cbd plant and structure

One of the most popular groups of products on the market – and one that’s gaining traction like crazy – are those that contain CBD. CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is one of over 100 chemical compounds (referred to as cannabinoids) that comes from cannabis plants.

They can be used for many different purposes, they come in many forms, and they’re completely safe for use.

But, as consumers decide how and when to incorporate CBD products into their daily routines, one aspect to consider is the two most popular forms that CBD can come in. Here, we’ll be focusing specifically on water-soluble CBD in comparison to CBD oil, the characteristics and uses of each, and how to determine which might be a better fit for your lifestyle needs.

What Is CBD Oil?

First, let’s talk about CBD oil. Without a doubt, it’s one of the more common CBD products you will see on the shelves these days, but equally as common are some of the misperceptions that surround it. Essentially, CBD oil is simply any product where its CBD component has been extracted from a cannabis plant, then added to an oil (such as coconut or hemp seed oil, for example) to be diluted.

What Are the Characteristics of CBD Oil?

Because CBD oil is an oil, just like any other, its characteristics are similar to those of other oil types. Though it contains CBD (which, you’ll recall, is a cannabinoid), CBD oil does not contain another well-known cannabinoid called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the chemical compound responsible for the psychoactive effects of “getting high” that users often experience when using marijuana and other cannabis products. Because CBD oil does not contain THC, a key characteristic of CBD oil is its ability to transfer some of the benefits of cannabis, but without the psychoactive “high” sensation.

As an oil, consumers can use CBD oil in a variety of ways. Users can ingest CBD oil, apply it topically, or inhale it. But, given the physiological constraints that oil undergoes while being digested in our digestive systems, researchers have concluded that rubbing CBD oil directly onto the skin, dropping some under the tongue, or even vaping the oil can bypass these digestive blockages and allow all of the CBD and its benefits to enter the body’s circulation. If CBD oil is ingested normally, it’s estimated that only about 10 to 20 percent will actually reach the bloodstream.

What Is Water-Soluble CBD?

Like CBD oil, water-soluble CBD does not contain THC which, you’ll recall, is what produces the psychoactive “high” effects. But, unlike CBD oil, water-soluble CBD is a CBD extract that has been scientifically converted to a water-soluble form, making it much easier for the body to absorb.

What Are the Characteristics of Water-Soluble CBD?

CBD, a naturally oil-soluble substance, is converted into a water-soluble one by way of breaking down the oil into small particles then coating the particles with a bio-encapsulation that ensures the CBD is stabilized. In essence, what we are left with is a light, water-soluble, powdery CBD extract that can be fully digested and absorbed by the body.

What Are the Common Uses of Water-Soluble CBD?

Once CBD oil has been encapsulated to be made water-soluble, its uses can be expanded to nearly any product in which consumers want to include it. Because of its amazing potential to be fully absorbed in the body, water-soluble CBD gets more bang for its buck when added to drinks, foods, or other means of consumption. When water-soluble CBD is used in this capacity, there’s no fear of low CBD absorption levels, nor is there fear of psychoactive effects (since, again, water-soluble CBD does not contain THC).

When Is It Better to Use Water-Soluble CBD?

Though choosing between water-soluble CBD products and CBD oil products is obviously each individual’s choice, the key to deciding which could be right for you is by evaluating your priorities.

Do you like the taste of CBD oil? Do you like applying it topically to your skin as part of your care regimen? And how about vaping CBD oil – do you enjoy it? If so, continuing to use CBD oil as a means to glean its benefits, while also enjoying the product itself, is perfectly fine and recommended.

If you’re not a strong fan of CBD oil’s taste, if you’re not interested in using it as a skin enhancer, or if you’re not interested in vaping the oil, water-soluble CBD is the better option to choose.

If you’re simply interested in getting the maximal results of CBD, without the psychoactive effects of THC, consider incorporating water-soluble CBD products into your diet.

In conclusion, is water-soluble CBD better than CBD oil? Though each individual’s CBD priorities will affect the answer to this question, there’s no denying that water-soluble CBD is more easily absorbed by the body through a wider variety of consumption methods.

But, the choice is yours.

How Do I Get the Most Out of My CBD?

If you are taking your CBD orally through a tincture, softgel, or edible the CBD is going to pass through your digestive tract before it gets to your bloodstream. This is why we suggest taking your oral CBD with or directly after a meal. By doing so, the processing of the CBD by your stomach and liver is slower than if you were to take it on an empty stomach.

By slowing the processing down the CBD and other cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes that are contained in your product have more time to get into your bloodstream, thereby increasing their effectiveness. An additional note if you are ingesting CBD oil: because it is oil-soluble the best type of meal to eat before taking your CBD is one that is high in healthy fats, like fish or avocados. This not only slows the processing of the beneficial cannabinoids, but the fats will also help to break them down in order to get a higher absorption rate.

Another factor to getting the most out of your CBD is maintaining its potency with proper storage. Always keep the lid to your product tightly sealed when not in use, and store it in a cool, dry area away from direct sunlight.

Interested in Learning More about Which CBD Product Is Right for You?

If you’re interested in learning more about what you can expect from CBD oil and water-soluble CBD, look no further than The Hemp Doctor.

At The Hemp Doctor, our goal is to give customers accurate information on CBD and hemp products and to provide only the best, safest, and purest hemp and CBD products available on the market. If you’re interested in learning more about CBD products, how water-soluble CBD differs from CBD oil, and how you can use both in a variety of ways, contact us online today.


