When talking about CBD oil in general, people are most likely referring to its complete form - Full-spectrum CBD oil. There are tons of CBD products in the market today but the most popular one is Full-spectrum CBD oil.
Why is it so?
What does Full-spectrum CBD mean?
What are Full-spectrum CBD oil’s benefits?
Those are the questions we will answer in this article. Further than that, we will tell you how does it work, how to use it, where to purchase the best Full-spectrum CBD oil and other relevant questions relating to it.
While the CBD products are not yet regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), and scientific research is still in its early stages, there are more than enough user testimonies and existing data to prove its positive effects on human (and animal) health.
The total hemp industry is on the rise and as Hemp Business Journal estimates, it will reach $1.8 billion in sales this year. CBD products are a sensational novelty that has exploded after the official legalization of industrial hemp in the whole USA in 2018.
However, since Full-spectrum CBD oil includes the psychotropic component THC, it’s not legal nationwide. Some states where marijuana is legal, are perfectly fine with it too. Some have put the restrictions on CBD oil to have no more than 0,3% of THC. There are some, though, that completely ban any cannabis product.
But more on that later. Now, let’s first answer the question “what does Full-spectrum CBD mean”.
Director of Education at Charlotte's Web
What to look for when choosing CBD oil?
Be sure to use a full spectrum hemp extract, know the source of the hemp, and confirm quality assurance. A full-spectrum hemp extract provides all the beneficial compounds that the hemp plant offers, such as phytocannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids and more. These compounds all support the activity of CBD, making full-spectrum superior to CBD isolate. Knowing the source of the hemp plants is essential; you want to be sure that they are grown without toxic pesticides and herbicides, and the only certain way to know that is if the manufacturer oversees hemp agriculture. It’s important to confirm that your CBD does not contain solvents, pesticides, glyphosate and heavy metals, and manufacturers must be able to show a certificate of analysis as proof.
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What Does Full-spectrum CBD Mean?
Full-spectrum CBD means that the product has been extracted from a cannabis plant and contains the full range of cannabis chemical compounds, such as phytocannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, etc.
If you’re new to this cannabis oil industry, let us briefly guide you through it.
Cannabis is a plant family. You probably know something about marijuana, right? It’s the best-known family member of cannabis. Scientists call marijuana “Cannabis Indica”.
Hemp is also a member of the same cannabis family. Though, it’s known in the science world by the name of “Cannabis Sativa”.
People smoke marijuana to get ‘high’, feel relaxed and unburdened. It’s because Cannabis Indica has a high concentration of chemical compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which is psychotropic and brings about those feelings of intoxication.
Cannabis Sativa, on the other hand, does not have a high-concentration of THC and therefore is not psychoactive. It does have high levels of the chemical compound CBD (cannabidiol) which has a huge potential to positively influence our physical and mental health.
Despite these two most well-known cannabis compounds, the plant has over one hundred similar phytocannabinoids and other ingredients, such as flavonoids or terpenes.
So, getting back to what is Full-spectrum CBD - the products labeled as “Full-spectrum” have all the active chemical compounds that the cannabis plant has, including the psychoactive THC.
However, mainly all CBD products are extracted from industrial hemp (Cannabis Sativa) where the concentration of THC is very low and does not make you feel intoxicated.
It does have the potential to show up on a drug test, though. Bear this in mind, should you need to take one.
Can You Overdose on CBD Oil?
Our more in-depth guide on “CBD Overdose” can be found here, but to give you a short version of it - it is practically impossible to overdose on Full-spectrum CBD oil because CBD is not a drug and as World Health Organization (WHO) report on CBD says, it has a “good safety profile”.
Furthermore, in the same report WHO agrees that CBD has proven positive effects on people suffering from epilepsy, may be useful in treating numerous other medical conditions and has no addictive qualities or potential for abuse.
While certainly there can be too much marijuana with various unpleasant side-effects, it is widely accepted that neither THC (the main psychoactive ingredient of marijuana) nor CBD is a lethal substance.
