Learn About Cannabinoids

The cannabis plant contains hundreds of different chemical compounds, but some of the most well-known are cannabinoids. You’re probably familiar with the two most popular ones: THC and CBD (cannabidiol). But did you know that more than 100 different cannabinoids have been identified? 

As new research emerges, we’re beginning to learn more about these compounds. For example, not all cannabinoids produce the intoxicating effects that cannabis is known for—in most cases, that “high” is a result of THC. But other cannabinoids, like CBD and CBN, have almost no psychoactive effects whatsoever. 

Interested in learning more about cannabinoids and how they may affect your body? We’ve put together this guide to give you more information:

Cannabis bud (Thousand Oaks marijuana strain) with visible hairs
Cannabis bud (Thousand Oaks marijuana strain) with visible hairs

What Are Cannabinoids?

If you look at the labels on cannabis products, most will list the ratio of THC and CBD. These substances occur naturally within the Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica plants. 

Depending on the strain of cannabis that you choose, you’ll have an entirely different experience after consuming it. Any given strain contains dozens of different cannabinoids. These chemical compounds can be used for recreational and/or medical purposes. 

If you have no experience with cannabinoids, we recommend starting with a low dosage and going slow. Take a small amount, and wait several hours before consuming more. Choose to do so in a place that’s safe and comfortable. Remember to always practice responsible consumption when using cannabis products.

How Many Different Types Are There?

So, just how many kinds of cannabinoids do we know about? We’re going to provide a brief overview of a few common and lesser-known cannabinoids:

THC

One type of cannabinoid that most people are familiar with is THC (also known as delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol). This psychoactive compound is known to produce effects like relaxation and euphoria. It’s also notorious for stimulating one’s appetite (or giving you a serious case of the munchies). 

Consuming cannabis with a high THC content can stimulate your senses, produce cerebral effects, and relax your body. These psychoactive properties are what recreational marijuana is often used for.

CBD

In many ways, THC and CBD are like night and day; most of CBD’s effects are the exact opposite of THC’s. CBD has been said to help with:

  • Pain relief
  • Reducing anxiety and depression
  • Assisting with sleep disorders 

The ratio of CBD and THC is important, as these chemical compounds have been shown to interact with one another. In higher doses, THC may produce undesirable effects like a racing heartbeat or anxiety. CBD works to counteract these negative effects. 

CBN

THC breaks down into CBN after being exposed to light, oxygen, and heat. The older cannabis gets, the more CBN you’ll find in it. Since it binds weakly to CH1 and CH2 receptors, CBN is less psychoactive than THC. Research has shown that this cannabinoid may have sedative and anti-inflammatory properties

THCA

Also known as tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, THCA has been shown to demonstrate medicinal benefits, including anti-inflammatory, antiemetic (relief from vomiting), and pain-relieving effects. 

THCV

Further research is required to gain a deeper understanding of the psychoactive properties of THCV. So far, we know it creates milder effects than THC does. It’s also been shown to suppress appetite rather than stimulate it.

These are just a few of the most common types of cannabinoids, but researchers have identified over 100.

How Do Cannabinoids Work?

Did you know that your body produces its own form of cannabinoids? They’re called endocannabinoids

The endocannabinoid system helps regulate your emotions, appetite, and sleep. When you ingest cannabinoids from a cannabis plant, the compounds in it bind to those same receptors in the endocannabinoid system.

Depending on the strain of cannabis that you ingest, the cannabinoids will bind to a different cannabinoid receptor in your body. CB1 and CB2 receptors are found all over the body and immune system, including the brain, the spinal cord, the tonsils, white blood cells, and the gastrointestinal tract. Endocannabinoid receptors are found in many different organs, which partially explains why cannabinoids produce such a unique mix of effects.

Macro detail of cannabis bud (fire creek marijuana strain) with
Macro detail of cannabis bud (fire creek marijuana strain) with

Different combinations of cannabinoids can produce what’s known as an entourage effect. Even if we understand how one compound acts on the body, things change when you mix other cannabinoids together and create unique interactions. 

There’s still so much to learn about cannabinoids and terpenes. As cannabis is legalized in more countries across the globe, we look forward to new research that might emerge about the effects of different cannabinoids. 

Interested in trying some of our high-quality cannabis? At Green Gaia, we offer a wide selection of cannabis products, devices, and accessories. Visit our website to order online today!

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