If you haven’t heard, terpenes are all the rage these days, mostly thanks to the recent changes in the legal status of CBD. Because CBD can be thoroughly researched for its effects on the body like never before, more and more studies are finding that terpenes are just as worth paying attention to as the cannabinoid itself.
Still, many people don’t really understand what terpenes are, let alone why they’re worth paying attention to. However, the truth is that if you’re not considering terpenes when making a purchase, you’re missing out. As you’ll see, these plant compounds may hold the key as to whether or not you actually find the relief that you deserve.
Now, we understand that the idea of studying terpenes can be a bit daunting. After all, we’re not all plant chemists, are we? Luckily for you, we’ve made a simple guide to understanding terpenes and applying that knowledge to your next purchase. This way, you’ll be able to zero in on your treatment like never before.
Should I Really Pay Attention to Terpenes? After All, Don’t They All Basically Do the Same Thing?
To put it simply, yes, you should pay attention to terpenes. For thousands of years, these chemical compounds have been used for medicinal purposes such as pain, anxiety, depression and various ailments affecting both the mind and body.
See, terpenes are simply the chemical compounds found in plants’ essential oils. If you’ve ever studied aromatherapy, you know that certain essential oils have been proven to provide unique healing benefits. That’s because of the terpenes that they contain. Terpenes like linalool, eucalyptol, pinene, myrcene and limonene are capable of helping treat a variety of ailments.
In the cannabis plant, you’ll find a variety of terpenes. Each terpene brings something unique to the table, so to speak, whether it be stress relief, pain relief, mood-enhancing benefits, energizing properties or some other benefit.
Now, here’s where it gets just a little bit complicated. There exists a wide variety of cannabis strains, and each strain is determined by its unique composition of terpenes. For instance, certain strains have more linalool, which makes that strain more relaxing. And, some strains have more pinene, which allows them to provide a little boost of energy.
As you may have heard, strains are typically divided into two categories: sativa and Indica. Strains belonging to the sativa category have more uplifting effects while strains belonging to the Indica category are more known to promote sleep and reduce anxiety.
So, as you can see, terpenes are in fact very important. Knowing which terpenes to look for can have everything to do with whether or not you experience relief from your particular concern.
What is the “Entourage Effect” and Is It Legitimate?
There’s another reason why terpenes are becoming so popular and important, and it’s because of what’s known as the “entourage effect.” This refers to the theory that when all of the plant material, including cannabinoids and terpenes, are taken together, their potential benefits are much more potent. Essentially, it means that taking the entire plant’s chemical composition as it existed in nature is ideal.
What Should I Research When it Comes to Terpenes?
Now, if you feel a bit intimidated by all this terpene talk, don’t be. We’ve broken down the key things to research so that you can be a terpene expert when the time comes to make a purchase.
Different Terpenes and Their Effects
The first thing to study is the variety of common terpenes found in cannabis, and the unique effects that each one provides. Knowing terpenes by name will help you quickly identify them when looking at a product that lists a specific terpene profile. And, this will help you know what to look for in the future. For instance, if you read that myrcene has sedative-like effects and you’re looking for a way to find relief from anxiety, you’ll know that a myrcene-heavy strain is the way to go.
How Different Companies Extract Their Terpenes
Another important thing to learn about is the proper extraction methods for terpenes, and how different companies extract theirs. Terpenes are rather delicate in terms of their molecular makeup, which means that certain extraction methods can damage them, rendering them useless. Knowing how they should be extracted will help you decide whether or not a company is putting effort into carefully preserving the integrity of each terpene.
Different Strains and How They Affect You
Now, it’s a good idea to study different strains. As we said, a strain simply refers to the unique terpene profile of the plant. So, you should check out the more popular strains that are out there, as many strains have been specifically crossbred to produce certain benefits. For instance, some strains are more geared toward sleep while others are bred to induce creativity.
Terpenes’ Different Flavor Profiles and Aromas
It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the unique flavors and aromas of each terpene. For instance, pinene is reminiscent of pine while limonene is distinctly citrusy. This will help you determine whether or not a particular terpene exists in a high concentration in a particular strain.
How Terpenes Can Be Consumed
You’ll also want to research the different products that are out there in order to learn about the ways in which terpenes should and should not be consumed.
How Can I Apply This Information to My Shopping Experience?
Now that you’re an expert on terpenes, it’s time to apply this information to your shopping experience so that you can choose the best product for your unique needs.
Research Companies Thoroughly
First, always research companies thoroughly. Look for some sort of verification that demonstrates that the terpenes are authentic, pure and high in quality. Try to find out about how the terpenes have been extracted. You can also search for reviews.
Figure Out How You’d Like to Experience Your Terpenes
Now, you need to decide how you wish to consume your terpenes. Do you want to vape them? Would you rather take them in the form of a tincture?
Come Up with an Idea of Which Strains You’d Like to Try
It’s a good idea to create a small list of different strains that you’d like to try. We always recommend trying out a few different strains before settling on the one that you like best.
The World of Terpenes Truly is FascinatingWhile researching terpenes can help you be a more informed consumer, it can also be intimidating. Fortunately, this guide will help you become a terpene expert in no time.