How Does Full-spectrum CBD Oil Work?
Since we’ve already answered what is Full-spectrum CBD, let’s understand how does Full-spectrum CBD oil work.
As all CBD products, Full-spectrum CBD oil interacts with our body’s endocannabinoid system influencing the areas for which it is responsible. Those areas include our mood, memory, immunity, cardiovascular health, appetite to name a few.
It also has an effect on different receptors in our body, like pain or serotonin receptors, for example. In other words, CBD influences our pain perception and happiness level (serotonin is known as a ‘happiness hormone’).
What is special about Full-spectrum CBD oil is that different from CBD Isolate (pure CBD product), Full-spectrum CBD oil has an ‘entourage effect’ on our body - when all the cannabinoids are in the same product, they work more effectively and strongly.
Ethan B. Russo, MD, neurologist, psychopharmacology researcher, and former Senior Medical Advisor to GW Pharmaceuticals uses the term ‘cannabis synergy’ to describe such a phenomenon.
However, this could not be said about pure CBD Isolate which only contains one phytocannabinoid CBD. As this 2015 study, made by Israeli scientists, proves - Full-spectrum CBD oil is superior to pure CBD Isolate in its potency to positively influence our health.
What Are Full-spectrum CBD Oil Benefits?
There are many Full-spectrum CBD oil benefits, both scientifically-proven and user-suggested. Many people turn to Full-spectrum CBD oil for its anti-anxiety features, pain-management or just for its ability to improve our overall well-being.
So far, there are some scientific evidence proving Full-spectrum CBD oil’s abilities to:
- treat epilepsy, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), insomnia
- restrict the growth of certain cancer type cells
- reduce inflammation, anxiety, pain
- improve cardiovascular and digestive functioning
What is exciting is that scientific cannabis research is still in its infancy and other potential uses and abilities of Full-spectrum CBD oil are hopefully yet to be revealed.
Is Full-spectrum CBD Oil Legal in the U.S.?
Actually, quite recently, in 2018, the U.S. Senate passed the Agriculture Improvement Act that legalized the cultivation of industrial hemp throughout the country. Naturally, hemp-derived CBD products became legal too. Since then, the CBD market rocketed and is continuously growing up until now.
However, despite the nationwide legalization, regional state governments still hold authority over cannabis laws in their states. At present, there are 3 states that completely prohibit any cannabis product, be it hemp-derived or marijuana-derived. Those are Nebraska, Idaho and South Dakota.
Since Full-spectrum CBD oil includes the psychotropic element THC, it might not be legal in your state to use it.
Some states have certain restrictions on marijuana use and the amount of THC in the product. We advise double-checking those regulations prior to purchase if you live in one of these states: Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Mississipi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.
It is also necessary to know where your preferred Full-spectrum CBD oil comes from and who are the producers. Therefore we recommend making research before purchasing the product.
In order to help our readers understand the CBD companies, we write in-depth reviews about them. So, do take a look at those, if you wish to know more.
How to Use Full-spectrum CBD Oil?
The most popular way of ingesting Full-spectrum CBD oil is sublingually - holding the dose beneath the tongue for a couple of minutes and then swallowing it. This way the elements from the oil go directly into our bloodstream (because there are thousands of capillaries under the tongue) and gives us its strongest effect.
Moreover, there’s not only Full-spectrum CBD oil but also all kinds of different Full-spectrum CBD products, like edibles, capsules or topicals that are, naturally, used in other ways - either directly swallowing or applying on top of the skin.
However, taking Full-spectrum CBD oil sublingually remains the most popular option for using it. It’s effective, it’s long-lasting and it’s efficient.
Perhaps only one downside to it - Full-spectrum CBD oil has a strong earthy flavor - similar to that of wheatgrass - which is not particularly tasty. For this reason, some companies offer the oil in different flavors.
What Are the Options?
The U.S. CBD market is vast and varied. Especially after the recent legalization of hemp nationwide. Since CBD has become the new hype thing, many producers see the opportunity here to earn more money. As a consequence, there’s a lot of false labeling and misleading marketing in the market that gets you lost and confused.
