How Cannabis Aromas Shape Your Experience
Ever wonder why some cannabis strains smell like lemons or pine trees, or berries? That’s the power of terpenes at work. Terpenes are aromatic compounds in cannabis and many other plants that create distinctive smells and flavors. But terpenes do more than just please your nose. They interact with cannabinoids like THC and CBD to shape your overall experience when you consume cannabis.
The terpenes in your bud, extract, or edible directly impact the effects you feel. Whether you want an energetic buzz, a calming high, or something in between, terpenes help get you there. They’re like a secret code that unlocks the full potential of cannabis and all its therapeutic and recreational benefits. Once you understand terpenes, you’ll never look at or smell cannabis the same way again. You’ll appreciate the subtle notes and how they translate to effects. So dive in – your terpene education starts now.
What Are Cannabis Terpenes?
Terpenes are aromatic compounds in cannabis that give each strain its unique smell and flavor. They’re also responsible for the effects you feel. Over 20,000 known terpenes play different roles in the natural world, including attracting pollinators, deterring herbivores, providing UV protection, fighting pathogens like viruses and bacteria, and influencing the local environment. This is accomplished as terpenes send critical chemical messages within the plant and surrounding organisms.Terpenes are best known for giving plants, including cannabis, their distinctive fragrance, taste, and appearance. The term “terpene” was given to these compounds in 1866 by the German chemist August Kekulé and is derived from “turpentine,” a resin made from pine trees rich in terpenes. As each cannabis cultivar has a unique terpene profile, it will exhibit a unique flavour and aroma.There are over 100 different terpenes identified in cannabis so far, and each strain contains a unique terpene profile.
The most common terpenes in cannabis are
•Myrcene – Earthy, musky aroma. Found in high amounts in Indica strains. It can produce sedating effects.
•Limonene – Bright citrus aroma. Found in Sativa strains. It can elevate your mood and relieve stress.
•Pinene – Piney, fresh aroma. Found in both sativa and indica strains. It can improve focus and alertness.
•Linalool – Floral, lavender aroma. Found in both sativa and indica strains. It can have calming and anxiety-relieving effects.
•Caryophyllene – Peppery, spicy aroma. Found in many strains. It can help reduce inflammation in the body.
Don’t just look at the THC percentage. Next time you visit your cannabis store, ask your budtender to explain the terpene profile to understand different strains’ aromas, flavour, and effects. Understanding terpenes can help you find the perfect product for your needs.
The Effects of Popular Cannabis Terpenes
When it comes to cannabis, terpenes are everything. These aromatic compounds give each strain its distinctive smell and flavor and shape your overall experience. There are over 100 different terpenes identified in cannabis so far, and each strain contains a unique terpene profile.
The effects of the most popular terpenes are:
Limonene: This citrusy terpene is uplifting and mood-elevating. Strains high in limonene tend to provide an energetic and focused high. They are great for socializing, creative work, and physical activities. The uplifting effects of limonene can help you feel motivated and productive. Super Lemon Haze, Area 51 and Manderine X Tangie are some well-known strains that contain noticeable amounts of limonene.
Myrcene: With earthy, musky notes of cloves and hops, myrcene is sedating and calming. Strains such as Black Cherry Punch or Crunch Berries, both high in myrcene, are ideal for unwinding at the end of the day and can help achieve a good night’s sleep or anguish
Pinene: As you might guess from the name, pinene smells like pine trees. This terpene is alert and can counteract some of the memory issues associated with THC. Strains high in pinene, such as Jack Herer or Sunset OG, tend to feel focused and clear-headed.
Linalool: Floral and lavender-like, linalool is soothing and anxiolytic (anti-anxiety). Strains such as Berry Cream Puff or Mosa X Blood Orange, which contain linalool, can help relieve stress and induce feelings of calm.
Terpinolene: An Energizing Terpene With Uplifting Effects Terpinolene has a fresh, piney aroma reminiscent of citrus and herbs. Strains high in terpinolene tend to have an uplifting, energizing effect that can help improve mood and ease stress or anguish. The terpene is known for its ability to induce feelings of alertness and focus. A terpinolene-dominant strain like Blackberry Kush, may be a good choice if you’re looking for a strain to increase productivity or creativity.
Terpenes are an important part of the cannabis experience. Now that you understand how they can influence your high, you can choose strains tailored to your needs and moods. So take a whiff, savor the flavors, and enjoy the effects. Your perfect cannabis experience awaits!
How Cannabis Aromas Shape Your Experience
The aromas of cannabis, known as terpenes, greatly influence your consuming experience. Terpenes are organic compounds found in the essential oils of plants, including cannabis that give it a distinct smell and taste. The terpenes present in a particular cannabis strain help shape its effects. For example, the terpene myrcene, which smells earthy and musky, is known for producing relaxing, sedative effects. On the other hand, the citrusy terpene limonene is uplifting and mood-elevating. The aromas of cannabis greatly contribute to your overall experience, so find strains with terpene combinations that suit your needs and desires. Your nose knows!
Benefits of Terpenes
Terpenes play several important roles in cannabis and other plants as chemical messengers, allowing them to interact with other compounds and the human body. Primarily, terpenes control cannabis effects by working with cannabinoids like THC and CBD to affect the human endocannabinoid system (ECS). These interactions with cannabinoids and the ECS have effects on the human body but are complex, not fully understood, and it has been the subject of much research in recent years. Researchers have found that terpenes have the potential to exert several effects and may have various benefits. It is important to note that research on terpenes and their effects on humans is still in its early stages, and more studies are needed to understand their potential therapeutic benefits and risks fully.
Terpenes work with cannabinoids like THC and CBD to produce the “entourage effect,” – where the compounds enhance and modulate each other’s effects. The combination of terpenes and cannabinoids in a strain determines its influence on your mind, body, and overall experience.
So now you know those distinctive scents wafting from your favorite cannabis strain are more than just pleasant aromas. Terpenes are potent compounds that directly shape your experience with cannabis physically and emotionally. Whether you prefer strains with citrusy, floral, or earthy notes, terpenes are working behind the scenes to influence how you feel when you partake. The next time you get a whiff of your chosen bud, take a moment to appreciate the terpenes and all they do to create your unique cannabis experience. Understanding them helps you better understand yourself and make the most of this versatile plant.