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What is the Entourage Effect?
The Entourage Effect, in the cannabis community, refers to the union of all cannabis compounds into one entire feeling, mood, energy, and experience. To put it simply, it is not ONLY about the high level of THC. The main compounds found in cannabis are THC, CBD, Terpenes and Flavonoids. The Entourage Effect is about how the combination of all compounds in cannabis come together to affect your endocannabinoid system.
What is the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system is the network of receptors that communicates information when cannabis enters the body. The 2 receptors are called CB1 and CB2. CB1 has received a lot of attention due to its potential therapeutic benefits in neuropsychological disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. These are conditions such as Parkinsons and Alzheimers. CB2 receptors have also been highly studied as preliminary findings have been said to help treat various pathological conditions while negating bad side effects. This may include cancer and blood disorders. The Endocannabinoid System is fully activated when the correct levels and combination of cannabis compounds enter the body (Entourage Effect). There are over 400 compounds in cannabis but the 4 main compounds are THC, CBD, Terpenes and Flavonoids. These compounds working together create the Entourage Effect.
What compounds in cannabis are important?
The 4 main compounds that create the cannabis profile are THC, CBD, Terpenes and Flavonoids. THC can be then broken down further into D-9-THCA, D-9-THC, D-8-THC and THCV. This is what provides the “couch lock” and “stoney” feeling that most consumers think is what “being high” feels like. This is why consumers are misled into believing that higher THC percentage correlates to getting more high. CBD is the compound in cannabis that carries no psychoactive effects but may potentially carry health benefits such as reducing seizures, relieving pain and anxiety, and more. There are more studies being done around CBD, but one fact remains the same – CBD is the most active and beneficial when combined with THC. The cannabis industry currently refers to this type of product as Full Spectrum. This means it carries both CBD with a level of THC over .3%. The 3rd and highly important compound is terpenes. Terpenes are what gives flavor and scent to not only cannabis, but foods and plants. Depending on the combination of terpenes, these flavors and scents evoke feelings, emotions and may help aid in health issues such as insomnia and inflammation. The 4th important compound is flavonoids. These are similar to terpenes in that they help in flavor and scent; however, this compound is one of the least researched compounds in plants. There is still a lot to discover that goes beyond taste and scent with flavonoids.
What are Terpenes?
Terpenes are the compounds that provide fruits and plants their flavor and smell. There are 6 main terpenes found in cannabis and each affect the endocannabinoid system differently. The main 6 are Lemonyne, Pinene, Linalool, Caryophyllene,, Myrcene, and Humulene. Each terpene provides a wide set of benefits and below is a basic breakdown of what each provides. The combination of these terpenes, mixed with CBD, THC and Flavonoids are what gives each cannabis strain their unique Entourage Effect. Without all compounds acting and reacting to each other, there is no true Entourage Effect. Zanna firmly believes that the balance of THC, CBD, Terpenes and Flavonoids is what provides the best experience and true Entourage Effect.
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