For this reason, our team is dedicated to bring some clarity for the CBD newcomers and also for those who wish to change their brand. We write thorough reviews about CBD producers and evaluate whether they are trustworthy and user-loved or not.
At the moment, it seems there are a few leading Full-spectrum CBD oil brands to choose from:
- Charlotte’s Web. One of the most popular choices for CBD newcomers and longtime users. Their potent and natural oils are extracted and produced from locally-sourced hemp. Also, they have a choice between various flavors for a more pleasant CBD ingestion.
- NuLeaf Naturals. This company only specializes in Full-spectrum CBD oil and therefore has no other CBD products. They are transparent, organic and professional. So, if you’re not looking for a fancy consumption experience but for an original, strong and solid product, this company might be a choice for you.
- CBDistillery. Another company that offers a wide variety of CBD products (even for pets). Their prices are reasonable, hemp is certified and you can choose from many different Full-spectrum or Broad-spectrum (no THC) CBD oils.
Important note! You might notice a huge difference in prices and other numbers for each Full-spectrum CBD oil. We would like to explain how does it work.
Each Full-spectrum CBD oil has its quantity in ‘mL’ (milliliters), potency in mg (milligrams) and from the latter prices change dramatically. ‘Mg’ decides the strength of the oil and therefore its price. It means - with each 1 milliliter, you will receive ‘x’ milligrams of cannabinoids (the good stuff you bought the oil for).
For example, if a 30 mL Full-spectrum CBD oil has 500 mg of cannabinoids, then with each 1mL serving you’ll get approximately 17 mg of cannabinoids (500/30 = ~17). If the same oil has 2500 mg in it, with each serving you’ll get a dose of 83 mg of cannabinoids. That’s a strong dose and naturally - way more expensive.
We recommend starting with low doses and slowly build up each week until you feel it’s enough.
In this article we’ve looked at what is Full-spectrum CBD oil, what does Full-spectrum CBD mean, we’ve discussed Full-spectrum CBD oil benefits and its usage, and finally, we’ve skimmed over through some of the leading producers in the U.S. market today.
Cannabis has more than a hundred different chemical components that are beneficial to our physical and mental health. The two most commonly known are CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
Full-spectrum CBD oil is typically extracted from the hemp plant (Cannabis Sativa) which has high levels of CBD and low levels of THC. Along with these two, Full-spectrum CBD oil includes all the other cannabis components.
For this reason, when consumed, it creates an ‘entourage effect’ in our body, where all the cannabis components work in synergy and bring about all the Full-spectrum CBD oil benefits.
However, since the CBD market is gaining popularity, it is important to make some research before purchasing the product. Also, since CBD products are not regarded as medicine yet, it is recommendable to consult with a physician before taking up this supplement in order to improve one’s health condition.
Director of Education at Charlotte's Web
Contributed By Jen Palmer, Director of Education at Charlotte's Web
Jen Palmer, ND is the Director of Education for Charlotte’s Web, CBD industry pioneers. Dr. Jen is...Read Full Bio...
Contributed by Jen Palmer, Director of Education at Charlotte's Web
1. Orrin Devinsky, Maria Roberta Cilio, Daniel Friedman et al.: 'Cannabidiol: Pharmacology and potential therapeutic role in epilepsy and other neuropsychiatric disorders'
2. Ethan B. Russo: 'The Case for the Entourage Effect and Conventional Breeding of Clinical Cannabis: No “Strain,” No Gain'
3. Ruth Gallily, Zhannah Yekhtin, Lumír Ondřej Hanuš: 'Overcoming the Bell‐Shaped Dose‐Response of Cannabidiol by Using Cannabis Extract Enriched in Cannabidiol'
4. Marcel O. Bonn-Miller, PhD; Mallory J. E. Loflin, PhD; Brian F. Thomas, PhD; et al.: 'Labeling Accuracy of Cannabidiol Extracts Sold Online'
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