Key CBD Terms that You Should Know
At Healing Earth CBD, we think everybody should know as much as possible about their CBD products: what they are, how they work, and how they are made.
To those unfamiliar, the terminology used in the cannabis industry can be confusing and even intimidating. Understanding the basic terminology can be extremely helpful in navigating the products and processes used across the hemp CBD industry.
CBD products have gained a lot of attention recently for their overall health and wellness benefits. And to be a smart CBD shopper, you must know the lingo. So, whether you are new to the world of CBD or just looking for a refresher course, Healing Earth has you covered on the vocab to empower you as you shop.
A legislative act signed by President Donald Trump and passed by the United States Congress at the end of December 2018, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, is more commonly referred to as the Farm Bill. This legislation made CBD products legal to purchase in all 50 states. Under the Farm Bill, industrial hemp (where CBD products are derived from) must contain less than .3 % THC. The power over industrial hemp regulation is shared by the state and federal governments. The Farm Bill also gave the FDA the authority to regulate cannabis products. You can view the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 in its entirety here.
The most abundant endocannabinoid found in the body, 2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) is a member of a group of molecules that play a complex and important role in various bodily processes including immunity and inflammation. Like anandamide, 2-AG is thought to help regulate appetite, immune system function, and pain management by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system receptors.
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A major endocannabinoid naturally found in the body. Like 2-AG, anandamide is a neurotransmitter found in humans and other animals. Anandamide binds with brain receptors to promote and regulate functions like cognition, learning, memory, mood, other higher intellectual functions, and certain motor functions.
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This term refers to the degree and rate at which a drug is absorbed by the body’s circulatory system. It is an important measurement tool because it determines the correct dosage for non-intravenously administered drugs. For drugs, supplements, and herbs administered non-intravenously (such as through consumption, inhalation, or topical application) bioavailability designates the fraction of the ingested dose that eventually gets absorbed.
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Products labeled “broad spectrum” fall somewhere between full-spectrum and isolate formulations. Because they contain terpenes and other beneficial cannabinoids, broad-spectrum products offer some of the benefits of the entourage effect — without any THC. For those who cannot have or do not want to have any traces of THC in their system, broad-spectrum products can be a better choice than isolates.
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Also known as CBD, cannabidiol is one of the naturally occurring cannabinoids found in cannabis plants. It is the second most prevalent active ingredient in cannabis, accounting for up to 40% of the plant’s extract. CBD does not produce psychoactive effects. Cannabidiol interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS), part of the nervous system that is thought to play a regulatory role in all kinds of bodily functions, including mood, sleep, and appetite. The wide range of potential therapeutic uses of this non-psychoactive compound has created a high demand for the cannabinoid.
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Not to be confused with cannabidiol (cannabidiol is a cannabinoid, but not all cannabinoids are cannabidiol), a cannabinoid is one of the diverse chemical compounds that acts on the endocannabinoid system receptors found throughout the body. These molecules include the endocannabinoids produced naturally in the body and phytocannabinoids from cannabis. The two most notable cannabinoids are THC and CBD. They alter neurotransmitter release and can be used to help maintain balance in the systems throughout the body.
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Cannabinoid Profile/Cannabinoid Spectrum
Referring to the types and amounts of cannabis compounds found in each extract or product. Determined by the cannabinoid and terpene content.
Cannabinoid receptors are part of the endocannabinoid system. These receptors are found in two types (CB1 & CB2) throughout the brain and body. The naturally occurring phytocannabinoids and the internally generated endocannabinoid bind to these receptors.
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Cannabinoid Receptor Type 1 (CB1)
CB1 is a g protein-coupled receptor found throughout the body. These receptors are primarily concentrated in the spine and brain. And are commonly associated with mood and pain sensation.
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Cannabinoid Receptor Type 2 (CB2)
CB1 is also a g protein-coupled receptor found throughout the body. These receptors are primarily found in the peripheral nervous system. And are commonly associated with inflammation and immune response.
