Terpenes are organic compounds found in many plants, including the cannabis plant. These compounds are responsible for the distinctive scent and flavour of the plant, and they can also offer various health benefits. Here, we take a looks at what cannabis terpenes actually are, how they work, and their potential benefits.
So, What Are Cannabis Terpenes?
Terpenes are a type of organic compound found in cannabis, as well as many other plants. These compounds are responsible for the plant’s aroma and flavour, and they are also thought to play a role in its therapeutic effects. There are over 100 different terpenes found in the cannabis plant, each with its own unique properties.
How Do Terpenes Work?
Terpenes interact with other compounds in the cannabis plant, including cannabinoids like THC and CBD. This interaction is known as the “entourage effect,” and it is believed to enhance the therapeutic benefits of cannabis. Different strains of cannabis contain different combinations of terpenes and cannabinoids, which can produce varying effects.
Benefits of Terpenes
Terpenes can offer a range of therapeutic benefits, depending on the specific compounds present in the plant. For example, some terpenes have anti-inflammatory properties, while others can help to reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. Here are some of the most common terpenes found in cannabis, along with their potential benefits:
Limonene is a terpene that is commonly found in citrus fruits. It has a strong, citrusy aroma and is thought to have mood-enhancing effects. Some studies have also suggested that limonene may have anti-inflammatory properties and could be useful in the treatment of conditions like arthritis.
Pinene is a terpene that is found in pine trees, as well as some citrus fruits and herbs like rosemary and basil. It has a piney aroma and is thought to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. Pinene may also help to improve memory and alertness.
Caryophyllene is a spicy terpene that is found in black pepper, cloves, and other herbs and spices. It has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties and may also have antidepressant effects. Some studies have even suggested that caryophyllene could help to reduce alcohol cravings.
Myrcene is a terpene that is found in mangoes, hops, and thyme. It has a musky, earthy aroma and is thought to have sedative effects. Myrcene may also have anti-inflammatory properties and could be useful in the treatment of conditions like arthritis.
Humulene is a terpene that is found in hops, sage, and ginger. It has a woody, earthy aroma and is thought to have anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Humulene may also help to suppress appetite, making it a potentially useful tool for weight loss.
Linalool is a terpene that is found in lavender and other flowers. It has a floral aroma and is thought to have calming and relaxing effects. Linalool may also have anti-anxiety and anticonvulsant properties, making it a potentially useful tool for the treatment of conditions like epilepsy.
Do Terpenes Get You High?
While terpenes can interact with other compounds in the cannabis plant to produce various effects, they do not produce a “high” on their own. However, terpenes may enhance the effects of THC, the compound responsible for the plant’s psychoactive effects.
As you can see, there is a lot more to cannabis than just THC and CBD. The terpenes in cannabis have a huge impact on the overall experience and can give each strain a unique taste, aroma, and effect. Understanding terpenes can help you to make more informed choices when picking different strains for different occasions.
Furthermore, research has shown that the different terpenes in cannabis can work alongside the cannabinoids in the plant, producing different effects and enhancing the medicinal benefits of cannabis. While more research is needed to fully understand the “entourage effect,” early findings are very promising.
Knowing about terpenes can also help you to tailor your cannabis experience to your desired effects. For example, if you are looking for a strain to help you relax and de-stress, then you may want to look for strains high in Linalool, which can produce a calming and relaxing effect. Alternatively, if you are looking for a strain to help with pain or inflammation, then you may want to look for strains high in Caryophyllene, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.
In summary, when it comes to picking the right cannabis strain, it’s not just about the THC and CBD content. The different terpenes in each strain can have a significant impact on the overall experience and the desired effects. So, next time you are choosing a strain, take note of the different terpenes and experiment with different combinations to find the perfect strain for you!
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