Cannabidiol (CBD) is a popular natural compound found in hemp and cannabis plants. CBD is available in three main types – broad spectrum, full spectrum and isolates. But when it comes to broad spectrum vs full spectrum CBD, which one is better?
Key Differences Between Broad Spectrum and Full Spectrum CBD
The main difference lies in the additional compounds found in each of the spectrums. A broad spectrum CBD extract will contain all of the plant chemicals within cannabis, but the THC content will be near 0.0% THC.
A full spectrum CBD extract will contain the same plant chemicals, but the THC content can near 0.3% THC. Regardless of which you choose, neither will get you high.
What is Broad Spectrum CBD?
Broad spectrum CBD contains a wide array of beneficial cannabinoids, terpenes and other hemp compounds – minus any THC. During processing, the THC is removed entirely, resulting in a THC-free extract.
Without THC, broad spectrum CBD products have no chance of causing a high. This makes broad spectrum a good option for those who want to avoid THC due to drug testing concerns or personal preference.
What is Full Spectrum CBD?
Full spectrum extracts contain the entire naturally occurring array of cannabinoids, terpenes and other beneficial hemp compounds. This includes a legal, trace amount of THC (less than 0.3%).
While not enough to cause impairment, some users report that the tiny amount of THC in a full spectrum CBD oil provides an “entourage effect” which enhances the overall effects of the product.
Is One Better Than the Other? Comparing Effectiveness
When it comes to effectiveness, studies show mixed results as to whether full spectrum or broad spectrum CBD is better.
Some studies found that the trace amounts of THC in full spectrum formulas lead to a more potent effect, thanks to the entourage effect.
However other studies found the difference between full and broad spectrum CBD to be negligible. Both provide powerful relief with minimal side effects.
For most users, broad spectrum and full spectrum are likely to be equally effective. The choice comes down to individual factors like desired effect, personal tolerance to THC and drug testing concerns.
Is One Safer Than the Other? Examining Potential Risks
Both full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD are considered safe and well-tolerated by most users.
However, full spectrum CBD may potentially show up on a drug test, as it contains trace amounts of THC. While rare, it is possible for a very sensitive test to detect these small THC concentrations.
Those who undergo frequent drug testing for work, legal or medical reasons may wish to avoid any risk by using broad spectrum CBD instead.
Additionally, there is some concern about THC consumption in recovering addicts and those prone to psychotic disorders. These individuals are advised to use CBD isolates or broad spectrum to avoid THC exposure.
Is One More Legal Than the Other? Checking State Laws
In most cases, broad spectrum and full spectrum hemp CBD extracts are equally legal. They both must originate from licensed hemp farms and contain 0.3% or less THC.
However, a handful of states have additional restrictions on full spectrum CBD products because they contain detectable THC. For example, Idaho, Nebraska and South Dakota ban all CBD products with any trace THC content.
To ensure compliance with local laws, check your state’s CBD and hemp regulations before purchasing full spectrum formulas. Broad spectrum provides the safest bet in restrictive states.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is broad spectrum CBD?
Broad spectrum CBD contains a wide array of active compounds from the hemp plant, including cannabinoids, terpenes and essential oils, but with undetectable levels of THC. It offers many benefits without the risk of intoxication.
What is full spectrum CBD?
Full spectrum CBD contains all the naturally occurring compounds found in hemp, including a legal, trace amount of THC less than 0.3%. The THC may help create an “entourage effect” that enhances the overall effects.
Is broad spectrum or full spectrum CBD more effective?
Studies show mixed results as to whether the trace THC in full spectrum formulas makes them more effective. In most cases, the two are likely to be equally beneficial for the average user.
Is one type of CBD safer than the other?
Both full and broad spectrum CBD are considered generally safe. But full spectrum may risk a positive drug test due to trace THC, so broad spectrum is safer for those concerned about THC exposure.
Summary – Which Spectrum of CBD is Right for You?
When weighing broad spectrum against full spectrum CBD, there is no universally “better” option. The key is finding the right product to suit your individual needs and preferences.
For most users, broad spectrum and full spectrum CBD can be used interchangeably without noticing much difference. Consider your risk tolerance to THC exposure, compliance with local laws and any drug testing concerns.
Speak to a knowledgeable CBD retailer if you need help deciding between broad or full spectrum for your needs. With high quality formulas from reputable brands, both types can provide an enjoyable experience and powerful relief.