Many health-conscious people have recently become very interested in the oils of the cannabis plant. The terms cannabis oil and CBD oil are used alternately for cannabis and are sometimes equated. Besides there is also the hemp oil, which has been known for a long time.
Many sources refrain from clarifying the terms and providing clear definitions in this area. Perhaps it has already happened to you that the different terms have confused you. You have probably already asked yourself whether all oils of the cannabis plant are also CBD oils.
The abbreviation CBD stands for cannabidiol. In recent years, this substance has been attracting more and more attention from scientists, doctors and people who are actively working for their health. Scientific studies and user reports describe a variety of potential positive health effects of CBD. But which cannabis oil is the right one for you, if you also want to profit from these positive effects or if you want to test such a CBD product?
In this article, we would like to give you an understanding of the terms and background of the different oils.
THC - the distinguishing feature of cannabis products
Cannabis is the scientific name for the hemp plant. Whoever hears hemp and cannabis often first thinks of intoxication, forbidden substances and marijuana.
It is often overlooked that
- on the one hand, there are different hemp plants
- and on the other hand a variety of products can be obtained from hemp.
For example, ropes are made from the fibers, edible oil can be extracted from the seeds, essential oil can be extracted from the dried leaves and flowers, and the infamous hashish and marijuana can be extracted from dried leaves and resins. Finally, there is the term cannabis oil, which is used in different contexts.
Which substance produces noise and which does not?
A possible intoxicating effect of hemp products is caused by the substance THC. This is an ingredient with the advertised name Tetrahydrocannabinol. It is this substance that is subject to the narcotics law. It is contained in the so-called Indian hemp (Cannabis indica) in larger quantities.
On the other hand, the so-called useful hemp (Cannabis sativa instead of indica) regularly has a THC content of less than 0.2 percent. The cultivation of hemp grown for food or fibre has been legalised in the European Community with the requirement of a reduced level of the substance that produces noise.
This has recently led to a variety of products on the market that are new to many people, especially CBD oils.
The non-psychoactive substance cannabidiol, or abbreviated CBD, is contained in all types of hemp, i.e. in Indian hemp as well as in industrial hemp. When we talk about cannabis oil, this term does not say anything about the amount of certain ingredients in the oil.
Also a cannabis oil, which is very rich in tetrahydrocannabinol and is therefore legally used only on prescription in the strictly medical field, is generally first of all a cannabis oil. Here, contents of the noise-active substance of 50-80 % are not uncommon.
Likewise, the non-psychoactive CBD oil is classified in the category cannabis oil.
The upper handle of the category oil
It is apparent that cannabis oil is the generic term for various oils derived from hemp plants. They are extracted from the leaves and flowers. Here you must not confuse the cannabis oils with hemp oils.
Hemp oils are edible oils obtained from the seeds of the hemp plant. They do not contain any psychoactive substances either, but they do not contain any CBD. Gladly hemp oils for CBD products are used as additive.
If you consider the origin of the different oils in relation to the different hemp plants used, cannabidiols can have been obtained from commercial hemp as well as from Indian hemp. However, the classic CBD oil with its very low THC content is extracted from commercial hemp, otherwise it would not be legal.
Not all manufacturers and product suppliers take the possible distinctions in the designations of the products into account.
Nevertheless, this is the first point of reference for you to be able to correctly classify the products on offer. As a health-conscious person you are interested in the legal cannabis oil, which contains mainly cannabidiole. Therefore you ideally speak of CBD oil, so that no misunderstandings can arise.
Content and effects in legal products
CBD belongs to the so-called cannabinoids. When research into the latter group of substances began, scientists discovered that the human body itself produces similar substances and that these are part of a very specific system in our organism. The cannabinoids we produce ourselves are called endocannabinoids and belong to the endocannabinoid system.
All cannabinoids perform certain functions in the signalling systems of human cells. There are specific sites in different parts of the human body, we speak of receptors or receptor sites where cannabinoids dock like ships in port.
These formulations are key points in our organism, which regulate, for example, the sensation and transmission of pain.
Effects in the body's endocannabinoid system
Although the scientific research and studies in this area have not yet been completed, the beneficial effects of CBD in the human body are explained by its ability to interact in the endocannabinoid system. The substance behaves differently at the receptor sites mentioned.
