middle ground between full-spectrum products and CBD isolates. For a little bit of everything but the high, you may want to explore broad-spectrum CBD products.
CBD Isolate Products: Nothing but CBD, Plain and Simple
Lastly, if all you’re after is the effects of CBD and you can live without any additional trimmings—and if you’re avoiding introducing THC into your system—it would be best to choose CBD isolate products. Even without experiencing terpenes and flavonoids, you’ll be able to get the stress relief and pain relief you’re after.
Conclusion: Making Informed Choices about Your CBD Consumption
In the end, learning more about the different types of CBD products will help you make a more informed choice about what to buy. You’ll be able to curate the CBD experience you want, regardless of whether that involves THC and other cannabis components—and as a result, you’ll be comfortable knowing what’s in your system and how particular ingredients will affect you.
Today’s huge CBD market may intimidate you at first, and that’s a normal feeling to have especially if you’re a first-time buyer. But once you find the products you want, it won’t be too hard to enjoy yourself while discovering everything that’s interesting about the herb.