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Cannabis plants contain more than 100 active compounds, with CBD and THC being the most well-known. There are several types of CBD, including full spectrum CBD, broad spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate. CBD isolate is the purest form, with these products made from CBD that has been extracted from hemp plants with the other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids removed. In contrast, full spectrum CBD still contains all the other compounds found in the hemp plant. These compounds may have beneficial properties that can work synergistically with CBD in the body. Broad spectrum CBD is the middle of the road, containing CBD and other compounds from the hemp plant, but with THC removed. Because full spectrum CBD contains THC (up to 0.3%) and a variety of other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids that may have unique benefits and can enhance the effects of the other compounds synergistically, many consumers say they experience greater effects from full spectrum CBD compared to CBD isolate and broad spectrum CBD. In fact, some studies have found that THC may have positive effects when taken at low doses, making full spectrum CBD appealing to consumers who want to experience the synergistic effects of CBD and THC without the psychoactive effects of THC commonly experienced with higher doses. But what do you need to know before taking full spectrum CBD? To learn more about full spectrum CBD, its potential benefits, and other important considerations when choosing CBD products, we reached out to a panel of CBD experts and CBD enthusiasts and asked them to answer this question:

“What should consumers know about full spectrum CBD?”

Meet Our Panel of CBD Experts & Enthusiasts:

Read on to learn what you need to know about full spectrum CBD.

NOTE: The information and opinions expressed below represent the opinions of the individual contributors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Incredible Edibles.

Marissa Davis


Marissa Davis is the CEO at FamOrganics.

“There are over 100 compounds found in cannabis plants…”

Full spectrum CBD oil utilizes the whole plant rather than just isolated CBD. When you use the whole plant, the compounds are able to work together to create the ‘entourage effect.’ The added bonus: you also get terpenes. During the extraction process, important cannabinoids and terpenes are removed. With full spectrum CBD, you are able to preserve the cannabinoid profile and natural terpenes.

Jim Higdon


Jim Higdon is a co-founder at Cornbread Hemp.

“Full spectrum CBD oil is as close to whole-plant cannabis wellness that federal law currently allows…”

That means it includes THC, but not more than 0.3 percent, which is the arbitrary threshold established by Congress.

Research conducted in Israel indicates that full spectrum hemp extract is more effective than CBD isolate because the THC helps the CBD achieve better results than the CBD isolate alone. In technical terms, this means that full spectrum extract overcomes the bell-shaped dosage response of CBD isolate. That means that CBD isolate works to a certain point, but then additional CBD does not have an additional effect – the effect trails off, like a bell-shaped curve. With full spectrum CBD, there is no bell-shaped reduction; a higher dose has a greater effect. This is an example of the “entourage effect.”

The only reason that non-full spectrum products have any market share is not that isolated or broad spectrum works better, but because of the threat of THC drug testing that steers some potential customers away from a product that contains even trace amounts of THC. It should not be the case that employers can still discriminate against employees for using federally legal hemp-derived THC from full spectrum hemp products, but until there’s clarification from Congress or the courts, that’s where we are.

Zach Dorsett


Zach Dorsett is the Chief Growth Officer at BFF Hemp.

“The hemp plant contains various different cannabinoids each with specific properties…”

For example, CBN, CBG, and the most common, CBD. During the refining process, you can separate out the different cannabinoids to produce unique products, each one with its own benefits. When a product says it is full spectrum, what that means is it contains the full profile of cannabinoids, including all the essential fatty acids and nutrients of the hemp plant that support a sustainable, healthy lifestyle. The most popular way to use a full spectrum CBD product is with a tincture or oil drop. You can use the oil to infuse other foods and drinks, or just take it daily like a vitamin! When choosing a full spectrum product, we suggest always going with organic hemp.

Rod Glupker


Rod Glupker works at CBD Store of Michigan.

“Full spectrum CBD uses the whole plant from the bud (flower), leaves, stem, and roots…”

All of those components offer benefits to the endocannabinoid system. There are over 100 cannabinoids. CBD is the most popular. When using a full spectrum CBD, you may also get many of the other cannabinoids. One of the cannabinoids that is becoming popular is CBG, which has benefits that CBD alone does not have. Together in a full spectrum product, CBD and CBG will have combined benefits.

