Common Cannabis Terpenes
Cannabis Plants Contain over 100 Terpenes
While there are over 100 different Terpenes found in Cannabis plants, there are some that are much more prevalent than others. They are classified into three categories due to their molecular structures; they are monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, diterpenes.
Myrcene is quite often found in abundance in Cannabis, in fact, mangoes contain a large amount of this Terpene. It is responsible for the Cannabis plants distinctive aroma, often earthy musky notes, but it also contains fruity notes likened to grapes. It has been reported that myrcene is useful in reducing chronic pain and inflammation, and often produces a relaxing or calming effect. Myrcene increases cell permeability and allows the Cannabinoids to get absorbed faster than they would be on their own. An example of the beneficial multiplying effect, or entourage effect, that oil concentrates rich in precious Terpenes has.
Caryophyllene is a unique Terpene in that it is the only one that can bind to Cannabinoid receptors in the body. It is well known for its peppery spicy notes, and is also found in spices like basil, oregano, cinnamon, black pepper, and rosemary. Its ability to interact with Cannabinoid receptors makes it a powerhouse in its reported uses to treat anxieties, help counter depression, and a key ingredient in topicals. Some research conducted in mice show caryophyllene may be useful in treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
As you may have guessed from its name, lemons are very high in the limonene Terpene, though Cannabis plants often contain a good deal of this Terpene, though not all. It has a pleasant citrusy smell, and it has powerful anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. It is common addition to household cleaning products, cosmetics and other products we often consume. It is reported for therapeutic purposes it is used to reduce stress and boost mood.
Linalool has a distinctive aroma that contains floral and spicy notes and is also found in lavender, mint, coriander, and even cinnamon. Lavender being heavily used for its relaxing, sedative calming effects, even for anti-anxiety. It is the linalool Terpene that is a powerhouse in this department and is often a benefit in balancing out the anxious side effects of THC. A great example of a benefit achieved by mixing Pure Terpenes into THC Vape pens for instance.
Alpha-bisabolol is commonly used in the cosmetics industry having a pleasant floral fragrance. It has been proven to be an effective anti-bacterial agent with strong analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It will come as no surprise that it is found in the chamomile flower.
This Terpene is responsible for the woodsy pine smell especially pervasive in some strains of the Cannabis plant. Found in two varieties the beta-pinene Terpene reminds one of dill or rosemary, while the alpha-pinene Terpene is responsible for the terrific woodsy pine aroma. Use for centuries in herbal medicines for its anti-septic and anti-inflammatory properties. Orange peels, parsley, basil and rosemary are examples of other plants rich in Pinene’s.
Humulene has an earthy woodsy aroma, often with spicy notes. Also found in hops, sage, black pepper, basil, and cloves, it is said to have a variety of therapeutic uses. It has been shown to suppress appetite and has anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, some studies have shown humulene to prevent cancer cells from growing, though much more research is needed to confirm its efficacy as part of any treatment plan.
Eucalyptol you may have surmised is the primary Terpene of the eucalyptus tree. Producing minty notes, most Cannabis plants have it, but only in trace quantities. It has been shown to relieve pain, help with respiratory support, and slows down the growth of both fungus and bacteria.
Somewhat infamous for its heavily relaxing effects, it is often said to be the Terpene responsible for the “couch lock” effect. It has floral notes similar to that of apple blossoms, lilacs, with an undertone of citrus, and an anise minty taste. Its pleasant scent makes it widely used in cosmetics and perfumes.
These are just some of the more common Terpenes found in Cannabis strains, the amounts of which vary by strain, and can include a wide variety of other Terpenes in trace and even prevalent amounts. These complex compounds present in varying amounts are what gives Cannabis its unique smell, tastes that vary, and provide for its sub-classes of Indica or Sativa. The presence of myrcene in larger amounts, generally 0.5% or greater, are said to be Indica plants.