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Cannabis is a genus of flowering plants in the Cannabaceae family. The plant is commonly classified by species (Cannabis sativa, Cannabis Indica and Cannabis ruderalis) or by classification (marijuana or hemp). This flowering herbaceous plant has been farmed throughout recorded human history. In addition to Marijuana and CBD, hemp fiber, hemp seed oil, and food products are also derived and harvested from different parts of the plant.
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A delivery method for CBD oils and extracts that is easy to swallow. Capsule products resemble the gel pills you are used to seeing at your local pharmacy.
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Cannabidiol’s popular nickname. You will see CBD attached to many products, but not all are created equal. CBD is a prevalent compound found in Cannabis plants. It has medicinal properties without psychoactive effects.
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Products taken orally and ingested for desired effects. Edibles can include capsules, gummies, syrups and more.
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This is a thick, oily substance extracted from hemp. This extract contains cannabinoids, terpenoids, and other plant materials. A hemp extract will be high in CBD and low in other cannabinoids like THC. The levels of each of these components are influenced by the hemp source, extraction method, and further processing methods. These extracts may be sold alone or used as an active ingredient in CBD products.
An isolate is a crystalline powder form of the single CBD molecule created by further processing an extract to remove other cannabinoids, terpenoids, and plant materials. These isolates may be sold alone or used as an active ingredient in CBD products. These products are 99% CBD. To manufacture an isolate, everything contained in the plant matter is removed — including any traces of THC and other beneficial cannabinoids — until only a powder or crystalline form of CBD is left. This means that isolate users will not benefit from the entourage effect.
A term commonly used to generally describe CBD products as a whole, and a descriptor specifically for CBD tinctures. Premium CBD derived from Cannabis plants. It can include carrier oils and added flavoring to improve its viscosity and taste.
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Products applied externally on the body. Topicals can include balms, salves, pain rubs, lotions, creams and more.
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CBD Vape Oil
A CBD product compatible with vape devices that allows users to inhale CBD. CBD Vape Oil often contains PG and VG, as well as flavoring.
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Certificate of Analysis
A document from an accredited laboratory certifying the amount of cannabinoids in a given product. This proof of analysis exists to benefit the consumer as much as the producer: It guarantees quality assurance for both parties. Reviewing the COA is a pro consumer move that helps you avoid mislabeled, low-quality, or fake products. A reputable company will always provide one.
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The carbon-dioxide extraction process uses changes in temperature and pressure to create phase changes in carbon dioxide, gently drawing out the plant’s beneficial components. The result is clean, safe oil with a long shelf life.
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A concentrated form of cannabis extract often known by another name like wax, shatter, or extract. Often used for dabbing.
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Vaporizing a concentrated form of a cannabis extract by placing it against an extremely hot surface and inhaling the vapors produced.
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The process where naturally occurring acid-form cannabinoids are heated to remove a carboxyl group. This process is as simple as smoking marijuana or heating cannabis in the oven. Temperatures of 200+ degrees Fahrenheit must be used. This form of 'decarbing' or 'activating' is used in marijuana and hemp to activate the cannabinoids so they may freely bind to the cannabinoid receptors in your body and brain.
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How a drug enters the body to produce the desired therapeutic effects. The delivery method of a given drug can affect how quickly it starts working and how much of each dose gets absorbed by the body (bioavailability). CBD delivery methods include ingestible capsules, gummies, and tinctures, as well as topical lotions, salves, and lip balms.
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Known by the abbreviation THC, this is a primary cannabinoid found in cannabis and the one responsible for its psychoactive effects. It works on endocannabinoid receptors in the brain to release dopamine. Some dislike the “high” feeling or other side effects of this chemical and prefer hemp-based products that contain little to no THC.
To learn more about Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol, Click Here.
These liquids are used in vaporizers. They are vaporized via heating to 200+ degrees Fahrenheit and inhaled. Often sold in bottles or pre-filled disposable cartridges, or as a kit for consumers to make their own e-liquids
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Any food containing some form of cannabis. Pot brownies are the most classic example, but nowadays, cannabis-infused edibles come in many other forms: candy, coffee, baked goods, martinis, even infused butter, and cooking oil.
Endo- is the prefix for “within,” and endocannabinoids are the cannabinoids produced within your body.