Other cannabinoids that you may find in full spectrum CBD would be CBDA, CBN, CBGA, CBC, and CBCA, as well as THC. THC is the compound that will get you high. However, in the United States, to sell CBD legally without a license it has to contain 0.3 percent or less of THC. With 0.3 percent or less THC, those products cannot get you high. You could drink an entire 1-ounce bottle of CBD oil with 0.3 percent THC or less and not feel any high from it. It is unlikely that you will test positive for THC with that amount, but I would never promise that you will not. If you are subject to drug testing, I would recommend choosing an isolate that is THC free. If you have a choice, full spectrum CBD will always be more beneficial.

Erin Spong


Erin Spong is the CMO at Key to Cannabis, one of the most trusted CBD education sites. A one-stop-shop for all things cannabis and CBD, they promote the most legitimate brands and products to help consumers cut through the CBD market clutter.

“By definition, full spectrum CBD includes every cannabinoid profile found in the cannabis plant, including THC – up to the legally allowable amount of 0.3 percent…”

Full spectrum CBD is often considered the most beneficial CBD because of its inclusion of a trace amount of THC to create what is known as an “entourage effect.” When cannabinoid profiles work in conjunction with each other, they produce beneficial effects on the body – such as reduced stress, anxiety, pain, and inflammation – that wouldn’t otherwise happen from one cannabinoid profile on its own.

Full spectrum CBD works with the endocannabinoid system to bring your body back to homeostasis. Whether you suffer from chronic pain or arthritis, insomnia, anxiety and depression, or a combination of ailments, full spectrum CBD can help to ease uncomfortable symptoms without creating any psychoactive effects. The more consistently you use full spectrum CBD, the more you will notice the benefits. Because full spectrum CBD does include a trace amount of THC, it may show up on a drug test. If your employer does require random or routine drug testing, this is something to be aware of when taking full spectrum CBD.

Victoria Barksdale

Victoria Barksdale is the co-owner and president of Texas Tonix, a natural health alternatives store that primarily carries cannabis products. Texas Tonix is certified as a woman-owned small business and a disabled small business. It is a family owned and operated company

“When looking at full spectrum CBD products, the first thing you should be aware of is…”

The third-party testing pages, known as the COAs (Certificate of Analysis). This document is crucial because it will let you know how much Delta 9 THC is in the product and can help you determine if the product is within legal limits or not.

Winston Peki


Winston Peki is located in Amsterdam (the Netherlands). Winston is the founder of Herbonaut, a website that (among other things) specializes in reviewing cannabis-derived products and scientific articles related to cannabis, CBD, and its use.

“Various studies indicate that the various cannabinoids and terpenes present inside hemp plants act synergistically to CBD…”

There’s even scientific evidence that shows CBD taken as part of a full spectrum hemp-extract can have the same effects as a purified CBD product, with a CBD-dose that’s four times smaller. Patients taking CBD as part of a full spectrum extract also reported fewer side effects than patients taking a purified CBD product. Besides making CBD more potent, these other hemp-derived cannabinoids and terpenes have uniquely beneficial effects of their own. For example, terpenes like linalool, limonene, and caryophyllene are associated with anxiety-reducing and anti-inflammatory effects.

One potential reason to not take full spectrum CBD products is that they always contain THC (< 0.3%). Some people are subjected to regular drug tests and taking a full spectrum CBD product may result in a failure of passing such a test, because they always test for THC.

Lauren Wilson


Lauren Wilson is a best-selling author and freelance cannabis writer. She has just finished two titles for Merry Jane’s CBD book series, “The CBD Solution,” the first of which hit the shelves in September 2020.

“The thing about the CBD marketplace is that it’s a mess…”

Most folks that I talk to will tell me CBD didn’t work for them, which is a shame because I am a strong supporter of CBD and have experienced its potential to offer a natural way to heal and support general well-being first-hand.

Most folks, when asked, also don’t know how much CBD they took (or are taking) or if there has even been any verification that the CBD content of their products is up to snuff as far as quantity and safety are concerned. That is why consumer education is so crucial right now!

So, when it comes to full spectrum CBD, I always like to start with the idea of the entourage effect. Given the super-star level of fame CBD is currently enjoying, I like to think of the entourage effect quite literally. When we’re talking about a full spectrum CBD product, CBD is the star of the show. It’s the cannabinoid in greatest abundance, and it’s what will confer the most effect. But now, let’s think about the entourage supporting CBD. Like any star, CBD needs support staff. And that’s what the idea of the entourage effect is all about.

