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Cannabis oil is somewhat of a tricky term. The main reason that it can often bring about confusion is that cannabis oil is many things –THC oil, CBD oil, and hemp oil. These three categories constitute similar, but altogether different, products that are typically used for widely different reasons.

For simplicity’s sake, let us first look at THC-based cannabis oil. What this means is that the primary psychoactive ingredient from the cannabis plant, THC, has been extracted from the plant’s flowers and mixed into another carrier oil, like sunflower or MCT, to produce a medical and recreational oil that can be consumed orally for therapeutic results. Oils high in THC will often have trace amounts, the same concentration, or even more CBD than THC.1

CBD oil, meanwhile, is also a concentrated form of cannabis extract that is derived from the flowers of cannabis plants, or hemp plants. This non-psychoactive cannabinoid is found in various concentrations in most strains of cannabis and can be used as an analgesic for everything from stress and anxiety, to chronic pain and inflammation. When people speak about cannabis oil, they are almost always talking about CBD oil.

What's the Difference Between Hemp Oil and CBD Oil?
The benefits of CBD oil are wide ranging, from helping with cancer-related symptoms, to reducing acne and aiding with heart problems and conditions. Researchers even believe that CBD oil may have a unique ability to act on the body’s endocannabinoid system and other brain signalling systems to provide benefits for neurological disorders.2

Where THC has long been known as the culprit that produces the traditional “high” that often leaves patients and consumers feeling paranoid and disoriented, CBD is an inherently calming cannabinoid that has quickly become the darling of the medical cannabis community, lauded for its many applications and uses. 

Hemp oil, or hemp seed oil, comes from the seeds of the hemp plant. Generally extracted from food-grade hemp that contains less than 0.3 percent THC, hemp oil is rich in nutrients, fatty acids and other bioactive compounds. In addition to serving as an analgesic, with some reports suggesting it is good for brain and heart health, hemp oil is used in skincare products like balms and lotions.3

In other words, though both CBD oil and hemp oil are understood to have health benefits, CBD oil is often used in cannabis therapy, and hemp oil is almost always reserved for products with periphery applications. For this reason, it is important to learn how to distinguish between hemp and CBD oil, which can often simply be termed cannabis oil.

While the discussion into the many differences in these products is somewhat confusing and convoluted, it can save both time, money and, quite literally, headaches, to form a general working of these classes of products. With more CBD and hemp oil products on the market, cannabis therapy has become even more inviting than ever. The trick is, simply, to establish an understanding of the terminology. 

  1. “What’s the difference between THC and CBD?” https://cbdoilreview.org/cbd-cannabidiol/thc-cbd/
  2. “7 benefits and uses of CBD oil.” https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cbd-oil-benefits#section5
  3. “Hemp oil benefits list.” https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324450.php

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