What are Terpenes?
19 Augs, 2018 - by John Snow | Technology

What are Terpenes?

Among other exciting things about cannabis, the soothing aroma adds a great deal to its already therapeutic tendency.Depending on the strain, cannabis herbs comes with unique tastes and smell- from Skunky smell of Sour Diesel to the Fruity Pineapple Trainwreck.

Do you know what’s responsible for the smell?

If you’re a cannabis user, knowing what terpenes are and their possible value in your herb can add value to your overall cannabis experience.

This article takes a comprehensive look at cannabis terpenes, including:

  • What cannabis terpenes are
  • How cannabis terpenes differ from other compounds
  • Terpenes and the endocannabinoids
  • The difference between terpenes and terpenoids
  • The difference between terpenes and other cannabinoids
  • As well as the types of terpenes and their purported therapeutic effects

Let’s delve in

Terpenes – Explained

Terpenes are naturally occurring compounds in cannabis responsible for its flavor and aroma.However, these chemicals are not exclusive to cannabis; they can also be found in other plants and organisms.Besides aroma and flavor, research shows terpenes may also interact with cannabinoids to produce specific unique effects.

Terpenes develop in cannabis trichrome. Their content and potency can be affected directly by the strains’ spectrum and the plant’s exposure to light.The unique terpene contents across cannabis cultivars account for the different aromas weed users experience across strains. The effects of these aromatic molecules can be felt whether you dab concentrates, vaporize, or smoke cannabis buds.

Terpenes deliver the tasty citrus, pine, woody, coffee, herbal, spicy, skunky, diesel, or topical taste to your buds.

Cannabis Terpenes Vs. Others

Think of your aromatic essential oils – terpenes are their main components.

Essential oils are nice-smelling compounds responsible for plants’ oxygenation, regeneration, and immune security. These aromatic oils have been extracted for therapeutic intents for centuries and can be found in several foods and plants.

It’s almost impossible to tell the difference between cannabis-derived terpenes and those otherwise sourced.

Researchers are currently investigating whether the effect from cannabis terpenes resembles that derived from other sources. So far, the only evidence says cannabis terpenes deliver supportive effects to other therapeutic compounds in cannabis.

Terpenes and their interaction with your body

When terpenes and other compounds collaborate, the effect produced is popularly referred to as the “entourage effect.” Or the “ensemble effects.” this theory, widely popularized by scientists, has drawn particular attention to terpenes, particularly within the medical space.

Whether for recreational or medical intents, all cannabis users seek a common result – the effect.

The entourage effect posits that collectively, cannabis compounds may deliver higher potency than when the compounds are used isolated.

Interestingly, increasing evidence says terpenes may play a chief role in balancing THC’s psychoactive impact and, as well, work together with other cannabinoids for higher potency.

Terpenes have also gained good traction due to their importance in dabbing – which involves inhaling vapor from cannabis concentrates heated with devices such as vaporizers, e-rigs, and dabs.

When heated at high temperatures, cannabis concentrates deliver smooth, tasty weed-themed flavors.

Disturbingly, most dabbers do not understand that at too high temperature, terpenes may rather produce harmful chemicals, including benzene and methacrolein, which may cause cancer.

Hence, the lowest possible temperature is strongly advised for a flavorful and less harmful vaping experience.

Terpenes Vs. Terpenoids

Too often, many use terpenes to mean terpenoids and vice versa. Terpenes is one thing, and terpenoids, another.

The simple difference between these two compounds is that why terpenes are compounds produced from hydrogen and carbon(hydrocarbon), terpenoids are products of oxidation.

Using cannabis, for instance – Terpenes is found in the trichrome of fresh cannabis plants. But after drying and curing, chemical changes occur, during which terpenes are converted to terpenoids.

Terpenes Vs. Cannabinoids

Many cannabis users do not care about these terms, let alone how they differ. But these seemingly inconsequential concepts can significantly optimize your experience.

You already know terpenes are aromatic compounds in cannabis, originally secreted to serve protective functions.

On the other hand, cannabinoids are also chemicals produced by cannabis buds, biologically meant to protect the plant.

However, one significant difference between them is the purported loads of effects cannabinoids deliver compared to the flavorful and aroma-rich terpene profile.

Cannabis contains plentiful cannabinoids and terpenes, each with its unique properties and effects.

Like cannabinoids, research shows terpenes may also deliver mild mental effects, particularly variants like limonene and linalool.

Combined with THC and CBD (and other compounds), you should expect many multiple effects.

In itself, the aromatic profile of terpenes may serve as an anti-stressor and come in handy for concerns such as physical discomfort, inflammation, pains, and minor aches.

Types of Terpenes

Although terpenes are a boatload in plants, scientists know only a notable few, commonly:


Limonene releases fruity hints of oranges and lemons.  A study shows limonene possible therapeutic properties, including

  • Antioxidant
  • Anticancer
  • Antidiabetic
  • Antiviral
  • And anti-inflammation

Terpene can be used as supplements


Pinene is another terpene in abundant quantity. Pinene is responsible for the fresh scent of several plants – think basil and rosemary. They may also deliver restorative and preventive effects for physiological and psychological issues.


This terpene takes credit for lavender’s alluring and calming smell. Linalool is widely recognized in aromatherapy.

Research shows the terpene may leave several bodily effects, including

  • Anticancer
  • Antidepressant
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Anti-inflammation
  • Neuriprotiecctic
  • Antimicrobial


Myrcene is found in cannabis as well as plants like lemongrass, hops, and thyme.

This terpene is primarily considered a potent antioxidant. Research suggests myrcene may prevent oxidative damage in the brain after a stroke.

Beta-caryophyllene is found in many vegetables and herbs. As with other terpenes, beta-caryophyllene  may deliver anti-inflammatory properties, which may curb pain


Here’s a predominant terpene in the hop plant. It’s also found in ginger and clove. Studies say humulene may help manage asthma and other allergic reactions. The chemical may cut down on inflammation in your airways.

Findings say it may also serve as a protection for the cells, which may help prevent cancer.

…And many more

Although the terpenes mentioned above are the most sufficient and common, others include:

  • Ocimene
  • Phytol
  • Geraniol
  • Nerolidol
  • terpinolene


Pause… and imagine a stash of flavorless cannabis.

Besides the bland smoke, the fun of comparing strains and flavors would be gone.

For this, farmers know well to protect terpenes, partly what makes each strain unique and enjoyable.

Generally, terpenes account for the smell of most plants. Although they are particularly abundant in cannabis, they occur in many other herbs, plants, and fruits.

While they are naturally produced to protect their home plants, exposure to these aromas can be therapeutic to humans.

Researchers, however, calls for more research to unveil more about terpenes before any credible claims can be made.

Looking for where to buy marijuana in Pickering? You can never go wrong with Montrose Cannabis. But don’t just take our words for it – see for yourself.

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