Full Spectrum vs. Regular CBD: What’s the Difference?

While most people typically just talk about “CBD oil” as if the substance is one singular grouping of compounds, not all CBD is the same.

The two major types of cannabidiol (CBD) are full spectrum (or full spec) and isolate CBD.

Knowing the differences between the two types lets you choose the right product for your needs, situation or preferences.

First, What is CBD?

CBD is found in cannabis, and is made from the stalks, leaves, and roots of the plant. As opposed to marijuana, which comes from the buds, flowers and leafs of that same plant.

It does not have any of the THC, the compound that gives you that high feeling. As a result, CBD oil is more widely available than cannabis. CBD oil often is used for the relief of pain and inflammation, and has been shown helpful for a variety of conditions including:

  • Arthritis
  • Epilepsy
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Chronic pain
  • Migraines
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Full Spectrum vs. Traditional Isolate CBD

The two types of CBD oil are full spectrum and isolate CBD. Each provides its own benefits, and knowing the difference can make getting relief easier and faster.

Full spectrum CBD contains every cannabinoid present in the cannabis plant. Nothing is filtered out of full spectrum oil, meaning the user enjoys all the effectiveness and benefits of the cannabis plant. Many full spectrum CBD oils also contain low levels of THC, but not enough to get you high. Full spectrum CBD is the most common type of CBD oil found on the market.

Isolate CBD like that found in Medterra products [1] is oil that’s extracted from the cannabis plant, leaving behind other terpenes and cannabinoids. There are a variety of levels and dosages of traditional CBD, with each serving a different purpose.

While much of the debate between full spectrum or isolate CBD comes down to personal preference, many researchers support the use of full-spectrum CBD oil.

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They say the compounding effect of all the terpenes and cannabinoids proves more beneficial to relief from the symptoms of chronic conditions.

How Is Isolate CBD Created?

The CBD compounds in the cannabis are isolated by cooling extracted oil until it forms crystals. The crystals are then processed into a highly pure powder.

This approach maximizes the “active ingredient,” the CBD, so many people feel this form of CBD oil is more effective at treating their problems, especially severe conditions.

Which is Better?

Much of the decision between full spectrum or isolate CBD oil comes down to personal preference.

However, studies have shown that full spectrum can be more effective because of the “entourage effect.”

Mice were given both isolate and full spectrum CBD oil in one study. Even at higher doses, the mice given isolate felt less relief from their pain even when it was administered in higher doses.

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This potentially means that full spectrum CBD oil is more effective than CBD isolate because you need lower doses of it to feel relief. The lower dosage needs, researchers say, can be attributed to the way all the terpenes and cannabinoids work together to decrease inflammation and reduce pain.

Closing Thoughts

While both full spectrum and isolate CBD oil can relieve the symptoms of many chronic conditions that otherwise require expensive pharmaceuticals or surgery, studies have shown that the “entourage effect” of full spectrum CBD oil provides greater relief at lower doses. However, both types of CBD oil can provide you with respite from a painful condition.

Knowing the difference between the two types can help you decide which is best for your needs, but you may need to try both types before making a final determination.

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