There has been an explosion in research and interest in the use of cannabis extracts. These extracts are appearing in everything from health supplements to beauty products. So what’s the difference between hemp oil and CBD oil? Confusion of these products seems widespread among consumers. Lets set the record straight.
It is important to note that hemp comes from the same plant that marijuana comes from, Cannabis sativa. Some also refer to hemp as industrial hemp. Furthermore, out of the hundred or so cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, the two most relevant are: cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
The three basic forms of these cannabis extracts are:
- Hemp seed oil (or hempseed oil): This is made by compressing the seeds of the hemp plant. These seeds contain no THC. Hempseed oil is very high in nutritional value.
- Hemp oil: This is the same thing as hemp seed oil. extraction of this oil comes from hemp seeds.
- CBD oil: This oil is made by extracting the cannabinoid-rich flowers, stalks, and leaves of the hemp plant. Because hemp plants are cultivated for their CBD content, manufacturing oil from these portions of the plant results in an oil that has a very high CBD content.
Consumer confusion is common when dealing with these different oil varieties. Just remember that hemp oil and hempseed oil are the same. They both come from cold-pressing hemp seeds. On the other hand, CBD oil comes from extracting the whole hemp plant.
What Are The Benefits Of Hemp Oil?
The two basic ways to manufacture hemp oil from hemp seeds:
- Refined hemp oil. This manufacturing process occurs when they compress seeds with a high degree of heat. This oil is clear, flavorless, and lacks antioxidants and vitamins. Refined hemp oil is usually used for beauty products such as lotions, soaps, ointments, or detergents.
- Unrefined hemp oil. This occurs when the hemp seeds are cold-pressed. Unrefined hemp oil can also be called “raw” or “virgin” oil. It ranges from dark to light green in color and has a grassy, nutty flavor.
Hemp oil lacks both THC and CBD. It does, however, have a wide range of other useful compounds and about 49% of its total weight is edible oil. About 76% of that edible portion is essential fatty acids (EFAs).
EFAs are fatty compounds that are vital to our health. However, we cannot properly synthesize them in our metabolisms. There are two fatty acids that are essential for humans: alpha-linolenic acid (also known as omega-3 fatty acid) and linoleic acid (also known as omega-6 fatty acid). Hemp oil has a 3 to 1 ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids. This means that hemp oil is an excellent source of nutrition.
The EFAs help to promote healthy brain and eye development. Furthermore, the 3:1 ratio of omega fatty acids is ideal for heart health and metabolic function. This helps the body lower bad cholesterol levels and more effectively burn fat.
Omega-6 fatty acids also promote healthy hormone levels, particularly in women suffering from premenstrual syndrome. Omega-3 fatty acids are also crucial for a healthy immune system and mood regulation. They also assist the body’s ability to fight off psoriasis.
In addition to EFAs, unrefined hemp oil also has:
- Antioxidants (making it useful as an anti-inflammatory agent and to decrease the effects of aging in the human body)
- Vitamins E, B, B1, and B2
Furthermore, unrefined hemp oil has a pleasant nutty taste and can be used as a replacement for olive oil in cold dishes. Unlike olive oil, however, it has a low smoke point. This makes it unsuitable for frying foods. As opposed to other culinary oils it is low in saturated fat (containing only about 5 to 7%).
Hemp oil is also in non-edible products, such as:
- A natural moisturizer in skin care products.
- The base for various kinds of plastics. This makes it a more environmentally friendly choice as opposed to fossil fuels like petroleum.
- The base for various kinds of environmentally-friendly paints.
- A varnish in wood finishing.
- A feedstock to create bio-diesel fuel (like other vegetable oils).
It is important to note, however, that refined hemp oil destroys the various nutritious elements. That is why manufacturers use this form of hemp oil is in non-edible products.
What Is CBD & Its Benefits?
CBD oil comes from the rest of the hemp plant. Hemp oil contains very low levels of CBD, usually less than 25 parts per million (ppm), whereas CBD oil can have anywhere from 3 to 25% of CBD. Most supplements will have somewhere in the vicinity of 15% CBD.
Furthermore, CBD oil is used as a wellness product. The benefits of CBD and THC have been well established. However, CBD is different than its more famous chemical cousin THC. CBD is not psychoactive, meaning it does not get the user high, while THC is psychoactive. For many users, this is preferable as a daily regimen of CBD will not negatively impact their ability to function normally.
CBD works by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). This is a communication and regulatory system that is composed of cannabinoid receptors. These receptors are located all over the body and properly regulate various functions in the body. These functions include sleep, pain, mood, appetite, hormones, and immune responses.
Using Hemp Seed Oil As A Carrying Agent for CBD Oils
In order for the CBD oil to be effective, it must be prepared properly. This includes taking the flowers, leaves, and stalks of the industrial hemp plants and both compressing and heating them. The resulting oil will be rich in CBD.
A company that sells legitimate CBD products will then test this oil for precise levels of CBD. This will then allow them to develop products that have consistent and definite dosage amounts so that you can properly administer the CBD as needed.
The CBD oil has to have a carrying agent, however. This is a part of the final product that keeps the CBD oil stable as well as edible and easily digestible. The best carrying agent for CBD oil is unrefined hemp oil. Not only does it give the CBD product a pleasant taste, but it is also full of nutrition. Remember that unrefined hemp oil has essential fatty acids, vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals.
CBD Oil Products
There are various CBD oil products. One common form of CBD oil is as a tincture. This is essentially just CBD oil (and hemp oil as a carrying agent) in liquid form. A bottle of tincture will have a dropper that dispenses a specific amount of CBD oil. The patient drops the CBD oil under the tongue and the medicine is absorbed through the mucous membranes. This bypasses the digestive system and enters the bloodstream much faster (usually within 10 to 15 minutes).
There are also capsules available. These usually have 50 milligrams of CBD per capsule. There are also edible treats, such as CBD gummies, that also have 50 milligrams per gummy. These forms absorb in the digestive tract. This means that they usually take a little longer to hit the bloodstream (about 30 to 60 minutes).
Is CBD Oil Legal in All 50 states?
It is important that the final CBD product is properly manufactured so that it is safe and effective.
If the CBD oil is derived from hemp plants, which have trace amounts of THC content, then it is legal everywhere in the United States. The keyword, however, is hemp-derived. That means that the CBD product must have been manufactured from the hemp plant. The final product will have 0.3% THC or less, meaning it will not cause any intoxication and will be completely legal. Certain companies exclusively sell hemp-derived CBD products.