If you’ve researched any type of hemp oil or CBD-related product, you may have seen references to both hemp oil and hemp seed oil. At a glance, these two seem like they must be similar; in fact, some websites refer to hemp seed oil as ‘hemp oil’, and proper hemp oil only as ‘CBD oil’. However, that changing terminology only confuses matters—the two products are not identical.
Hemp Oil vs. Hemp Seed Oil
In fact, their similarities don’t go far beyond their sources. As their names imply, hemp oil and hemp seed oil are made from the hemp plant. Hemp plants are a variety of the Cannabissativa plant that produces marijuana; in fact, they’re the exact same species. Plants designated as hemp, however, must be comprised of less than 0.3 percent THC. Even here there we find differences between the products—hemp seed oil comes from the seeds of these plants, while hemp oil with CBD can come from either hemp or Cannabis sativaplants.
Hemp Seed Oil
Hemp seed oil is a bit easier to understand and explain. Simply put, it is an oil extracted from hemp seeds, with little or no THC or CBD. CBD oil is quickly becoming known for its medical uses, but hemp seed oil is gaining in popularity for a very different set of potential health benefits. (Please note that while all the following claims are based in quantifiable research, more research must be done to solidify these findings.)
Hormone balance. Prostaglandins are hormone-like compounds that help the body function properly; hemp seed oil is rich in gamma linoleic acid, which is a necessary building block for some prostaglandins. Research indicates that supplementing with GLA, including the use of hemp seed oil, may optimize hormone health and reduce symptoms of menopause and PMS.
Helps in preventing cancer and heart disease. The fatty-acid profile of omega-3 fats and GLA in hemp seed oil reduces inflammation and strengthens the immune system, which assists in cancer prevention. At least one study has suggested hemp seed may also offer protection against heart disease.
Assists in weight loss. The GLA content of hemp seed oil works as a natural appetite suppressant and curbs sugar cravings, helping to reduce overall calorie intake.
In short, hemp seed oil has numerous healthy properties, but they revolve around fatty acids and other compounds found in hemp seeds as opposed to the unique properties we associate with cannabis and hemp. Their benefits similar to other products on the market, such as fish oil.
Hemp (CBD) Oil
Hemp oil, on the other hand, is used for its CBD content. This complicates matters a bit when searching out hemp oil, because what’s available depends on your location, especially in the United States.
First, though, let’s talk about what it does.
Pain relief. In humans, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is involved in regulating several basic body functions, including sleep, appetite, pain, and immune system response. Studies have shown that CBD impacts ECS receptor activity, resulting in reduced inflammation and helping alleviate chronic pain.
Anxiety reduction. Although studies are in their early stages, CBD oil has shown promise in treating both anxiety and depression. For example, one study had twenty-four people with social anxiety disorder receive either a 600mg dose of CBD or a placebo before a public speaking test. Those who took the CBD performed substantially better than the placebo group. If these types of results hold, CBD oil may become an excellent substitute for anxiety sufferers who would like to avoid pharmaceutical treatment.
Alleviation of cancer-related symptoms. Where hemp seed oil has properties that help prevent cancer, CBD oil can reduce symptoms related to cancer treatment, such as the nausea and pain associated with chemotherapy.
Early studies have also indicated CBD oil may assist with treating substance abuse, reduce the incidence of diabetes, and improve heart health.
In addition, since CBD oil is used to alleviate more serious medical issues than hemp seed oil, if you’re buying CBD oil there is a reasonable chance you’re already taking some type of medication. Speak with your doctor about potential negative interactions between your current medications and CBD oil before using the oil.
The production of hemp oil is also more complicated than that of hemp seed oil, mainly due to the aforementioned legality issues. CBD oil can be created to have more than 0.3% THC, but by U.S. federal law it then becomes a Schedule 1 drug, the same as marijuana. This CBD oil can be made using the leaves and flowers of the Cannabis sativa plant, which lets manufacturers create the oil using fewer plants and in less time, but only in states where cannabis is legal.
CBD oil with less than 0.3% THC is broadly legal and can be manufactured anywhere. When buying hemp oil online, this is almost certainly the type of oil you’ll be able to purchase. It’s as effective at providing medical benefits as oil with higher THC, plus you avoid any psychoactive effects.
One thing to note about this type of CBD oil is, in order to remain below 0.3% THC, it must be extracted from the stalks of the hemp plant. Relatively large quantities of industrial hemp are required to extract the CBD oil you find for sale online.
In and of itself, this is fine; however, depending on where the hemp was grown, the oil extracted from it may be less healthy—hemp is a bio-accumulator that draws toxins from the soil. If the soil is contaminated (with pesticides, for example), the CBD oil made from hemp grown there has a higher chance of causing negative side effects. Therefore, while hemp seed oil is basically the same no matter where you get it, it’s important to buy CBD oil from a trusted source that only sells safe products. Make sure the oil you buy is listed as pesticide-free and made from non-GMO hemp oil.
As we can see, there are substantial differences between hemp (CBD) oil and hemp seed oil. Although hemp seed oil can help you be broadly healthier, CBD oil is positioned to offer unique benefits to users. If you need CBD oil, make sure you have a trusted source at the ready. Visit the CB Distillery to see the safe, effective CBD oils we have available, and contact us if you have any questions.