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  • by Nicola Boulton January 20, 2023 6 min read

    What Makes Full Spectrum CBD Different from Broad Spectrum CBD Oil?

    Full-spectrum CBD contains all cannabis derivatives like the broad spectrum, although the latter lacks the psychoactive THC. This blog discusses the similarities, differences, and health benefits of the two cannabis spectrums.

    Cannabidiol is an active component of hemp, a strain of the cannabis plant. The cannabis derivative contains more than 100 cannabinoids, although CBD and THC are its most active ingredients. THC, abbreviated from tetrahydrocannabinol, is responsible for the euphoric effects associated with marijuana. THC is maintained in trace amounts to avoid its psychoactive effects from cannabis-infused products. CBD is non-psychoactive; instead, it contains properties that allow it to treat different health conditions without causing euphoria. Cannabidiol is processed into three spectrums with varying potencies; isolates, broad, and full spectra. The spectra vary in the number of cannabis derivatives, making each a unique additive to everyday products.

    What Makes Full Spectrum CBD Different from Broad Spectrum


    What Is CBD?

    CBD is among the more than 100 cannabis derivative domiciled in the hemp plant. Cannabidiol is also found in marijuana, a common cannabis strain known for its psychoactive-rich components like THC. Although in trace amounts, Cannabidiol contains THC, predisposing it to psychoactive characteristics and making its components more beneficial to its users. Cannabidiol is linked to many health benefits ranging from alleviating pain and inflammation to suppressing intrusive thoughts, addressing topical-related disorders, and calming the body after sustained periods of physical and mental insertions.

    CBD Spectrums

    Cannabidiol is obtained from the hemp plant using different extraction methods. The extraction techniques result in the three spectrums of CBD oil with varying levels of purity, potency, and effects on different conditions.

    CBD Isolate

    The isolate is a subset of Cannabidiol subjected to the most processed Cannabidiol. Manufacturers subject the cannabis derivative to supercritical carbon dioxide or alcohol-based solvents to extract the select organic compound. In the case of the isolated spectrum, hemp compounds like terpenes, CBG, CBN, THC, and flavonoids are isolated, leaving an almost pure Cannabidiol (Marinotti& Serial, 2020). The resultant distillate is up to 99% pure Cannabidiol.

    Broad Spectrum

    The broad spectrum CBD removes diverges from the isolate in many ways. The elimination of cannabis compounds is limited to a few components like fatty acids and THC. Special techniques isolate the psychoactive THC to obtain a product with multiple health and therapeutic benefits, albeit without THC.

    Full-Spectrum CBD

    The full-spectrum Cannabidiol is subjected to the least amount of processing. Most of its compounds remain in the final product, including the psychoactive THC; the spectrum provides a wider range of health and therapeutic benefits, is considered the strongest, and offers an effectiveness to profound cases of pain, inflammation, and sleeplessness. While the spectrum harbors the psychoactive THC, it remains at safe levels, which may not give mind-altering effects. Instead, the numerous cannabis compounds work synergistically to provide a wider range of effects than other cannabis derivatives.

    Broad-Spectrum Vs. Full-Spectrum

    The broad and full-spectrum converge and diverge in equal measures. The two spectrums contain different cannabis derivatives like terpenes, flavonoids, and other cannabis derivatives obtained from the same serving; these compounds provide an entourage effect to their users. The entourage effect is a theory; it posits that cannabis derivatives amplify the effects of each other when used together (Mahler et al. 2019). When used simultaneously, there is an inherent benefit from the nexus among CBD, CBN, terpenes, and other compounds. Therefore, users of the broad and full spectrum get a more effective treatment outcome than isolated users.

    The extraction o broad-spectrum Cannabidiol oil leaves out THC; products from broad-spectrum oil do not have a wider range of effects like the full-spectrum infused products. The broad spectrum products benefit users unable to develop a tolerance for THC. Full-spectrum users benefit from a fully-fledged entourage effect.

    The full-spectrum CBD oil predisposes its users to a positive drug test. Cannabidiol may accumulate in the body over time for regular users. The THC in the full spectrum may surpass the undetectable threshold and give a positive test result. However, detectable levels of THC in a drug test are not always correlated with psychoactive effects.

    Benefits OfCannabidiol; Full Spectrum Vs. Broad Spectrum

    Cannabidiol oil is infused in different health and wellness products to dispense the cannabis derivatives for the following benefits;

    Treats Nausea

    According to Aderson et al. (2021), full-spectrum CBD oil contains anti-emetic properties, which can suppress toxic responses among animals that can vomit. While the anti-emetic properties have been documented in animal studies, anecdotal results show that such effects are replicable in human medicine. Cannabis derivatives like CBG have potent anti-emetic properties, making the full-spectrum an ideal anti-nausea; similar properties may be found in broad-spectrum oil.

