CBD 101 – Broad Spectrum, Isolate, & Full Spectrum.
What’s the difference?
The term CBD oil is misleading and often misused. In this article, you’ll learn the three main types of CBD products and the difference between them.
One of the most frequently asked questions we receive from our readers and people new to using CBD oil is the difference between CBD isolate, broad spectrum isolate and a full spectrum product.
We thought it best to break it down to ensure a better understanding and to help South Africans choose the best product suited for them.
With a rise in the popularity of CBD oil in South Africa, the terminology used to describe products has become increasingly confusing. Companies have created multiple types of CBD oil and numerous forms of CBD products to differentiate themselves from competitors.
Most people use the term CBD oil interchangeably for multiple products. The term CBD oil, however, is not necessarily accurate because many CBD oil products contain several cannabinoids. A majority of the CBD oil that you can get for medical and wellness purposes come from the hemp plant (Cannabis Sativa L vs Cannabis). In this article we differentiate CBD oils by their cannabinoid content.
There are three main types of CBD oil that you’ll hear about:
- Broad Spectrum CBD oil
- Isolate (CBD)
- Full Spectrum CBD oil
Broad Spectrum CBD
Broad spectrum CBD products contain an array of cannabinoids and terpenes but zero THC. Think of Broad Spectrum CBD as Full Spectrum without the THC. To create Broad Spectrum CBD, manufacturers will put their products through additional processing to isolate and remove as much trace amounts of THC possible while preserving the other natural cannabinoids and terpenes. Broad Spectrum CBD is an excellent choice for individuals that can’t have any traces of THC in their system, whether for medical, personal or legal reasons.
CBD Isolate is typically the CBD product of choice for those who are sensitive to other cannabinoids such as THC. Isolates are just that – CBD isolated from all other cannabinoids. During the CBD isolate extraction process, everything contained in the plant matter is removes, including any traces of THC, terpenes, waxes, oils, chlorophyll and more. What’s left is 99+% pure CBD. When looking at isolate, it’s very important to verify the purity. While many are in the 99.9+% range with no identifiable amounts of THC, there are lower purity options (such as 99.5% of lower) that may still have trace amounts that will show up in a lab test. This small a percentage of THC is usually negligible, but its still something to be aware of for those seeking the purest CBD Isolate they can find.
Full Spectrum CBD
Full spectrum or “whole plant” products contain everything the cannabis plan contains. That means they contain CBD as well as flavonoids, the natural fatty acids found in hemp, terpenes and other cannabinoids such as CBG, CBN and trace amounts of THC. All these naturally-occurring elements have their own important therapeutic value. Full spectrum products are by far the most popular. One reason for the popularity of full spectrum CBD is something called the “entourage effect.”
So, what does this all mean if you could potentially be drug tested for a new job, or at your current position?
It is unlikely that a Urine Test would show up positive when consuming a pure CBD isolate (Zero THC). But, if a person is taking a Full-Spectrum, (<.2%) THC, it could build up in the system, and a person could test positive for THC. If a company is testing for cannabinoids in general, you will test positive because CBD is a cannabinoid.
If you are expecting to be drug tested at work or for a new position, it is okay to ask what they are testing for. Feel free to bring in your bottle, showing the product you are taking is THC free. Or stop taking all CBD products prior to a drug test.
Which CBD spectrum is best for you?
Only you can answer that question! No one spectrum is better than the other – they all come with their own unique benefits and suit a range of needs and lifestyles. Hopefully our quick guide covering the differences between broad spectrum CBD, CBD isolate and full spectrum CBD will give you everything you need to make an informed decision, but if you’re still unsure or just want to chat about it further, get in touch via the contact form.