There’s a lot of attention surrounding cannabidiol (CBD) these days. So it’s not surprising that there might be a little bit of confusion among consumers. After all, CBD comes from a plant that was vilified for the better part of the last 150 years. It’s understandable that some of the lingo might be a bit puzzling. And a lot of this confusion is around hemp-based products and hemp oil. If you’re telling me CBD is from hemp and cannabis, why are you telling me hemp oil isn’t CBD? What’s the difference?
Hemp oil, also referred to as hemp seed oil, and CBD are both derived from the cannabis plant. But there are several notable differences between the two.
Hemp Oil Isn’t CBD
CBD is extracted from the whole cannabis plant–stalk. That includes the flowers and leaves. While hemp oil comes from cannabis seeds, which do not contain CBD. In the manufacture of CBD extracts, the entire plant is put through an extraction process like CO2 extraction. This removes CBD and other cannabinoids from plant matter. In CBD isolates, the extract is further purified so that it contains only CBD (and zero THC.) While in broad and full-spectrum CBD extracts, other cannabinoids and terpenes are included with CBD.
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Hemp oil is extracted solely from cannabis seeds, which do not contain CBD or other cannabinoids. Seeds are crushed and the fatty oils are collected. It bears repeating that hemp oil does not contain cannabinoids. It is therefore bereft of many of the therapeutic benefits of CBD oil.
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But Wait, Don’t Stop Taking Hemp Oil
Like other seed-derived oils, hemp oil is high in omega fatty acids and other antioxidants. As well as vitamins B and D. Nutritionally, hemp oil is a great addition to a healthy diet and some people use it to help lower high cholesterol. Although the jury is still out on its effectiveness.
Hemp oil also shown to help boost the immune system and provide cardiovascular benefits. It can also help with skin and gastrointestinal issues.
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Both Have Benefits, Just in Different Ways
Hemp oil is also a good source of protein, fiber, certain vitamins and minerals, and unsaturated fats. Which are all part of a healthy diet. To be clear, we’re not saying “don’t consume hemp oil.” We’re also not saying “stop taking hemp seed oil”. In fact, we’re pretty big proponents of it. We want you to be aware that some nefarious products try to claim that hemp oil has the same benefits as CBD. And that’s just not the case.
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Though they’re derived from the same plant, hemp oil and CBD oil are vastly different beasts. CBD can be thought of as alternative medicine. But hemp oil is purely nutritional and is considered by many to be a superfood. This is due to its robust dietary profile. Be sure to consult with your health care provider before adding hemp oil or CBD extracts to your wellness regimen.
Kristi is a skilled researcher and writer — covering health, wellness, cannabis and neuroscience over many years. She has written for Healthline, The New York Times, Washington Post and Everyday Health to name a few.