As a wave of cannabidiol (CBD) products hit the market in light of the newfound public acceptance, it can be hard to weed out the best from the less beneficial.
One thing we know for sure is that a full spectrum hemp extract is superior to CBD isolates.
In this article, you’ll learn:
what a full spectrum hemp extract is;
the benefits of other constituents of the hemp plant;
why a full spectrum hemp extract is superior to CBD isolates;
why you don’t need THC for the full entourage effect;
and the markers of a high-quality full spectrum hemp oil.
Just keep reading!
What is a Full Spectrum Hemp Extract?
Full spectrum hemp extracts are different from CBD oil that simply isolates CBD in that they contain all the beneficial compounds of the industrial hemp plant.
Researchers have used the term “The Plant of One-Thousand-And-One Molecules” to describe hemp, which speaks to its amazing biochemical profile (1).
When CBD is isolated from all the other constituents of the plant, you isolate it from the environment where CBD was naturally designed to be administered: in the presence of all the other compounds.
Terpenes, Flavonoids, and Other Cannabinoids
So, what exactly are these other compounds?
To start, cannabidiol isn’t the only cannabinoid present in industrial hemp. In fact, cannabigerol (CBG), cannabidivarin (CBDV), cannabichromene (CBC), and cannabinol (CBN), four other cannabinoids present in industrial hemp, also have potent health benefits (2). These are mainly associated with their anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and pain relieving properties (1).
Another notable compound is hemp’s terpenes, which give the plant its flavor and smell. They exhibit anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving, and anti-bacterial action, enhancing the beneficial effects of cannabinoids.
Hemp also has antioxidant capacity with over twenty classes of flavonoids present in the plant. These antioxidant compounds neutralize damaging free radicals and upregulate our body’s natural antioxidant systems to promote longevity and protect cell function (3).
Why Full Spectrum Hemp Extracts Beat CBD Isolates: The Entourage Effect
The Entourage Effect is a phenomenon seen in plant medicines where other compounds present in plants boost the activity of their active constituents.
This has been observed in research many times, with full spectrum extracts proving to be more therapeutic than CBD isolate counterparts (4).
One meta-analysis showed a significant difference in improvement of epileptic seizures in patients who took a CBD-rich full spectrum hemp extract versus a CBD isolate (5). Although, there was not a significant difference when the results were standardized to a 50% improvement. However, researchers attribute this to a lower concentration of CBD in the full spectrum hemp oil used.
If researchers in the study would have controlled for the amount of CBD present in the extracts, there’s no doubt that the full spectrum extract would have been more effective.
But, What About THC?
THC is the psychoactive cannabinoid found in high amounts in the marijuana plant. Conversely, the industrial hemp plant which is used for full spectrum hemp extracts is required to contain 0.3% THC according to legal regulations.
But, don’t all the cannabinoids, including THC, need to be present for the full entourage effect? Wouldn’t this render industrial hemp extracts less effective than extracts that also contain THC?
Science simply doesn’t back this statement up. Most of the beneficial effects of hemp and marijuana extracts are attributed to CBD and other non-psychoactive cannabinoids. Although THC has some therapeutic properties, the majority of research shows hemp extracts are beneficial even without the presence of THC.
In fact, patients that utilize hemp extracts for anxiety may find that THC products exacerbate their anxiety (6).
How to Find the Best Full Spectrum Hemp Extract: Purity & Potency
As always, when purchasing a full spectrum hemp extract, you want the best of the best! This means investing your money in purity and potency.
Considering CBD is one of the most powerful cannabinoids in hemp, a high concentration of CBD in a full spectrum extract is going to confer the most therapeutic effect. At Phytologica, we offer extracts up to an ultra-potent 3000mg concentration.
Most of all, you don’t want the benefits to be overshadowed by toxic contaminants like solvents, pesticides, and heavy metals. As seen in our Certificates of Analysis available for all products, our full spectrum hemp products made from organically-grown hemp do not contain pesticides, solvents, and heavy metals. You can rest assured you’re getting a pure product that will benefit your body without harmful contaminants.
Interested in learning more about hemp and the miracle properties of this plant? Check out our blog for more informational articles.