Have you ever wondered what determines the scent of any plant? Any thoughts about why scented candles bring relaxation after a hard-working day? The answer is simple but may sound unfamiliar to you. It is all about terpenes. These compounds are responsible for odor and tend to have positive health effects. They are among the substances that aroma candles are usually made of. When it comes to cannabis, this weed, like any herb or flower, contains these aromatic compounds. They provide weed with its distinctive aroma characteristics and contribute to its flavor. That is why you may unmistakably smell cannabis before seeing it.
When you look for the best cannabis seeds for sale in Canada, you must know the basics about weed terpenes. It is as helpful as knowledge about growing hemp peculiarities, finding its storage essentials, or understanding what cannabinoids’ effects are. The reason is that terpenes play an integral role in weed’s growth and survival, besides providing aroma and flavor. Explore this article to become familiar with terpenes and make your cannabis strain selection more confident and justified.
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What Are Terpenes in General
In the same way that the THC cannabinoid is commonly associated with “high” feelings, terpenes are responsible for the unique cannabis strains’ odor and flavor. To correctly understand where the terpenes come from, one should know what a trichome is. It is a gland on the marijuana buds, stems, and leaves that contains various plant compounds like cannabinoids and terpenes. The last element is naturally occurring and can be found in the female hemp plant trichomes.
Terpene’s essential role in the cannabis plant’s growth and survival lies in its ability to enrich buds and leaves with pigmentation and color. Therefore, this element enhances the hemp’s attractiveness to particular creatures, while those who may cause harm stay away from the plant. Terpenes also support hemp’s immune system, as they are great stress and pathogen protectors. Compounds convey the surrounding conditions’ information to trigger the immune system’s responses. Which variables can influence the level of terpenes in the cannabis plant?
- Indoor or outdoor growing.
- Temperature and light exposure.
- Harvesting time.
Plenty of terpenes are volatile and can be easily lost during standard extraction. Nonetheless, terpenes and other volatile cannabis elements are protected by sensitive extraction methods such as live resin.
Most Popular Terpenes
There are more than 150 types of these aromatic compounds. Some are present in cannabis in concentrations too low to detect, while others have a more substantial presence.
Its aroma is associated with citrus scents. One can find it in the rinds of citrus fruits. Studies showed that this monoterpene could reduce anxiety by increasing stress-reducing hormone levels. Limonene also causes a dopamine release to uplift the mood.
Beta-caryophyllene is known for its peppery and spicy nibble, also found in black pepper or cloves. It is sometimes classed as an atypical cannabinoid due to its ability to bind to the CB2 receptor found in the body’s immune system. Researches show the β-caryophyllene ability to ease liver fibrosis, diabetes, cerebral ischemia, and Alzheimer-like disease symptoms.
It is the dominant terpene profile among cannabis cultivars. Its tropical fruit, musky, and herbaceous aromas resemble hops, mango, and lemongrass. Among its common effects are deep relaxation and anti-inflammation. According to a study in cultured cells, myrcene helps slow down osteoarthritis progression.
Pinene smells like pine, and its aroma is close to that of rosemary, parsley, and pine needles. Its scent promotes memory retention and alertness. Pinene helps open airways, improve respiratory functions, and reduce inflammation.
Effect on the Body
The entourage effect theory says all cannabis compounds work together to create unique benefits. If one blends terpenes and cannabinoids, plant synergy occurs. For instance, this compound influences THC and CBD effects in the body and can boost the cannabinoid’s activity. “Full spectrum cannabis extract” refers to medicine made from the whole plant, which includes terpenes, cannabinoids, and other parts of the plant. According to the research, CBD extract is four times more potent than CBD isolate.
The therapeutic benefits mentioned below are based on test tubes and preclinical animal studies. Terpene research is still in its early stages, and not many studies have been done on people yet.
- The antimicrobial effect can be gained by eucalyptol, α-bisabolol, menthol, geraniol, and terpinolene terpenes. They help in stopping and killing microorganisms’ progression.
- Antidepressant medication involves plant extracts like linalool or β-pinene. 25% of antidepressant drugs use herbal extracts containing terpenes in their formulas.
- The antiviral effect is based on the terpenes’ ability to help kill viruses. Among popular elements are caryophyllene, alpha- and beta-pinene, and camphor.
- Combining terpenes and cannabinoids can provide pain relief. Recent studies showed that this effect could be intensified without harmful side effects increasing.
- Such terpenes as pinene, beta-myrcene, and terpinene have the potential benefit to exhibit anticancer activity and inhibit the cancer cells’ growth.
Armed with the information above, one can understand the indicators of hemp’s smell and flavor and the role of that weed’s compound in its growth and survival. Knowing what terpenes a particular cannabis plant contains helps choose the plant with the desired effects.