Complete Beginner’s Guide to Cannabinoids and Terpenes
Complete Beginner’s Guide to Cannabinoids and Terpenes
Cannabinoids are natural compounds produced by plants and animals, including humans. Yup, your body is making cannabinoids all the time.
There are two types of cannabinoids:
Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids found in plants.
Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids naturally produced in our body.
The most well known cannabinoids are THC and CBD, but there are a lot of other ones. In hemp plants alone, scientists have discovered over 120 natural cannabinoids, all with their own effects and benefits.
Cannabinoids interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) which regulates our body and overall well-being.
Humans and all other vertebrates (animals with a backbone) share the ECS system, and it’s responsible for a bunch of normal bodily functions. It’s responsible for your sleep, mood, stress, and much more – which is why CBD is so effective.
But CBD isn’t the only intriguing phytocannabinoid on the block. The hemp plant makes over 120 known cannabinoids with plenty more waiting to be discovered. And we’re discussing only a few of them here today.
Terpenes are fragrant essential oils found in plants. They’re what give blueberries, lavender, and hemp their signature smell.
They are used in a wide variety of food and cosmetic products. They also have been used in aromatherapy by humans for millennia.
Amazingly, hemp has the highest concentration of terpenes found in any plant. Each hemp terpene has a unique scent and flavor – and all of them have positive effects on our bodies.
Why Do Hemp Plants Make Cannabinoids and Terpenes?
Throughout history, plants have developed some pretty cool mechanisms to stay safe from bug-predators and the hemp plant is no exception.
Terpenes and cannabinoids are two compounds produced in hemp. Terpenes are responsible for the taste and smell of a plant which help to deter unwanted insects and keep the plant healthy. Cannabinoids are made as part of the normal hemp plant life cycle and some scientists are proposing that they also serve UV ray-protective roles.
And check this out: terpenes and cannabinoids aren’t just useful for hemp– they benefit you, too. As a newbie to the world of Cannabidiol (CBD), you may not know much about these natural compounds yet.
That’s why we’re doing a deep dive into the most interesting features of cannabinoids and terpenes. Ready? Let’s get started!
List of Important Cannabinoids and Their Effects
So, what’s all the hype about cannabinoids?
Researchers and we average joes/janes alike want to learn about these natural compounds because of the way they benefit human health and well-being. Yet the majority of cannabinoid research surrounds only two: CBD and THC.
Unfortunately, that means we don’t know much about the benefits of other cannabinoids yet. Let’s explore some of the benefits we do know about and the specific cannabinoids that offer them.
CBD is one of the most popular natural supplements today because of how effective and safe it is. That’s because this natural molecule is non-psychoactive (meaning it won’t make you feel high) and has a ton of positive effects on the body.
Here’s an example: many studies have reported CBD’s effect on sleep, stress, and relaxation.
But the crucial thing to know about CBD is its safety. Research into this cannabinoid’s toxicity for humans has been overwhelmingly positive.
THC is the main ingredient in marijuana. It’s psychoactive, meaning THC causes the “high” you get from using marijuana. This is because THC acts on ECS receptors found in the brain and changes brain chemistry to make you feel euphoric.
Nothing wrong with that, but all Jupiter products are non-psychoactive – meaning they can never get you high. In fact, the legal limit for THC in CBD oil in the U.S. is less than 0.3%. We lab test all products to ensure that.
Research on THC suggests this cannabinoid has positive effects so it’s worth studying.
How is CBD Different from THC?
Since CBD and THC are the most well-known cannabinoids in the world, they often get confused with one another. But here’s the thing: THC and CBD are incredibly different.
While even small amounts of THC can make you feel high, CBD is non-psychoactive and won’t get you high even a bit. In fact, some research suggests CBD could actually counteract the “high” associated with THC.
They’re both made from the sample plant, cannabis, adding to the confusion. But the difference is that CBD is made from hemp varieties of the plant and THC is made from marijuana varieties.
Another obvious difference is that CBD is legal nationwide, while THC is not yet recreationally legal everywhere.
CBG (Cannabigerol) is lesser-known, but it’s one of the major phytocannabinoids found in the hemp plant. And researchers are really interested in CBG because of its broad potential for human well-being.
Benefits specific to CBG are still being studied but researchers theorize that CBG may have positive effects on sleep and stress.
CBN (Cannabinol) is created when THC and oxygen interact while the hemp plant grows. A little sunshine, a little fresh air, and baddabing-baddaboom the plant makes CBN. Super cool, no?
More specifically, a process called oxidation occurs when the plant interacts with oxygen, and THC breaks apart before producing CBN. This is why you find CBN in aged hemp more often than young hemp.
And here’s the kicker: even though CBN comes from THC, it won’t get you high. It’s still being studied but promises to have positive effects on stress and overall wellness.
CBC (Cannabichromene) is another cannabinoid that won’t cause you to feel high. It does bind with two receptors that are associated with feeling good.
Other studies show that CBC may have positive effects on sleep and relaxation. In short, it’s very much worth exploring.
This cannabinoid may also contribute to the entourage effect, which we’ll discuss later in this guide.
