August 01, 2020

Cannabidiol (CBD) is becoming more mainstream, and as research and CBD-based products become more available, the easier it’ll be for people to obtain them. And as more people get involved with or develop an interest in CBD, the easier it is for facts to become distorted and for misconceptions to occur.

One of the most common misunderstandings is hemp oil (or hemp seed oil) vs CBD oil and whether they’re the same thing.

There’s much confusion about the connection between hemp oil and CBD oil because the terms are often used interchangeably on several products. In many cases, hemp oil is rightfully used to refer to CBD oil.

 We will keep this one short and sweet with just the main basics:

What Is Hemp Seed Oil?

Hemp seed oil comes from the seeds of hemp plants.

Hemp seed oil is a natural supplement that contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, B vitamins and vitamin D, and other nutritional antioxidants. Although its efficacy isn’t entirely clear, hemp seed oil is usually eaten to maintain cardiovascular health.

How Is Hemp Seed Oil Made?

Manufacturers typically make hemp seed oil by cold-pressing the seeds and refining the oil extraction. The process usually includes cleaning the seeds before pressing them to oil.

Because it’s made from seeds, hemp seed oil doesn’t have a cannabinoid profile. Hemp Seed Oil contains no terpenes nor cannabinoids – more importantly, no traces of THC at all and zero CBD. Hemp seed oil is useful mainly as a dietary supplement or as a food oil.


What Is CBD?

CBD oil makers extract CBD from the leaves, stems, flowers, and stalks of matured hemp plants.

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid that is naturally occurring. It’s an organic chemical that comprises about 40 percent of industrial hemp. As a reminder, CBD has no intoxicating properties, so it cannot induce any “high” or euphoria.

CBD works by stimulating the endocannabinoid system – a biological structure common in all vertebrates. This system helps maintain homeostasis, the human body’s natural balance of physical and chemical systems when responding to various physiological conditions.

Within the endocannabinoid system, CBD molecules attach to CB2 cannabinoid receptors that are connected to the peripheral nervous system (PNS). The PNS includes various organs and systems, such as the immune system, muscles, skin, and limbs.


How Is CBD Oil Made?

There are several extraction methods used for pulling CBD from hemp material, including solvents, carbon dioxide, dry ice, and olive oil.

Once the CBD is pulled, manufacturers have to infuse the isolates into a carrier oil, so it’s safe for human use. And most reputable makers of CBD oil use MCT oil as a carrier because of its benefits compared to other edible oils.

The quality of CBD oil is often influenced by how the CBD is extracted from the hemp material. And because CBD is harvested from the whole hemp plant, the extraction typically contains terpenes, cannabinoids, and other essential oils that, together, generate the entourage effect.

What Is The Entourage Effect?

The entourage effect means that compounds, including CBD and other cannabinoids, have a greater impact when working together than individually.

The terpenoids assist the cannabinoids with their peak effects, and other cannabinoids like cannabigerol (CBG) help boost the effects of CBD.

With the entourage effect, the CBD formula in hemp-based oils works better as a whole than each ingredient would alone. And you can only gain benefits from the entourage effect from broad spectrum or full spectrum CBD oils – not from hemp seed oil.

Is Hemp Oil the Same as CBD Oil?

The straightforward answer is no. It doesn’t matter how many brands are intentionally or mistakenly mixing up the terms “CBD oil” and “hemp oil” to sell products; these two substances are not the same.

But then why would sellers market the terms as the same?

The main reason would be that CBD oil and hemp seed oil come from the same family, and for some manufacturers and users, that’s all they care to know. And without a decent grasp of the differences between the two, products are often labeled the same.

Another reason is that companies know how much more money consumers are willing to pay for CBD oil. Because of its sophisticated extraction process, CBD costs much more to extract than hemp seed oil.

It isn’t too hard for a company to spend less to extract hemp seed oil, put it in a product, and brand it so that consumers believe they’re buying a CBD-infused item when there’s no CBD in it at all.

Conversely, some brands may market their CBD products as hemp oil to circumvent federal regulations. Many of these rules sharply limit how companies can advertise CBD oil.

The best way to determine what you’re buying is to check the ingredients list. CBD oils typically list their main ingredient as cannabidiol, broad spectrum hemp, full spectrum hemp, or hemp extracts. 

What Is the Difference In Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil?

Although both come from plants, we’ve covered many differences between the two:

Hemp Oil (Hemp Seed Oil) CBD Oil
Low cannabinoid profile Uses carrier oil
Offers mostly nutritional benefits Generates the entourage effect
Extracted from crushed hemp seeds Extracted from the whole plant
Used mainly for cooking and skincare Contains cannabinoids and terpenes
An abundance of fatty acids and protein Works with the endocannabinoid system
Offers several benefits (sleep, stress, discomfort, etc.)

And they also have their similarities: they’re non-intoxicating, can be used topically or internally, offer wholesome benefits, and are oils.



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