As both hemp and marijuana increasingly become part of our nation’s dialog, misunderstandings and misrepresentations of the two are growing equally as common. Of course, we’re not completely at a loss for why that’s the case; for decades, US policies have conflated hemp and marijuana as one in the same, treating both as Schedule 1 drugs that face severe punishments. As the conversation about marijuana begins to change, many have also begun to turn to hemp for its many benefits, as well.

But, the question remains: Are marijuana and hemp the same?

In short, no. Even though marijuana and hemp are quite different in both effect and usage, they’ve been categorized together for so long that it’s easy to see the inherent confusion.

In this article, we’ll try to point out the key differences between hemp and marijuana, what each is, and why it’s important that hemp gradually sheds its unfairly negative association with marijuana and begins to shine according to its own benefits.

Hemp vs. Marijuana

What Is Hemp?

Firstly, hemp comes from the Cannabaceae plant family, which is the same as that of marijuana. But, hemp is different in that all recognized, legal hemp products contain less than 0.3 percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is one of the cannabinoid chemicals and is responsible for giving users the classic “high” associated with marijuana.

Because hemp has such low THC levels, its uses vary wildly from those of marijuana. Hemp has, historically, been a vital ingredient for rope, clothing, food, and many other products across several industries. Beginning with the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, hemp production (which used to be required of farmers in the decades before) decreased dramatically as its association alongside marijuana grew. This eventually culminated into the Controlled Substances Act in 1970, which classified both hemp and marijuana as Schedule 1 drugs. This effectively further damaged hemp’s reputation within the US, even as hemp’s usefulness was still recognized.

But, just late last year, President Trump signed into law the 2018 Farm Bill, which federally legalized hemp and hemp products’ cultivation, transportation, and distribution (again, as long as products contain less than 0.3 percent THC). At this point, we anticipate that the dialog surrounding hemp will once again change, but hopefully it’ll change for the better this time.

What Is Marijuana?

On the other hand, marijuana and the laws surrounding it are a bit more complex. It also comes from the Cannabaceae plant family, and some estimates suggest that there are thousands of varieties and strains (indica, sativa, or hybrids) of marijuana. Though the marijuana plant is similar to that of the hemp plant, because of its traditionally high levels of THC, most of its uses are reserved for medical or recreational purposes as opposed to textile or industrial functions.

Though THC levels in marijuana can vary significantly, it’s usually somewhere between five and 30 percent. It is precisely this THC quantity that produces the psychoactive effects often associated with “getting high.” But this is also often (and, erroneously, we might add) associated with all products from the cannabis family. Only those that have high enough quantities of THC produce these effects, which includes marijuana but does not include hemp.

Currently, there are about 38 states that have legalized marijuana in some capacity (whether medicinal, recreational, or both), with more considering laws in the future. At present, marijuana is still illegal on a federal level.

How Are They Similar?

In essence, the only similarity that hemp and marijuana have is that they both originate from the same plant family, Cannabaceae. But, their chemical makeup differs enough that comparing hemp and marijuana is like comparing oranges to lemons. These fruits may be similar, but they have numerous distinct qualities that make comparing them difficult; the same can be said regarding marijuana and hemp.

How Are They Different?

Obviously, the most noteworthy difference between hemp and marijuana is that hemp, containing THC levels lower than 0.3 percent (i.e., what federal law considers legal hemp), has no psychoactive effects on users at all. Marijuana, on the other hand – which often has much higher levels of THC – does produce psychoactive effects.

Because of this key distinction, hemp is mostly used for industrial purposes, which changes the way it’s cultivated. Marijuana, contrarily, is largely used for medicinal and recreational consumption, which means that its cultivation necessitates much more precision and conditioning.

Why It’s Important to Know the Difference

As we’ve pointed out, hemp and marijuana – despite having some similarities and belonging to the same plant family – are, indeed, very different. Confounding the two as one in the same is not only overly simplistic and unfortunate, but it’s also dangerous. Here’s why:

Hemp Has Many More Uses

When we regard hemp as the same as marijuana, we may miss out on some of the benefits that it can provide. Hemp products – which have been estimated to number over 20,000 – have a myriad of uses; by disallowing all hemp from the market or misjudging it for something it’s not, we may miss out on those benefits.

Hemp Does Not Give a “High”

Surely one of the most polarizing aspects of marijuana, despite its many useful effects, is the “high” that users feel. Again, this high is directly tied to THC and other cannabinoid chemicals’ interacting in the human body. This means that products not containing THC do not give the user any psychoactive effects. When we assume that hemp does this, it creates a layer of animosity that should not exist.

Currently, the Laws Are Different

At the moment, hemp is legal federally – provided that it falls under the 0.3 percent THC requirement. Conversely, marijuana is only legal in select states and remains illegal federally. Understanding that hemp is viewed and treated differently under the law than marijuana is important, as possession of one or the other has different repercussions.

Additionally, now that hemp has been legalized federally, we expect there to be a growth in hemp cultivation and use in products around the nation. As a consumer, it’s wise to understand that hemp and marijuana have very distinct uses in this sense.

Interested in Learning More about Hemp?

If you’re interested in learning more about hemp and what its products might be able to bring into your life, look no further than The Hemp Doctor.

At The Hemp Doctor, we promise to provide only the best, safest, and purest hemp and CBD products available on the market. If you’re interested in learning more about hemp, how it differs from marijuana, and how you can use it in a variety of ways, contact us online today.

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