CBDV and THCV
CBDV (Cannabidivarin) and THCV (Tetra-hydrocannabivarin) may resemble CBD and THC, but they’re quite unique.
CBDV is very similar to CBD. It’s non-psychoactive, meaning it won’t change your state of mind. It’s being looked at for potential positive benefits for exercise recovery and general well-being.
Meanwhile, THCV produces effects opposite of THC, especially regarding relaxation and appetite.
Let’s Talk More About Terpenes
Like cannabinoids, terpenes are natural compounds found in plants. You’ll know them better as the aromatic compounds in essential oils. An aromatic compound is one that evaporates quickly, making it easier for the strongly-scented molecules to get into your nose.
Yep, that’s right, terpenes are what give plants their incredible aromas. The smell of oranges? Terpenes are responsible for that. Fresh strawberries? Terpenes! The minty smell in your peppermint latte? Terpenes are at work here.
But Terpenes are also responsible for many natural benefits of plants, which is why we carefully preserve them while we make our hemp extract and then add them back in. In short, they’re partially responsible for the great smell and positive effects of Jupiter CBD Drops.
List of Important Terpenes and Their Effects
Over 120 terpenes have so far been discovered in cannabis plants. Today, we’re exploring just a few of them. Check out this list of some of the most common terpenes and how they can supercharge your health.
First up on our list is the terpene humulene. If you’re a beer connoisseur, you may know this terpene for another reason. Hops (one of the main ingredients in craft beer) is also rich in humulene, offering the earthy taste some brews are famous for.
As for its benefits, research shows that humulene may play a role in healthy appetite and overall well-being.
While humulene was the first terpene discovered, myrcene is the most abundant terpene found in cannabis plants. This terpene has a scent reminiscent of cloves with sweet undertones. Myrcene is also found in high concentrations in mangos and responsible for their irresistibly sweet scent.
Research into this terpene suggests that it has relaxing effects on the body.
Beta-caryophyllene (or caryophyllene) is in a ton of different plants, including black pepper, rosemary, and cinnamon. Also found in cannabis, caryophyllene is unique. That’s because it may just be the only terpene known to interact with the ECS directly.
Because of this, it’s much easier to study caryophyllene’s benefits. Research suggests this terpene may be involved in helping with feeling relaxed.
Second only to myrcene, limonene is another highly abundant terpene in the cannabis plant. As its name suggests, limonene has a citrusy scent. It’s no wonder, then, that this terpene is also found in lemons, limes, oranges, tangerines, and nearly all other citrus fruits.
So every time we smell that amazing sweet and tart scent of citrus, we have limonene to thank (thank you, limonene).
Research into limonene suggests that this terpene may affect overall happiness and well-being. Other studies show it could be beneficial for unwinding and de-stressing after a long day at work.
What’s that smell? It’s probably linalool– a terpene known for its pungent and spicy-sweet aroma. You may also recognize its signature scent in aromatic herbs like lavender, mint, and coriander.
Scientists have long-recognized the calming effects of plants containing linalool (think lavender at bedtime).
Alpha- and beta-pinene are two different terpenes found in the cannabis plant. Aptly named, these terpenes are responsible for the distinct aroma of pine trees. They’re also the most common terpenes found in nature. Lucky for us, they smell amazing!
Both pinenes are associated with a broad range of benefits. But the most studied effect is the relationship between pinene and feeling awake and refreshed.
Camphene is the last terpene on our list, but it’s certainly not the least interesting. You may recognize the root of “camphene” as similar to camphor oil, which comes in many soaps, lotions, and ointments. That’s because camphene is one of the main ingredients in camphor oil.
It should be no wonder, then, that research shows the possible benefits of camphene for healthy looking skin.
Cannabinoids in Hemp and Marijuana
If you’re like many people, you’re probably wondering: what makes marijuana so different from hemp? Aren’t they the same?
Well, no. Because hemp and marijuana are two different varieties of the cannabis plant. You can think of this in the same way lemons and limes are two varieties of the citrus tree. One citrus fruit tastes sweet while another tastes sour, just like hemp and marijuana have different effects on your body.
What’s the bottom line? All you really need to remember is that CBD comes from hemp and doesn’t make you high, while THC comes from marijuana and can make you high.
Do They Both Have Terpenes?
Despite their many differences, hemp and marijuana are descendants of the cannabis plant. And this means that, yes, both hemp and marijuana plants contain terpenes – that’s why they can smell similar.
Cannabinoids, Terpenes and the Entourage Effect
So, why does all this chatter about cannabinoids and terpenes matter? It’s not just that they’re both found in cannabis. These two compounds are also closely intertwined in how they interact with our bodies.
With the sole exception of B-caryophyllene, terpenes don’t interact with the ECS. But they do help boost the effects of cannabinoids like CBD. And so do the minor cannabinoids like CBC, CBN, and CBG.
In short, when you take all these natural compounds together, just like they grow in the hemp plant, they offer better effects. This positive interaction is known as the Entourage Effects and it’s what makes Jupiter CBD Drops so effective.
And this is also the reason we always recommend trying a full spectrum CBD product that’s carefully processed to preserve cannabinoids and terpenes. That way, the product stays close to nature and you can see the benefits of the entourage effect for yourself.
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