The CBD industry is rapidly changing due to an endless flow of studies, technological innovations, and consumer trends. This means that hemp enthusiasts have a wider selection of products to choose from than ever before. Thus, allowing users to better finetune their experience to suit their very unique needs and preferences. This also means that first-timers can feel very intimidated as there are now so many different types of products to choose from.
There are three types of hemp cannabinoid products: full spectrum, broad spectrum, and isolate. There seems to be a lot of misinformation regarding the difference between Full Spectrum and Broad Spectrum products, which is why we will be discussing them in full detail here. And, as you’ll see, both of these products are more than capable of supplying your body with a stellar dose of cannabidiol (CBD), but they are different enough to require that you consider your options.
What is Full Spectrum?
This is a product containing the full spectrum of compounds found in hemp. Essentially, the hemp plant is run through an extraction process, and the resulting concentrate contains every compound that existed in that plant.
As you may know, cannabidiol is only one of hundreds of compounds found in the hemp plant. CBD is a cannabinoid, which is a class of compounds that work with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). There are plenty of other hemp-based cannabinoids such as CBN, CBG, CBC, and even THC. There are also terpenes and flavonoids. Terpenes are compounds found in all plant’s essential oils that have their own unique therapeutic and medicinal properties. Flavonoids are phytonutrients found in all plants that can also produce an array of medicinal benefits.
Full spectrum hemp extract, therefore, provides you with all of these compounds. While it contains tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it’s only in a trace amount. Meaning, you won’t get high. The THC found in Full Spectrum products is simply there to enhance the “Entourage Effect.” Also, because of this low THC concentration, full spectrum hemp extract is legal thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill.
Full and Broad spectrum hemp products are associated with the “entourage effect” which refers to the synergistic effects of consuming every compound together, as nature intended. It seems that this allows the compounds to boost each other’s properties.
What is Broad Spectrum?
This is a hemp product containing every compound from the hemp plant EXCEPT for THC. When making broad spectrum hemp extract, the THC compound is isolated and removed from the remaining concentrate. Broad spectrum hemp products will produce the Entourage Effect like mentioned above; however, it will not be a fully synergistic experience due to missing the THC.
Comparing Types of Products by Administration Method
Now, let’s talk about how each type of product can affect you based on the administration method that you choose.
#1: Vape Cartridges
As you would imagine, these products are intended to be used with a vaporizer device. They are turned from a hemp concentrate into vapor when being inhaled into the lungs. Vape cartridges are known to take effect in the body very quickly due to the quick absorption rate of the compounds through the mucous membranes in our mouths when inhaled. It is important to note that inhaling hemp cannabinoids seems to provide a more intense experience, although it is more short-lived. You can expect the onset of effects to occur within 1-5 minutes with a duration of effects to be 1 to 3 hours.
Broad Spectrum: Broad-spectrum CBD vape cartridges contain every hemp compound except THC. This formulation of cannabinoids can be very beneficial to those looking to deal with the symptoms of daily anxiety, stress, depression, and acute minor pains (among many other symptoms) without any exposure to THC.
Full Spectrum: Full spectrum CBD vape cartridges allow you to experience the Entourage Effect in a way that’s uniquely therapeutic due to the trace amounts of THC.
#2: Hemp Flower
Hemp flower is very versatile. Being the raw product of the hemp plant it contains all naturally produced compounds (cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.) It can be smoked, vaped, or used to create your own edibles/topicals at home. All hemp flowers at Sativa Remedy are pre-packaged in a smell-proof, sealed, mylar bag with a Certificate of Analysis. Each high-CBD cultivar sold here is hand-selected and vetted for quality before offering it to our customers. We search the nation for small hemp cultivators who have perfected their craft of growing high-quality plant medicine.
Broad Spectrum: Broad spectrum hemp flower simply does not exist. All hemp plants will contain at least trace amounts of THC.
Full Spectrum: By using raw hemp flowers you are consuming all of the naturally occurring compounds straight from the source. The Entourage Effect can be felt more intense via hemp flower than any other method of consumption.
These are oil-based CBD products that come in dropper bottles. You fill the dropper with the product to your desired dose and drop it beneath your tongue holding it there for about one to two minutes. This allows the majority of the compounds to get absorbed through the sublingual tissue. Then, the remaining tincture is swallowed. You can expect an onset of effects to take place anywhere from 15 minutes to 30 minutes with a duration of effects lasting 2-4 hours.
Broad Spectrum: Broad-spectrum tinctures give you every compound from the hemp flower the product was extracted from except THC. This means that you won’t get an intense entourage effect but can still enjoy the effects from the wide variety of hemp compounds.
Full Spectrum: Many experts recommend full spectrum tinctures for first-time users because of the way in which the entourage effect is uniquely potent.
Topicals are absorbed into the skin rather than taken internally. They can come in the form of creams, lotions, gels, sprays, transdermal patches, and more. Something to note about topicals is that cannabinoids like THC do not easily absorb deep enough to get into the bloodstream. Cannabinoids found in topicals usually only penetrate the upper most layers of our muscle and epidermis making them a great option for temporary localized pain relief and inflammation. You can safely use full-spectrum topicals without the worry of THC altering your state of being! You should expect to feel localize relief from the topical in 10-15 minutes and the effects should last 2-3 hours.
Broad Spectrum: Broad-spectrum topicals can be of beneficial use for certain skin conditions caused by inflammation. For the most part, we recommend sticking with the full spectrum topical for the best overall results.
Full Spectrum: Here at Sativa Remedy we typically recommend a Full Spectrum topical for most commonly dealt with issues regarding the skin and muscles. The reason behind this being the trace amounts of THC found in these products really allow for a full Entourage Effect to occur in a localized section of our body.
Edibles are cannabinoid-infused food goods – think gummies or capsules – that are ingested via the stomach. This method of consumption can be tricky in finding your optimal therapeutic dose due to everyone having different digestive systems and metabolisms.
Following the method of titration will allow you to find your unique dose the easiest. We recommend with edibles – start low and go slow. This is when you eat only a small portion of an edible, wait 1.5-2 hours to then re-evaluate how you feel, and then determine if you need an additional dosage to get to your desired effects. Typically with edibles, the onset of effects can range anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours with the duration of these effects lasting anywhere from 6-8 hours.
Broad Spectrum: Hemp edibles that do not contain THC (broad-spectrum) can still be therapeutic to aid with a myriad of symptoms.
Full Spectrum: Full-spectrum hemp edibles are the most therapeutic edible since they contain trace amounts of THC allowing for a full Entourage Effect.
Making a CBD Product Decision is Hopefully Easier Now
Both full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD products are fully capable of giving you the hemp experience that you desire. However, these two types of products are unique enough that it’s a wise idea to thoroughly consider which one you’d like to try when choosing your preferred CBD administration method. We hope this short guide can help you better understand the varieties of hemp products on the market.