Components of the Cannabis Plant and the Difference between Full-Spectrum and Broad-Spectrum CBD

There are more than 120 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, including CBD and THC, that influence the therapeutic and psychoactive effects of cannabis products. In addition, the plant contains hundreds of other components that also offer various benefits. Among these are terpenes and flavonoids.

Terpenes are organic compounds found in the essential oils of plants. They are what give different varieties of cannabis their distinctive aromas and flavours, such as citrus, mint and pine. There are more than 150 terpenes in the cannabis plant, and their development is influenced by many factors, including climate, age and maturation, soil type and fertilisers. Their therapeutic benefits include helping to induce sleep and relax muscles, reducing stress and increasing energy.

Cannabis also includes about 20 different flavonoids. Flavonoids are found in all kinds of plants, including fruits, vegetables and grains. Like terpenes, they have therapeutic effects. Studies have shown that the flavonoids found in cannabis have anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and neuroprotective properties.

Full-spectrum CBD includes terpenes and flavonoids, as well as THC at very low levels (less than 0.3%). These active compounds work together to enhance the benefits of the individual cannabinoids. When these compounds and cannabinoids work synergistically like this, they produce what is known as the ‘entourage effect’.

The entourage effect refers to cannabis components working together to boost or intensify the benefits of hemp. Other than CBD and very small levels of THC, full-spectrum extracts also contain small amounts of other cannabinoids, including CBN and CBG.

By comparison, broad-spectrum CBD contains the same compounds as full-spectrum, apart from the THC, which is removed. As broad-spectrum CBD still contains all the different cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids, it can still generate the entourage effect, just without the THC.

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