Cannabis and hemp plants are extremely complex. There are hundreds of chemically active compounds within them, like other cannabinoids and terpenes, for example. These compounds come together to both support and enhance the effects of CBD. While CBD might be the star, other cannabinoids (like THC or CBG, for example) and terpenes are the entourage that help make CBD perform even better. There are so many goodies offered up by hemp and cannabis plants. A full spectrum product will give you all those goodies, plus the benefits that come along with their synergistic relationships.

Scientific inquiry and studies looking at the entourage effect are on the rise, and I for one am really excited. I think there is so much to uncover as to how and why these compounds work so well together and so well for us.

The other thing consumers should know is what the term full spectrum actually means. All CBD products – whether it be an oil, a gummy, a salve, or a facial serum – begin with an extraction. All the goodies need to be taken from the physical plant so they can be infused into the products that you and I use.

Full spectrum products contain the full profile of cannabinoids, terpenes, and other active compounds that are naturally present in the plant – the full magic sauce. Consumers will also see broad spectrum products, which are similar to full spectrum but have been refined to remove any and all THC, even the very trace amounts found in hemp. So, for folks who would prefer to avoid THC altogether (though THC has its own therapeutic and wellness benefits!), broad spectrum CBD can offer a similar magic sauce, just less the THC.

Dr. Elaine Burns


Dr. Elaine Burns is the first Arizona healthcare professional to pass the American Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine certification test. Top orthopedic and sports doctors regularly refer patients to Dr. Burns, as does Barrow Neurologic Institute and Banner Health. All DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ products are made from proprietary formulas with every batch’s potency verified through independent lab testing.

“First off, it should be called full spectrum HEMP, as CBD is just one of the chemical constituents of the hemp/cannabis plant…”

Full spectrum simply means that ALL the CB’X’ chemicals (CBD, CBN, CBG, etc.) from the hemp are being used in the product. Of all the CB’X’ chemicals, CBD is the more prevalent compound and the most studied medicinally

The truth is that a lot of people are branding their products as full spectrum hemp to get around the use of CBD, since with the FDA and on all the digital marketing platforms, the use of CBD is not accepted. For example, I know for a fact that the exact same product that is sold on a manufacturer’s website as CBD drops (for example) are called hemp drops or full spectrum drops when sold on Amazon. So, this further leads to the confusion between the terms.

The bottom line is if consumers are using CBD for its medicinal benefits, then they should stick with CBD or at least make sure that if they use a full spectrum product that they are getting the milligrams of CBD in that combined product to assist with the symptom relief.

Consumers in the market for CBD products, unfortunately, must do their own due diligence as this is a highly unregulated industry… so, they need to be not only reading labels, but holding the manufacturer accountable by seeking out proof and authenticity via test results.

Karen Getchell


Karen Getchell is the Director of Content at Cannabis Training University. Karen performs extensive research and interviews to inform the content for the Cannabis Training University curriculum.

“The most important thing to keep in mind when purchasing full spectrum CBD is purity…”

Full spectrum CBD is created by extracting all of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids that occur naturally in the plant. Although this produces an oil with beneficial entourage effects, the process can also extract harmful residues from the plant.

To ensure the purity of your full spectrum CBD product, be sure that the product is tested by a certified lab and review the results before you buy. A certified lab test will make sure that you are getting all of the benefits of full spectrum CBD without consuming harmful levels of solvents, pesticides, or chemicals.

Dr. Michael Heller


Dr. Michael Heller is the Co-Founder and CEO of Realize.

“By definition, full spectrum CBD contains CBD plus all of the other active ingredients (cannabinoids) found in the hemp plant…”

However, the number one characteristic that distinguishes full spectrum CBD from other types of CBD is that it contains a fractional amount of THC. Full spectrum CBD products are required by law to contain no more than 0.3 percent THC.

How does this translate into a product like a tincture? If you were to take a single 1 ml dose of a full spectrum CBD oil tincture that contained 0.3 percent THC, you would be consuming approximately 2.7 mg of THC. That is enough THC to trigger your endocannabinoid system but not enough to get you high. Although THC is largely associated with the high from marijuana, it also performs a lot of beneficial functions. THC has been clinically proven to treat pain and nausea, and it is also being investigated to treat sleep and anxiety.

