There is a lot of confusion around the differences between CBD Oil and Hemp Oil. Consumers often make purchases thinking they are going to get the benefits of CBD Oil when, in fact, what they are getting are the effects of Hemp Oil. This comprehensive article will clear it up for you!
Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: Navigating the Murky Waters
Both hemp oil and CBD are known to have tremendous health benefits, which has led to a meteoric rise in the popularity of these products. The problem is that the information being shared about hemp and CBD oil can be conflicting, confusing, and even downright false.
The most significant difference between hemp oil and CBD oil is the part of the cannabis plant that provides the oil. Hemp oil comes from hemp seeds, and the oil is a nutrient-dense substance that can also be used in food recipes. CBD oil is extracted from the whole plant, and it contains cannabidiol, which has a variety of health benefits, ranging from improving mood to reducing pain, and countless others.
|Hemp Oil||CBD Oil|
|Made from pressing hemp seeds and extracting the oil||Made by extracting oil from the hemp plant|
|Excellent source of plant-based protein||Helps regulate biological functions, including mood, pain, appetite, hormones, sleep, immune system, etc.|
|High in Vitamin E, magnesium, and omega fatty acids||Contains high amounts of CBD|
|Contains little to no CBD or any other cannabinoids||Can be called a variety of names, including cannabinoid oil and hemp-derived CBD oil|
|Has nutritional and industrial uses||Primarily used for medicinal purposes|
What It Is
What CBD & Hemp Oil Are
Both CBD oil and hemp oil come from the same plant: The Cannabis sativa L. plant. The difference stems from which part of the plant the oil comes from.
Hemp oil is derived from the seeds of the plant, so it is sometimes (though not always) referred to as hemp seed oil. CBD oil, on the other hand, is made from the whole cannabis plant and its flowers. Therefore, its CBD content is highly concentrated.
What is Hemp Oil?
Hemp oil is the oil that’s formed by pressing hemp seeds. It has a variety of applications, from cooking oil and body care products to industrial applications like fuel, ink, paint, and plastic. It’s important to note that hemp oil contains no THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive element in cannabis that has intoxicating effects.
Hemp seeds contain almost no CBD, so if you’re looking specifically for the health benefits that come from consuming CBD oil, then hemp oil is not going to help. It’s important to understand this distinction because you can’t necessarily rely on the expertise of a shop clerk or the description on a product’s website to steer you in the right direction.
What is CBD Oil?
Short for cannabidiol, CBD is a compound found in the cannabis plant. It is one of only hundreds of cannabinoids present in the plant, and it has been documented in several studies to help with pain, seizures, depression, and anxiety.
Some of the current confusion about the difference between CBD and hemp oil has to do with the labeling and how companies name the products. There’s another player to watch out for as you shop for CBD oil, and that’s cannabis oil. Cannabis oil can contain high concentrations of CBD, THC, or both. The issue with THC-containing CBD oil is that it can have a psychoactive effect, meaning you’ll get “high” when you consume it.
The Origins of CBD Oil and Hemp Oil
Though cannabis as a medicinal treatment has been around for thousands of years, the recent discoveries made by modern scientists have given rise to the movement we see today.
Though cannabis was a widely used medicine throughout the world in the 19th century, tumultuous times in the U.S. during the early 20th century caused the treatment to fall out of favor. Concerns about THC’s psychoactive elements and the inability to separate that compound from other cannabinoids caused CBD and hemp oil to undergo an uphill battle before gaining legal and societal acceptance.
A Brief History of Hemp Oil
Humans began cultivating hemp more than 10,000 years ago in Asia, specifically a region that is now Taiwan. Its original use was for conditioning soil. As hemp leaves fell to the ground, their nutrients fertilized the crops, while absorbing excess run-off water.
A couple of thousand years later, the Chinese discovered hemp’s usefulness for building materials, clothing, and a nutrient-dense food source. The ancient Chinese were also the first to use hemp oil for medicinal purposes. Around 2737 B.C., written record shows that the Chinese Emperor, Shen-Nung, used hemp oil for medicinal teas to treat pain. It was also found to help skin rashes and other irritations.
