So you're interested in trying CBD but feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the options out there. What's full spectrum, broad spectrum, and isolate CBD? Do you really need the benefits of the "entourage effect" or is that just hype? And is THC something you want in your CBD product or something to avoid at all costs?
These are all super valid questions if you're a CBD newbie trying to navigate the ever-growing marketplace. Well, grab your favorite CBD cocktail and get comfy, because we're breaking down the key differences between full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD to help you decide which one is right for you!
Full Spectrum CBD - The Whole Plant Powerhouse
Full spectrum CBD products contain all of the naturally occurring compounds found in the hemp plant, including various cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and traces of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol - the stuff in marijuana that causes a high).
The presence of all these hemp compounds is important because of something called the “entourage effect.” This basically means that all the components work synergistically to magnify the overall benefits. It’s kind of like how foods rich in different vitamins and minerals pack more of a nutritional punch than isolated supplements.
So in the full spectrum CBD world, you’re getting the benefits of CBD along with small amounts of THC, CBN, CBG, etc. This creates an amplified therapeutic effect compared to isolated CBD. Research also indicates the terpenes and other hemp compounds boost the effects of CBD through their own unique mechanisms of action in the body.
The only downside of full spectrum CBD is that it can trigger positive results on some drug tests due to the trace THC content (although the amount is very low at 0.3% or less). But if that’s not a concern for you and you want to maximize the entourage effect, full spectrum CBD could be the way to go.
Broad Spectrum CBD
If you like the idea of harnessing as many hemp cannabinoids and terpenes as possible, but want to avoid THC altogether, broad spectrum CBD is your jam.
Broad spectrum CBD starts out as full spectrum extract, but undergoes an additional process to remove the THC while still maintaining the other cannabinoids and compounds like CBD, CBN, CBG, terpenes, flavonoids, etc.
So basically, broad spectrum gives you the entourage effect without any THC in the mix. And no THC means you don’t have to worry about failing drug tests. Win-win!
The potential downside is that broad spectrum CBD may be slightly less potent compared to full spectrum due to that THC being stripped away. But many CBD aficionados claim the difference is negligible. And not having to stress about drug testing outweighs any small loss in potency for them.
Key Differences Between Full and Broad Spectrum CBD
When it comes to choosing between full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD, there are some notable differences to be aware of. Let's take a deeper dive into the key distinctions:
Full spectrum contains all compounds from the hemp plant
The defining feature of full spectrum CBD is that it contains all of the natural compounds found in the hemp plant. This includes over 100 different cannabinoids like CBD, CBG, CBN, and most importantly - THC. Full spectrum CBD oil retains trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the compound responsible for the high associated with marijuana. The THC levels are very low, usually around 0.3% or less, but its presence means full spectrum CBD has an elevated risk of triggering positive drug test results. For some CBD users, having a tiny bit of that THC boost harmonizes perfectly with the CBD and other cannabinoids to create an entourage effect they really enjoy. But for others looking to avoid THC entirely, it makes full spectrum CBD not the ideal choice.
Broad spectrum contains multiple cannabinoids and terpenes
Unlike full spectrum, broad spectrum CBD products go through an extra processing step to remove any traces of THC. So you still get a CBD oil rich in various cannabinoids like CBD, CBN, and CBG along with terpenes and other hemp compounds. But by completely removing the THC, broad spectrum CBD effectively eliminates any chance of it showing up on a drug screening. For CBD users who want to stay clear of THC while still leveraging the benefits of other hemp compounds, broad spectrum strikes that perfect balance.
Full spectrum may provide stronger relief from things like pain, anxiety, and sleep issues
The combination of THC plus CBD and other cannabinoids creates an amplified entourage effect that may deliver more powerful therapeutic relief in some cases. For conditions like chronic pain, anxiety, and sleep disturbances, the research indicates full spectrum CBD can be more effective due to that THC content and heightened overall potency. However, CBD alone has still demonstrated significant positive effects on pain and anxiety reduction in multiple studies. So while full spectrum may have an edge for some users, CBD on its own clearly has profound benefits regardless of the other compounds present or absent. It comes down to finding the right product that works for your particular needs.
