All your hemp oil and CBD questions, answered. Including, what's the difference, why it matters, and how to decode the label. Hemp vs CBD Oil: Explanation and 4 Best CBD Products It can be challenging to understand products that seem similar, but there are a few key differences between CBD and hemp. Read now.
Hemp vs. CBD: What’s The Difference & Which One Should I Take?
Lindsay Boyers is a nutrition consultant specializing in elimination diets, gut health, and food sensitivities. Lindsay earned a degree in food & nutrition from Framingham State University, and she holds a Certificate in Holistic Nutrition Consulting from the American College of Healthcare Sciences.
Roxanna Namavar, D.O. is an adult psychiatrist focusing on integrative health. She completed her residency training at the University of Virginia Health-System and currently has a private practice in New York City.
Until recently, federal regulation in the U.S. meant that industrial hemp could not be cultivated for commercial use. It wasn’t until the 2018 Farm Bill that farmers could grow and sell hemp plant extracts—namely, hemp oil and CBD oil. Since then, these products have hit the market quickly and with much fanfare, but with increasing popularity comes increasing confusion. If you’re wondering about hemp, CBD, and the difference between the two, here are the top-level highlights.
In This Article
Hemp vs. CBD: The basics.
For starters, let’s go over the differences between hemp and marijuana. These are two different plants from the same family: Cannabis. Cannabis plants contain a variety of different compounds called cannabinoids, the two most well-known (and most studied) are THC and CBD. THC has psychoactive effects, which means it can get you high and is found in high concentrations in marijuana plants. CBD does not have psychoactive effects, and is instead taken for stress management.*
Hemp oil extract, on the other hand, is an oil that’s made from the stalk, and/or flowers of the hemp plant and is rich in beneficial cannabinoid compounds. (It should not be confused with hemp seed oil, an omega-3 rich culinary oil made from pressed hemp seeds that does not contain cannabinoids.) CBD isolate oil, on the other hand, is an isolated extraction of one particular cannabinoid, cannabidiol. So the main difference between hemp oil and CBD oil is that CBD oil contains one type of cannabinoid, while hemp oil has a variety of them.
More on hemp oil.
Hemp oil is safe and legal: It must contain less than 0.3% THC, it is legal in all 50 states, and it will not make you feel you high even in large doses. (Repeat: Hemp oil will not make you high!)
What it will do is give you a dose of beneficial cannabinoids, including CBD. While CBD and THC are the most well-known cannabinoids, the hemp plant contains more than 140 different cannabinoids in total. In addition to the cannabinoids, hemp is also rich in organic compounds called terpenes that give the plant its smell and taste. Each of these cannabinoids and terpenes is associated with various benefits, like supporting sleep, digestion, and immune function.*
While each cannabinoid and terpene is beneficial on its own, all of these compounds are synergistic when taken together—a phenomenon called “the entourage effect.”* That’s what makes hemp oil extract so impressive. As a rich source of cannabinoids, hemp oil extract imparts the entourage effect, meaning you benefit from all the plant compounds.
OK, what about CBD oil?
CBD is the isolated extract of the specific cannabinoid cannabidiol from either the hemp or marijuana plant. CBD oil can be purchased in the isolate form, which means all of the other cannabinoids and terpenes have been filtered out or in the broad- or full-spectrum form, which means some or all of the other cannabinoids remain.
CBD oil that comes from the marijuana plant can contain higher concentrations of THC and get you high. This type of CBD oil is only legal in certain places or under certain circumstances, like with a medical marijuana card. CBD oil extracted from marijuana is often marketed as “cannabis oil.” CBD extracted from hemp contains less than 0.3% THC and will not get you high.
A good way to tell if the CBD oil you’re purchasing is from hemp or marijuana is its availability. Most of the CBD oil that you can buy online and over the counter is the type that comes from hemp since the sale of high-THC CBD oil isn’t legal everywhere or outside of dispensaries.
While CBD does have benefits on its own, like stress management and enhanced sleep quality, it’s missing out on the synergistic benefits of the other cannabinoids and terpenes.* For this reason, many experts recommend whole-plant extracts rather than isolated CBD products. For more, check out our roundup of best CBD products.
So, what’s the difference?
Although they are marketed as being essentially the same thing, hemp oil extract and CBD oil extract do have some important differences. Hemp oil is a cannabinoid-rich extract that contains over 140 beneficial cannabinoids that produce the entourage effect, while CBD oil is an isolated extract of a single cannabinoid.
Hemp vs CBD Oil: Explanation and 4 Best CBD Products
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Over the last few years, CBD oil has become one of the most popular natural remedies on the market. Those who use the cannabinoid say that it offers a wide range of benefits, including pain relief, better sleep, lowered stress and anxiety, and even clearer skin. The best part is that CBD is non-intoxicating and doesn’t cause a high.
