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Hemp Oil vs CBD (Cannabidiol): What’s the Difference?

The hemp industry is experiencing an exciting renaissance that’s bringing a range of familiar and novel products to eager consumers everywhere. 

Hemp oil and CBD oil are among the most popular industrial hemp products among consumers. Are you curious? Do you want to discover what the buzz is all about? That can be tricky if you’re not sure what the difference between hemp oil and cannabidiol oil is. 

We’ll explore the differences between the two — so you can decide whether CBD or hemp oil is better for you.

What’s CBD Oil?

Cannabis sativa plants contain more than a hundred different compounds, collectively known as cannabinoids. THC and cannabidiol (CBD) are the most well-known of these substances. 

CBD is a non-addictive, non-psychoactive cannabinoid — it won’t get you high. Authorised CBD products, which have a THC content of 0.02 per cent or less, are legal to buy over the counter in the UK. These products are classified as novel food items.

Where Does CBD Come From?

CBD is generally extracted from low-THC Cannabis sativa plants — legally classified as industrial hemp. The highest concentrations of CBD are found in the upper third of the plant. Once the leaves and flowers are harvested, they undergo further processing to create CBD oil. 

Several extraction methods can be used:

  • CO2 extraction. This CBD extraction method does not use any potentially harmful chemicals and instead relies on the fact that CO2 can easily take on solid or liquid forms. 
  • Solvent extraction. This method relies on various solvents, such as ethanol, to extract cannabidiol from industrial hemp.
  • Oil extraction. People making CBD oil at home sometimes do so by slowly heating decarboxylated hemp in olive oil.

A process called winterisation follows this initial extraction. This process refines and purifies the CBD.

Depending on the precise process used to refine CBD, cannabidiol products may be labelled as:

  • Full-spectrum CBD. Full-spectrum CBD contains numerous cannabinoids, including terpenes. It has a THC content of up to 0.02 per cent (or 0.03 per cent in the United States). 
  • Broad-spectrum CBD. These products contain many cannabinoids and may have trace amounts of THC.
  • CBD isolate is the purest form of CBD — containing no THC.

Types of CBD Products: A Quick Look

Consumers who’d like to add CBD products to their personal wellness routines have an exciting range of options. We wouldn’t go so far as to say that any CBD product you can imagine already exists, but that wouldn’t be far off. 

The most popular options include:

  • CBD oil. You can use this liquid cannabidiol by holding it under your tongue for 60 to 90 seconds. You can also add it to cooking recipes or cosmetics. 
  • CBD capsules. You can swallow these with water, as you would do with multivitamin supplements.
  • CBD gummies. CBD edibles are becoming very sought-after, but gummies remain the top choice. You eat these pre-dosed CBD edibles like any other candy — with the difference that you shouldn’t binge-eat the whole bag and must remember to stick to the desired dose! 
  • CBD vape pens and vape liquids. Vapers can enjoy CBD products in a convenient form already familiar to them. 
  • CBD cosmetics. Some people prefer to apply CBD topically. Cannabidiol-infused creams, ointments, and shampoos are some examples.

Why Do People Use CBD Oil?

The scientific community is still learning about all the ways in which cannabidiol may potentially affect the body. CBD products are legal and available over the counter in many countries, including the UK. 

However, it’s important to remember that no claims can be made about their potential health benefits. Informed consumers shouldn’t use CBD to prevent, treat, or cure a specific disease. 

Having said that, research that explored why people choose to use cannabidiol found that 37 per cent of consumers enjoy CBD to support their overall health and wellbeing. Others believe it helps them to relax. 

What’s Hemp Oil?

Hemp seed oil is extracted from industrial hemp plants, as with CBD oil. The plant’s seeds are used to extract oil in a cold-press method reminiscent of how olive oil and other plant oils are manufactured.

Why Do People Use Hemp Seed Oil?

Hemp seed oil has many applications. Because the seed is (technically) a nut, hemp seed oil has rich nutty flavours that make it an interesting culinary ingredient. Hemp oil can also be used for industrial purposes. 

Hemp seed oil may contain traces of CBD and even THC, but that’s not why people generally use this oil. This oil is rich in nutrients, such as Omega-6 fatty acids, which can play a role in a healthy and balanced diet.

CBD Oil or Hemp Seed Oil: Which One Should You Choose?

If you’re excited to see what hemp has to offer, it can be hard to decide where to start. 

Let’s recap the differences between the CBD oil and hemp seed oil:

  • CBD oil is extracted from industrial hemp plants, and then further refined. This oil is classed as a novel food in the UK. It is rich in cannabidiol. Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD oil contain a wide variety of other compounds, including terpenes. CBD isolate is a pure form of CBD oil.
  • Hemp seed oil, sometimes called hemp oil, is a cold-pressed oil extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant. It has a rich, nutty flavour that gives consumers a chance to experiment in the kitchen — and lots of nutrients. 

Consumers interested in adding CBD to their wellness routines should know that CBD oil isn’t the only choice. Gummies, capsules, creams, vape pens, and convenient and interesting edibles are also on the market. 

While choosing the best CBD products for you, it’s important to do your research and ensure that the cannabidiol products you choose meet your high standards:

  • Look for organically-farmed non-GMO products that are cruelty-free.
  • Take a look at the manufacturer’s extraction method. The CO2 extraction method does not rely on chemicals. 
  • Consumers who don’t want to consume THC, even in trace amounts, will want to pick CBD isolate products. 

Enjoy your CBD adventure!



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