What Does Full-Spectrum CBD Mean?

CBD, cannabidiol, is a hot topic and I don’t see it going away anytime soon, especially as more people come to understand and feel the beneficial effects cannabidiol has on the body. However, CBD is only part of the story – it’s just one of over 100 different beneficial cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. The name “full-spectrum CBD” (aka: whole plant CBD) indicates it contains everything the plant contains.

Since the discovery of the body’s endocannabinoid system, it has been called possibly the most important physiologic system involved in establishing and maintaining human health. Here are the three primary ways the endocannabinoid system is influenced.

What Does Full-Spectrum CBD Mean?

A full-spectrum CBD oil contains all the cannabinoid strains, terpenes, flavonoids and fatty acids found naturally in the cannabis plant. Here's more about what terpenes are and what they do. While CBD appears to play the most significant role in hemp’s health benefits, you want a product with a variety of different cannabidiol strains, such as cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerols (CBG), cannabichromenes (CBC) and cannabinodiol (CBL). This is crucial because the different cannabinoids work together synergistically – a concept known as the entourage effect.

A full spectrum CBD oil is different than a CBD isolate product, which is 99.9% pure CBD, so it’s missing the health benefits created due to the entourage effect.

The Entourage Effect For CBD Oil

The entourage effect is a phenomenon that occurs when substances are more effective in their whole and natural state, versus being extracted into separate parts. This explains how the cannabis plant works – all the compounds within the hemp plant interact in the body to produce a stronger influence compared to consuming any one of the compounds alone – it’s a synergistic effect.

The main components involved in the entourage effect include cannabinoids, flavonoids, terpenes and fatty acids. For this reason, always look for WHOLE PLANT full spectrum CBD oil. Ask the company you’re buying from if the product is full spectrum. Here are my top priorities when buying and producing a CBD product.  

Check out how the terpenes and flavonoids in CBD oil impact your health. 

Kelly Harrington, MS, RDN

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for Healthy Goods

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