Broad spectrum is ideal for people who want the entourage effect but must avoid THC for drug testing
For those who are subject to routine or random drug testing for their job or other obligations, avoiding THC is a necessity. Here, broad spectrum CBD swoops in as the hero. It allows you to experience the benefits of multiple cannabinoids, terpenes, and other hemp actives working together by way of the entourage effect. But with the THC scrubbed out completely, you can take broad spectrum CBD worry-free knowing that THC won’t influence the results of a drug screening. For CBD users who can’t have THC show up in their system, broad spectrum CBD products are typically the safest bet.
Both offer more potent effects than CBD isolate alone
CBD isolate is a single-compound, 99% pure CBD extract. While CBD alone certainly has powerful and wide-ranging effects in the body and mind, both full and broad spectrum CBD leverage something isolate products lack - the entourage effect. Research indicates that full and broad spectrum CBD can be more effective overall thanks to that symphony of cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds working together as nature intended. For this reason, many CBD users opt for a whole plant extract rather than isolates for maximum health benefits.
So in summary, while full spectrum CBD offers the most potent entourage effect, the trace THC may be a deal breaker for some users. Broad spectrum preserves some of that entourage activity but removes the risks associated with THC. And for certain conditions, that little bit of THC may make a big difference in the relief experienced by some CBD users. There’s no universally “better” option – it truly comes down to evaluating your own health goals and CBD preferences.
Introducing Jeng's Broad Spectrum CBD Cocktails
Here at Jeng, we’re excited about the healing potential of hemp. After doing our research, we chose to formulate our products using broad spectrum CBD for a few key reasons:
First, we want our CBD cocktails to be accessible and enjoyable for all of our customers. While some people love the mellow buzz from a tiny dose of THC, others want to keep their drink completely THC-free. Broad spectrum allows us to cater to both preferences.
Second, we’re obsessed with terpenes and how they complement the effects of CBD. Broad spectrum CBD retains all those aromatic, plant-derived terpenes that make our drinks so deliciously complex.
And finally, we formulate our cocktails to promote balance and wellbeing for the mind and body. While THC certainly has therapeutic properties, we feel the clear-headed benefits of broad spectrum CBD better align with our brand’s mission.
Our carefully crafted flavor combinations enhance CBD's calming qualities and support the entourage effect in their own unique way. So if you're looking for a CBD experience that's THC-free but still supports the entourage effect, give our broad spectrum CBD cocktails a try! Sip, savor, and find your perfect blend.
FAQ about Full Spectrum vs. Broad Spectrum CBD:
What’s better for anxiety - full or broad spectrum CBD?
For managing anxiety, full spectrum CBD may be more effective due to the THC and maximum entourage effect. However, broad spectrum CBD with calming terpenes like linalool can also be great for reducing anxiety without the risks of THC exposure. It comes down to personal preference.
Does full spectrum CBD get you high?
No, full spectrum CBD by itself will not get you high since it contains very low levels of THC (0.3% or less). However, full spectrum CBD may produce a very slight euphoric buzz. Broad spectrum CBD contains zero THC, so there is no chance of impairment.
Is full or broad spectrum CBD better for pain?
For chronic pain, full spectrum CBD may provide the most relief due to the THC and entourage effect. But broad spectrum CBD can also be very effective at reducing pain when combined with pain-relieving terpenes like bisabolol.
Will full spectrum CBD cause me to fail a drug test?
It is possible to test positive after taking full spectrum CBD, since THC is present. Opt for broad spectrum CBD if you are subject to routine drug testing for work or other reasons.
Does broad spectrum CBD work as well as full spectrum?
Most users report broad spectrum and full spectrum CBD work equivalently well, although full spectrum’s THC content may make it more potent. The entourage effect of CBD along with other plant compounds still occurs with broad spectrum products.
Is one CBD spectrum better for sleep?
Full spectrum CBD may promote deeper sleep due to the sedative effect of THC. However, broad spectrum CBD with the terpene myrcene can also induce sleepiness. Try each spectrum and see which works best for your sleep issues.
At the end of the day, CBD is about finding the product that meets your personal wellness goals, whether that’s pain relief, better sleep, reduced stress and anxiety, or just an overall sense of calm.
If those goals include avoiding THC entirely, broad spectrum CBD retains the plant’s beneficial compounds without any high-inducing effects. For others, a little THC boost harmonizes with CBD to really help them relax and unwind.
Hopefully this guide gave you some clarity around the pros and cons of full spectrum vs. broad spectrum CBD. Try out different products, listen to your body’s response, and you’ll soon find your ideal CBD match!