In the UK, 6 million people have used CBD in some form, but what is CBD? If you want a simple answer to that question, check our introductory CBD guide, but if you’ve got the basics, understanding what’s in a CBD oil gets a little more complicated.
That’s because CBD oils often contain lots of other compounds outside of CBD, including other cannabinoids, terpenes, and compounds known as bioflavonoids. But what are bioflavonoids? And how do they affect CBD? If you hadn’t guessed, those are the questions we’re here to answer today.
What do hemp plants consist of?
Before we address what bioflavonoids are, let's first discuss the bigger picture: cannabis plants. Cannabis plants are where CBD and THC come from; they are cannabinoids, which are chemicals that interact with your endocannabinoid system.
You may already be familiar with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), as this is the active ingredient that gives people a "high" when partaking in marijuana. All our CBD is harvested directly from a subsection of cannabis plants known as hemp plants.
On the other hand, "CBD" stands for "cannabidiol" and is very similar to THC. You can get practically all the same benefits you would from THC, but without the high. This is why it's become immensely popular with the general public.
In addition to cannabinoids, hemp plants also consist of terpenes, which are what makes marijuana and hemp have those unique smells. Not only that, but they also have some therapeutic effects when combined with other compounds (more on that later).
And last, but not least, hemp plants also consist of flavonoids or bioflavonoids.
What are bioflavonoids?
Flavonoids (also known as bioflavonoids) are a substance found in plants that are responsible for giving them their colouration. You might've thought it would be responsible for their flavour just based on the name, but "flavus" actually means "yellow" in Latin.
When you witness plants changing color from season to season, this is thanks to flavonoids. For example, you know how the leaves on trees start turning yellow in autumn? This is thanks to the flavonoids (and carotenoids) found in the trees.
In plants, flavonoids serve to not only attract pollinators, but also to ward off anything that may eat the leaves, flowers, or fruits. It also has the added job of helping UV light filter into the plant to grow healthy and strong.
Even though "flavus" means "yellow" in Latin, that doesn't mean flavonoids can only turn plants yellow. In fact, there are several types of flavonoids that can transform plants into a variety of colours, such as red and blue! Currently, over 6,000 bioflavonoids have been identified in the world.
How bioflavonoids affect CBD
In hemp plants, you'll find over 200 biological compounds. Out of those 200, bioflavonoids make up around 20 of them. As you can see, they're a significant part of hemp plants.
Bioflavonoids are pharmacologically active compounds, and like with terpenes, they don't just affect CBD in just an aesthetic way. They also play a role as antioxidants, which are hugely beneficial for keeping plants healthy and free of fungi and pests.
What about cannaflavins?
"Cannaflavins" is a portmanteau of "cannabis" and "flavonoids." You guessed it: cannaflavins are bioflavonoids that you'll find specifically in cannabis plants. When you're looking at these plants, you'll find a combination of both bioflavonoids and cannaflavins.
Remember how we said that terpenes are the compounds responsible for the unique scents found in different cannabis strains? The truth is, they're not the only factors at play for this. Not only do cannaflavins give CBD flowers their pigmentation, but they also influence the flavours and scents too!
So if you're using CBD sprays, CBD drops, or any other CBD products, you're bound to be consuming cannaflavins and bioflavonoids.
The entourage effect
We mentioned earlier that when terpenes are combined with other compounds, it can amplify the effects CBD has. This means terpenes interact with the cannaflavins and other cannabinoids found in the CBD oil. All these compounds working together is worth more than the sum of their parts.
This makes it very important to look for broad spectrum CBD products instead of CBD isolate. With CBD isolate products, this means you're only getting CBD in them, nothing else.
Broad spectrum CBD products retain all the other helpful compounds in hemp while also getting rid of the THC. That’s why all BeYou products use a broad spectrum extract!
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