When THC is present with CBD, such as full spectrum CBD, it has an amplifying effect, making the CBD more effective at relieving ailments. It is a great benefit for the consumer with minimal risk of getting them intoxicated unless several doses are ingested.

Intoxication is of zero concern in topicals because the active ingredients stay on the surface of the skin and never make it into the body. Overall, a full spectrum CBD product that contains THC will be more effective than a CBD product with no THC. If you are required to take a drug test, it is possible to fail if you have ingested large doses of full spectrum CBD over a long period of time. If you get drug tested or are fundamentally against THC, you could try broad spectrum CBD as an alternative, which is full spectrum CBD with THC removed.

Dr. Rashmi Byakodi


Dr. Rashmi Byakodi is a health and wellness writer and the editor of Best for Nutrition.

“Cannabidiol (CBD) based products are becoming popular, as CBD has shown to have beneficial health effects…”

Companies are allowed to produce and distribute CBD products derived from non-psychoactive hemp varieties so that consumers have access to this extremely advantageous cannabinoid.

Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the most common cannabinoids; both have various pharmacological actions. According to studies, unlike THC, CBD does not possess any psychoactive effects. It can be effectively used for treating epilepsy and other neuropsychiatric disorders, including anxiety and schizophrenia.

Unapproved CBD products and supplements making therapeutic claims are not subject to FDA evaluation regarding whether they are adequate to treat a particular disease or not. Due to the lack of appropriate processing, there is a safety risk for CBD products. Consumers should be careful before trying any CBD products of unknown quality or unproven benefits.

Conor Denman

Conor Denman is a CBD expert and CEO of SMPLSTC.

“Full spectrum CBD is derived from hemp and contains many cannabinoids beyond just CBD…”

Including THC and other elements of the hemp plant, as well as naturally occurring terpenes, essential vitamins, fatty acids, protein, and more. Full spectrum CBD will also provide something called the entourage effect, where all the cannabinoids work together and benefit from each other, providing better results for your body.

Griffin Lynch

Griffin Lynch is the COO and Co-Owner of BATCH by Wisconsin Hemp Scientific.

“The first thing any consumer should know about full spectrum CBD is that it does contain THC…”

That is what distinguishes full spectrum products from broad spectrum and CBD isolate products. Although only trace amounts of THC are found in full spectrum CBD, the therapeutic benefits are much greater than those achieved by other CBD products without any THC. That’s because full spectrum products are the closest representation of the whole hemp plant. Dr. Ethan Russo is the leader in cannabis-related research and has published findings backing a concept now commonly known as the entourage effect.

In short, the entourage effect explains how CBD, when consumed along with THC (even in very small amounts that do not lead to intoxication), creates a synergistic effect with the sum being greater than that of either isolated compound. To simplify it even further, 1+1 = 3 in the case of CBD and THC being used together in full spectrum CBD products.

Other common questions we get relate to the legality of full spectrum products and the possibility of accidentally getting high or failing a drug test. While it is technically possible to fail a drug test due to CBD use, it is very unlikely as the user would have to consume a high-concentration oil routinely for multiple months before enough THC could collect in the system to trigger a false positive. Any reputable seller of CBD should offer a Certificate of Analysis (COA) that shows lab results specifying their THC volume is less than 0.3 percent by weight to meet federal guidelines.

Gus Hanger

Gus Hanger is the CEO of Industrial Hemp Farms. Gus is a young innovator and entrepreneur who is eager to shake things up and change the world.

“There is full spectrum, broad spectrum, and regular CBD…”

Full spectrum CBD oil contains traces of THC, cannabinoids, and terpenes from the hemp extraction. Full spectrum oil will always contain under 0.3 percent delta-9 THC to remain legal under federal law. Some research has suggested that full spectrum CBD can create the entourage effect, which may boost the effects of CBD.

Broad spectrum is similar to regular CBD oil in the fact that it contains no THC. Although the THC content is removed, other elements of the hemp plant are included. These include trace elements of other cannabinoids and terpenes. Users prefer broad spectrum CBD when they want the other cannabinoids and terpenes from the hemp plant with the exemption of THC.

Regular CBD oil is also known as THC-free CBD oil because this type of oil is created by adding CBD isolate to a carrier oil. With this type of product, the user gets pure CBD with no other added cannabinoids or terpenes. Regular CBD oil is generally cheaper than broad and full spectrum oils.

