How to Safely Consume Terpenes in Cannabis Products

How to Safely Consume Terpenes in Cannabis Products

You may know that just the smell of specific marijuana strains is enough to make you relax. In contrast, others may make you wrinkle your nose. So, the effects of the aroma can often seem almost as intoxicating and blissful as ingesting the substance. Keep in mind that from light florals to heavier smells, the aromas of marijuana are unique and different. However, you may wonder what gives your cannabis this aromatic essence.

Several compounds present in the marijuana plant create the taste, smell, and look of the plant. And cannabis cultivators worldwide use these various chemicals in order to produce specific properties in medical marijuana plants that cause effects users often seek. One of the main substances the cultivators use is called terpenes. Terpenes are naturally-occurring compounds present in cannabis and many other useful plants. And you do not have to be a CBD oil user in order to consume terpenes.

However, are terpenes safe? Do terpenes have THC? You may also want to know how to consume terpenes in cannabis safely. Read on to find out.

What are Terpenes Exactly?

You may find it surprising, but all plants produce terpenes, from rare weeds to the tastiest fruit-bearing trees and beautiful flowering plants. Terpenes are volatile molecules synthesized in the resin glands of cannabis flowers.

Most people come across terpenes in their everyday lives. These essential oils are naturally produced by plants, giving them distinct flavor, color, and aroma. Did you know that there are many different kinds of terpenes? They are characterized by their unique chemical structure and size. Most terpenes can be classified as diterpenes, monoterpenes, triterpenes, alcohols, or ketones.

Trichomes, which are glands that cover the female cannabis plants, secrete significant levels of terpenes along with cannabinoids and other compounds. Besides strain genetics, environmental aspects, including light exposure, temperature variations, and the presence of nutrients, can have an impact on terpene levels.

Note that infusing food-grade terpenes with various cannabis products helps elevate the cannabis flavor and aromatic profiles and reproduces the full flower effect, which makes terpenes weed or terpenes CBD very helpful and valuable. However, reconstructing the right or most balanced terpene profile or creating a new flavor experience starts by assembling the best food-grade terpenes in order to deliver a safe, healthy, consumer-friendly cannabis experience.

There are hundreds of different terpenes in the world, and more than 200 have been discovered so far in cannabis plants. You will find terpenes, including cannabis terpenes, in a wide range of plants, including fruits, flowers, vegetables, and herbs. However, keep in mind that only a few terpenes in industrial-grade hemp are concentrated enough to be deemed significant.

You may have heard about terpenes when purchasing cannabis-based products. For example, terpenes make cannabis products better or more flavorful and aromatic. However, what many people do not know is that certain terpenes can be dangerous if they are not used or consumed correctly. This is why it is best to dilute your terpenes before using them. The main reason people add terpenes to their CBD oil is the additional health benefits they provide.

Scientists and researchers have been investigating the properties of terpenes and terpenes' benefits for quite some time and have concluded that specific terpenes have several therapeutic and medical uses and applications.

What are Terpenes Used for?

Terpenes boast a wide range of medical and therapeutic effects. There are about 90 to 100 terpenes unique to the cannabis plant. Keep in mind that the combination of these chemicals and various cannabinoids is mainly responsible for the success of the cannabis plant.

The majority of plants and some animals, including termites and swallowtail butterflies, create terpenes. Terpenoids, which are terpenes' oxygenated derivatives, are also frequently referred to as terpenes. Terpenes are produced from the basic isoprene molecule, which is replicated to produce terpenes. In every plant, these elements have two crucial roles: producing resin and protecting the blossoms or flowers from pests.

Terpenes are used for several purposes. For example, limonene, a famous terpene, is used in alternative medicine because of its observed ability to lower heartburn as well as gastric acid reflux. People also use terpenes for anxiety relief.

Terpenes have various health benefits and are known to be studied and used for their antiviral characteristics. Certain terpenes, such as CBD terpenes, have shown potential for treating diabetes and cancer. For many cannabis users, terpenes are known to offer a better experience without the common side effects.

Terpenes are also a significant part of resin. This is why they are heavily used in producing various essential oils, making them a good fit for beauty and medical products. They are most often used in aromatherapy, but they are also synthetically made as aromas and flavors and as food additives. Apart from these uses and benefits, terpenes are well-known for their analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and antidepressant properties.

