Terpenes and the entourage effect
Other Compounds Found in Hemp & THE ENTOURAGE EFFECT
One of the appealing things about cannabis is the variety of aromas and flavours that the different strains give off. These are the result of terpenes – molecules found in herbs, trees and fruit that give essential oils their distinctive aromas. There are thought to be over 200 various terpenes in the cannabis plant, different concentrations making each strain unique.
The flavour of the terpenes and the benefits of the other cannabinoids are maximised by whole-flower vaporisation. In addition to their aromas, terpenes have direct interactions with our bodies.
These are some of the terpenes found in cannabis:
- Pinene (pine): Pinene is the most common terpene in the world and has anti-inflammatory properties. It produces the fresh cleansing scent found in orange peel, pine needles, basil, and parsley. It’s been known improve airflow to your lungs and promote alertness.
- Myrcene (earthy, musky, fruity): Myrcene can be found in mangoes, hops, thyme, lemongrass, and basil, and is the most commonly found terpene in cannabis. It can compose up to 50 percent of a cannabis plant’s terpenes. Myrcene has been shown to be useful as an anti-inflammatory, a sedative, and a muscle relaxer. Many indica strains have high levels of myrcene, which contribute to the tired/stoned feeling (if higher than 0.5% myrcene in a strain, it creates the “couch-lock” feeling in users).
- Limonene (citrus): Like its name suggests, limonene smells like lemons, oranges, mandarins, limes, and grapefruits. Its invigorating fragrance has been shown to elevate mood and relieve stress. It’s also, interestingly enough, probably found in your favourite cleaning products or perfumes not only because of its citrusy aroma, but also due to its anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Limonene also improves absorption of other terpenes and chemicals through the skin, which makes it great in strains that you use for tinctures, ointments, and other topicals.
- Humulene (hoppy, earthy): Humulene is found in hops, coriander, cloves, and basil. It’s best known for its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to suppress appetite (while many other strains only increase appetite).
- Linalool (floral, spicy): Linalool is found in fragrant flowers and spices like lavender and coriander, and is widely known for its stress-relieving, anti-inflammatory, and anti-depressant effects. The linalool terpene balances out the jittery side effects of THC, making it an effective treatment for both anxiety and psychosis. Some studies also suggest that linalool can boost the immune system and significantly reduce lung inflammation.
- Caryophyllene (peppery, spicy): Caryophyllene is found in Thai basil, cloves, cinnamon leaves and black pepper. Studies show that it can help treat anxiety, depression, and act as an anti-inflammatory, which sounds like a big job to handle for one small terpene.
- Terpinolene (smoky, woodsy): Terpinolene can be found in sage and rosemary, and has slightly sedative, antioxidant, and antibacterial properties. It’s also been found to depress your central nervous system, and therefore induce drowsiness and reduce excitement or anxiety.
Evidence suggests that whole-plant cannabis is far more beneficial than isolated compounds from the plant. As it is with many beneficial plants, fruits, and vegetables, we consume many, many elements at one time. The combinations make up and provide the nutritional benefits we need. The entourage effect is somewhat similar to this concept of “whole plant medicine”, the idea being that you are working with several components at once.
So, when we speak about the CBD entourage effect, we’re talking about the interaction between many different compounds within the cannabis plant. Since the cannabis plant has more than 500 different compounds, there’s a lot to choose from.
Especially interesting are flavonoids, a phytonutrient (natural chemical), that creates the colour in plants. Flavonoids are particularly beneficial because they have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and they are present in many well-known “super foods” such as green tea, apples, and blueberries.
Vitamin A, C, E and B complex vitamins (niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine) and beta-carotene are also found in full spectrum CBD oil. Zinc, potassium, iron, calcium and phosphorus are minerals found. 20 amino acids, Omega 3 and omega 6 are also found.
CBD Studios use a CO2 extraction technique, which is a clean process that allows for the full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes to be retained.
As the cannabinoids combine with and strengthen your body’s endocannabinoids, many people report that they experience a lower overall intensity of pain. Athletes may use the cannabinoids found in CBD oil to help them recover quickly after a tough workout, for example.
It is important to understand that the cannabinoids in CBD oil are still under a lot of scrutiny and a lot more research has to be done until there is proof that they actually cure illnesses, but scientists believe that they can help with pain and stress management. The concern over addiction to prescription painkillers brings people to feel that CBD oil is a much safer alternative.
CBD Studios do not offer or claim to have any medical cures or treat any illness.