What is the meaning of ‘terpenes’?

Can someone explain the term ‘terpenes’ in the context of cannabis? How do they contribute to the overall experience and effects of cannabis?

One answer “What is the meaning of ‘terpenes’?

  1. Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in various plants and cannabis, and are responsible for the unique smell and flavor of each strain. Terpenes, alongside cannabinoids, make up the unique cannabinoid profiles (flavonoids, etc) seen in each strain, and may also play an important role in the overall effects of certain cannabis strains.

    Terpenes are fragrant and volatile compounds that give cannabis its distinct aroma and flavor profiles, beyond just the taste of the cannabis plant. Most commonly, these compounds interact with cannabinoids like THC and CBD, which can alter and enhance the effects for the consumer.

    Terpenes provide a great way for consumer to differentiate between cannabis strains. Every strain of cannabis has its own unique smell and taste, due to the unique terpene profile. There are more than one hundred different terpenes found in cannabis, each of which have very unique effects when consumed.

    Not only do terpenes impact the smell and taste of cannabis, they can also provide medicinal benefits, depending on the terpene in question. Each terpene has its own unique set of therapeutic and medicinal benefits. For example, pinene is known to provide bronchodilate and anti-inflammatory effects, while limonene has known anti-anxiety, antidepressant and antibiotic properties.

    It has been postulated that the terpenes present in cannabis can interact in a synergistic manner with cannabinoids, leading to an “entourage effect”. How this interaction works is still unclear but it is believed to enhance the overall effects of cannabis. For example, alpha-pinene is known to increase alertness, while myrcene is known to promote relaxation. This leads to the theory that the presence of both terpenes can increase the effects of one another, allowing the consumer to experience both effects more potently.

    Given that most cannabis consumers purchase based on the smell and taste of the strain, it is likely that users can detect the effects of terpenes before even consuming cannabis. Additionally, terpenes may help enhance the effects of cannabinoids and provide users with a more interesting, desirable, and therapeutic experience. Therefore, it is important to keep in mind that terpenes are an important part of the cannabis experience and should not be ignored.

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