Cannabis has become extremely popular over the past decade thanks to chemical compounds called cannabinoids. Produced by plants in the hemp family, these compounds interact with the body in unique ways and give rise to a variety of effects. THC is the main psychoactive compound responsible for marijuana’s intoxicating effects while cannabidiol (“CBD”) is medicinal and is claimed to be effective against a wide variety of symptoms.
Cannabis actually produces more than 100 cannabinoids as well as terpenes and flavonoids, but because of its federal status as a Schedule I controlled substance, little research has been conducted into these lesser-known compounds.
In the past few years, scientists have been able to study cannabis more closely, and one theory has become prevalent. Individually, THC and CBD could have their therapeutic benefits, but together, they somehow enhance each other’s beneficial effects while tamping down on the less desirable ones. Terpenes, which are produced by other plants and are responsible for marijuana’s strong aroma, also work together with the cannabinoids to make them more impactful. This synergy is called the entourage effect, and researchers believe understanding it is key to unlocking cannabis’ true potential.
Like cannabinoids, terpenes also have therapeutic effects, and this applies to those that are present in other plants as well. For instance, pine trees produce pinene terpenes, which have anti-inflammatory properties while lavender produces linalool terpenes, which have anti-anxiety effects.
In cannabis, a terpene called myrcene seems to have strong anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antibiotic and sedative effects and can have an entourage effect when taken with THC, says Dr. Ethan Russo. He recently authored a seminal research paper titled “Taming THC: Potential Cannabis Synergy and Phytocannabinoid-Terpene Entourage Effects.”
Since cannabis has numerous cannabinoids and terpenes, the theory is that different terpene-cannabinoid and cannabinoid-cannabinoid combinations may have different effects. One study found that although THC can be quite effective at reducing cancer-related pain, it was even more effective when taken with CBD. Additionally, the study found that cannabidiol boosted THC’s analgesic effects while reducing its psychoactive effects, which can be quite helpful for those who are interested in THC’s pain-relieving abilities but don’t want to get high.
Cannabinoids such as THC interact with the endocannabinoid system (“ECS”), which is in charge of regulating functions such as pain, sleep and appetite. These are all functions that contribute to the body’s internal balance or homeostasis. CBD, on the other hand, doesn’t interact with the ECS, but it affects how THC binds with endocannabinoid receptors. Scientists don’t know exactly what causes this, but understanding how this system of receptors and cannabinoids and terpenes alter functionality could allow scientists to harness the entourage effect and open up cannabis to a wider variety of medical applications.
As firms such as BevCanna Enterprises Inc. (CSE: BEV) (OTCQB: BVNNF) (FSE: 7BC) continue to bring innovative cannabis-based beverages to the market, consumers can expect to get a taste of the different cannabinoid, terpene and flavonoid combinations possible.
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CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.
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