In some cases other substances are inhibited in their effect, in others different effects are caused by signal transmissions at the receptor site.
Accordingly, medical experts in scientific studies and users have so far reported, among other things, on the antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, anxiety-relieving and sleep-promoting effects of cannabidiols.
What is a full spectrum product?
Even if you can now better classify the terms CBD oil and cannabis oil, you may have further reason for confusion. Many suppliers point out with their CBD products that they are so-called full spectrum products? What's it all about?
Cannabinoids and cannabidiols are not contained in the hemp plant in isolation. They are in the company of various other substances, not all of which have yet been researched. It is assumed that several 100 different ingredients are also contained in the hemp varieties.
Standardized extracts with advantages and disadvantages
When talking about the effect of a certain ingredient, such as CBD in cannabis oil, a product can make this substance useful in different ways. For example, the substance can be isolated from the plant and later added to a carrier substance - for example, another oil.
In certain cases, such a substance can even be produced synthetically and can also be added to a carrier substance in a standardised isolated form. In medical applications, such isolated extracts are generally used to ensure the most precise standardization possible and a high proportion of the substance in a constant quantity in a product.
Anyone using a drug must be able to rely on the fact that each batch of the drug contains a consistently high proportion of an active ingredient. On the other hand, it may be precisely this isolation of a particular substance that, due to a particularly intensive dosage and the lack of compensatory accompanying substances, can lead to the undesirable side effects of the substance in drugs.
Synergetic effects in full spectrum products
What can regularly be neglected when isolating a certain ingredient is its interaction with other substances in a natural active ingredient environment, as is also the case in the original plant.
You may be familiar with the claim that it makes a difference to take vitamins by eating a whole apple or to take vitamins in isolated and often synthetic form via food supplements.
Many orthomolecular physicians - specialists in micronutrients - today assume that the embedding of natural vitamins in their normal active ingredient environment is better for absorption into the human organism and also for realizing the potential of micronutrients.
Characteristics in the full spectrum
A very similar problem arises with CBD oil. If we speak of a full spectrum product, then cannabidiol is contained in the oil together with other ingredients of the hemp plant. These are other cannabinoids and a large number of so-called secondary plant substances.
Secondary plant compounds have been enjoying great popularity among scientists and physicians for some time. Originally, they protect the plant from harmful environmental influences such as UV radiation or predators. It was found that many secondary plant compounds can also have positive effects in the human organism.
If CBD is absorbed together with the other substances that naturally surround the cannabidiol in the plant, the so-called entourage effect occurs.
For cannabis products this effect was investigated in a scientific study in 2011.
The entourage effect
The different plant substances work together in full spectrum oil, they interact and synergetic effects unfold. This often affects the so-called bioavailability of substances. By bioavailability we mean the intensity of the absorption capacity for a particular substance.
If, for example, a certain ingredient is not particularly bioavailable to us humans, it may be present in a product in a high dose, but the organism only actually absorbs a fraction of the substance. What is interesting about CBD is that it is present in the plant together with its precursor CBDA. CBDA is an acid that only converts into CBD in a specific process.
In this context, an Israeli study from 2014 showed that a full-spectrum product could significantly increase the anti-inflammatory effect of CBD.
Regulatory issues in the context of different products
It is also important to note that the distinction between a full spectrum product and an isolate in cannabis oil may play a role in regulatory classification. Isolates that have been obtained naturally or produced synthetically usually characterise drugs.
In contrast, full-spectrum products are typical for the food supplement sector, which is one of the food products. This makes sense because you are taking a natural product in a relatively natural form.
However, you should not misunderstand the term full spectrum by assuming that you cannot rely on the stated contents of certain active ingredients in this product. Very specific extraction methods in premium products ensure that the full-value oil contains the stated percentage of CBD.
Here, full spectrum products do not differ noticeably from the so-called isolates. The distinction lies primarily in the active ingredient environment and the other ingredients contained in cannabis oil.
As you can see, no two oils are the same in terms of the extraction method for cannabis.
How do the different products differ in their effect?
In the medical field the effects of cannabidiol and THC combined in one cannabis oil are often used. For the sake of simplicity, THC oils are often referred to, although this preparation may also contain cannabidiole.