As interest in CBD has continued to grow, there’s also been a renewed interest in a similar product, hemp oil. While many people use CBD and hemp oil interchangeably, the fact is that these products are very different. Though they are both extracted from hemp, they have very different effects.
Here’s what you need to know about hemp oil vs. CBD oil. We’ll also discuss some of the best CBD products with hemp oil available today.
Discover’s Best CBD Products:
What is Hemp Oil?
Hemp oil, also known as hemp seed oil, is made by cold-pressing hemp seeds into an oil. The seeds contain very little CBD, THC, and other compounds. However, it does contain a large amount of omega-3 and omega-6 fats, which are some of the healthiest unsaturated fats. The seeds also contain vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium, and B vitamins.
What is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is made by extracting CBD, and other plant compounds, from the stalks, flowers, and leaves of the hemp plant. The extract is then suspended in a carrier oil, such as MCT or hemp seed oil.
Benefits of Hemp Oil vs. CBD Oil
As discussed above, hemp seed oil is rich in several vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids. One of the biggest advantages of hemp oil is that it contains omega-3s and omega-6s, which support heart health. These essential fatty acids may be effective in lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of plaque buildup in the arteries.
But unlike CBD oil, hemp seed oil doesn’t have any therapeutic benefits. Hemp oil doesn’t contain any CBD, so users just benefit from the nutrients that the oil contains.
On the other hand, CBD oil may offer all sorts of benefits, including relief from stress and anxiety, better sleep, effective pain management, and more. So if you’re looking for an oil that offers therapeutic benefits, you’ll want to try CBD opposed to hemp seed oil, which has very little effects.
How Hemp and CBD Oil Are Made
Hemp and CBD oil are also different in terms of how they’re made. Hemp oil is made by cold-pressing hemp seeds. This results in a dark, thick oil that is rich in highly concentrated nutrients.
On the other hand, CBD is extracted using a variety of processes, including CO2 or ethanol extraction. The extract is then suspended in a carrier oil. CBD oil contains all of the plant compounds, including terpenes, other cannabinoids, and flavonoids.
Hemp seed oil is cleared and legal on all levels. It’s an FDA approved compound that can be sold or bought almost anywhere. However, the same can’t be said for CBD oil, which has a lot of legal gray areas.
CBD products were legalized under the 2018 Farm Bill, as long as the product contains less than 0.3% THC. THC is the cannabinoid that causes a high, so CBD products must contain a very low amount to prevent any psychoactive effects.
Because the Food and Drug Administration has not formally evaluated CBD products, the market is widely unregulated.
Tips for Buying CBD Oil
When buying CBD oil, one of the first things to do is to ensure that you’re actually buying a product that contains CBD. Remember, hemp seed and CBD oil are vastly different and have very different side effects.
To ensure you’re buying a CBD product, check the ingredients list for CBD, cannabidiol, or some kind of extract such as full spectrum, broad spectrum, or CBD isolate. If none of these ingredients are listed, then chances are that you’re buying hemp oil and not CBD oil.
When shopping for CBD oil, there are some things you’ll want to look for. Some of the most important details to consider include:
Type of extract. There are three different kinds of extracts that can be used in making CBD oil. These include CBD isolate, full spectrum CBD, and broad spectrum CBD. isolate is the purest form of CBD and is free of other plant compounds. On the other hand, full spectrum CBD contains all of the plant compounds, including THC. Broad spectrum CBD is very similar to full spectrum, the only difference being that all traces of THC have been removed.
THC content. If you buy a product that contains full spectrum extract, pay close attention to the THC content. Trace amounts are unlikely to get you high, and it’s also unlikely that such a small amount will cause you to fail a drug test. However, you only want to buy CBD oil that contains 0.3% THC or less. Otherwise the product is illegal.
Additional ingredients. Many CBD oils are flavored to provide a more palatable experience. On its own, CBD is very earthy and can even have a slightly bitter flavor profile. Aside from flavorings, there are also other ingredients that can be added to CBD oil. For example, some companies add melatonin to improve sleep, while others infuse oils with herbs and botanicals to promote overall health and well-being.
Now that you know the differences between hemp and CBD oil, here are some of the best CBD products that you’ll want to try.
Best CBD Products
Penguin is known for making high quality pure, premium CBD. All products are made with naturally grown hemp and are lab certified, so consumers can buy with confidence. Penguin’s CBD oil is made with refined broad spectrum extract from Oregon grown hemp. Each bottle contains 0% THC and is made to order, so you can enjoy a fresh batch each time.