Awais Spall

Awais Spall is a published cannabis researcher who has spent five years as a clinical advisor, advising doctors and practitioners on the safe use of cannabis as medicine. Awais has partnered with a direct to consumer brand known as Revibe, where he used his background to develop a transdermal formulation that is able to provide all of the benefits of CBD in a topical product.

“The biggest problem with full spectrum CBD is that it is impossible to standardize from batch to batch…”

Each batch of full spectrum CBD will have a different profile of cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and other polyphenolic compounds. We haven’t acquired enough data on the interactions between these various compounds, nonetheless their physiological effects in the aggregate.

For instance, some of the clinicians I worked with in California found that full spectrum CBD can have a mildly psychoactive effect, which can be a positive or negative feature depending on the patient’s unique needs. One theory is that some of these plant phytocompounds can synergize and have physiological effects that can be described as THC-mimetic. Also, many companies will add plant-derived non-cannabis terpenes into their products which often don’t have the same biochemical properties as cannabis terpenes and are not very well studied. Despite these concerns, many practitioners and patients swear by full spectrum CBD. Its THC-mimicking properties can increase the analgesic effects for some patients, while simultaneously allowing them to use a lower amount of CBD to reach an effective dose.

In contrast, several patients with auto-immune diseases that use CBD to modulate their immune systems often have adverse reactions when taking full spectrum CBD. Some of these patients will describe full spectrum CBD as causing a slight hangover-like feeling. These patients will often benefit from taking higher doses of CBD isolate. Similarly, athletes seeking to boost endocannabinoid tone to improve muscle recovery also tend to prefer higher doses of CBD isolate.

In my opinion, the choice between full spectrum and isolate really depends on each person’s bio-individuality. After trial and error, some people may like it and others may not. I find that CBD isolate tends to be a much safer compound that actually can be standardized in the lab. That is why I prefer to only use CBD isolate while developing CBD topicals.

Rachael Rapinoe


Rachael Rapinoe is the Co-Founder & CEO of Mendi, an athlete-built and women-owned company with a mission to improve recovery for all athletes.

“Nothing beats full plant power…”

The combination of over a hundred different cannabinoids, terpenes, and other whole plant elements truly make these blends unbeatable. For anyone not under a drug testing policy, we highly recommend incorporating full spectrum CBD into your recovery regimen.

Eva Droz

Eva Droz is the Vice President of Retail Operations at Nothing But Hemp.

“Full spectrum CBD comes with what we call the entourage effect…”

You get the full benefits of the plant and better absorption, with all of the cannabinoids, proteins, and flavonoids naturally working together to stabilize the endocannabinoid system.

Because nothing is being removed from the compound, full spectrum CBD contains trace amounts of THC (under 0.3%). That small amount of THC will not get you high, but there’s a possibility it could be detectable on a drug test. If your employer has a zero-tolerance THC policy, you should be aware of that. And, as always if you’re taking prescription drugs, talk to your doctor before taking CBD.

James Brennan


James Brennan brings a successful track record of 20+ years building brands and businesses as co-founder of Liveli.

“How and why CBD works is complex…”

The endocannabinoid system (ECS), endocannabinoids such as Anandamide (also known as “The Bliss Molecule”), and CBD can be an important part of supporting overall sense of calm and balance.

Picking out a CBD supplement can be a stressful process in itself, as there are thousands of products to choose from, and separating the wheat from the chaff can be a minefield. Some things consumers should look for to know they are going with a good quality full spectrum product include:

  • Made from pure, potent, and sustainably farmed hemp.
  • Grown in the USA.
  • Transparency within the products. Products should be tested by independent labs so that you know what’s inside. Look for the potency of the CBD and the other cannabinoids, as well as purity. You will typically find these on websites using the language ‘COA’ (Certificate of Analysis) or ‘Lab Results.’
  • Derived from the entire plant so you get the full spectrum of the cannabinoids.
  • Chemical and solvent-free processes.
  • Particle size – the smaller or finer, the better, as it helps your body absorb the benefits.

John Frigo

John Frigo is the Digital Marketing Lead with Best Price Nutrition, as well as a number of other brands of online vitamin and supplement shops, both online and brick and mortar.

