Full spectrum, broad spectrum, isolate and co.

Common CBD products on the market have various forms, benefits and effects. You wonder which one you should take? This article provides the most important clues for your purchase decision.

Where does CBD come from?

CBD in its natural form practically always comes from the cannabis plant. It can also be artificially produced in the lab through complicated chemical processes, in which case it would be synthetic CBD. But usually CBD products contain natural CBD from cannabis. Important: CBD is not an addictive substance, so it is not prohibited, does not cause a strong feeling of intoxication and is not addictive.

CBD crystals / CBD isolate

The pure, isolated cannabis active ingredient CBD is a white powder. CBD crystals remain after all other ingredients of the cannabis plant have been separated and removed. CBD crystals are therefore pure CBD in a pulverized form.


  • Precise dosage
  • soluble in oil
  • vaporizable in vaporizer

CBD oil

Most CBD oils and hemp drops on the market contain CBD isolate dissolved in vegetable oil. Hemp nut oil is the most common, and sesame oil or coconut oil are often used for mixing.

Advantages of such isolate oils:

  • good CBD bioavailability
  • no THC contained
  • easy handling

CBD full spectrum oil

A cannabis flower contains hundreds of active ingredients. If you extract all the soluble substances from it with a solvent like alcohol, you get a sticky, tarry mixture of waxes, oils, and all the soluble active ingredients and byproducts of the flower. This is called a full-spectrum cannabis extract.

Here, in simplified terms, there are two broad differences:

Raw extract:

A cannabis full-spectrum extract is raw if it comes from CO2 extraction and has not been heated. The extract then contains high levels of cannabinoid acids such as CBDA or CBGA, but few "activated" cannabinoids such as CBD or CBG. This extract is very bitter in taste.

Activated ectract:

The extract is activated if it comes from "hot" alcohol distillation or if it has been specially heated in a precise pattern after extraction. It then contains a lot of cannabinoids and hardly any cannabinoid acids and has a mildly resinous taste. Activated is actually an outdated and somewhat misleading term. The correct term today is decarboxylated.

Conclusion: Full spectrum drops:

In any case, if one mixes such a full-spectrum extract with vegetable oil, one obtains the so-called full-spectrum drops. These rank between crude and decarboxylated, and there are an infinite number of mixing ratios that can be achieved with many different techniques. Often, CBD isolate is also added to increase the CBD content. This is how the extremely large wealth of variants on the market of CBD full-spectrum drops is created.

CBD full spectrum oil thus contains cannabis complete extract mixed with vegetable oil. In some cases, CBD, CBG and/or terpenes are also added.

Cannabinoide & Cannabinoidsäuren

Both cannabinoids and cannabinoid acids are valuable for health. Activated cannabinoids are useful for all ailments related to the nervous system, immune system, organs, muscles, and bones. Raw cannabinoid acids are probably more suitable for problems with the skin as well as in the gastrointestinal tract. This is suggested by observed anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiemetic effects. However, much research needs to be done here to make truly valid claims.

What is broad spectrum?

The active ingredient content of cannabis complete extracts can be further manipulated using various techniques (e.g. controlled heating). In this way, one creates broad-spectrum cannabis products with THC contents approaching zero percent (0.05% or less). These products also still contain abundant other constituents of the cannabis plant. Not as many as full spectrum, but enough for an entourage effect.

Full spectrum and entourage effect

CBD full spectrum drops are characterized by the interaction of the myriad ingredients of the cannabis plant. The contained cannabinoids, cannabinoid acids, terpenes, flavonoids and minerals support and enhance each other's effects. As a result, such drops can have a stronger and more efficient effect than CBD drops with isolate. One can often also dose them lower as a result. This process of interaction is called the entourage effect.

CBD full spectrum drops almost always contain a small amount of the addictive substance THC. This has very many valuable effects. And usually the THC content is so low that it cannot cause any danger in road traffic, nor can it cause any impairment in drivers. However, under adverse circumstances it can lead to problems, e.g. with driving licenses and the like. A certain amount of caution is always required here.