CBD – Full Spectrum Vs Isolate
As the awareness of CBD as a recovery product grows, two very common questions we get asked are; “What is the difference between a full spectrum and an isolate?” and “Which one should I be using?”
So, let’s have a look at both……
Full-spectrum CBD oils are made using an extract that maintains the naturally occurring cannabinoid profile of the cannabis plant. This includes other types of cannabinoids such as; CBG, CBC, CBN, as well as terpenes like pinene, linalool, and limonene.
There are in fact hundreds of compounds other than CBD or THC found in the plant, each having different effects on the human body.
Full-spectrum extracts are often regarded as having a greater level of therapeutic benefit than isolates. This is due to something called the entourage effect, a process where various compounds in the plant work together to produce greater benefits.
CBD isolates will often start out as full spectrum however will undergo further processing to remove everything except CBD from the extract. These extracts allow for greater standardization of CBD products by manufacturers and guarantee zero THC and other cannabinoids.
CBD products made from isolates can be cheaper however they can have less broad acting effects on the human body than full spectrum.
Now that I know the difference which one should I be using?
Well this comes down to personal choice or preference, a number of elite athletes (depending on their level of competition and their chosen sports policies of course), tend to lean towards the CBD isolate as they tend to have 0% THC. WADA has removed CBD from the prohibited list however THC remains prohibited above a reporting threshold of 150ng/mL. (although interestingly the UFC has recently amended its policy with positive tests over the THC threshold no longer being considered a violation of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, unless additional evidence exists that an athlete used it intentionally for performance-enhancing purposes.)
Whichever way you go, the general advice is “low and slow”, start out small and build up to where you feel you are getting the desired results.
One of the best things about CBD is, over time as you continue to use it, rather than build up a tolerance and needing more it actually works better. With a long half-life from CBD, the concentration of the CBD will gradually build up in the body over time, giving the CBD longer-lasting effects the longer you take it.