Home / CBD Education / You Asked so We Answered: What is the Difference Between Hemp Oil and CBD Oil?

You Asked so We Answered: What is the Difference Between Hemp Oil and CBD Oil?

Hemp seed oil vs CBD oil

After decades of prohibition, hemp agriculture is gaining renewed interest across the United States thanks to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized the crop at the federal level. Farmers, manufacturers, and consumers alike are exploring the multiple uses and benefits of hemp, which can be used to produce a myriad of goods including textiles, foods, and health and wellness products.

But the versatility of hemp can also lead to confusion for consumers, and with so many products made from the plant, it’s no wonder. Hemp seed oil and hemp CBD oil, for example, are two different products from the same plant, and each can have contributions to overall health and wellness. But they’re not the same.

What is CBD?

CBD, cannabidiolum, (−)-cannabidiol[3]
The structure of cannabidiol, also know as CBD
Only the flowers, and to a lesser extent, the leaves and stalks of the hemp plant contain CBD, one of the dozens of special compounds known as cannabinoids that are produced by the species of plant classified as Cannabis sativa. The most well-known cannabinoid is tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the chemical that is responsible for the high commonly associated with cannabis use. Varieties of cannabis high in THC are also known as marijuana and are still treated as a controlled substance. By definition, industrial hemp has less than 0.3 percent THC, which is not enough of the compound to induce a high. Because of this, many consumers prefer hemp CBD oil as a way to take advantage of the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids.

Benefits of CBD

Research into CBD has found that the compound has many physiological effects that have applications that can support health and wellness. CBD has been shown to be effective at reducing pain and inflammation and can help with the management of chronic pain. CBD also shows promise in the treatment of anxiety and depression. Other studies have shown that CBD may help promote relaxation and better sleep.

Hemp Oil – Terminological Misconception

full spectrum CBD oil

What is Hemp Seed Oil?

Hemp seed oil is made only from hemp seeds, which are pressed until they release the oil contained inside, similar to the production of olive oil. Hemp seed oil is a healthy fat that is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and can be an important part of a healthy diet. Hemp seed oil is also beneficial to the skin and as such, is frequently used as a natural ingredient in beauty products. But hemp seed oil doesn’t have any cannabidiol, better known as CBD, because there is no CBD in hemp seeds. Consumers hoping to enjoy the benefits of CBD will have to look elsewhere.

Is Hemp oil as Good as CBD oil?

There are many people who intentionally or non-intentionally misleading customers by presenting hemp seed oil as CBD oil. Although hemp seed oil has many great benefits and might be used as a carrier oil for CBD it does not contain any CBD by itself. There are also cases in which a full-spectrum CBD oil will be labeled as hemp oil. Consumers should always read the package’s list of ingredients carefully before choosing a hemp product.

So What is Hemp CBD Oil

There are 3 types of CBD oil:

Full Spectrum CBD Oil

Some CBD hemp oil products are made from whole-plant extractions so they will be able to provide a full range of benefits that are naturally produced by hemp. A full-spectrum product is made by extracting not only the CBD but also other phytocannabinoids such as CBN (Cannabinol), CBG (Cannabigerol), CBC (Cannabichromene), CBDV (Cannabidivarin), THCV (Tetrahydrocannabivarin) and up to 0.3 percent Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), as well as other botanic compounds that may have beneficial properties, such as terpenes, flavonoids, and antioxidants. Many people believe that these so-called full-spectrum CBD oils can provide more health benefits through a synergistic process known as the entourage effect.

Broad Spectrum CBD Oil

Broad-spectrum CBD oil contains all the terpenes, flavonoids, and lesser-known cannabinoids just like in the full-spectrum oil but nevertheless, it is still considered inferior to a full-spectrum oil since it lacks any THC which is needed for a full-body entourage effect.

CBD Isolate

One form of CBD that is gaining in popularity and generating interest among consumers is CBD isolate, which is also produced from industrial hemp. Manufacturing CBD isolate begins with a full-spectrum extraction, which is then subjected to further processing to separate plant material, waxes, chlorophyll, oils, and other compounds. The resulting isolate is a concentrated substance that is up to 99 percent or more pure CBD.

So Which CBD Oil Is Better?

Hemp Seed Oil Full-Spectrum Oil Broad-spectrum CBD isolate
Has CBD No Yes Yes Yes
Has THC No Up to 0.3 % No No
Has other cannabinoids No Yes Yes No
Psychoactive No No No No

Learn more about the various types of CBD oils

Both broad-spectrum and CBD isolate can act as good alternatives for people who are subject to drug screenings for marijuana use. While full-spectrum hemp CBD oil has at most 0.3 percent THC and cannot cause a high, some users, particularly those taking large amounts of CBD supplements, have tested positive for THC with the use of full-spectrum extracts.

For most consumers, however, full-spectrum hemp CBD oil is probably a better option because it will provide other beneficial compounds, including minor cannabinoids, in addition to CBD. Research into these other compounds from hemp and cannabis plants, including CBG and CBV have also shown potential medical benefits. In fact, in a study published in 2015, researchers determined that mice showed a greater improvement of inflammatory conditions from the use of a full-spectrum CBD oil and its entourage effect than with treatment with CBD isolate.

Understanding CBD Products

A variety of hemp CBD products are now available in all 50 states and in major part of the EU for purchase by consumers, both online and in stores. Hemp CBD oil is available in liquid formulations and has also been incorporated into other products such as capsules, vape oils, and topical products. Some topical products also incorporate other pain-relieving ingredients such as menthol and capsaicin, natural analgesics that can add to the effectiveness and relief provided by CBD. When shopping for CBD products, be sure to read the label to ensure the type and amount of CBD contained in each formulation.

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