Skip to main content
Medical Cannabis 101

Hemp CBD Oil vs. Cannabis CBD Oil: 9 Differences You Need To Know

By July 3, 2019August 15th, 2022No Comments
Reading Time: 8 minutes

You’ve probably seen hemp CBD oils sold online or even in a local convenience store. It’s not only the accessibility of these oils but also the medicinal relief that these drugs bring in, that add up to the popularity of CBD oils. With CBD’s therapeutic benefits becoming more widely known, you may have wondered if there’s a difference between oils labelled as “hemp” and “cannabis.” A thorough knowledge of these drugs and the composition of each drug, hold significance upon its usage. It becomes important to know the composition of the oil in order to best utilize the products for your specific needs. 

Some people buy hemp CBD oil assuming it has the same therapeutic benefits as Cannabis CBD oil because they are unaware of the differences between the oils.  In reality, Hemp CBD oil and Cannabis CBD oil are two separate products with different uses and people should do their own research before buying these oils for medicinal uses. Even if you reside in a province where the use of Marijuana is legal, preference should be to buy it from a licensed producer who possesses a proper knowledge of the composition and the required dosage that you should use for the application of these oils.

In this post, we’ll highlight the major differences between hemp CBD oil and cannabis CBD oil. By the end of this very post, you should be able to make out how these two products have stark differences and effects on an individual.

Interested in speaking to a healthcare practitioner at Apollo for a free virtual appointment?
Get your free CBD prescription here.

Difference #1: Cannabis CBD Oil & The Entourage Effect

When both THC and CBD are present, they work together in what’s known as the entourage effect. This means that each cannabinoids’ therapeutic benefits are multiplied when they’re present together. Hemp CBD oil contains less than 0.3% THC. In contrast, cannabis CBD oil usually has under 1 mg/ml or less. Although this isn’t a significant amount more, it’s enough to utilize the cannabinoid’s benefits. This amount of THC won’t create any psychoactive or unwanted effects, but will only enhance the effects and benefits of your medication. 

Difference #2: Cannabis CBD Oil Contains More CBD

Many botanists and researchers have found through studies that, though cannabis and hemp belong to same category of plants, there is a large difference between these two. These have been divided into two categories namely: Cannabis Sativa or Cannabis Indica.

If you’re looking to buy a CBD oil, it’s presumably because you want to get the benefits of CBD. Cannabis-derived oil is more concentrated in nature compared to hemp CBD oil and has a more effective therapeutic value.

Cannabis CBD oil typically has a 20% CBD concentration as compared to Hemp CBD oil. The amount of CBD in a hemp-derived oil varies by seller and depends on the plant it is made from. 

Some hemp plants are bred to make oil while others are bred for industrial uses and contain lower amounts of the cannabinoid. Typically, hemp-derived oil has a low concentration of 3.5% CBD. Because this count is so low, you’d need to take a significant amount of the oil to get any effect.

Difference #3: How It’s Derived?

As you can probably guess, hemp CBD oil is derived from the hemp plant whereas cannabis CBD oil is derived from marijuana plant. Cannabis and hemp are different strains that originate from the same plant species. The hemp plant is not thought of as medicinal because it’s very low in chemical compounds, also known as cannabinoids.

THC, commonly known as tetrahydrocannabinol, is the major psychoactive compound found in cannabis. The higher the percentage of THC found in a CBD oil, the higher the effect it will have on your cognitive abilities and functioning. 

In Hemp CBD, the plant and subsequent oil contain less than 0.3% of THC. 

Comparing cannabis made CBD oil, it contains a small increase of THC percentage which activates your receptors and works synergistically to better alleviate your symptoms, still without making you “high”. 

While the cannabis plant is used to make medicine, the hemp plant is most commonly used to make consumable food products which are derived from the hemp seed. It is also used to produce a variety of other products including clothing, paper, and much more.  These are all made from the fibres and stalks of the plant.  

Difference #4: Reliability & Regulation 

Licensed producers who sell cannabis products are subject to regulation and inspections by Health Canada. Since their products are tested before they’re sold, you can trust that their labelling is correct. This includes Hemp products produced by Licenced producers. 

However, there are many hemp CBD oils in the market sold in unregulated storefronts, health food stores, and even in convenience stores, which are not produced by licenced producers and as such, are not regulated. These types of hemp products are illegal, if they do not come from a licenced producer.