    Suppress Pain and Inflammation

    Pains come in varying levels; mild, severe, chronic, or acute. Cannabidiol has anti-inflammatory properties, which can suppress pain related to inflammation (Evans, 2020). However, full-spectrum Cannabidiol oil is a more potent pain medication due to the presence of THC. The nexus between CBD and THC provide a better treatment outcome for inflammation-related problems like arthritis pain.

    Side Effects Of Cannabidiol Oil

    Many users tolerate CBD products. However, an overdose of Full-spectrum products may result in side effects like dry mouth. Boggs et al. (2018) suggested that new users may suffer from drowsiness, nausea, diarrhea, and drowsiness. Low-quality full-spectrum products may intoxicate unsuspecting users, leading to psychoactive behaviors.

    Cannabidiol oil intake may compete with other medications if taken simultaneously; users under medication should avoid CBD products without proper medical advice.


    Broad and full-spectrum Cannabidiol offers its users a wider range of health and therapeutic benefits. However, the latter gives stronger entourage advantages and treats more severe conditions. The broad-spectrum oil offers limited health and therapeutic benefits, although it is ideal for users who dislike THC. The cannabis derivatives are well-tolerated in the body. However, users may suffer from drowsiness and diarrhea if they take excess cannabis derivatives. Poor quality products may also have negative effects, including, but not limited to, psychoactive effects. Consumers under medication should take cannabis-derived products with a piece of proper medical advice; Cannabidiol may undermine the uptake of other drugs.


    Anderson, L. L., Etchart, M. G., Bahceci, D., Golembiewski, T. A., & Arnold, J. C. (2021). Cannabis constituents interact at the drug efflux pump BCRP to increase plasma cannabidiolic acid concentrations markedly. Scientific Reports, 11(1), 1-14.

    Boggs, D. L., Surti, T., Gupta, A., Gupta, S., Niciu, M., Pittman, B., ...&Ranganathan, M.   (2018). The effects of Cannabidiol (CBD) on cognition and symptoms in outpatients with chronic schizophrenia a randomized placebo-controlled trial. Psychopharmacology, 235(7), 1923-1932.

    Marinotti, O., &Sarill, M. (2020). Differentiating full-spectrum hemp extracts from CBD   isolates Implications for policy, safety, and science. Journal of Dietary    Supplements, 17(5), 517-526.

    Nahler, G., Jones, T. M., & Russo, E. B. (2019). Cannabidiol and contributions of major hemp phytocompounds to the “entourage effect”; possible mechanisms. J. Altern.       Complementary Integr. Med, 5.

    What is Full Spectrum CBD?

    Full Spectrum CBD contains all the naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis plant, including cannabinoids (like CBD and THC), terpenes, and flavonoids. It may contain trace amounts of THC (less than 0.2% in the UK).

    What is Broad Spectrum CBD Oil?

    Broad Spectrum CBD Oil also contains multiple cannabinoids and other beneficial compounds found in the cannabis plant, but THC has been removed or is present in negligible amounts (less than 0.2% in the UK).

    What are cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids in CBD?

    Cannabinoids are chemical compounds found in cannabis, such as CBD and THC. Terpenes are aromatic compounds that contribute to the plant's scent and may have therapeutic effects. Flavonoids are phytonutrients with antioxidant properties.

    What is the difference between Full Spectrum and Broad Spectrum CBD?

    The main difference is THC content. Full Spectrum CBD may contain trace amounts of THC (below the legal limit), while Broad Spectrum CBD has no detectable THC. Both contain multiple cannabinoids and other beneficial plant compounds.

    Why choose Full Spectrum CBD over Broad Spectrum CBD?

    Full Spectrum CBD proponents believe in the "entourage effect," where cannabinoids and other compounds work synergistically to enhance therapeutic benefits. It's preferred by those who can tolerate trace amounts of THC or seek maximum therapeutic potential.

    Why choose Broad Spectrum CBD over Full Spectrum CBD?

    Broad Spectrum CBD offers benefits of multiple cannabinoids and compounds without THC, making it suitable for individuals who want to avoid THC entirely due to personal preference, drug testing concerns, or sensitivity to THC.

    Is Full Spectrum CBD legal?

    Full Spectrum CBD derived from hemp containing less than 0.2% THC is legal in the UK. It's crucial to ensure products comply with legal THC limits and purchase from reputable sources.

    Is Broad Spectrum CBD legal?

    Broad Spectrum CBD with THC removed or present in negligible amounts (less than 0.2% in the UK) is legal in the UK. Verify THC content through lab reports from trusted suppliers to ensure legality.

    Can Full Spectrum CBD make me high?

    Full Spectrum CBD may contain trace amounts of THC (less than 0.2%), but it's not enough to cause psychoactive effects associated with THC. It shouldn't make you feel high, but individual responses may vary.

    Can Broad Spectrum CBD make me fail a drug test?

    Broad Spectrum CBD with THC removed or in trace amounts (less than 0.2% in the UK) is unlikely to cause a positive drug test. However, some sensitive tests may detect even trace amounts of THC, so exercise caution if drug testing is a concern.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton

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