“Full spectrum CBD is a superior product, in my opinion…”

Full spectrum contains all the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, while many are stripped out during the process of turning CBD into an isolate. The only advantage I can see to isolates is that some CBD users using consumable products don’t like the plant matter taste of full spectrum CBD. Its true isolates taste better or taste less like plants, but as far as the effectiveness, full spectrum is far superior. Also, when using products that are not consumable (i.e., salves, lotions, etc.), you may as well go for full spectrum, as taste isn’t an issue.

Dr. Jon Thompson


Dr. Jon Thompson is the founder and CEO of extraktLAB.

“Full spectrum CBD is various plant compounds extracted from industrial hemp…”

The plant material is processed through a piece of extraction equipment to obtain crude CBD oil. The crude oil must then be refined to remove unwanted residual solvents from the initial extraction. The extraction and refinement solvents, plant waxes, and lipids are the only things removed from extracted crude CBD oil to make a complete full spectrum CBD oil. By using CO2 there is no residual solvent left from the extraction process. Full spectrum CBD has higher potential to be more effective than isolated CBD products, with the entourage effect. A full spectrum CBD oil has all the cannabinoids hemp has to offer, including terpenes, flavonoids, and other beneficial attributes. Full spectrum products usually have a bit of an earthy smell and bitter flavor, which comes from the plant residuals (not to be confused with chemical or solvent residuals). Because again, nothing is removed from the botanical extract except wax and lipids.

Benefits of Full Spectrum CBD

Some people are apprehensive of the minor amount of THC, the psychoactive molecule in cannabis, in a full spectrum CBD oil, but that concern should be dispelled. When produced from hemp, the quantity of THC may not exceed 0.3 percent, which is not enough to give you the euphoric feelings or intoxication from THC, although full spectrum CBD does give you the benefits of other plant-derived compounds.

Full Spectrum can be a Sustainable Option

The process for creating full spectrum CBD extracts is not as tedious as the process for obtaining CBD Isolate from the plant. Why? Because the product clings onto an abundance of naturally occurring chemicals. An all-natural solution is developed by utilizing sustainable and best farming practices. Full spectrum CBD actually works better, without the use of synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, or fungicides.

Full Spectrum CBD and Other Cannabinoids

Full spectrum CBD uses the entire spectrum of cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes, hence the name. A theory, confirmed in a 2011 article written by Dr. Ethan Russo and published in the British Journal of Pharmacology, proved cannabinoids synergistically work with one another, and the effects of full spectrum CBD could last much longer than they might with CBD isolate. Examples of some other cannabinoids that may be present in these types of CBD products include THC, THCA, CBDA, CBN, CBG, CBC, CBV, THCV, CBDV, CBGV, CBGM, CBE, and CBT, each of which has its own set of beneficial effects.

Full Spectrum CBD and the Entourage Effect

It’s important to know what the ‘entourage effect’ is, because this chemical phenomenon will occur inside your body if you consume full spectrum CBD. Full spectrum CBD contains a variety of cannabinoids, and it retains other plant compounds, including terpenes like caryophyllene, humulene, limonene, myrcene, and pinene. Full spectrum products will also contain an abundance of flavonoids. These phytonutrients possess antioxidants with anti-inflammatory and immune system benefits. When these chemicals react with one another, it increases the beneficial effects of CBD.

Full spectrum CBD Without a Prescription

Just like CBD isolate, full spectrum CBD does not have mind-altering effects because the psychoactive compound THC is not present in high quantities. When produced using industrial hemp, full spectrum products may not contain more than 0.3 percent THC. Because of this, a prescription for full spectrum CBD is not required in all 50 U.S. states.

Full Spectrum CBD Coupled with Some Active Ingredients has Shown Promise to Naturally Alleviate Discomfort

Pain-relieving medications may cause dependency, addiction, and, in many cases, unwanted side effects. Full spectrum CBD, when put together with other active ingredients, can possibly present an all-natural solution for inflammation and chronic pain issues. One study on cannabinoids demonstrated significant pain reduction in mice that were administered full spectrum CBD. The research showed positive results without causing lingering effects the next day, something pharmaceutical-based pain relievers are known for causing.

Full Spectrum CBD Has Been Shown to Curb Cravings

A study revealed that nicotine cravings could be curbed when smokers replace tobacco cigarettes with CBD vaporizers. Published in the journal Addictive Behaviors by a group of researchers from the University of London, the study suggested that CBD consumption led to a lower rate of tobacco use. Since full spectrum CBD can be vaped, phytocannabinoids and phytonutrients are absorbed through the lungs quickly. Some users can experience their calming effects within minutes.