Aside from CBD extract, Penguin CBD oil is also made with hemp oil, MCT oil, terpenes, and natural flavors. The brand offers delectable flavors, including Citrus, Mint, Strawberry, and Cookies & Cream.
2. Verma Farms
Verma Farms’ Hawaiian-inspired, tropical flavors prove just how delicious CBD oil can be. This brand offers a full collection of CBD oils that are made with broad spectrum CBD. Enjoy pure relaxation with each flavorful drop! Choose between mouth-watering flavors such as Watermelon, Strawberry, Mango, Peach, Pineapple, and others.
Aside from broad spectrum CBD extract, Verma Farms oil also contains MCT oil, terpenes, and hemp oil. All ingredients are gentle on your system and are formulated to keep you feeling your best inside and out.
Not only does this brand sell high quality CBD oil, Verma Farms also sells top of the line gummies, capsules, topicals, and even CBD-infused dried fruit!
3. BATCH CBD
BATCH CBD is your one-stop shop for exceptional full-spectrum CBD products, including an assortment of specially designed oil tinctures, gummies, balms, and gel capsules. BATCH’S full-spectrum products contain all of the naturally occurring cannabinoids found in hemp, including up to .3% THC, so you can experience a fuller range of benefits. All of BATCH’s CBD products are made with high-quality organic Wisconsin hemp and are tested by a third-party lab.
BATCH’s CBD offers multiple CBD Oil tinctures, including their Original CBD Oil Tincture, Dream CBD Oil Tincture, CALM CBD Oil Tincture, CLARITY CBD Oil Tincture, and their GOLD RESERVE BLEND. These CBD oil tinctures are available in a variety of concentrations, from 500mg up to 3000mg, so you can further customize your CBD experience!
4. Joy Organics
Joy Organics is one of the first CBD manufacturers to make tinctures that are made entirely of USDA Certified Organic ingredients. This is a brand that doesn’t compromise on quality, which is why every batch is thoroughly tested to ensure efficacy, safety, and potency.
Joy Organics CBD oil tinctures are available in broad spectrum and full spectrum extracts. The brand also offers some of the best flavors on the market, including Orange Bliss, Fresh Lime, Summer Lemon, and Tranquil Mint.
These CBD oils aren’t made with hemp seed oil. Instead, each bottle contains extra-virgin olive oil and essential oils for flavoring, including peppermint, orange, and others.
If you’re in the market for CBD oil, it’s important to understand the difference between CBD and hemp seed oil. These two oils are often used interchangeably, but they are very different. While both oils are made from parts of the hemp plant, they have very different chemical makeups along with different side effects.
For CBD oil that you can trust, buy from one of the four brands that made our list of best products. These CBD oils are high quality and are thoroughly tested for safety, potency, and efficacy.
What’s the difference between CBD and Hemp?
It can be challenging to understand products that seem similar, but there are a few key differences between CBD and hemp.
The passing of the 2018 Farm Bill allowed for farmers to grow industrial hemp. The legality of cultivating and selling hemp-derived products for commercial use brought immediate growth in the industry. Hundreds of products, such as hemp oil and CBD oil, became available to the masses. But with such a sudden surge of compounds like CBD and hemp available came confusion about the differences between the products.
First, it is important to know that CBD is actually a chemical found within the hemp plant. Comparing CBD to hemp would be like comparing milk to dairy. The two compounds come from the same plant family but they each come from different species within it.
CBD is extracted from different parts of the hemp plant, or any cannabidiol-rich cannabis strain. Before being processed, the product is then heated after being extracted in order to activate the CBD and other cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis. The result is a concentrated CBD extract, which is usually mixed in with a carrier oil and sold as CBD oil. Hemp oil, also known as hemp seed oil, is extracted from only the seeds of the hemp plant.
The main difference between CBD and hemp is the cannabinoid content. Both products come from the same plant, but hemp plants contain a significant amount of CBD, while hemp seeds do not. Since CBD is extracted from different parts of a mature plant it contains cannabinoids, so when ingested the user can feel the effects of it.
Hemp is cultivated for a number of reasons, such as for food products, skincare, and natural remedies for diseases. CBD does not have any psychoactive effects and is ideal for mental health. People often take it for its therapeutic benefits such as anxiety relief, pain management, or for its anti-inflammatory properties. Hemp plant seeds are nutritious and contain healthy fatty acids, making hemp oil ideal for its nutritional and anti-inflammatory benefits and most commonly found in supplements and skincare products.
Hemp and CBD are often words used interchangeably, and even though they come from the cannabis sativa plant and can both be used topically or ingested, it is important to know the differences before using or introducing them into your kitchen.