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The concept of one element adding to the benefit of another is nothing new. Research within multiple fields of study, including chemistry, sociology, and biology, commonly support the concept credited to Ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, suggesting “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts,” meaning the combined impact is stronger than the effect of individual components. Today, we call that concept synergy.
Although there has been a lot of consumer interest in the health and wellness potential of cannabidiol (CBD), it may surprise you to know that CBD is just one of more than 400 potentially beneficial plant elements found in cannabis. Rather than selecting a product made with a single cannabinoid, many CBD users appreciate the benefit of multiplying the potential of full-spectrum products.
Some people are initially hesitant to purchase CBD when they learn it comes from cannabis. Most find it reassuring to know there are two potential sources: marijuana and hemp. Most of the CBD products available in stores and online come from industrial hemp. That’s because hemp plants do not produce enough THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) to cause intoxication.
Consumers investigating the therapeutic potential of hemp-derived CBD have the option of selecting between two distinctly different product types: those made with full-spectrum hemp extract, or products made with CBD isolate. Before choosing a product, it’s essential to know the similarities and differences. Consider the following:
CBD is created from the stems, stalks, and flowers of industrial hemp plants. When you purchase a full-spectrum product, that means your CBD contains all the potentially beneficial plant components in the same ratios as the source, including trace amounts of THC. Many CBD users find full-spectrum products more beneficial than products made with CBD isolate.
CBD isolate is a pure form of hemp oil. The CBD gets separated from the other plant elements during extraction and processing. All that remains is a white, granular powder that is nearly 100 percent pure cannabidiol (CBD). CBD isolate is flavorless, odorless, and THC-free. That makes isolate products ideal for anyone who wants to avoid THC or does not care for the somewhat grassy flavor of many full-spectrum products.
While it’s easy to understand why people might initially consider a THC- free/purified form of CBD to be the better option, research shows that the combined effects of the more than 480 plant compounds contribute to the extract’s therapeutic potential. Just a few of the many potentially beneficial plant elements found in full-spectrum hemp extract include:
Although CBD is the most prevalent and most often discussed plant-derived cannabinoid found in hemp extract, it’s essential to know that full-spectrum hemp oil contains more than 100 plant-based cannabinoids. These minor cannabinoids (CBDA, CBG, and CBDV, and more), contribute to the analgesic, anti-emetic, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-microbial properties of the plant. The trace amounts of THC may also add to the overall effects.
Experiencing the calming effects of chamomile tea or feeling energized by the smell of peppermint is experiencing the therapeutic potential of plant terpenes. The therapeutic potential of many plants depends on the combination of terpenes they contain. Full-spectrum hemp extract has more than 100 natural plant terpenes, including linalool, myrcene, and beta-caryophyllene. Plant terpenes are shown to contribute to the therapeutic potential of hemp-derived products.
Flavonoids are plant elements that attract pollinators, filter UV rays, and give plants their distinctive colors. Flavonoids are directly responsible for red and blue tones. Full-spectrum hemp extract contains a significant number of flavonoids – approximately 20. Flavonoids are potent antioxidants that have the potential to fight cancer and protect your body from free-radical damage.
Full-spectrum hemp oil also contains vitamins A, C, and E, B vitamins, essential fatty acids, and amino acids that perform numerous functions throughout your body. The many plant elements in full-spectrum products work synergistically; the combined effects are believed to be significantly more potent than CBD on its own.
While synergy accounts for the potential benefits of combining active plant elements, full-spectrum CBD users also benefit from a lesser-known phenomenon known as the entourage effect. It’s the entourage effect that is commonly used to explain how the many inactive components in cannabis plants combine with other inert plant elements to form active compounds.
When combined, these once inert plant elements magnify and multiply the synergistic properties of the plant. Unique to cannabis plants, the entourage effect is the result of the combined phytocannabinoids and terpenes.
Whether you prefer investigating the health and wellness potential of THC-free CBD or are intrigued by the property enhancing the potential of full-spectrum products, it may be helpful to know that the choice is yours. Both product types have significant health and wellness potential because they both contain CBD.
CBD is a plant-based cannabinoid that interacts with the receptors of your endocannabinoid system, the most significant regulatory system in your body. Cannabinoids function as messengers. It’s the interaction between the messengers and receptors of your endocannabinoid system that regulate nearly every essential function in your body. Just a few of the many features regulated by endocannabinoid system signaling include:
CBD mimics the effects of the cannabinoids made in your body. The endocannabinoids help keep your endocannabinoid system functioning efficiently. That’s important. The cannabinoids synthesized in your body are made as needed and break down quickly. Under the influences of stress, illness, or injury, the demand for endocannabinoid system messengers can exceed the supply. The processes regulated by your endocannabinoid system are vital to your overall well being. Many researchers believe endocannabinoid deficiencies can make you unhealthy.
A full-spectrum CBD tincture, commonly referred to as CBD oil, is a blend of whole hemp extract and carrier oil. A versatile product, CBD tinctures can be applied topically, added to your favorite recipes, stirred into your morning coffee, or held under your tongue for a few seconds before swallowing (sublingual method).