Full spectrum vs broad spectrum cbd

Full-Spectrum vs. Broad-Spectrum CBD: What’s the Difference?

CBD has been a favorite in the health and wellness scene since it first hit, with evidence that it may be able to improve a range of conditions and symptoms. 

You might be familiar with CBD’s potential effects on sleep, pain, and depression, but did you know that there are different types of CBD extract?

CBD is not a one size fits all product. There are different CBD products you can choose from to suit your individual needs. If you’re looking for a CBD product that contains more than just CBD, it’s essential to know the difference between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD. 

Full-Spectrum CBD

While CBD may be most well-known as a cannabis compound, you don’t have to consume cannabis to get CBD. CBD is available in a range of concentrates and isolates, one of those being full-spectrum CBD. 

Full-spectrum CBD is an extract containing CBD but also other compounds found in cannabis, such as terpenes and other cannabinoids. An easy way to remember the difference is that full-spectrum of cannabis compounds are found in full-spectrum CBD. 

Because full-spectrum CBD contains such a wide variety of cannabis compounds, you can expect to find THC, the most prominent cannabinoids in cannabis. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the compound responsible for the psychoactive high associated with cannabis.

Other compounds that could be found in full-spectrum CBD include the cannabinoids CBG and CBN, terpenes, flavonoids, and a range of fatty acids. 

Full-spectrum CBD can come in many different forms, and the best consumption method for you will be based on your needs and personal preferences. From vapes to edibles to throat sprays, there are many choices for how to take full-spectrum CBD. 

Benefits and Uses

CBD is an impressive compound, and research shows that it has the potential to improve the symptoms of anxiety, depression, inflammation, pain, and sleep disorders (1, 2, 3, 4, 5). 

Since full-spectrum CBD contains more than just CBD, you are likely to experience different health benefits than if you just consumed CBD isolate.

Compounds such as THC, CBG, terpenes, and flavonoids have been shown to have a gastroprotective effect, reduce lung inflammation, act as a neuroprotector, act as an antibacterial, and improve brain function, as well as a range of other health benefits (6), 7, 8, 9, 10).

Full-Spectrum CBD and the Entourage Effect 

Aside from their individual benefits, the compounds in full-spectrum CBD may also work together to create what is known as the “entourage effect.” 

The theory behind the entourage effect is that cannabis compounds are more potent when taken alongside other naturally occurring cannabis compounds. The entourage effect may make it possible for you to experience more substantial health benefits while using full-spectrum CBD (11). 

Broad-Spectrum CBD 

As a CBD extract, broad-spectrum CBD may sound a lot like full-spectrum CBD, but there is one key difference between the two. Broad-spectrum CBD does not contain any THC. 

While broad-spectrum CBD contains many of the same compounds as full spectrum-CBD, such as terpenes and other cannabinoids, you won’t find THC in broad-spectrum CBD. 


Like full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD can be found in many forms and can be taken in a variety of ways. The broad-spectrum concentration level and consumption method you choose will depend on the strength, length, and speed of the effects that you want. 

Benefits and Uses

Broad-spectrum CBD is likely to induce many of the same health effects as full-spectrum CBD without the benefits, psychoactive effects, and drawbacks of THC. 

These potential benefits may include analgesia, reduced inflammation, improved cognitive functioning and mood, protective qualities, and improved sleep (12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17). 

While broad-spectrum CBD is missing THC, you may still experience an entourage effect from the combined effects of the other compounds present in broad-spectrum CBD. 

There is also some benefit for taking a product that does not include THC. THC has been found to potentially increase the risk of psychosis in patients with a history or susceptibility to certain mental health disorders (18, 19). While THC has also been found to induce a range of positive health effects, it’s psychoactive effects should be taken seriously, and depending on where you live, THC can also cause some legal difficulties. 

Because of this, one of the potential benefits of broad-spectrum CBD is that you avoid any of the possible adverse effects of THC. 

Which Is Better? 

Choosing between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD comes down to your personal preferences. 

Both full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD have the potential to induce a range of health benefits because of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds they contain. 

The main difference between the two extracts is THC. 

Those who benefit from THC and are seeking the effects of the cannabinoid in addition to CBD and other compounds will likely prefer full-spectrum CBD. Those who are at risk of psychosis or wish to avoid the psychoactive effects of THC will likely benefit more from consuming broad-spectrum CBD. 

Another vital comparison between full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD is their legality. Federal regulations require CBD products to contain no more than 0.3% THC. So, under federal law, broad-spectrum CBD and full-spectrum CBD that is under the 0.3% THC threshold is legal. 

The Bottom Line 

CBD extracts are an easy and effective way to consume CBD and other compounds, without having to consume cannabis.

Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD are similar in that they are CBD extracts that also contain other compounds that naturally occur in cannabis. However, while full-spectrum CBD contains the full range of compounds, broad-spectrum CBD doesn’t contain THC. 

Both of these extracts can induce a range of health benefits. Deciding which one is better for you will likely depend on how you tolerate THC and your general opinion on it.

**Standard Disclaimer: CBD is not FDA-approved. We make no such claims that using our products will guarantee relief. Moreover, research regarding CBD is still ongoing and in the early stages.**

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