THC appears to be particularly well absorbed orally and is particularly pleasant for patients in this dosage. On the other hand, inhalation via smoking the corresponding extracts is not considered optimal from a medical point of view. Especially non-smokers will have a hard time smoking cannabis extracts. Furthermore, side effects on the respiratory organs cannot be ruled out.
Here a cannabis oil is the optimal solution.
Different and overlapping effects
The rushing cannabis oil unfolds an intensive effect. Based on the studies and experience reports available to date, scientists suspect a broad therapeutic spectrum. However, the research is far from being completed, partly because for a long time the law has been very restrictive in the testing of such drugs.
This cannabis oil is used today among other things in
- states of pain
- spastic paralysis and movement disorders
- Epilepsy and other convulsive disorders
- autoimmune diseases
- inflammatory processes
- psychiatric symptoms
- the withdrawal of certain addictive substances
If you are interested in CBD oil and its effects, you probably also have an interest in the corresponding study situation in this area.
Even if the scientific research is far from complete, various focal points for potential applications of this non-psychoactive cannabis oil have also been identified:
Studies so far mainly in the pharmacological field
These studies also originate from the medical field, as CBD oil is now increasingly used in medical and therapeutic applications. Your intention with appropriate dietary supplements is probably also aimed at alleviating various everyday complaints and a precautionary approach.
Research into the positive effects on health, including the prevention of certain complaints, is still in its infancy. Often, users are currently exchanging experiences, which are subject to individual assessment.
The different substances harmonize well with each other
With regard to the effects of the different cannabis oils described so far, there are overlaps. This is not surprising if you recall the processes described above in the body's endocannabinoid system through cannabis.
As described above, the different ingredients of cannabis unfold a number of corresponding effects at specific receptor sites. When comparing the different oil products, however, it must be emphasised again and again that products containing THC have an intoxicating effect and addictive effects also play a role.
The different oil products also differ considerably in regulatory terms. The psychoactive oils are not only available on prescription, but are also subject to the particularly strict requirements of the narcotics law, while CBD oils are legally distributed. So you cannot legally purchase cannabis oil containing THC.
Where is the development heading?
Our small contribution to the different oils of the hemp plant could hopefully answer many of your questions. Since the scientific research of all substances of the cannabis plant is far from being completed, we expect many more findings in this area in the coming years.
Several hundred active substances are waiting to be investigated for possible positive effects and perhaps to be made as useful as cannabidiole. Such a development is already apparent for CBDA. This seems to have positive effects even without CBD in cannabis oil.
The gentle alternative to hemp
We also assume that full-spectrum products in the food supplement sector in particular could continue to play an important role for many people. As a user you benefit from the gentler effects of the hemp plant without having to cope with the side effects of cannabis such as intoxication and addiction. Many users find the absorption of the oils particularly easy and also report rapid positive effects with this cannabis oil.
We would like to emphasize that the advantages of a CBD oil can be perceived differently from one individual to another.
Also, science has not yet found out everything about the body's endocannabinoid system. Further research is also needed to understand the exact interaction of the different cannabinoids.
Self application and medical application side by side?
We suspect that medical and not strictly medical applications of cannabis oil will in the future coexist. For obvious reasons, the psychoactive oil will continue to have a special regulatory status, but the positive effects in medically supervised application will also become more interesting with this oil. Cannabidiol, on the other hand, can help many people in everyday life and in self-administration.
For you it is especially important to understand the term cannabis oil as a term for different oils that are composed of different substances and contain these substances in different concentrations. With this definition in the background it might be easier for you to evaluate corresponding cannabis offers of the different suppliers, especially if so-called full-spectrum products are offered as oil.
Often cannabis oil is used as a general synonym for CBD oil because the oil is currently legally distributed. We nevertheless consider this equation to be rather imprecise and also a little misleading for consumers who are not so familiar with the subject. That is why we also prefer this exact designation for CBD oil.
Note: In this article we report on prescription cannabis, prescription CBD or over-the-counter or legal CBD. This Article does not make any proposal as to the possible purpose of the proposal and is for information and education purposes only. Promises of healing and benefits are excluded.