What are terpenes and terpenoids?
When the laboratories get involved in studying hemp, their focus is generally on its constituent compounds.
For the most part, these focus on THC in CBD. However, some of this research centers on solvents in the concentration of terpenes found in the construction of this wondrous plant.
The quality level of the products derived from the plant tends to hinge on these contents. But that leaves us with an important question: what are terpenes?
So, at this point, having read through many of our materials, you probably have a pretty good idea of the meaning of terms like “cannabinoids” and “solvents”, but you may not yet be familiar with “terpenes”.
In the present article, we’ll attempt to remedy that situation.
The Flavor Comes from Terpenes
It’s important to note that the aroma, flavor, and color of any plant is derived from the quantity, strength, and type of terpenes that exist within that plant.
Terpenes, which are really just organic compounds, happen to appear within the composition of aromatic plants in general. It is the terpenes that provide the aroma, flavor, and color of the plant.
When oils are present, they deliver the terpenes within their composition. So it’s important to know that oils and resins that come from plants contain those terpenes.
Those creating fragrances and perfumes rely on this. But as a consumer, or potential consumer, of CBD oil products, you’ll want to understand that some of the aesthetic aspects of your experience are derived from terpenes.
Terpenes in Hemp and Cannabis
Cannabis, according to research, contains over 200 terpenes. These compounds are responsible for the aroma and flavor that you find in cannabis. Have you ever been sitting somewhere, perhaps in a park, and caught a particular smell that made you suddenly realize that someone nearby was smoking marijuana? The nature of that idiosyncratic smell is all about terpenes.
At the same time, it’s important to understand that there are number of different conditions that cannabis can treat in a powerful way: fibromyalgia, PTSD, ADHD, anxiety, migraines, multiple sclerosis, stress, and a number of others.
In fact, one cannabis derived substances already been approved by the FDA: BCP (beta-caryophyllene), a dietary terpene derived from cannabis.
This substance is important in relieving inflammation by activating the CB2 receptor. It is also, like CBD, non-psychoactive.
The Character of Terpenes
You may be interested to know that vitamin A is a terpene. It’s important for vision and many other things.
Evergreens produce an enormous amount of terpenes. Think of pine trees, Cedars, and Cypress trees. These are trees that have the leaves, or needles, year-round. Often, they produce pinecones or cones of some form. These types of trees produced terpenes in highly concentrated manners during the summertime.
Similarly, cannabis produces its own terpenes. A good example of this is a compound known as Alpha-Pinene. This compound can act as a natural bronchodilator as well as an expectorant. It’s great at treating coughs and relieving respiratory congestion.
Limonene is another common terpene found in cannabis. It functions as an antifungal, antibacterial, and antidepressant. Some even believe that this compound can work against cancer. It has also been found to function as a treatment for low blood pressure.
Myrcene is another common terpene found in cannabis. It tends to increase the permeability of cell membranes. This can open the doors for increased psychoactivity of THC.
In all, hemp contains 120 different terpenes. That’s a total number for all varieties of hemp. Different versions of hemp contain different numbers. If you purchase hemp oil that’s been derived from hemp seeds, some of the terpenes will be lost.
Importantly, the terpenes contained in Hemp are mostly monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes.
Cannabinoids, themselves, have no flavor or aroma. In other words, all of the perceivable sensory elements involved in the experience of cannabis or CBD oil products are 100% the product of terpenes.