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Terpenes | What Are Terpenes Anyway?

Terpenes | What Are Terpenes Anyway?

3rd Feb 2021

Ever wonder what makes Cannabis strains so different they can smell like skunk, pineapple or blueberry? Or why Blue Dream make me chill but causes my friend to get dizzy?

What is going on with this plant!

There’s a lot more unknown about the chemical compounds found in Cannabis than known. What was coined as the “Entourage Effect” to describe the synergy in the full spectrum of chemicals from Cannabis and their effects on the human body might as well have been called the “I Have No Clue Effect”. Research is slowly teasing apart the mysterious evolutionary dance Cannabis and Humans have had but many more lifetimes of research are ahead of us.

What We Know

The well known star of Cannabis most recently has been tetrahydrocannabinol or THC. Recreational breeding during prohibition focused on THC almost exclusively as the main psychoactive compound driving your high. Prohibition’s easing across the country has provided opportunity to explore and understand the diverse array of compounds found in Cannabis.

Cannabidiol or CBD has recently moved into the spotlight as another cannabinoid with medicinal benefits linked to helping with seizures, anxiety and inflammation to name a few. THC and CBD are only two of over 100 known compounds in this one class of chemistry from Cannabis.

The full spectrum of cannabinoids together interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system to produce some of the medicinal or recreational effects for which Cannabis has been utilized for.

Getting to Know Terpenes

Terpenes are another class of chemical compounds that are a large component of plant essential oils and are all derived from a similar structural formula called an isoprene unit. Like a nerd with a box of legos, the molecular machinery inside of the Cannabis trichome can piece these isoprene units together to form a large variety of terpenes found in nature.

Cannabinoids alone are mainly tasteless and flavorless. Terpenes, along with the diverse array of compounds in the essential oil extract of Cannabis, provide each strain with its aroma, flavor and many medicinal and recreational attributes.

Over 30,000 terpenes have been discovered so far and by some accounts Cannabis can make over 90% of terpenes on Earth. Hence why one strain can smell like diesel and another like strawberry.

Just understand that like an iceberg, much of what is there is unseen, or unknown, in Cannabis.

~ The Crew at Trinity Terpenes


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