Full-Spectrum CBD vs. Broad-Spectrum CBD

Since the legalisation of cannabis and cannabis products, opinions regarding CBD have become increasingly relaxed. Still, people don’t know the difference between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD.

In this article, we’re going to answer the question of “What’s the difference between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD” once and for all. Let’s put them up against each other – full-spectrum vs. broad spectrum.

What Is CBD?

Before we get into the differences between full-spectrum CBD and broad-spectrum CBD, let’s see what CBD is all about.

There’s a lot of research revolving around CBD nowadays, but it’s all still in its early stages. Despite this, the benefits are obvious to most people and CBD, whether used in its full-spectrum or broad-spectrum form, has helped many people deal with various problems, physical, as well as mental.

CBD is a compound found in cannabis and hemp. Inside the plants, it is second only to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in abundance. CBD is not considered psychoactive, although it usually contains trace amounts of THC.

Broad-Spectrum vs. Full-Spectrum vs. CBD Isolate

There are a few differences between the two CBD types in the battle of broad-spectrum vs. full-spectrum CBD. The primary consideration, however, revolves around the compounds that they contain.

Full-spectrum CBD goes through full-spectrum processing, which leaves the compound with several naturally-occurring extracts of the cannabis plants (terpenes and other cannabinoids). This includes up to 0.3% THC, which is considered the legal limit in various places in the world. This is what full-spectrum CBD is about.

Broad-spectrum CBD, on the other hand, also contains various compounds found in the cannabis plant. However, this CBD type is completely free of THC (or in very insignificant trace amounts).

Finally, there’s a CBD product called “CBD isolate.” Unlike full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD, CBD isolate doesn’t contain any cannabis plant compounds other than CBD itself. It is the purest form of CBD found on the market.

However, you should keep in mind that some manufacturers tend to misuse these terms or wrongfully use them interchangeably. To them, the subject of full-spectrum vs. broad-spectrum CBD is insignificant. We encourage you to inform yourself about the differences between the two, as this knowledge can enhance your CBD experience.

Extracting CBD

There are four common means of extracting CBD from cannabis to produce full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, or CBD isolate. Let’s look into them.

The Carbon Dioxide Method

This is the most common and most effective method for extracting CBD and producing high concentrations of it. It is used for CBD isolate, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum processing. Using CO2, CBD oil is separated from cannabis in an efficient and abundant manner.

The Lipid Method

To avoid using CO2 and various solvents, some companies focus on the lipid extraction method. It has shown to be effective, which is why it’s gaining in popularity. Lipid extraction is used in full-spectrum processing and the processing of broad-spectrum CBD.

The Steam Distillation Method

Using steam, oil is separated from the cannabis plant. It is a popular and non-polluting method of CBD extraction. However, it is not nearly as effective as the other methods, which is why it’s generally used for full-spectrum hemp flower extraction, where the essential plant oils play a vital role. The steam method is also commonly used for whole-plant CBD extraction.

The Solvent Method

This is a highly-effective method for CBD extraction that is commonly used in CBD isolate production. This is not to say that it isn’t applied in full-spectrum extraction as well. It can be utilised for everything from broad-spectrum hemp and full-spectrum hemp production to full-spectrum hemp flower extraction. However, if the solvents are left behind, this method might pose a severe health risk.

Full-Spectrum vs. Broad-Spectrum CBD Benefits

Now that we’ve answered the question of “what is full-spectrum and what is broad-spectrum CBD,” it’s time to move on to the difference between the two popular CBD types. We’ve classified broad-spectrum vs. full-spectrum CBD in terms of their benefits. We’ll also talk about the benefits of using CBD isolate.

The Benefits of Full-Spectrum CBD

The difference in full-spectrum hemp CBD and cannabis-derived full-spectrum products is next to non-existent. But we’ll be talking about both derivatives when answering the question of “what is full-spectrum CBD good for?”

Full-spectrum hemp and cannabis products have antiseizure, antianxiety, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, pain relief, and various other health benefits.

The Benefits of Broad-Spectrum CBD

So, what is broad-spectrum CBD generally used for? Well, there aren’t too many differences in the battle of broad-spectrum vs. full-spectrum CBD benefits. Like full-spectrum, broad-spectrum CBD has the aforementioned antiseizure and anti-inflammatory benefits. It also reduces anxiety, acts as an antioxidant, provides pain relief, etc. Both broad-spectrum hemp- and cannabis-derived products do not contain THC.

Although full-spectrum CBD isn’t likely to cause the “high” effect, its broad-spectrum counterpart is even less likely to do so.

CBD Isolate Benefits

In the game of CBD full- vs. broad-spectrum, neither of the two is a real winner. The differences are a matter of nuance and are generally insignificant. However, in some cases where considerable amounts of CBD are required to help with an ailment, using a CBD isolate doesn’t bring any side-effects from the compounds found in full- and broad-spectrum CBD.

What Is Whole-Plant CBD

We’ve answered the questions of “what is broad-spectrum CBD about” and “what is full-spectrum CBD about.” But what about the match of whole-plant vs. full-spectrum CBD? Well, whole-plant CBD is very similar to full-spectrum CBD, in a sense that CBD is less isolated than in CBD broad-spectrum and CBD isolate. Whole-plant CBD contains various waxes, fats, and other bi-products of hemp plant extraction.

So when you put whole-plant vs. full-spectrum CBD, you get an even less refined version of full-spectrum CBD.


1.       How is broad-spectrum CBD made?

Given the fact that more detailed refining is required to get rid of the trace amounts of THC here, broad-spectrum extraction is typically performed using the CO2 method. However, other methods can be used as well.

2.       What is full-spectrum hemp?

Although the differences between the hemp and cannabis full-spectrum CBD extraction exist, they are borderline irrelevant. It generally boils down to the legal aspect of using CBD. In some countries, using cannabis-extracted CBD is illegal, for instance.

3.       What is full-spectrum?

Outside of CBD-related use, full-spectrum means something “all-encompassing.” If the question is “what is full-spectrum CBD,” the answer is a hemp/cannabis extract of CBD that comes with various other compounds of the plant.”

4.       What should I start with?

If you plan on using CBD with the goal of overall life betterment, you can start with full-spectrum CBD and move on from there. It’s also very important that you start with low dosages and increase gradually over time.

CBD Full- vs. Broad-Spectrum

We hope that we’ve answered some key questions regarding CBD here, such as “what is full-spectrum CBD,” “what is broad-spectrum CBD,” “what is CBD isolate,” etc. Getting informed regarding CBD is important, seeing how this compound is becoming increasingly popular in the modern world.

There is no doubt that we’ll be hearing a lot about CBD in the future and the list of its benefits is extensive.

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