The Effects of Terpenes

Did you know that nature produces over 30,000 different terpenes? However, only a few have been well-studied and researched so far. Terpenes and their effects are unique. Many terpenes, such as cannabis terpenes, are bioactive, meaning they may affect the body. This impact usually varies based on the terpene concentration and how you use it.

For example, myrcene is the most-abundant terpene present in cannabis. It increases cell permeability, allowing cannabinoids to be absorbed much faster. Cannabis indica strains usually contain 0.5% myrcene. These strains have been shown to have a few sedative effects and also assist with inflammation and chronic pain.

Because they give off strong and vibrant scents, terpenes are the primary component of many essential oils and are crucial to many alternative therapies, including aromatherapy. A person's mood and level of stress may be affected by the aromas of specific plants and essential oils when they are inhaled.

Some people also think that terpenes influence or improve the high or euphoric effect that comes from cannabis use. The idea that terpenes increase or modify the effects of THC and CBD in the body is known as the entourage effect.

Terpenes also seem to offer various medical benefits, helping treat a wide range of health concerns. It stands to reason that terpenes can also provide medical benefits since they help keep the cannabis plant healthy and safe from environmental threats. Terpenes can have potent pharmacological effects on their own or in combination with cannabinoids to enhance the therapeutic benefits of marijuana.

How are Terpenes Consumed?

People have been consuming terpenes for centuries. In the past, terpenes were available only in the plant sources they were produced in. Today, however, people have access to ultra-pure and concentrated terpenes, which increases the risk of causing harm if you are not careful.

You may know that many terpenes are lost during cannabis oil extraction. This is why reintroducing terpenes to the oil helps recreate the impacts of the full flower. Terpene-rich oils can then be vaporized, tinctured, or mixed into any oil-based product.

Because vaping increases the bioavailability of terpenes, it is an extremely effective method of consuming terpenes. Additionally, tinctures have a quick onset as they can be taken sublingually.

Inhaling and Vaporizing

Vaporizing and inhaling terpenes are popular consumption methods. During smoking, terpenes lose many of their fragile elements because of the application of heat. Vaping provides a more "terp-centric" cannabis experience and increases access to the terpenes' potential health benefits. This is because it allows for precise temperature control while decreasing the quantity of terpenes lost to heat through lower temperature and closed system heating.

Vaporizing flowers with vaporizers designed to vaporize cannabis allows for a much healthier experience than smoking. The concentration or potency of terpenes in vaping oil usually ranges between 5 and 15%, depending on the preferred formulation. Keep in mind that if the concentration is very high, it may sting your lips or tongue.

When working with concentrated terpenes, you should ensure adequate ventilation. Did you know that inhaling pure or concentrated terpenes can damage and irritate your lungs? Cannabis vaporizers do not produce any combustion, making it easy to avoid the sub-standard elements produced because of the burning process.

» Topical Application

Terpenes have also been used topically in lotions, soaps, and cleaning oils for as long as people have been ingesting them orally in their natural forms. Terpenes are common and vital ingredients in topicals and beauty and cosmetic products, not just for their aroma but also for functional benefits like anti-inflammation, antioxidant properties, and wound healing.

Terpenes add value to cannabis topicals since their chemical properties help enhance the absorption of cannabinoids through your skin. When combined with certain cannabinoids, terpenes can help improve skin permeability and bioavailability. Certain terpenes like geraniol have a very calming and relaxing scent and can relieve itching and irritation.

» Oral Consumption

Apart from various oil products, terpenes can be easily mixed with many other products for their valuable benefits, such as cannabis beverages, brownies, edibles, and capsules.

Making edibles from cannabis flowers is one of the healthiest ways to absorb the plant's flowers, and the effects of cannabinoids are considerably stronger. However, you need to be careful since they might be powerful, and the effects may last for a long time if you consume too much.

You will be able to savor and notice certain terpenes, but the most volatile ones will evaporate when you decarb the cannabis in order to activate the cannabinoids and make the edible effective. Many people and companies are also creating their cocktails and drinks with cannabis terpene profiles; they are very easy to use, and the results surprise everyone that tries them.

Final Thoughts

As medicinal cannabis and hemp become more widely accepted, it's essential to acknowledge the need for more research on the potential effects, benefits, and interactions of terpenes. While the terpenes we consume from foods are generally safe, in their pure or concentrated form, terpenes can be dangerous as they can cause allergic reactions and irritations when they come into contact with your skin or eyes. However, when used the right way, terpenes are not just safe to use, they also deliver a variety of generous health benefits.

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