Full Spectrum Versus Isolate CBD - What's the Difference?

So Many CBD Choices, What Do I Do?

With so many CBD products entering the market these days, consumers can feel overwhelmed. I am frequently asked, "Which CBD product is best?" and "How much should I take?" or "What are the differences between full spectrum versus isolate CBD?" In this post, I'm going to break down a few of the most common questions, and specifically talk about the differences between full-spectrum and isolate CBD. But first, let's look at how CBD works on the body in order to set the stage for understanding which type is best for you.

CBD in the Endocannabinoid System

Our bodies are incredibly complex, we are still discovering entirely new systems and evolving our understanding of how the known systems function. The key system being acted on by CBD is the Endocannabinoid system (ECS), which has receptors in your brain as well as throughout the body. While we now know what the system is that CBD affects, its existence is a relatively new medical discovery.

The first cannabinoid receptor was found in the brain of a rat in 1988. Scientists discovered exactly where in the brain the effects of THC - the psychoactive cannabinoid - are registered. This led to the burning question, "why do we have these receptors in the first place?" It wouldn't be until 1995 that we would have an answer to that question.  

In 1995, a team of scientists led my Israeli scientist Raphael Mechoulam, would discover that not only were there more cannabinoid receptors in the brain, but that there is an entire system of cannabinoid receptors throughout the body in what became the Endocannabinoid system or ECS for short.  

In the past 50 years, we have learned that the Endocannabinoid system is responsible for maintaining homeostasis throughout the body.  Some of these functions include:

  • Maintaining healthy bone density

  • Maintaining healthy immune system

  • Regulating mood and sleep

  • Regulating peripheral nervous system

These are just a few of the functions attributed to the ECS, but researchers are continuing to discover more as well as how exogenous cannabinoids such as CBD can have meaningful impacts on our health and well being. Now we'll dive into the difference between full spectrum versus isolate CBD.

Full Spectrum versus Isolate CBD 

Now that we understand that our bodies have receptors for binding to CBD molecules knows as "cannabinoids" that regulate normal bodily function, let's look at how the different products on the market act on that system and compare with each other.  

Isolate CBD

CBD Isolate, as the name implies, is literally the isolated CBD molecule from the rest of the cannabinoids that naturally occurs in the hemp plant. Using CBD Isolate, you eliminate any trace amounts of THC, as well as the other cannabinoids like CBG and CBC. The benefit of using isolate versus full spectrum CBD is that you eliminate any risk failing a drug test since you are completely filtering out the THC cannabinoid. However, you also reduce the efficacy of the CBD and require higher doses to achieve the similar results. The downside of CBD isolates will be better understood when we look at Full-Spectrum CBD.

Full Spectrum 

A true full-spectrum CBD, like the CBD used in Windansea Coffee, contains over 100+ cannabinoids and terpenes. Studies have shown there is a synergistic effect between the cannabinoids when they are introduced together in the body. This is referred to as the "entourage effect." CBD's effect on reducing inflammation, shrinking cancer cells, and many other uses, is much greater using a full spectrum CBD than from a CBD isolate, even at a lower dose. The multitude of cannabinoids work together in slightly different ways that produce noticeably better results on inflammation, mood control, appetite, pain, and anxiety. 

Will Full Spectrum Get Me High?

While full-spectrum CBD products do have trace amounts of THC, the federal regulations require that CBD made from industrial hemp contain less than .3% THC in order to be classified as a "Hemp" product and be legal in all 50 states. This strict cutoff at such a low concentration means you will not feel the psychoactive effects of THC in a full-spectrum CBD oil. You will probably still feel a sense of wellness, relaxation, and mild euphoria, associated with the CBD and other cannabinoids interacting with your ECS. 

How Much Should I Take?

While we do not prescribe CBD at any level to cure or prevent any disease, there are many factors to consider when deciding how much CBD to take.  First, its important to realize there is no one-size-fits-all solution with either full spectrum or isolate CBD.

Our bodies are very different from each other and factors like size, weight, age, body composition, and sensitivity to external substances are all variables that determine what is "right" for you. What may be not enough for one person, might be just right for another.

The good news is that since CBD is non-lethal there is no danger in taking too much. However a taking a moderate amount may be more beneficial than taking an excessive amount. We recommend starting with small doses (5mg-10mg once per day) to see how you respond.  If you don't experience any unwanted effects from that size of dose, titrate up slowly to around 20-25mg twice per day. A full-spectrum CBD is going to be the most effective and will not require a larger dosage.

Windansea CBD Coffee comes in two strengths. The Single Fin Original Strength contains approximately 8mg of CBD per cup of coffee and the Double Overhead Double Strength has approximately 16mg of CBD per cup of brewed coffee. Taking CBD with your morning coffee is an easy way to remember to take your CBD daily and integrate it into your routine. It is also a great substitute if dropping bitter oil in your mouth feels like a chore.

Full-Spectrum CBD Coffee | Windansea Coffee

Windansea Coffee allows you to get an effective dose of high quality full-spectrum CBD while you drink your morning coffee, leaving you clear headed, focused, and jitter free.

If you have any questions about full spectrum vs isolate CBD, let us know in the comments!