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Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
Known as the ECS, the main function of this mammalian biological system is to maintain bodily homeostasis, or keeping the body balanced even when the environment changes. Scientists believe that cannabis is effective, in part, because the phytocannabinoids it contains mimic our endocannabinoids. Endocannabinoid receptors are found throughout the entire body, and the system plays a part in many of the body’s processes, including appetite, stress, sleep, pain, memory, and immune function. Endo stands for endogenous or originating within the body.
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This phenomenon is all about teamwork: It is the result of the many components in the cannabis plant interacting together with the human body to produce a stronger effect than any one component on its own. Full-spectrum CBD products combine CBD with other naturally occurring terpenes and cannabinoids (including THC) to be more effective than their isolate counterparts.
To learn more about Entourage Effect, Click Here.
A biological substance that serves as a catalyst for a reaction within the body.
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The first Cannabis drug approved by the FDA. It is used to relieve two severe forms of epilepsy, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome.
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Extraction using cold, high-grade alcohol gently pulls all the active compounds from the cannabis plant’s cellulose material, resulting in pure, full-spectrum hemp oil. Oils extracted using this method are further refined via chromatography to remove all remaining traces of ethanol.
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An extract, most often from hemp, is an oily substance derived from cannabis which includes plant materials, waxes, fatty acids, cannabinoids, and terpenoids. This extract can be consumed directly or used as a base ingredient to create other types of products.
The process of deriving CBD oil from hemp. There are several methods of extracting phytocannabinoid-rich oil from cannabis plants, including CO2 and cold ethanol extraction.
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Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase, an enzyme that is responsible for breaking down anandamide in the body. CBD can inhibit FAAH, resulting in greater amounts of anandamide present in the body.
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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is a regulatory government agency with the power to regulate cannabis and cannabis-derived products since the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill. So far, the FDA has officially approved the CBD product Epidiolex as a treatment for epilepsy. The government’s relationship with the cannabis industry is constantly evolving; learn more about how the FDA is handling cannabis and CBD products on the FDA’s website, here.
Referring to a cannabinoid spectrum CBD that is full of all the terpenes, cannabinoids, flavonoids, and fatty acids found in hemp, all of which have therapeutic value of their own and help create what’s known as the entourage effect. Basically, full-spectrum CBD can give you every potential benefit the plant has to offer.
A distinct strain of the Cannabis sativa plant often grown for industrial use. Hemp used in CBD products must contain less than .3% THC. Hemp is known for its fibrous quality of its stalks and the medicinal properties of its seeds and flowers. Hemp is commonly used in the health, clothing, home building, automobile, paper, and plastic industries. Hemp is a non-psychoactive plant, and it will not produce a “high” when consumed or smoked. Hemp is often grown outdoors and can be grown in most climates.
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Hemp Extract is synonymous with CBD. It is rich with cannabinoids, which can have positive effects on health and wellness.
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This is a broad term used to describe an oil created from hemp. This could mean an omega-3 rich hemp seed oil or a cannabinoid-rich CBD extract. As a consumer, you should ensure you understand the difference to understand what is in the product you are purchasing.
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Hemp Seed Oil
Derived from industrial hemp, hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of a hemp plant using a cold expeller-pressed method. This oil does not contain cannabinoids and instead is a highly nutritious food source packed with Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids, amino acids, fiber, and more. It has no therapeutic benefits but is often used as a dietary supplement and a low-saturated-fat cooking oil.
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Hemp grown specifically for the industrial uses of its products, including textiles, clothing, biodegradable plastic, food, biofuel, and medicine (including CBD). Hemp and its products are legal in the U.S. under the Farm Bill as long as they contain less than .3% THC.
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Small spherical sacs containing hemp oil extract used to increase the bioavailability and effectiveness of a product.
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A general term that refers to female Cannabis sativa plants that produce flowers containing phytocannabinoids that are used for their medicinal and psychoactive properties. The “high” from Marijuana is produced by its high concentration of THC. Marijuana is typically used for medicinal or recreational applications. Marijuana is grown under precise environmental conditions, often indoors.