A Brief History of CBD Oil
CBD oil’s history is relatively shorter but still longer than you might expect. In 1940, a Harvard chemist first extracted CBD from the Cannabis sativa plant. Half a dozen years later, animal experimentation began, and it was shown that CBD didn’t alter one’s mental state. By the 1960s, researchers formulated the first CBD oil made for therapeutic use.
Despite this rapid development, scientists struggled to identify which cannabinoid structures caused each effect. Within a few years, researchers made significant progress while also making the landmark discovery that CBD oil could be an effective seizure-reduction treatment for people suffering from epilepsy.
Myths About CBD Oil
1. The CBD industry is unregulated, which makes CBD products untrustworthy.
For now, there is no federal legislation regulating CBD production or sale. Some companies are taking advantage of this lack of regulation to sell products with quality issues, but that doesn’t mean all CBD products are untrustworthy; brands such as Charlotte’s Web and Foria sell top-quality CBD products.
2. CBD does not work.
CBD works if you are using it to treat something specific, such as inflammation or anxiety. If you use CBD for fun, you might not notice any health differences.
3. More CBD is better.
CBD is generally safe, but using it excessively can lead to adverse side effects. Get the best results by using the recommended method of application and taking proper doses.
4. CBD has no side effects.
Keeping it simple, CBD is not for everyone—especially pregnant and lactating women and people on specific prescription medication. Depending on your physiology, using CBD in extreme doses may cause reduced appetite, nausea, or lethargy.
Myths About Hemp Oil
1. CBD is the same as hemp oil.
A close look at hemp oil vs. CBD oil will show both products are not the same. Pure hemp oil does not contain as many cannabis compounds as full-spectrum CBD oil, which is why hemp oil cannot cause the entourage effect, but CBD oil can.
2. Hemp oil will get you high.
Quality hemp oil extracted from a hemp plant will not get you high. Unlike other cannabis plants, hemp plants do not contain enough THC to trigger a psychotropic reaction. But if your hemp oil is from a cannabis plant and it is not well-refined, there might be enough THC to get you high. Play it safe by buying all your hemp oil from reliable sources.
3. THC Will Show in Drug Tests.
Quality hemp oil should contain less than 0.3% THC. THC will not show up on a drug test unless it is over 1%.
4. Hemp oil is not safe.
Quality hemp oil in high doses is not toxic. However, not every physiology is compatible with hemp oil, so it is best to consult your doctor before experimenting with it.
How Its Made
How is Hemp Oil Made vs. How CBD Oil is Made
When hemp is being grown specifically to use the seeds, the plants tend to be shorter, and they’ll be carefully selected to ensure that the THC content is low. By law, THC content must be below 0.3 percent. Farmers also look for hemp plant varieties with seeds that contain more oil by weight.
When the seeds begin to break open, it’s time for harvest. If the hemp is being used for fiber or another application, then the harvest time will vary. However, when it’s being made for consumption, the next step is to use a machine to press the seeds and extract the oil. If you’ve ever seen a cold press juicer or juice extractor, then the process is nearly identical.
Because CBD oil is made from the entire Cannabis plant, including the stalk, the process of extracting oil is radically different. There are two ways that manufacturing facilities create CBD oil from the plant materials:
CO2 Extraction – convert CO2 to a liquid in a process called supercritical CO2 extraction. This technology is also used in coffee production to make decaffeinated coffee and, it’s also used in extracts like vanilla and almond.
CO2 extraction doesn’t always do as good of a job at extracting the cannabinoids as a solvent-based extraction process as it’s not as precise. The longer cycle times also reduce the yield, making this process less favorable.
Solvent-based extraction – This process uses butane and propane to bind to the desired cannabinoids and terpenes present in the plant. Larger operations that need to scale and work with more than 1,000 pounds per day of plant material may choose to use chilled ethanol for their extraction process.
