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February 10, 2021 3 min read 0 Comments

Isolate vs Broad spectrum CBD vs Full spectrum CBD


You may have heard these terms bandied around as you search for CBD online.  But what do they actually mean?  With very little regulation – brands have made their own interpretation of these definitions.

Here’s a more textbook definition:

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is 99% pure CBD.  It is tasteless and has no smell and is found in powder form.  That sounds great, right?  Well yes, and no.  You see – isolate does not contain any of the other plant matter including Phytocannabinoids and terpenes.  It is often referred to as pure CBD which can be misleading.  Terpenes are thought to be very important in how CBD is effective.  Terpenes are what you will find in ingredients like turmeric for example, and they have been used for centuries in Chinese medicine.  Most brands use isolate to flavour their gummies and edibles but not at Mother.  More on that and terpenes later. 


Next up is full spectrum CBD:

Full Spectrum

Full spectrum oils contain terpenes and other cannabinoids including THC.  Some people refer to these as entourage oils.  However, that is not necessarily correct.  Full spectrum CBD oils are made using the same plants as isolate and broad spectrum – those that come under the category as hemp, meaning below 0.2% THC in the plant.  For a full entourage oil, you would expect more THC than that found within a hemp plant.  There will be some level of entourage effect though.  However, with the FSA taking control of CBD and classing it as a food supplement – it is very unlikely we will see any THC allowed in any CBD product in the UK – watch this space!  It is important to note that THC is psychotropic – it will get you high, basically.  However, with the current guideline amount (under 1mg per product) that is not a danger. 


Which leads us onto broad spectrum:

Broad spectrum

Broad spectrum products are THC free but will still contain other plant cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids.  To be safe and limit any psychotropic effects, many consumers prefer to take a product that has zero THC.  Just like all Mother CBD products, Mother CBD is a ‘broad spectrum’ CBD product.  Our gummies and oils all contain a beneficial array of naturally occurring cannabis plant compounds. 


A little bit on terpenes and their importance:


Terpenes are the essential oils of all plants - they are found in trees, plants and even fruit.  Terpenes are responsible for the smell of a lemon, of lavender - its why pine trees have that specific pine smell (forest bathing is big in Japan).

Terpenes have been used in Chinese medicine for centuries - turmeric for example is rich in terpenes.

Terpenes also help to protect plants and attract pollinators.  Terpenes are found in fairly low numbers within CBD - but even a low % (around 0.04%) are considered potentially significant regarding the beneficial role they play within CBD.

It is the assortment of terpenes within the cannabis plant which give each strain its signature flavour and smell.

We do not often share our terpene analysis reports as they’re essentially the recipe for what makes our products taste so great.  But if you look below – you will see that Mother CBD features a beneficial array of terpenes in our oils.

Thank you for reading our article, Isolate vs Broad spectrum CBD vs Full spectrum CBD.