There seems to be quite a bit of confusion when it comes to the meaning of full-spectrum CBD products. For many CBD enthusiasts having a full-spectrum product is a necessity, yet for others, it is highly avoided at all costs. Some people want everything that there is available to be in their products, and others only want a few things. Either way, the good news is that we do have a choice in what we want – or don’t want to be in our hemp products. What is full spectrum? Let us explain.
CBD THC CBG CBN and Other Cannabinoids
So, when we talk about a CBD product being full-spectrum CBD there is a little bit more to the meaning than it seems. See, CBD is just one of over a hundred different cannabinoids that are present in the hemp plant. When they pull the essence from the hemp plant in order to create a CBD product, they are actually pulling out what is known as the hemp extract. CBD itself is not any sort of spectrum, it is just one part of a whole. The extract itself can have the full spectrum of the hemp plant within it. This is where we get the term “full-spectrum CBD.”
Confusing? Not if you understand the science. When you extract the very essence of the hemp plant from the hemp solids you can regulate what parts of the compounds within the plant can be within the final extract. A full-spectrum extract will have all of the cannabinoids, including THC, all of the flavonoids, all of the terpenes, and everything else that can possibly be extracted from the hemp plant included in the extract. This is how you get a full-spectrum CBD product.
What some people don’t like about full-spectrum hemp products is that there is a tiny amount of THC within the extract. Some folks are extremely sensitive to THC…or they have a healthy fear that if they have even a minuscule amount of THC in their system that they could get a positive drug test for THC and get into trouble.
Broad-Spectrum Hemp Extracts
Another popular hemp product is a broad-spectrum hemp product, or as some people refer to it, broad-spectrum CBD. When hemp goes through the extraction process there are a number of ways to remove the hemp oil from the plant and isolate it into some type of substance.
One of the most popular methods of extraction today is to separate the hemp oil from the solids by way of supercritical CO2 extraction. This is where machinery is used in order to pull the hemp solids into a chamber where it is exposed to supercritical CO2 for a long enough time to extract all of the oils from the hemp solids and trap them into the supercritical substance.
When the extraction process is over, the supercritical fluid can be pulled into another chamber where the carbon dioxide is forced to turn back into its natural form of gas. This way a clean, non-toxic substance is used in order to pull the extract from the plant, then the substance is safely evaporated into their without a trace left to taint the extracted hemp oil.
Once the extract is pulled away, the next step in the broad-spectrum process is to remove any and all traces of THC from the extract so that in the final product there is absolutely no THC. The rest of the cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes are still present in the extract so that there is a faint chance of triggering the entourage effect. However, there is no THC, so the solution left is entirely THC-free, but still has the CBD and all of the other goods that people love.
Whenever you see a CBD product that states that it is full-spectrum it means that there is at most 3% THC content present in the product. The full spectrum of the hemp plant is contained in the product. That’s what that means. Full-spectrum has THC, broad-spectrum is THC free. Now go out and enjoy yourself with this newfound knowledge.