Rediscovering Nature -
If you're like me, you've probably been hearing a lot about the different kinds of cannabinoids found in cannabis. But what is it all about? And why should we care? This guide will give you the lay of the land when it comes to rare cannabinoids and what makes them so exciting.
Since cannabis legalization, the search for new and exciting cannabinoids has been in full swing.
Since cannabis legalization, the search for new and exciting cannabinoids has been in full swing. But it's not just about THC or CBD—a new generation of researchers are out to find rare cannabinoids that could yield new medical applications or even improve on what we already know about these compounds.
"Since the 1960s, scientists have been searching out rare cannabinoids to unlock their medical potential."
In fact, this is nothing new: since the 1960s, scientists have been searching out rare cannabinoids to unlock their medical potential. In 2016, they discovered a previously undiscovered cannabinoid called cannabichromene (CBC). CBC was found in an extract of cannabis flower that had been sprayed with an acidic solvent; when the solution was heated to evaporate away any residual solvent, a thin film remained on top of the water layer that contained CBC crystals!
Why are rare cannabinoids so exciting?
If you’re new to the world of cannabis, it can be difficult to know where to start. But whether you’re looking for a low-key evening or something more adventurous, there is no shortage of options when it comes to enjoying this versatile plant.
Cannabis is constantly evolving and changing—and with that evolution comes a whole host of new products on the market. As an avid cannabis consumer myself, I was excited by these innovations and decided that I wanted to learn more about them—especially if they were going to offer me more options in terms of how I choose my cannabis products.
My first step? Learning all I could about minor cannabinoids!
In other words, what does minor mean?
Minor cannabinoids are those that are present in small quantities in the cannabis plant.
They aren’t as common as the major cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, so you don't see them in every strain of cannabis.
Their effects can be different from those of major cannabinoids: for example, some minor cannabinoids have a sedating effect while others promote alertness.
Minor cannabinoids have a range of medical applications—they are being researched for their potential to treat everything from epilepsy to cancer—but they haven’t been as well-researched when compared to THC or CBD. It's important to note that research is always needed to determine conclusions about minor cannabinoids effectiveness (so if you're looking into using one for medicinal purposes, talk to your doctor first!).
Here's where things get interesting: Some minor cannabinoids might actually be more powerful than some major ones! This may depend on what kind of product they're used in (e.g., edibles versus vaping) or how much you consume. Though minor cannabinoids are still not widely known or understood, their effects have already been harnessed by some companies. It’s likely that we will see more research done on them as time goes on and more cannabis growers learn about producing strains with higher concentrations of these compounds.
What is a cannabinoid?
Cannabinoids are chemical compounds that interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system. They found in the trichomes of cannabis and hemp plants, which are most potent during the flowering stage of growth.
The well-known cannabinoid compounds THCV, CBG, and CBN have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety while promoting overall wellness.
Popular categories of cannabinoids include THC, CBD, and CBN. Each cannabinoid has its own effects on the body. For example, THC is known for its psychoactive effects while CBD is not psychoactive.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
You may be a little confused about what the ECS is at this point, so we’ll break it down for you. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a network of cannabinoid receptors found throughout your body. The ECS has been found to play an integral role in regulating many biological processes including appetite, pain-sensation and mood. It’s also responsible for maintaining homeostasis (balance).
In addition to its wide range of physiological effects on the body and mind, the ECS plays an important role as a regulator of other systems in our bodies such as:
The Endocrine System - A system that produces hormones that regulate various functions within the body
The Nervous System - Responsible for transmitting signals through neurons in your brain and throughout your body
"This system is so important that it’s been dubbed “the natural pain-relief system” because of its ability to reduce inflammation and help us cope with stress."
While THC (and other cannabinoids) can bind directly to these receptors—known as CB1 or CB2 receptors—this isn't always necessary since there are endogenous cannabinoids produced by our bodies called NADA. These substances act as neurotransmitters which communicate information between neurons throughout our bodies via synaptic transmission pathways.
This system is so important that it’s been dubbed “the natural pain-relief system” because of its ability to reduce inflammation and help us cope with stress. The ECS can be disrupted by certain environmental factors like diet, exercise, or even emotional trauma. It also plays a role in regulating our immune system—as an example, when we don't have enough cannabinoids available for the ECS to use as fuel (from eating too much sugar), our body becomes more susceptible to illness such as colds and flu.
The ECS is also responsible for helping us sleep better at night—one study found that people who consumed cannabis before bedtime slept deeper than those who didn't use any cannabis products. This is because cannabinoids like CBD can bind directly with receptors in our brains which help regulate mood and stress levels.
Cannabigerolic acid (CBGA)
Cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) is the precursor to psychoactive tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD). CBGA is found in the trichomes of the cannabis plant, which are glands that produce resin and contain terpenes.
"CBT has been shown to increase levels of anandamide, a compound that produces feelings of well-being."
In traditional markets like Europe and Asia, CBGA has long been used for its antimicrobial properties. Some do not consider CBGA a minor cannabinoid because it's a large percentage of the compound is formed naturally during photosynthesis.
Rarer cannabinoids like cannabitriol (CBT) and cannabinol (CBN) are not known to have a major effect on the overall composition of cannabis plants, but they may influence other characteristics. For example, CBT has been shown to increase levels of anandamide, a compound that produces feelings of well-being.
Where can I find rare cannabinoids?
New strains or cannabinoid infusions.
A reliable source online.
Searching Lab results.
A physical location you can visit in person, such as a shop or dispensary.
A trusted store with a good reputation and solid customer service
As a cannabis consumer, you're probably familiar with the more common cannabinoids like THC and CBD, but have you ever heard of cannabichromene (CBC)? It's one of the less well-known cannabinoids that may have similar effects as CBD. CBC has been shown to reduce pain in mice and rats, which indicates it has potential for treating chronic pain disorders such as fibromyalgia or arthritis.
Learning more about the different types of cannabis on the market to find your perfect "strain".
For the best results, you need to know what you’re looking for. Here are the some basics about cannabinoid profiles:
THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) are both cannabinoids, but they have different effects on your body. THC is psychoactive, so it makes you feel “high.” CBD is not psychoactive and has no effect on your mental state or physical health. It does have other benefits, such as reducing inflammation and helping with insomnia.
Another difference between these two compounds is that only THC causes a high — there's no such thing as a "high-CBD" strain or product because CBD itself isn't psychoactive like its counterpart THC . The ratio between these two compounds can vary wildly from strain to strain; some varieties may have 1:1 ratios while others might contain 20:1 ratios of each component. This means there's no one-size-fits all solution when choosing marijuana based on its cannabinoid profile alone!
* If the cannabinoid you're looking for isn't available locally in your state, try searching online! There are lots of websites that let users upload reviews about different strains and products. You can find information on what types of effects each strain has, how they were grown/harvested, etc. If a specific type sounds good but isn't available locally then buy it from an out-of-state vendor instead.
Despite the plethora of cannabinoids discovered in the last few years, many more remain undiscovered. However, with new methods of extraction being developed and scientists and researchers pushing for more research into cannabis, it is only a matter of time before we are able to explore these minor cannabinoids in detail.
Takeaways from this section:
Cannabis is an extremely complex plant with many different compounds that interact with our bodies in different ways. It's important to know as much as possible about any substance we are consuming or working with so that we can make informed decisions about its benefits and drawbacks. In order for us to better understand these minor cannabinoids, more research needs to be done on them so that their properties can be better understood by scientists and the public alike.