If you look at the various products derived from hemp and cannabis, you will likely come across CBD isolate. CBD isolate is a good choice for those who want CBD without any psychoactive effects or any trace of THC. Because it is free of THC, CBD isolate is legal in most jurisdictions, including at the federal level in the United States.
But what is CBD isolate and what do you use it for?
Understanding CBD Isolate
To put it simply, CBD isolate is a form of CBD that does not contain any THC at all.
It is a crystalline powder or solid that has 99 percent pure cannabidiol (CBD).
How It Is Made
There are a few ways that CBD isolates can be made, but the most common is to create an extract from cannabis or hemp that removes all of the active compounds. From there, it undergoes refinement to eliminate THC, plant matter, and any other phytocannabinoids that are present. In the end, only CBD remains, and it is in its purest form.
What It Looks and Smells Like
The exact appearance of CBD isolate will vary based on the method used to produce it. It may be a very fine white powder that looks similar to confectioners’ sugar. Or it may be large crystals of CBD. CBD isolate does not typically have a distinct taste or order.
Types of CBD Isolates
Although there are many types of CBD isolates, the following are the most common:
Crystals and Powders
You are most likely to come across CBD powders and crystals. They are formed by taking a slab and pulverizing it.
Slabs are the result of CBD being isolated out of a full-spectrum extract. Most slabs are broken into smaller pieces and used for vaping and dabbing.
You may see the term, terpsolate, which is a CBD isolate that has had hemp-derived terpenes added back into it.
It is also increasingly common to find various products containing CBD isolate, including edibles, oils, and topicals.
Why People Choose CBD Isolate
To better understand what CBD isolate is used for, take a moment to review why people choose this product over other cannabis-derived products.
The fact that CBD isolates have absolutely no THC is the biggest draw for many people. This is important for multiple reasons, including psychoactive effects, legality, and drug testing.
THC is the component in marijuana that causes its psychoactive effects. As such, if you consume CBD isolate, you will not get high since there is no THC present.
The lack of THC also means that you can consume CBD isolate and still pass a drug test. This is particularly appealing for those who are subject to regular drug tests for work, school, sports, or any other reason.
The legality of CBD isolates also comes from its lack of THC. In the United States, the Farm Bill legalized hemp, which it qualifies as having less than 0.3 percent THC. Any plant with more THC than this limit is marijuana and subject to the patchwork legality created by individual states. Since CBD isolates have 0 percent THC, they qualify as hemp-based and are legal.
Some people choose CBD isolates because they are a little easier to dose, at least in some respects. Specifically, the fact that the isolates only have CBD makes it easier to determine how much CBD is present. In contrast, CBD oil would require analysis and calculations to determine the amount of CBD present.
Others choose CBD isolates because of their versatility. You can prepare them in multiple ways because they are tasteless and odorless. People appreciate the ability to enjoy the isolates by themselves or mix them into food or drinks, depending on their preferences. This makes it very easy to incorporate CBD into anyone’s daily life.
You Will Miss the Entourage Effect
Although CBD isolate is popular and a strong choice for many people, you should keep in mind that consuming this type of product will not let you take advantage of the entourage effect. This effect refers to the fact that the various cannabinoids and terpenes that occur in marijuana interact and maximize each other’s effects. In other words, the CBD in a product that has THC and terpenes would produce more significant results than the same amount of CBD in an isolate.
Because you still notice effects with CBD isolates, this is not a concern for most people, except maybe those who need a higher dose.
What Is CBD Isolate Used For and How
As mentioned, CBD isolate is incredibly versatile, so you can find many ways to use it.
Many people choose to consume the CBD isolate alone to get the effects of the CBD. You can do this sublingually by placing the appropriate amount of the isolate under your tongue and leaving it in place for around a minute. Your body’s mucous membranes absorb the CBD and bring it to the bloodstream, providing nearly immediate relief that is also stronger.
If you prefer, you can turn CBD isolate into a CBD concentrate and then dab or vape that product. Or you can turn it into a crystal slab that you dab using your traditional oil rig.
Creating CBD-infused Items
Some people use CBD isolate to create their own CBD-based products, such as oils or topicals. Turning the isolate into oil is as simple as mixing it with MCT oil or the carrier oil of your choice.
Others turn it into a topical treatment by combining it with a homemade skin care product or even a store-bought product. Others use their CBD isolate to make edibles infused with CBD. Just keep in mind that CBD has low oral bioavailability because the gastrointestinal tract does not absorb it well. Combining it with a carrier oil increases the bioavailability somewhat. You should also keep in mind that CBD does not dissolve in water, so it is not easy to add it into a drink unless your chosen drink already has some oil.
What Are Broad-spectrum CBD Isolates?
You may also come across broad-spectrum CBD isolates. These are similar to full-spectrum products, but they do not contain THC. They do, however, contain most of the other compounds in cannabis. As such, broad-spectrum isolates let you take advantage of the entourage to some extent.