CBD products have grown to be widely accepted in the market today. These products have various uses and are available in a wide range of strains and through different extraction processes. Two of the most common variations of this product are CBD distillate and full spectrum CBD. Use this guide to educate your decision on the right product that will achieve your desired effect.
CBD distillate is heavily refined cannabis oil. It undergoes extensive processing to isolate the specific compounds resulting in a cannabinoid-dominant substance.
The process starts with the extraction of cannabis oil from the plant. Various extraction methods are used for this, such as CO2 and hydrocarbon extraction. Vacuum filtration is also used to remove the wax from the raw cannabis oil. The refined cannabis oil goes through a distillation system that separates the different fractions in the oil based on their molecular weight.
The cannabinoid fraction that is derived from this process is what is bottled as distillate. The distillate can be sold as is or enhanced with flavorings when used for vape pods and cartridges. CBD distillate may contain trace amounts of THC. The manufacturer also has plenty of control over the product’s characteristics, such as the taste, look, and smell.
Pros and Cons of CBD Distillate
The high-potency level of CBD is the main advantage of choosing the distillate. The other cannabinoids are removed, resulting in more potent CBD.
In addition, CBD distillate is easy to produce and is cost-efficient to make. The distillation process also uses parts of the cannabis plant that you would otherwise throw away. It can also be created out of low-potency sources. There are many ways to customize CBD distillate, such as adding artificial flavorings to suit your preference.
The main downside to distillate is the CBD taste can be very strong. Many people find the taste unpleasant. Consuming this product can result in negative experiences, so be extra cautious if you use it for the first time. When using distillate, it would help if you were wary of the entourage effect. The entourage effect is the way various substances and compounds interact with each other to produce that feeling of “high.”
Full Spectrum CBD
Full spectrum CBD is what most people refer to when they think of CBD. The plant undergoes an extraction process, but the result is not as refined as distillate. This processing method is preferred because it can preserve the beneficial properties of the cannabis plant.
You feed the cannabis plant into the ethanol extraction system before soaking it in a solvent (typically ethanol). The plant is soaked at various temperatures until the oil is extracted along with its beneficial compounds, such as flavonoids, terpenes, and cannabinoids.
Aside from ethanol extraction, various methods are used to extract full-spectrum oil from the plant, including CO2 extraction and a rosin press. Full-spectrum CBD is not just a good source of cannabinoids, but also has trace amounts of THC.
When buying full-spectrum CBD, ensure you get it only from trusted sources. The regulation of what can be labeled as “full-spectrum” CBD is not very stringent. Therefore, there is no way to ensure that the product is indeed full-spectrum CBD oil.
Pros and Cons of Full Spectrum CBD
Just like CBD distillate, there are certain benefits and drawbacks to choosing full spectrum CBD oil. If you are looking for the medicinal benefits of CBD, then select the full spectrum. It can preserve the beneficial properties of the various compounds in the plant. In fact, this is what experts recommend for anyone who wants to experience the entourage effect of CBD.
The downside to full spectrum CBD is that the oil is not as potent as it is in distillate form. It is also challenging to produce and, therefore, more expensive. You will need a more significant amount of cannabis plant to achieve the same potency level as distillate.
CBD Distillate vs Full Spectrum CBD
Knowing the different properties and characteristics of each type of CBD product, the next question is, how do you choose the right type of product to use?
It depends on the type of experience and result you want to get from the product. CBD distillate goes through a refinement process that makes the yield ultra-potent. The distillation process allows you to isolate the desired compounds and make them more concentrated in effect.
On the other hand, full spectrum CBD does not undergo the refinement that would remove the THC content. Consuming this type of CBD product will likely produce the entourage effect.
Initially, it appears that a full spectrum CBD is the promising choice of the two. However, every extraction batch is different, resulting in varying experiences. This can make it unpredictable and tricky to use because you’ll never know what kind of experience you will have.
On the other hand, the distillate is more consistent, and the result is standardized. You can expect the same result every time you use it. Incorporating artificial flavoring also enhances the taste and makes it more pleasant to use. The distillate is intended for commercial purposes or those seeking a recreational high, whereas full spectrum CBD is suited for its medicinal use. In particular, full spectrum oil is considered a reliable treatment for mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. This is also the product that is used for managing seizures.
Choosing between the two CBD products depends on personal taste and needs. It takes a process of trial and error to determine the right product for your desired effect. If you get any of these products, make sure you have the option to customize the strength of the cannabinoid.