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A technique that involves consuming small servings of CBD supplements throughout the day. Microdosing can be beneficial because it allows the user to maintain stable CBD levels in your system around the clock. This consistency can be important for those who use CBD for its balancing properties.
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Also known as dietary supplements, these are food-derived products that offer extra health benefits in addition to their existing nutritional value. These products that contains nutrients derived from food products and are often concentrated in liquid, capsule, powder, or pill form. Dietary supplements are regulated by the FDA.
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A water-soluble emulsion of hemp extract oil droplets broken into particles averaging 25 nanometers in diameter. This process increases surface area and thus is up to 5x as bioavailable as traditional oil-based products.
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Foods and products derived from farming methods that promote ecological balance and restrict the use of pesticides, fertilizers, and synthetics. These growing practices promote the health of both the environment and the consumer. Organic products particularly appeal to those who support sustainable farming and care about the safety and quality of what goes into their bodies.
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The chemical compounds in cannabis plants that mimic the endocannabinoids naturally produced by the body. CBD and THC are examples of phytocannabinoids, but there are at least 113 different phytocannabinoids in the cannabis plant, each producing unique effects in the body. 'Phyto' as a prefix simply means 'derived from plants'.
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A measure of drug activity expressed in terms of the amount required to produce an effect of given intensity in the body. A high-potency drug evokes a larger response even at a low dose, while a low-potency drug evokes a small response at low concentrations and requires higher doses for a similar effect.
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A property that changes brain function by interacting with the central nervous system and results in altered perception, mood, consciousness, cognition, or behavior. THC is the primary psychoactive component in cannabis plants.
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Pet CBD Oil
A CBD tincture product designed specifically for domestic animals like dogs and cats. Pet CBD Oil often contains a premium form of CBD extract and pet-friendly flavoring for easy administration.
The level of quality determined by the absence of toxins, contamination, and harmful pesticides.
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PCR is short for phytocannabinoid rich — it contains as much as ten times the concentration of CBD as generic industrial hemp and only negligible amounts of THC. It does not cause a high. Also referred to CBD-rich oil. This term is generally used to label a CBD oil which has gone through some initial filtration and distillation steps to remove unwanted compounds such as chlorophyll and waxes. The resulting product has a higher concentration of CBD than the raw extract, hence the term CBD-rich oil.
An ointment made from the cannabis plant to be applied directly to the skin.
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A cannabis plant bred for certain characteristics and use in medicinal, recreational, or industrial purposes. Industrial hemp, for example, is a strain bred to contain more CBD and less THC than other varieties, making it useful for medicinal products and legal under the Farm Bill.
From the Latin for “under the tongue,” a method for administering drugs by mouth. It involves placing a substance under the tongue, where it can be readily absorbed into the blood vessels and begin to circulate throughout the body.
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Terpenes are a large and diverse class of organic compounds produced by plants. Aromatic oils that lend flavors such as berry, mint, and pine to different cannabis strains. More than 100 different terpenes have been identified, and every cannabis strain has its own terpene profile. The effects of any given terpene may be amplified in the presence of other compounds (also known as the entourage effect).
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Short for Tetrahydrocannabinol, THC is a compound found in Cannabis plants that can produce a "high" or feeling of intoxication. THC is federally illegal but lawful in some states.
See: Delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol
A delivery method that refers to a bottle with a dropper that is used to dispense CBD Oil, typically administered sublingually, that quickly absorbs and distributes throughout the body.
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A delivery method where product is applied to the skin, typically as a salve or lotion, over the areas where they are needed.
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Third-Party Lab Testing
The process of having a product examined by an independent team of experts to verify its ingredients, potency level, purity levels and more.
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A type of product created by combining a CBD isolate and terpene extract.
Water Soluble CBD
A form of CBD that is water-soluble made by breaking an extract into tiny particles using nanoemulsions or liposomes. This type of CBD is more bioavailable than oil-based products.
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A business practice where a company owns its own supply chain. For example, owning the farms where hemp is grown, the barns where it is stored, and the labs where it is processed. This means that a vertically integrated company can ensure tighter quality control and maintain their core values and practices across all parts of the production process.
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