Benefits of CBD Oil vs. Hemp Oil
Because CBD oil and hemp oil are derived from different parts of the plants, they have a different nutritional profile. As a result, they’ll produce different effects on the body, and they each have unique benefits. Once you understand the benefits of each, you’ll be able to make a smart choice when it comes to choosing either CBD oil or hemp oil.
The Benefits of Using CBD Oil over Hemp Oil
CBD oil is made from the whole plant and the flowers of the hemp plant, causing it to have a high concentration of CBD. This type of oil is purported to offer a variety of health and wellness benefits, making it the preferred choice over hemp seed oil if you’re looking for a product with medicinal properties.
Studies show that CBD is effective in treating the following:
- Pain & inflammation: People have been using cannabinoids to treat pain for centuries. CBD helps reduce chronic pain by influencing endocannabinoid receptor activity in the human body. It also helps with reducing inflammation, which makes it an effective treatment for joint pain. Further studies indicate that CBD better alleviates pain when used with THC.
- Epilepsy: People have been using CBD to treat refractory epilepsy for decades. Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved CBD for treating seizures caused by Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), Dravet syndrome, or tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC).
- Sleep: CBD promotes better sleep by relieving stress and anxiety, which puts you in a calmer state of mind. Not only does CBD help people fall asleep, studies show that it helps with staying asleep, as well.
- Arthritis: Because of its anti-inflammatory effects, CBD can help minimize the discomfort from arthritis. You can use CBD to treat arthritis by consuming it orally or massaging the oil over the affected area to lower the pain and inflammation.
The Benefits of Using Hemp Oil over CBD Oil
Even though hemp oil doesn’t contain CBD, it does have numerous other health benefits. One of the most well-studied of these benefits is its effect on the skin. When ingested orally, hemp seeds’ concentration of omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) helps hydrate and moisturize the skin from the inside out.
A pivotal study from 2005, published in the Journal of Dermatological Treatment found that patients who took hemp seed oil for 20 weeks had significant reductions in skin dryness and itchiness.
Hemp seed oil also contains vital nutrients for overall health, including:
- Vitamin E
- Linoleic acid
- Omega-3 fatty acids
The high concentration of fatty acids has also been linked to improving brain health and heart health. In one study published in Nutrition & Metabolism, researchers theorized that hemp seed oil could have multiple positive effects on the heart, including reducing blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is responsible for maintaining homeostasis in these systems. For example, if you are in a car accident and injure your back, then the ECS begins going to work on returning you back to “normal.” Your body’s endocannabinoids bind to the receptors where your system needs them most to fight pain and inflammation while restoring health and function.
Scientists are still working out exactly how CBD-containing products support this system, but it’s believed that CBD oil can either increase your body’s endocannabinoids or prevent your natural endocannabinoids from breaking down. Another theory is that CBD binds to a receptor that we haven’t discovered yet.
How to Tell the Difference Between CBD Oil and Hemp Oil
Even though the difference between CBD oil is clear, making the distinction as a consumer can be tricky.
To recap, hemp oil is made from hemp seeds. Though it is healthy and nutritious, it contains no medicinal properties. CBD oil, on the other hand, contains cannabinoids, which are known to support a variety of biological functions, making it a top natural choice for people looking to improve their mood, reduce pain, support their digestion, etc.
The problem is primarily with how these products are labeled and marketed. For example, if you search on Amazon for “CBD oil,” you’ll see hundreds of results for hemp oil that claims to help with mood and inflammation. However, a close look at the label will show that the hemp oil sold on Amazon doesn’t contain any CBD. It’s a very unfortunate experience, and it’s essential to watch out for these pitfalls.
Not all misleading labels are meant to confuse the consumer, however. Sometimes, manufacturers use tricky wording to avoid getting into legal trouble. For example, even though CBD is now legal in all 50 states, it can’t be marketed as a supplement or added to food products. Companies might use the term hemp extract and not CBD specifically to avoid detection from authorities.