If a hemp plant is not grown by an LP (licensed producer), the conditions hemp plants are grown in and whether they contain any toxins can be an area of concern. As we discussed above, since hemp has far less CBD than a cannabis plant, a significant number of hemp plants are needed to make oil. This raises the risk of contamination.

In addition, unless the hemp oil has been tested by a third party ( which is mandatory by Health Canada ), there’s no way of telling how much CBD it contains, if any. In fact, the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency (FDA) in the U.S. has sent several warning letters to companies who sell hemp oils claiming they contained CBD. When tested, the FDA found that many of these products falsely labelled the cannabinoid content.

If a product is unreliable, it makes dosing difficult and ineffective.

Difference #5: Safe vs. Unsafe Additives

To make cannabis CBD oil, the cannabinoid is often mixed with a healthy fat, such as coconut oil. Mixing CBD with a fat makes it easier for your body to absorb, meaning your medication will be more effective.

Since medical cannabis CBD oil is not vaporizable, some people may consider hemp CBD vape oil a good alternative.

However, many unregulated and illegal hemp CBD oils that are designed for vape pens contain the thinning agent propylene glycol. The FDA has deemed this chemical safe when used topically or ingested. But, it may be toxic when heated and inhaled. Since there isn’t enough research to say propylene glycol is safe to vaporize, you may want to consider avoiding this chemical.

Difference #6: Medicinal Uses

Because of the differences we describe above, these oils do not have the same uses. If you see a medical marijuana doctor and they think CBD is a good treatment, they will prescribe you a cannabis CBD oil. 

Cannabis CBD oil can be used as a treatment for a variety of conditions, including:

  • Seizures (epilepsy or Dravet Syndrome)
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Chronic pain
  • Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease
  • Cancer
  • Helps with alertness or focus

Cannabis CBD oil can be easily taken under the tongue using a syringe or dropper. Alternatively, you can add it to a drink or food. Some people make capsules and sprays out of the oil.

Cannabis CBD oil can treat a variety of conditions. Medical marijuana products are most effective when bought through a licensed producer and when treatment is supervised by a doctor. To learn more, talk to us today or schedule an appointment.

Difference# 7: Consumption and Utility of Hemp CBD v/s Marijuana

Whether the status is legal or illegal, the farming of Hemp and Marijuana cannabis date back to a thousand of years of history when the human civilization was undergoing rapid developmental changes. Humans have been farming these plants not only as consumables but also to sustain and stay alive. 

Some of these plants were bred for medicinal purposes only whereas others were also farmed for their psychoactive potential. Marijuana plants were grown for both consumption and medicinal usage. Due to the high amount of THC content, it has gained more popularity compared to its counterpart.

On the other hand, if we dig deep into the history of Hemp plants, these were generally used for their fibre and seeds. The fibre was used to spin fabric and later on with industrial development and revolutionization, it was crafted into textile growing industry. It is also used as food, many diet supplements and also for various body products. Oils are the most common form of using Hemp CBD. Due to these numerous benefits, hemp is also termed as industrial hemp plant. 

Difference #8 Appearance of Hemp CBD V/s Cannabis CBD

As both the drugs are plant-based drugs, the appearances of Hemp CBD and Cannabis CBD don’t have major differences. The only difference lies in the way these drugs are found in their original forms and how these are processed (in case of Hemp CBD) and made useful for human consumption.

In case of Cannabis plants, their beneficial properties are found in the flower of the plant. The more flowers that the plant has, the more amount of cannabis can be extracted from it. If we talk about Hemp plants, as by know we know these are basically bred for industrial purposes. Hemp is mainly derived from the stalk of the plant. The appearance of Hemp plant is more of a taller and skinnier plant as compared to its counterpart, that is; Marijuana plant. 

Difference #9: Contents and Composition

Until now we have read about the industrial usage, comparison of how both the drugs are derived and their various other usages. The main difference lies in the contents and the composition of these two CBD oils.

Hemp CBD oil:

The Hemp CBD oil is a full spectrum oil that contains not only CBD but also various phytonutrients. For making it a legally consumable and useful product, Hemp CBD is processed in such a way so that all the THC contents are eliminated from the final product. It would be useful to know that CBD isolates are those products that contain only CBD. These products don’t have THC, terpenes or other forms of cannabinoids.

Cannabis CBD oil:

In terms of cannabis CBD, we know that these oils have a certain percentage of THC, CBD and other important compounds too. Due to the presence of THC, CBD oil derived from marijuana is always generally regarded as a more thorough and complex product, medicinally.  

