Understanding The Types of CBD

The CBD market is filled with false advertisement and non-educational resources to help gather information regarding hemp and cannabis. At &Sunny, we are trying to change the market to help consumers be more informed.

Within the Cannabis plant, there is a classification of compounds known as “Cannabinoids.” Among these are CBD (Cannabidiol) and THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), along with over a hundred others which naturally occur within cannabis plants (eg: marijuana and hemp). There are different plant extraction methods that yield three types of what is commonly known as CBD: Full-Spectrum, Broad-Spectrum, and CBD Isolate. Understanding the differences among these can help you, as the consumer, make educated purchase decisions. To learn more about the difference between CBD oil and hemp oil (or commonly referred to as hempseed oil), check out our blog: “Hemp Oil vs. CBD oil: Common Misconceptions.”



Full-Spectrum hemp oil is an extract that contains all naturally occurring compounds found in the plant including trace cannabinoids, terpenes, nutrients, and more. Terpenes are natural essential oils found in all plants, flowers, vegetables and herbs (think about a lemon: what you’re really smelling is the terpene limonene). So, what are the cannabinoids contained within full spectrum hemp oil? On a molecular level, all classes of cannabinoids are derived from the cannabinoid Cannabigerol (CBG) before being synthesized into various other cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are changed from their original acid forms by decarboxylation through heat, light, or alkaline conditions, allowing them to interact fully with the endocannabinoid system [1]. Think of decarboxylation as picking a grape from the bunch. Once you pick the grape off, the bunch now has a different weight and is now technically a different cluster of grapes. It is a process which removes carbon atoms from a carbon chain to create a new carbon chain and thus a new molecule. Full-Spectrum hemp oil contains CBD, CBG, CBN, THC, and all minor cannabinoids within the cannabinoid spectrum. When purchasing full-spectrum products, you should be aware that these products may contain THC and can not be labeled as “THC free.” To be legally sold as Full-Spectrum, the product must contain less than the statutory limit for THC, which is 0.3%. Even though Full-Spectrum is below 0.3% THC concentration, high dosing or multiple doses can have a cumulative affect which can lead to psychoactive feelings. This is called the “entourage effect” [5].

Broad-Spectrum  (What we use at &Sunny)

Broad-spectrum hemp oil contains the full list of cannabinoids, nutrients, vitamins, minerals, flavonoids, terpenes, and other compounds that are native to the hemp plant, except for measurable amounts of THC [2]. Broad-Spectrum hemp oil is a bit of a mix between Full-Spectrum and CBD Isolate. Like Full-Spectrum, all the naturally occurring compounds found within the plant are preserved in the extract. However, like CBD Isolate, THC is completely removed to the testable limit. Because Broad-Spectrum contains multiple cannabinoids, it can deliver the enhanced benefits of Full-Spectrum without the risk of psychoactive effects of THC. Just like Full-Spectrum, to be legally considered Broad-Spectrum, the extract must contain less than 0.3% THC by dry weight. We use Broad-Spectrum hemp oil at &Sunny which is extracted beyond 0.3% (almost down to 0.005%) and tested by an ISO certified independent third party laboratory.

CBD Isolate

In scientific terms, an isolate is the purest form of a compound, which is produced by singularly extracting that compound from its environment and isolating it from all other compounds [3]. CBD isolate is the purest form of CBD, which is produced by removing all naturally occurring compounds found in the plant including terpenes, flavonoids, plant parts, and other cannabinoids. This means when you use products with Isolate, you are not receiving all the benefits from the cannabinoids found in Broad-Spectrum and Full-Spectrum oils. CBD isolate is a crystalline solid or powder comprising pure CBD. To produce CBD isolate, manufacturers use various processes to extract all the compounds and other substances from the cannabis plant, including THC. The process leaves behind pure CBD in crystal form. Manufacturers may then grind the crystals into a powder to make the product easier to consume. CBD isolate does not have a distinctive smell or taste. [4].

Full-Spectrum vs. Broad-Spectrum vs. CBD Isolate

In Summary, Full-Spectrum contains all the naturally occurring compounds within the plant, including all the cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, THC, and more. Isolate is a pure form of CBD, which does not contain any other cannabinoids, terpenes, or flavonoids. Broad-Spectrum gives you the benefits of the wide range of cannabinoids that Full-Spectrum offers but without THC, therefore not producing the possible psychoactive effects. At &Sunny, we carefully chose the best Premium Grade Broad-Spectrum hemp oil to include in our products. We wanted to offer the benefits of all the Cannabinoids without any psychoactive properties.

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[1] “What Is Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil?” Medical Marijuana, Inc., 13 May 2020, www.medicalmarijuana.com/full-spectrum-hemp-oil/.

[2] “What Is Broad Spectrum CBD Oil?” Medical Marijuana, Inc., 28 Feb. 2020, www.medicalmarijuanainc.com/what-is-broad-spectrum-cbd-oil/.

[3] Cadena, Aaron. “Full Spectrum vs Broad Spectrum vs CBD Isolate: The Difference Explained.” Medium, CBD Origin, 19 Mar. 2019, www.medium.com/cbd-origin/full-spectrum-vs-broad-spectrum-vs-cbd-isolate-the-difference-explained-a09e415bf235

[4] “CBD Isolate: Uses, Effects, and Benefits.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 11 Mar. 2020, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/cbd-isolate#what-it-is.

[5] “Entourage Effect.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 1 Aug. 2020, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entourage_effect.


Author: Katrina Harren

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"I created &Sunny because I was intimidated by many of the products out there. I believe women's wellness should be simple - most of our base ingredients can be found in your home pantry."

Rachelle Slotnick, Founder of &Sunny