Our best advice is to check the label before you buy and look for the following:
- A specific mention of CBD content per serving or per package.
- Third-party lab testing to ensure that what’s on the label is accurate. Look for a Certificate of Analysis (COA) to determine the CBD concentration in a product.
- Country or region of origin so that you know the hemp was grown and processed in a place that has manufacturing and environmental regulations.
Types of CBD oil
Now that you are already well informed about CBD and its benefits, you should also know that there are also different types of CBD. Every type serves a different purpose and you should know them before you actually buy any CBD products.
Full-Spectrum CBD Oil
Full-spectrum CBD oil comes from processing the whole cannabis plant. It contains all the compounds you can get from consuming every part of a cannabis plant, including Cannabidiol (CBD), Cannabinol (CBN), flavonoids, omega fatty acids, terpenes, and more.
It will also contain Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), but the THC content will depend on the specific product you buy. Because full-spectrum CBD contains all the cannabis compounds, you are likely to experience the entourage effect.
The entourage effect involves all the cannabis compounds working together to improve your physical and mental health. The absence of one or more compounds will reduce the entourage effect and make the product less potent.
Broad-Spectrum CBD Oil
Broad-spectrum CBD is extra refined and contains fewer cannabis compounds than full-spectrum CBD.
Quality broad-spectrum typically contains no THC, making it the ideal choice for those trying to avoid psychoactive effects. It’s also a safer product to buy if you live in a state where THC is illegal.
However, because broad-spectrum CBD contains no THC and some other cannabis compounds, it cannot deliver the full health benefits experienced with the entourage effect.
If you want 100% CBD, you can’t do better than CBD isolate, which is CBD oil in its purest form. Creating it involves extracting the oil from a cannabis plant and refining the extract until only the CBD compound remains.
Because it is so refined, you can only get CBD isolate in powder form. You can consume the powder sublingually/buccally or by swallowing it. Also, because the product contains only CBD, it delivers zero entourage effect.
How to take CBD Oil
There are several safe ways to take CBD oil, and the method you choose will depend on what you are comfortable with, the type of results you want, and how quickly you want to see those results.
When you swallow CBD oil, it enters your digestive tract before passing into your bloodstream. You can only use CBD orally if it comes as an edible, or it is in powder, oil, or capsule form. Swallowing CBD takes the longest to show effects, but oral use keeps CBD in the bloodstream the longest.
If you do not like the taste of CBD oil, you can mix it with food or drink and still get the same effects.
Sublingual or Buccal
Using CBD sublingually, placing it under your tongue, or buccally, placing it on the inside of your cheek will allow your body to absorb it directly into your bloodstream. Because it does not undergo digestion first, sublingual and buccal use works much faster than ingesting CBD. You can use CBD sublingually or buccally when it is in tincture, oil, or tonic form.
Vaping involves vaporizing and inhaling CBD, sending the CBD straight to your lungs. From there, it will rapidly enter your bloodstream. You can vape CBD by using a vape pen or dabs. If you do not have a vaping tool, you can smoke high-CBD cannabis.
You can get CBD into your bloodstream by rubbing it directly into your skin. Keep in mind that very little of the substance gets into your system when used topically.
CBD is available as suppositories and lubes that you can apply via the anus or vagina. Because these areas are rich in capillaries, a fair amount of the substance will enter your bloodstream.
How to Take Hemp Oil
Hemp oil vs. CBD oil comparisons shows the human body absorbs both products the same way. That means, depending on your goals, you can take hemp oil orally, sublingually/buccally, or topically. You can also vape it.
When using CBD or hemp oil, the right dose will depend on the application method you choose. For instance, compared to ingesting, sublingual use requires smaller doses. Smaller doses are sufficient because sublingual application gets more of the substance into your bloodstream than digesting.
Side Effects of CBD Oil
Some users have reported side effects from using CBD oil, but generally, the product is well-tolerated. Reported side effects include:
- Dry mouth
- Loss of appetite
Whether you will experience any of these side effects is dependent on your physiology and the quality of the product you use. Also, CBD might interact poorly with certain medications, such as blood thinners.