Interested in speaking to a healthcare practitioner at Apollo for a free virtual appointment?
Get your free CBD prescription here.

Is industrial Hemp oil an apt source of CBD? 

When purchasing hemp cbd oil, most lean towards buying industrially processed Hemp-derived CBD oil. These are generally bought to combat various conditions they have been suffering from. 

Patients suffering from chronic pain seek this medication to get a temporary relief from the pain they have been dealing with. Not only this, in case of anxiety issues and to bring a balance in mental health problems and issues, these oils stand helpful in potentially bringing around the desired long term relief one hopes for when struggling with anxiety. It has also been noted to be very useful as a natural product for people who have sleep disorders, including insomnia. 

But if we compare Cannabis CBD with the above said, the CBD derived from marijuana has a high -resin content and is preferred more. The significant reason for this is, that marijuana plants contain a greater composition of cannabinoids than hemp plants. That adds to the therapeutic value to the full spectrum CBD products. 

The key thing to be noted here is that CBD with more prominent levels of additional THC work more effectively than the CBD only hemp plant. 

This realization in studies has shown that CBD derived from marijuana works better than the CBD derived from Hemp plants or industrially processed Hemp.

What is the future of CBD oil?

As more research is done by both universities and corporate research facilities, we will continue to discover the different benefits that CBD has to offer the human body. This will most likely lead to a larger market, as CBD will continue to replace pharmaceuticals and reduce patient’s unwanted side effects. 

The various entities involved range from farmers and scientists to corporations and their consumers who pave the way for these products to reach the desired markets. 

 As per the prediction of trade specialists and consumer review services, it is anticipated that breeders and botanists will continue to expand growing techniques and strain combinations to continually increase the potential benefits of CBD products.  These different plants and methods of ingestion will create new markets, as seen now in Canada’s edible and beverage market as of October 2019 (Legalization 2.0).  

Seeing the upward trend of the markets, it can be assumed that there will be a constantly increased access to a greater variety of CBD oils and other cannabis-derived products for both consumers and patients alike. 

Towards growth and betterment

As we know, there are indeed many stark differences between Hemp and Marijuana both in their make-up and in how they affect the human body. Because there have been legal restrictions in the past decades for not only consumers, but also research purposes, restrictions have made it unapproachable for real in depth studies. Because of this, we have a lot to learn and to discover. The medical and pharmaceutical field requires years of research and human trials to definitively call a product a successful medicine or treatment option. We here at Apollo have been working with our own research staff since 2013 to help further the scientific and medical community’s understanding in this area. Our goal to better assist patients in need, dealing with things like chronic pain and mental health issues is what guides our company to discovering the full benefits and potential of CBD products.

Apollo Cannabis

We are a research clinic and doctor's office that specializes in cannabinoid therapy (medical cannabis treatment). We have published our own peer reviewed clinical research study on the use of medical cannabis for pain management. Our team of doctors, nurse practitioners, and patient educators have helped over 100,000 Canadians. We are here to help educate, support, and provide relief.

Get medical marijuana legally to treat ADHD, Anxiety, Pain Management, and More

Book Your Free Virtual Appointment From The Comfort Of Your Own Home

Please note, our online booking availability is currently full until June 24th. To book an appointment sooner, please click on the button to the right and complete the formfill on that page or call us at 1-877-560-9195.

If You Are:

  • From Ontario
  • New To Apollo
  • 19 or Older
  • Not a Veteran or Motor-Vehicle Accident (MVA) Patient

Please click here to book your free appointment online

If You Are:

  • From a Province Other Than Ontario
  • Or Under 19
  • Or A Veteran or Motor-Vehicle Accident (MVA) Patient

Please click here to schedule your free appointment

Book Your Free Virtual Appointment From The Comfort Of Your Own Home

Please note, our online booking availability is currently full until June 24th. To book an appointment sooner, please click on the button to the right and complete the formfill on that page or call us at 1-877-560-9195.

If You Are:

  • From Ontario
  • New To Apollo
  • 19 or Older
  • Not a Veteran or Motor-Vehicle Accident (MVA) Patient

Please click here to book your free appointment online

If You Are:

  • From a Province Other Than Ontario
  • Or Under 19
  • Or A Veteran or Motor-Vehicle Accident (MVA) Patient

Please click here to schedule your free appointment