Article written by
Shanti RyleContent Writer
Content reviewed by
Dr. Lewis JasseyMedical Director - Pediatric Medicine
Table of contents
Broad-spectrum cannabidiol (CBD) products contain no tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) but feature other therapeutic cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids extracted from hemp and cannabis plants. They still offer the benefits of the entourage effect, but with only the THC removed from the final product. This makes broad-spectrum CBD products potentially very useful for those who seek the therapeutic power of various cannabinoids but no THC, which a person may be sensitive to or needs to avoid due to drug tests.
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What Is Broad-Spectrum CBD?
Broad-spectrum CBD oil and full-spectrum CBD oil are alike in that they contain much of the additional plant material and chemical profiles of the hemp plant from which they are extracted. However, processors further refine broad-spectrum THC to remove all detectable levels of the psychoactive component from the final product.
There are several ways to remove THC from the CBD oil, such as:
- Solvent extraction
- CO2 extraction
- Steam distillation
- Lipid extraction
This extraction process reduces the oil’s THC content to less than 0.005% of the product’s total weight.
Despite its lack of THC, broad-spectrum CBD contains a wide range of additional cannabinoids and compounds. A mix of cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), terpenes, and flavonoids that vary based on the plant source material act in concert to provide superior health benefits than they would in isolation. This synchronicity is called the entourage effect.
When to Use Broad-Spectrum CBD
Broad-spectrum CBD offers many of the same benefits as full-spectrum CBD while avoiding trace amounts of THC. This provides a safer option for individuals who need to steer clear of THC for work or pass a drug test but still want to harness the power of the entourage effect.
There’s no definitive answer as there’s no one-size-fits-all; the CBD type that works best for one person may not work for someone else.
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How Broad-Spectrum CBD Works
Broad-spectrum CBD works in the same manner as other cannabis medicines. CBD and the other cannabinoids in a product interact with the user’s endocannabinoid system and produce different effects depending on the precise formulae and ratio of individual chemicals.
However, while broad-spectrum CBD offers psychoactive effects because it impacts the brain, it will not produce the same euphoria as THC. Broad-spectrum CBD oil contains a nearly full spectrum of compounds, but all the THC has been eliminated.
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Potential Health Benefits and Uses
Though more evidence is needed to produce any definitive conclusions, dozens of research studies support the many potential wellness benefits of CBD.
The existing research points to CBD’s anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety properties as its chief health benefits. Due to these properties, CBD offers promising support in addressing symptoms arising from the following health conditions:
- Epilepsy or seizures
- Arthritis and other inflammatory health conditions
- Chronic pain or nerve pain
- Mood disorders
- Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and insomnia
- Appetite issues
Emerging research also suggests the neuroprotective benefits of CBD as a preventative or potential treatment for neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis (MS), and Parkinson’s disease.
Potential Risks and Side Effects
Broad-spectrum CBD is generally considered safe with no adverse side effects or risks. However, CBD is known to interact with some prescription medications, prolonging their lifespan in the body and impacting their effects. Consult your doctor to determine how CBD may fit into your current medication regimen.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Which form of CBD is most effective?
Ultimately, it depends on the user’s preference. Full-spectrum CBD offers the best bang for your buck if you want the benefits of the entourage effect. If you need to avoid THC appearing on a drug test but still want the benefits of other cannabis compounds, broad-spectrum may be the best fit. CBD isolate is best for those who want pure CBD or to be more inventive with how they use their medicine. There’s no definitive answer as there’s no one-size-fits-all; the CBD type that works best for one person may not work for someone else.
Is broad-spectrum CBD stronger?
Broad-spectrum CBD is not more or less potent than other types of CBD products – it’s still CBD, though its effects may vary based on the different cannabinoids in a particular product.
Is broad-spectrum CBD better for anxiety?
While broad-spectrum CBD isn’t different in positive effects from other CBD products, CBD overall has shown a promising ability to soothe symptoms of anxiety or stress and promote overall wellness. It is suggested that relaxing and sedative cannabinoids and terpenes like CBN, myrcene, humulene, and linalool could help contribute to broad-spectrum CBD products’ anti-anxiety effects.