To be safe, always use only top-quality CBD, and consult your doctor before using the product.
Side Effects of Hemp Oil
Like CBD oil, hemp oil is generally safe to use, including in large doses. But some users report experiencing these side effects after using hemp oil:
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Throat irritation
- Bradycardia (slow heart rate)
Reduce the risk of experiencing these side-effects by using only high-quality and certified pure hemp oil. Also, avoid complications by using hemp oil in smaller doses and gradually working your way up to a larger dose.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, using hemp oil is not recommended. Also, research shows that hemp oil does not interact well with medications like diuretics and cardiac glycosides.
Cardiac glycosides and hemp both slow down your heart rate and combining both can slow it down to an alarming rate. Avoid complications by consulting your doctor before trying hemp oil if you are on any medications.
The Costs of Buying CBD Oil and Hemp Oil
The price of CBD oil is dramatically higher than hemp oil. CBD oil can cost $50 to $100 (or more) for a one-ounce vial, and $10 to $15 for a small package of gummies. The current high prices are mostly due to uneven supply and demand. As demand for CBD oil has exploded, it’s taking manufacturers time to catch up. The passage of the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized hemp production will hopefully add new supply sources to the mix.
Hemp oil should be dramatically less expensive, but when it’s falsely marketed as a CBD product, its prices might mimic CBD oil. For this reason, it is imperative that you know exactly what you’re buying. Check the label for the CBD concentration before you pull out your credit card. Hemp seed oil should cost about the same as a bottle of high-quality olive oil.
Are Hemp Oil and CBD Oil Legal?
Hemp seed oil is 100% legal, but the legality of CBD oil depends on several factors, including:
- How the product is being marketed
- Whether the product contains THC
- If the CBD has been added to food and beverage products
The recent passage of the 2018 Farm Bill (formally known as the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018) legalized the sale of CBD and hemp products in the United States. It’s shocking to think that natural hemp with no psychoactive properties wasn’t always legal, even just a couple of years ago!
Before the Farm Bill, federal law had classified CBD as a Schedule I drug. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) defines Schedule I drugs as having “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” Other drugs in this category include heroin, LSD, ecstasy, and peyote.
The DEA had failed to distinguish between marijuana (cannabis with THC) and cannabis that does not have any psychoactive properties. In the eyes of the DEA, all CBD-containing products were illegal. Fortunately, the 2018 Farm Bill has resulted in the legalization of hemp and removal of its Schedule I status. Further, hemp has been removed from the DEA’s jurisdiction, and it is now regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
However, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) continues to regulate any consumable products containing cannabis. If the hemp or CBD products make any therapeutic claims, then they must be approved by the FDA before being sold to the public.
Due to this legislative distinction, you’ll rarely, if ever, see a hemp or CBD oil brands making any claims that their product will cure or treat any disease. By avoiding promises, they can sell their products to consumers without any regulation. As you can imagine, this can end up being dangerous for people taking these products if they’re not purchasing from reputable companies.
We won’t delve too deeply into the legality of hemp oil and CBD oil, but it is important to note that the FDA does prohibit CBD in food products and dietary supplements. Because CBD is an active ingredient in drugs that have been approved by the FDA to treat epilepsy, the FDA requires approval for other companies to sell the product. One could view this as the government’s attempt to protect consumers, or it could be seen as a way to protect pharmaceutical companies’ profits from natural products that work just as well (if not better) than expensive drugs.
Despite the restrictions about adding CBD to ingestible products and selling them across state lines, this hasn’t stopped companies from manufacturing and selling a variety of CBD supplements and infused food products. The FDA may begin cracking down on sellers, but so far, they’ve turned the other cheek.
And of course, if you are buying CBD oil that has THC in it, make sure your state has legalized marijuana. For a list of current regulations, a site called The Street provides the latest information about each state.
