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What’s the difference between full spectrum and isolate?

There are many questions surrounding cannabidiol (or, as it is more well known as, CBD). One of the more confusing parts about the Cannabis sativa industry would be the different strains. This is understood and this is why we here at Panacea Life Sciences will answer these questions here in this article. What is Full Spectrum CBD? What is CBD Isolate? And what is Broad Spectrum CBD? Read on to find out. 

What is CBD? What about THC?

Firstly, let us talk about what CBD is and what it is not. CBD is one of the 113 cannabinoids found in the cannabis sativa plant. This particular cannabinoid is often confused with another cannabinoid, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). This is the component that gets users ‘high’ this is different from CBD, as it has no inebriating effect. 

In 2018 the Farm Bill has allowed farmers across the country to grow and sell hemp legally. This is because of the low amounts of THC in hemp. While CBD is legal to grow throughout the 50 states, THC is not. When a Cannabis sativa plant contains higher amounts of THC it is deemed a marijuana plant. There are a handful of states that have legalized the use and growth of products containing higher amounts of THC. CBD has been described as having other health benefits. 

Now that we know what CBD is and what it is not, let’s get to the root of the question. 

What is full spectrum?

What is full spectrum CBD? Like stated earlier in the article, the Cannabis sativa plant contains 113 cannabinoids and CBD is just one of them. A full spectrum CBD product contains the entire spectrum of the cannabinoids. This includes the small .3% of THC as well. However, this amount of THC is legal and cannot get a user the ‘high’. So, if you are looking for a product that will give you all the cannabinoids, look for the label of a full spectrum product.


Now, what is an isolate? It is pretty self-explanatory; a CBD isolate is an isolated CBD. In this process all other cannabinoids are extracted out leaving only the CBD. If you only want to experience the potential benefits of CBD look for an isolate. 

What about broad spectrum? 

Broad spectrum CBD is similar to full spectrum. But instead of having all of the cannabinoids, the THC cannabinoid is extracted out. Therefore, broad spectrum gives you the entire spectrum without the .3% of THC. 

What are the uses of CBD?

Now that you understand what CBD is and what it is not as well as the difference between all the strains, why use it? There are several reasons why people have begun to use CBD in their daily lives. With this being said, it is important to note that the research done on CBD is still preliminary, this is because THC has been in the spotlight for longer. However, CBD still has full potential to assist in your daily life. Here are noted reasons for using CBD:

  • Promote a sense of calm: CBD has been described as promoting a sense of calm in those who have feelings of anxiousness. This is why people have often used CBD right before bed to calm any nerves they may have. 
  • Anti-inflammatory: We here at Panacea Life Sciences have done our own research for this certain benefit. We had owners of pets who have osteoarthritis administered their “man’s best friend” CBD. One of the hardships of osteoarthritis is the inflammation.  Pet owners described their pets gaining more mobility while using the CBD and therefore assisting their inflammation. 
  • Skin health: Although a CBD topical never reaches the bloodstream it does not mean that they cannot assist in healthy skin. This study shows that those with and without skin conditions had improved skin health after the use of CBD topicals.
  • FDA approved medication: There are several FDA approved medications that contain CBD. Epidiolex, among others. This medication helps those with two severe types of epilepsy, Lennox-Gestalt syndrome and Dravet syndrome. While there are other medications that are used to help those going through anti-cancer treatments with the nausea it comes along with the treatments. 

What CBD products are out there? 

Now that we know the uses of CBD. What products are available? Here is a list: 

  • Tinctures: This type of CBD intake is one of the easiest and one of the most effective because of how quick it gets into your system. A tincture is an oil-like substance that is generally placed under the tongue and gets into the bloodstream from there. 
  • Tablets: Tablets are much like tinctures in the way that they enter the bloodstream. Through the mouth after being dissolved.
  • Soft gels: Soft gels are soft capsules full of CBD. These can be taken daily and go through the digestive system to land into the stomach, from there they are broken down and then find the bloodstream through the stomach lining. 
  • Edibles: This type of CBD product is similar to soft gels but instead of swallowing a pill you are able to taste something yummy before it travels to the stomach. Then off to the bloodstream it goes. Soft gels and edibles take longer to feel effects but are described to last longer than tinctures.
  • Topicals: CBD topicals are used on this skin. Topicals never reach the bloodstream but can provide benefits through the pores. There are creams, salves, lotions, and even hand sanitizer available.
  • Vapes: We here at Panacea Life Sciences do not advocate for the use of CBD vapes, but it is an option. CBD vape is inhaled and then collected into the bloodstream by the lungs. 

The Difference

Now that you understand the difference between a full spectrum CBD and an isolate CBD, hopefully you can begin your journey to see if CBD is right for you. Starting with a smaller amount of CBD and then gradually working your way up in amounts will help you see what works well for you. As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments at [email protected] Check out our full spectrum CBD oil for sale in the shop!