Anthony Franciosi


Anthony Franciosi is the founder of Honest Marijuana Company, which utilizes all-natural cultivation methods to produce only the finest organic and eco-conscious cannabis products.

“Full spectrum CBD is a concentrate that contains all the chemical compounds including cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, essential oils, and others that naturally occur in the cannabis plant…”

In a raw (or dried and cured) cannabis plant, all of these chemicals cohabitate together like a big pile of multi-colored LEGO bricks. Each color represents a specific chemical in the cannabis plant. For example, black is THC, yellow is limonene (a terpene), green is CBN, red is humulene (another terpene), blue is CBD, white is myrcene, and so on. That’s the entourage effect in action. The term used to describe the entourage effect is “synergy.” It’s the interaction or cooperation of two or more substances to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects. So, when you purchase a full spectrum CBD product, you get all the other chemicals as well – including, possibly, THC. Though THC levels in a full spectrum CBD product will probably be low, there might be enough of the psychedelic cannabinoid to make you feel a little strange. Always check the label before taking any full spectrum CBD product.

Full spectrum CBD is best for individuals who:

  • Live in a state where cannabis is legal and grown locally
  • Have been prescribed a specific CBD-to-THC ratio by their doctor
  • Suffer from conditions that broad spectrum CBD and CBD isolate won’t treat

You might be wondering why full spectrum CBD would be better than the more potent CBD isolate in some cases. To put it as simply as possible, it’s because full spectrum CBD contains more chemicals. The full combination of chemicals in the cannabis plant work together to produce a synergistic effect – an effect greater than the sum of their separate effects. For example, THC is an ideal treatment for appetite loss, while CBD helps to lessen anxiety. You can’t substitute CBD for THC and expect to get your appetite back. The two are not interchangeable, and by themselves, they each have a unique effect. But put them together, and suddenly you have a wide variety of treatments and effects available. From depression and OCD to arthritis and migraines, the combination of THC, CBD, terpenes, and other cannabis compounds makes these treatments possible.

That’s why full spectrum CBD may be better than broad spectrum, and even CBD isolate, when it comes to treating a wider variety of issues.

Michael Gray

Michael Gray is the Director of Marketing at Spectrum EQ and an investor in real estate and industrial hemp.

“Science and consumers alike are gaining more understanding about all the beneficial elements the hemp plant has to offer…”

No longer is cannabidiol (CBD) the only cannabinoid in the hemp plant perceived as beneficial. These days, CBG, CBC, CBN, and hundreds of other cannabinoids have been found to offer many benefits to our health and well-being. Educated consumers are looking beyond the number of milligrams of CBD to find the benefits of full spectrum products. I believe the next phase in science exploration and consumer understanding will be whole plant hemp extracts, which not only have a full spectrum of cannabinoids but also bring out all of the terpenes, flavonoids, and other beneficial elements the hemp plant has to offer.

Jamie Bacharach


Jamie Bacharach is a Licensed Medical Acupuncturist and the Head of Practice at Acupuncture Jerusalem in Israel.

“Full spectrum CBD is a type of CBD which is created by extracting a complete profile of cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant…”

Full spectrum CBD does contain THC and is advisable for people looking for the most effective way to consume CBD, as it will contain the full profile of compounds which can work together to achieve the best results. Full spectrum CBD is similar to whole plant CBD, although whole plant CBD is not as refined and generally contains more byproducts, such as fats and waxes.

Leslie Hoffman


Leslie Hoffman is the CEO at Asheville Hemp Project.

“It is important to understand what is meant by ‘full spectrum,’ as well as ‘broad-spectrum’ or any of the other descriptions related to the processing of hemp, in order to select the right products for your use…”

Isolate further refines hemp to include only CBD, with none of the other beneficial compounds left. The whole plant contains many compounds that are useful in achieving the desired effect of using CBD, including other cannabinoids and terpenes. They work very well together, often referred to as an ‘entourage effect,’ providing maximum benefit and effect.

Since it requires extra processing to eliminate any of the compounds, most of us would prefer a full spectrum. If you are a rare person who cannot tolerate any THC, including the minuscule legal limit (0.3%), then you may prefer to ensure you’re not taking any THC by using a more processed CBD product. Also, the question of taste is involved when ingesting, as full spectrum CBD does have a flavor. Many of us appreciate that flavor, and yet some do not.

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