Companies have been quick to capitalize on the “green rush,” but this mad dash for profits has left consumers scratching their heads about what they should be buying to help reap the greatest health benefits.
As you peruse the web or the aisles of a store that sells CBD products, remember to check the labels diligently. We’re still in a period of “buyer beware,” and for the health of your body and your pocketbook, it pays to know what you’re getting!
FAQ’s on Hemp vs CBD
Question: Is Hemp oil the same as CBD oil?
Answer: No. Hemp oil and CBD oil are different from each other. Hemp oils are derived from the seeds of the plant while CBD oil is extracted from the whole cannabis plant.
Question: What is hemp oil and its uses?
Answer: Hemp oil is derived from the seeds of the plant, so it is sometimes (though not always) referred to as hemp seed oil. Hemp oil is the oil that’s formed by pressing hemp seeds. It has a variety of applications, from cooking oil and body care products to industrial applications like fuel, ink, paint, and plastic.
Question: What is CBD oil and its uses?
Answer: Short for cannabidiol, CBD is a compound found in the cannabis plant. It is made from the whole cannabis plant and its flowers. It is one of only hundreds of cannabinoids present in the plant, and it has been documented in several studies to help with pain, seizures, depression, and anxiety.
Question: How is hemp oil made?
Answer: When hemp is being grown specifically to use the seeds, the plants tend to be shorter, and they’ll be carefully selected to ensure that the THC content is low. By law, THC content must be below 0.3 percent. When the seeds begin to break open, it’s time for harvest. The next step is to use a machine to press the seeds and extract the oil. If you’ve ever seen a cold press juicer or juice extractor, then the process is nearly identical.
Question: How is CBD oil made?
Answer: CBD oil is made from the entire Cannabis plant, including the stalk. There are two ways that manufacturing facilities create CBD oil from the plant materials: CO2 extraction and solvent-based extraction
Question: Why use CBD oil over hemp oil?
Answer: CBD oil has a higher concentration of CBD. It is preferred for medicinal purposes. Recently, scientists discovered that CBD balances the body’s endocannabinoid system, which regulates a range of functions in the body, including Sleep, Mood, Stress, Immune system,
Question: Why use hemp oil or CBD oil?
Answer: Hemp oil contains no THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive element in cannabis that has intoxicating effects. Even though hemp oil doesn’t contain CBD, it does have numerous other health benefits.
Question: What are the side effects of CBD oil?
Answer: Generally there are minimal or no side effects of CBD oil, but some users reported that they experience fatigue, drowsiness, dry mouth, diarrhea, and loss of appetite after using CBD oil.
Question: What are the side effects of hemp oil?
Answer: Hemp oil is generally safe to use even in large doses. But some users report that they experience hypertension, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, throat irritation, and bradycardia after using hemp oil.
Question: How to take CBD and hemp oil?
Answer: There are several safe ways to take CBD oil, and the method you choose will depend on what you are comfortable with, the type of results you want, and how quickly you want to see those results. Some of it includes oral, sublingual, vaping, topical, and suppository.
Question: What is homeostasis?
Answer: Homeostasis is your body’s ability to remain in a stable internal state while your external environment changes. For example, without homeostasis, your internal temperature could drop when external temperatures drop and do the opposite when external temperatures rise.
Question: What are the types of CBD oil?
Answer: There are three common types of CBD oil. These include Full spectrum CBD, Broad Spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate.
Question: Which is cheaper CBD oil or Hemp oil?
Answer: The price of CBD oil is dramatically higher than hemp oil. CBD oil can cost $50 to $100 (or more) for a one-ounce vial, and $10 to $15 for a small package of gummies. Hemp oil should be dramatically less expensive. It should cost about the same as a bottle of high-quality olive oil.
Question: Are Hemp oil and CBD oil legal?
Answer: Hemp seed oil is 100% legal, but the legality of CBD oil depends on several factors, including How the product is marketed, whether it contains THC, and if the CBD has been added to food and beverage products.
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