What Are the Different Varieties of THC-free CBD? - Glow Bar London

September 27, 2022 5 min read

What Are the Different Varieties of THC-free CBD?

CBD and THC are both cannabis compounds. CBD has no psychoactive effect, unlike THC. There are three types of CBD: isolate, full-spectrum CBD, and broad-spectrum CBD. THC-free CBD includes CBD isolate and broad-spectrum CBD. THC-free CBD is the perfect choice for those who need to use CBD without ingesting THC. It is a perfect choice for those who intend to undergo a drug test.

You must have heard a lot regarding cannabis and marijuana derivatives. However, you can easily confuse several terms surrounding the cannabis plant. The cannabis plant itself is gaining popularity. The name "cannabis" has become relevant in medical, edibles, and beauty products. That's due to the benefit of the two natural compounds (THC and CBD) found in the entire plant. CBD and THC are both cannabinoids and popular compounds receiving the most attention. To know the different varieties of THC-free CBD, it's important to learn the basics regarding the cannabinoids THC and CBD.

What is CBD?

According to Mead (2017), CBD is an active compound found in the cannabis plant. There are hundreds of such compounds; all referred to as cannabinoids. However, common cannabinoids include THC, CBD, and CBG. While all these cannabinoids are extracted from a cannabis plant, they serve different purposes.

Unlike THC, CBD is a non-psychoactive compound – one of the reasons why it's a common ingredient in many products. Being non-psychoactive is because it's extracted from the hemp plant. Hemp is a cannabis plant with little to no THC.   Often, THC is what gives marijuana its psychoactive effects.

Types of CBD

With several terms surrounding CBD, it can easily get confused. Thankfully there are three major types of CBD:

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is pure CBD containing no other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. It is in the form of a crystalline powder. Since it's a hemp extract, CBD isolate has no THC. All other hemp compounds are stripped away during extraction to obtain this pure CBD form. Based on the extraction, CBD isolate is often 99% pure. This purity level is the essential benefit of this cannabidiol form since it maintains its potency when incorporated into other products.

Full-spectrum CBD

Unlike CBD isolate, full-spectrum CBD contains terpenes, flavonoids, and other cannabis compounds. Many folks prefer full-spectrum over CBD isolate because of the entourage effect. The theory defends the effectiveness of ingesting CBD and THC together. According to the theory, taking these cannabinoids together with other compounds delivers great benefits than taking CBD alone. CBD oil is the perfect solution for anxiety and depression. 

Terpenes and flavonoids have positive effects. Therefore, the oil derived from full-spectrum CBD is a perfect choice for those preferring less refined products.  

Broad-spectrum CBD

Broad spectrum CBD has features of both CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD. It contains CBD and other cannabis compounds but has no THC. However, some derivatives may contain THC traces. Due to its additional compounds, broad-spectrum CBD may have heightened effects.

What is THC?

Like CBD, THC is one of the popular cannabinoids extracted from the cannabis plant, marijuana. According to Fattore et al. (2011), THC is a psychoactive cannabinoid, and it's what gives marijuana its psychoactive properties.

The different Varieties of THC-free CBD

The cannabinoid CBD is extracted from the hemp plant. According to Sawler et al. (2015), hemp is a cannabis plant with not more than 0.3% THC. The extracted compound (CBD) has a lower THC level. However, CBD may contain some THC traces depending on the extraction method. The different varieties include:

CBD Isolate

According to MacCallum & Russo (2018), CBD isolate is 99% pure CBD with no other cannabis compounds. Unlike full-spectrum, CBD isolate contains no THC, making its derivatives safer.

How Is It Made?

All CBD types are made by separating CBD from the hemp plant. While the process may seem basic, extracting CBD from hemp is quite harder. Other undesired substances, such as terpenes and waxes, are also obtained during extraction. There must be an additional step to separate from other compounds. This makes it quite difficult to isolate CBD.

After the extraction process, the end product is often crude oil. Therefore the substance must be exposed to decarboxylation and winterization. Through winterization, lipids and waxes are stripped away. Through decarboxylation, CBDA is converted to CBD. A solvent is added to the end product (fractional distillation) to draw out chlorophyll, terpenes, and other unwanted compounds. CBD is later separated from minor cannabinoids and THC traces.

A non-polar solvent is added to the resulting product (conc CBD). The mixture is heated and cooled, leading to cannabinoid crystals. The crystals are then collected and passed through a non-polar solvent to remove other impurities. A fine white powder remains with a high CBD concentration (CBD isolate). The process results in 99% pure CBD powder.   

Broad-spectrum CBD

Broad-spectrum is a CBD variety containing all cannabis plant compounds. However, it has no THC. Broad-spectrum CBD can often contain terpenes, wax, and various cannabinoids, such as cannabigerol and cannabinol.          

How Is It Made?

Broad spectrum CBD is extracted similarly to the full spectrum. However, there is an extra step involved in preparing broad-spectrum CBD.

The first stage involves adding solvent to the plant material (hemp). And the solvent used is supercritical CO2 – liquefied carbon dioxide.

The next stage involves chromatography, a basic chemistry technique. The process separates THC from the rest of the compound. This retains all the phytochemicals. And what you'll get is a THC-free substance that is infused with CBD and other cannabis compounds. Manufacturers may decide to separate all the ingredients into their respective isolates before combining them again.

Who Needs to Use THC-free CBD?

THC-free CBD is the perfect choice for those who need to use CBD without ingesting THC. Additionally, it is a perfect choice for those who intend to undergo a drug test. THC is what often appears on the drug test.

The Bottom Line

CBD is one of the active cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. The compound is non-psychoactive, making it a safer ingredient. CBD and THC capture many's attention due to their effects on the body. THC is what often makes people high. CBD, on the other hand, has many health benefits. For those who wish to explore CBD without getting exposed to tetrahydrocannabinol, THC-free CBD is a perfect choice.  

References

Fattore L & Fratta W (2011). Beyond THC: the new generation of cannabinoid designer drugs. Frontiers in behavioral neuroscience, 5, 60.

K M Hudson D Vidmar J Butler L & Myles S (2015). The genetic structure of marijuana and hemp. PloS one 10(8) e0133292.

Mead A (2017). The legal status of cannabis (marijuana) and cannabidiol (CBD) under US law. Epilepsy & Behavior, 70, 288-291.

MacCallum, C. A., & Russo, E. B. (2018). Practical considerations in medical cannabis administration and dosing. European journal of internal medicine, 49, 12-19.Sawler J Stout J M Gardner.