What are Terpenes?

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Terpenes in Medical Marijuana

Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in many plants, including cannabis. The fragrance of most plants is due to a combination of terpenes which protect the plants from animal grazing and infectious germs. Terpenes are bioactive, meaning they may affect the human body. This effect will vary based on the concentration of the terpene and how a person uses it. Terpenes may also offer some health benefits to the human body.

What is the Entourage Effect?

In addition, terpenes may affect or enhance the effects of THC or CBD. This is known as the entourage effect - and the impact varies from strain to strain.

The Types of Terpenes

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Beta-caryophyllene

Beta-caryophyllene exists in many herbs and vegetables, such as cloves, cinnamon and black pepper. It’s responsible for the spicy aroma. Beta-caryophyllene may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Analgesic
  • Antidepressant
  • Sleep-supportive

Strains high in Beta-Caryophyllene include:

  • Bubba Kush
  • OG Kush
  • Chemdawg
  • Sour Diesel
13

Limonene

Limonene is a very common terpene that most people can immediately recognize by its citrusy scent. As the name suggests, limonene is commonly found in the rinds of lemons and oranges. Limonene may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidant
  • Antiviral
  • Antidiabetic

Strains high in Limonene include:

  • Do-Si-Dos
  • Wedding Cake
  • Banana OG
  • White Fire OG
17

Linalool

Linalool is most abundant in the lavender plant and gives the flower its rich scent. It is one of the most important compounds in aromatherapy and is responsible for the calming effect many people get when smelling lavender or its essential oil. Linalool may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-anxiety
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antidepressant
  • Neuroprotective

Strains high in Linalool include:

  • Do-Si-Dos
  • Zkittles
  • Scooby Snacks
  • Kosher Kush
21

Alpha-pinene

Alpha-pinene is a naturally abundant terpene. It provides a fresh, bright scent to many plants including pine needles, rosemary, and basil. Alpha-pinene may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammation
  • Antidepressant
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Analgesic

Strains high in Alpha-Pinene include:

  • Blue Dream
  • Harlequin
  • God’s Gift
  • Grape Ape
25

Camphene

Camphene is a terpene that occurs in a variety of essential oils, including turpentine, nutmeg, cypress oil, bergamot oil, and valerian. The essential oil derived from common nutmeg contains 60-80% camphene. Camphene may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammation
  • Analgesic
  • Antifungal

Strains high in Camphene include:

  • ACDC
  • Ghost OG
  • OG Kush
  • Banana Kush
30

Eucalyptol

Eucalyptol has a fresh mint-like smell and a spicy, cooling taste. Eucalyptol makes up 90% of eucalyptus oil. Eucalyptol may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammation
  • Antioxidant
  • Antifungal
  • Antibacterial

Strains high in Eucalyptol include:

  • GSC
  • Bubba Kush
  • Headband
  • Super Silver Haze
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Myrcene

Myrcene is found in highly fragrant plants and herbs such as mangoes, hops, bay laurel, leaves, thyme, lemongrass and basil. The aroma is often characterized as earthy and musky. Myrcene may contain the following therapeutic properties:

  • Anti-inflammation
  • Analgesic
  • Sleep-supportive
  • Anti-anxiety

Strains high in Myrcene include:

  • OG Kush
  • Blue Dream
  • Granddaddy Purple
  • Tangie
37

Terpinolene

Terpinolene has a multidimensional aroma, carrying smells of pine, floral, herbs, and even a bit of citrus. It is most commonly found in lilacs, apples, nutmeg, and cumin. Terpinolene may contain therapeutic properties:

  • Cardiovascular
  • Antibacterial
  • Antifungal
  • Anti-nausea

Strains high in Terpinolene include:

  • Jack Herer
  • Golden Goat
  • Ghost Train Haze
  • Golden Pineapple