You may be familiar with common terms for cannabis, such as cannabinoid, indica, and sativa. But have you ever encountered terpenes? This is another compound found in cannabis. But what terpenes actually are? Terpenes are naturally occurring compounds found in a variety of plants and possibly also found in the cannabis plant, which enhance the herb's medical benefits. Here's what you need to know. Read on to find out what researchers have to say about these terpenes.
What are Terpenes?
Terpenes are chemical compounds found naturally in plants and some animals. Terpenes are responsible for the aromatic compounds found in nearly every flower, herb, and fruit grown around the world. Some terpenes also have medicinal properties, which is why hemp also contains different terpenes. Cannabis produces hundreds of different terpenes and produces strong aromas that attract the consumer. Terpenes in marijuana are known to interact with other organic compounds such as THC present in them.
How do Terpenes Work?
Terpenes alone may not confer medical benefits in cannabis. Most of the medical properties of cannabis are due to cannabinoids such as CBD and THC. Terpenes actually support other cannabis molecules and can enhance the therapeutic properties of other cannabinoids. This is known as the entourage effect. The entourage effect occurs when terpenes synergize with THC and CBD to produce stronger effects than either can achieve on their own. Different terpenes affect the body differently. Some have a more energizing or uplifting effect and some are more relaxing or sedative.
Do Terpenes get you high?
Most of the psychoactive effects of cannabis come from THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) which is a cannabinoid. Therefore, terpenes affect the body by producing certain psychoactive effects, such as calming and relieving pain. However, terpenes are not responsible for getting you high. Nevertheless, some are considered psychoactive because they affect the brain. Some terpenes may have potential benefits for certain mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder.
What Are the Most Popular Terpenes in Cannabis?
Myrcene is also known as beta-Myrcene. It is one of the most abundant terpenes found in cannabis, parsley, lemongrass, cardamom, mango, hops and many other fruits and plants. Its aroma is both fruity and herbal with clove, pepper, balsam, and spicy scents. Animal studies suggest that it has sedative properties, but the evidence is weak and effects have only been observed at high doses. Researchers believe that myrcene terpenes may block pain and inflammation. More generally, myrcene is known for its sedative Effect.
Pinene is the most abundant terpene in nature, found in cannabis, pine trees, and Spanish sedge. It has anti-anxiety properties and is able to bind to neurotransmitter sites in the brain. The naturally occurring cedar odor of pinene can be found in basil, rosemary, and cedar needles. It has been studied for its potential ability to fight inflammation and infection, and for its ability to fight human cancer cells. It also has promising effects against Alzheimer's disease and other neurological conditions and symptoms.
Pine Key Cannabis Strains are Blue Dream, Bubba Kush, Chemdog, Dutch Treat, Island Sweet Skunk
Caryophyllene or Beta-caryophyllene is a major terpene found in many cannabis strains. This is responsible for the pungent smell of black pepper. It is also found in cloves, hops, and rosemary. Its pungent and woody aroma is found in black pepper, oregano, basil, and cinnamon. Caryophyllene can relieve symptoms of anxiety. Beta-caryophyllene has potential anti-inflammatory effects on conditions such as arthritis.
Some popular Caryophyllene dominant cannabis strains are Bubba Kush, Candyland, ChemDog, Gelato, Girl Scout Cookies.
Linalool is a primary terpene in lavender that is responsible for the plant's floral scent. Linalool has anxiolytic, antidepressant, mood-stabilizing, sedative, pain-relieving, and anti-inflammatory properties. It also improves sleep quality and reduces pain sensitivity by inhibiting pain signals in the spinal cord. Boasting has rich, spicy, and floral notes. Linalool occurs in over 200 species of plants and is commonly known for giving lavender its distinctive scent.
Common Linalool Major Cannabis Strains Are Amnesia Haze, Lavender, LA Confidential, OG Shark, Special Kush
Humulene gets its name from Humulus lupulus, better known as common hops. Humulene is one of the major terpenes in cannabis and is heavily produced in the resin of mature plants. True to its name, Humulene imparts a spicy, earthy aroma found in hops, cloves, and basil. More studies have suggested that humulene may fight allergies when taken orally or inhaled. Humulene also has antibacterial and antifungal properties. Researchers believe that it exhibits tumor-fighting and anti-carcinogenic properties when synergized with other phytocannabinoids.
Bubba Kush, Candyland, Death Star, Original Glu, Sour Diesel Humulin are the leading cannabis strains
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