What Are Cannabis Terpenes and What Do They Do?
Have you been wondering what gives cannabis its distinctive smell? It turns out that it’s not just the cannabinoids like THC and CBD. There are also compounds in cannabis called terpenes, and they play a big role in the plant’s aroma and effects.
The aroma of a particular strain of cannabis is determined by its terpene content. For example, the terpene limonene is responsible for the citrusy smell of some strains. Myrcene, on the other hand, has a musky odor.
This makes cannabis terpenes a very important part of the cannabis plant. They not only contribute to the plant’s smell but also its flavor and effects.
But what exactly are cannabis terpenes? And what do they do?
What Are Cannabis Terpenes?
Cannabis terpenes are aromatic compounds that are produced in the plant’s trichomes. These are the small, hair-like structures on the surface of the plant.
Terpenes are found in a wide variety of plants, not just cannabis. They are found in citrus fruits, pine trees, and even herbs like basil. This is why different strains of cannabis can have such different smells.
Cannabis terpenes in particular are thought to have some important effects on the human body. Some terpenes are known to have medicinal properties, while others may affect the way that cannabinoids like THC and CBD work.
Additionally, they are also pesticides that can protect the plant from predators.
The Most Popular Cannabis Terpenes
When cannabis terpenes are present in high enough concentrations, they can be smelled. And different strains of cannabis will have different ratios of terpenes, which is what gives them their unique smell.
Some of the most common cannabis terpenes include:
Myrcene is the most common terpene in cannabis. It’s also found in other plants like mangos, hops, and thyme. Myrcene has a musky, earthy smell. They are also known for their sedative effects.
Limonene is a citrusy terpene that is also found in lemons, oranges, and other citrus fruits. Limonene has uplifting and stress-relieving effects. They give cannabis strains a citrusy smell. Similar to myrcene, it is also a common terpene in cannabis.
The woody and earthy terpene humulene is found in cannabis, as well as hops and cloves. Humulene has appetite-suppressing effects.
Caryophyllene is a peppery terpene found in cannabis, as well as black pepper and cloves. This terpene has anti-inflammatory and stress-relieving effects.
Have you encountered a lavender-scented cannabis strain? That’s because it likely contains the terpene linalool. Linalool is also found in other flowers and spices like coriander. This terpene has sedative and stress-relieving effects.
The terpene alpha-pinene is found in cannabis, as well as pine trees. This terpene gives cannabis strains a piney smell. They work magic for consumers suffering from asthma. They also have memory-boosting effects.
These are just some of the most common cannabis terpenes. There are over 100 different types of terpenes that have been identified in the plant. And each one has its own unique smell and set of effects.
How Do Cannabis Terpenes Work?
Cannabis terpenes are thought to work in a few different ways. They can interact with the human body’s endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for regulating things like mood, pain, and appetite.
Additionally, they can also affect the way that cannabinoids like THC and CBD interact with the body.
It’s important to note that cannabis terpenes are not just responsible for the plant’s smell. They also play a role in its flavor, effects, and even its color.
So if you’re looking to experience a particular set of effects from a cannabis strain, pay attention to its terpene profile.
Cannabis Terpenes vs CBD and THC
It’s important to note that cannabis terpenes are not the same as cannabinoids like THC and CBD. While cannabinoids are thought to interact directly with the body’s endocannabinoid system, terpenes are thought to work indirectly.
Moreover, cannabinoids like THC and CBD are known to have psychoactive effects. This means that they can alter your state of mind, making you feel high. Terpenes, on the other hand, are not thought to have any psychoactive effects.
This is why cannabis strains can smell and taste so different from each other, even if they contain similar levels of THC and CBD. It all comes down to the terpene profile.
What Are The Benefits of Terpenes?
Cannabis terpenes are thought to offer a range of potential health benefits. Some common benefits include:
1. Stress relief
2. Pain relief
3. Increased appetite
4. Improved memory
5. Anti-inflammatory effects
6. Antimicrobial effects
7. Antioxidant effects
8. Cancer-fighting properties
While more research is needed to confirm these potential benefits, there is a growing body of evidence to suggest that cannabis terpenes could be helpful for treating a variety of conditions.
For example, one study found that the terpene linalool was effective at reducing stress and anxiety in rats. This is in line with the traditional use of lavender, which is known for its calming effects.
Each cannabis terpene has its own unique set of effects. One way to find a cannabis strain that’s right for you is to pay attention to its terpene profile. This can give you an idea of what to expect in terms of flavor, smell, and effects.
How To Preserve Terpenes In Cannabis
To maintain the potency of your cannabis and its terpene content, it’s important to store it properly. Here are a few tips:
1. Store cannabis in a dark, airtight container.
2. Keep it at a cool, consistent temperature.
3. Avoid exposure to light, heat, or moisture.
4. Don’t store cannabis for more than a few months at a time.
By following these storage tips, you can help to preserve the terpenes in your cannabis and ensure that it remains potent. Remember, how you harvest, dry, and cure your cannabis can also affect its terpene content.
So if you’re looking to maximize the terpene content of your cannabis, be sure to pay attention to these steps as well.
Cannabis terpenes are a type of compound that’s responsible for the plant’s smell and flavor. They also play a role in its effects. Each cannabis strain has a unique terpene profile that gives it its own set of effects.
Cannabis terpenes are thought to offer a range of potential health benefits, including stress relief, pain relief, and increased appetite. However, more research is needed to confirm these potential benefits.
What is clear is that cannabis terpenes play an important role in the plant’s effects and can be used to find a strain that’s right for you!