What are Terpenes?
Terpenes are organic compounds found in cannabis and other plants that give off a distinct aroma. They are responsible for the unique smells and flavors of different strains of cannabis. Terpenes are classified according to the number of carbon atoms they contain. The most common terpenes found in cannabis are monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes, and diterpenes.
Monoterpenes are the most abundant terpenes and are responsible for the sweet, citrusy, and floral aromas found in many cannabis strains. Examples of monoterpenes include pinene, limonene, and myrcene.
Sesquiterpenes are responsible for the earthy and spicy aromas found in certain cannabis strains. Examples of sesquiterpenes include caryophyllene, humulene, and bisabolol.
Diterpenes are responsible for the musky, skunky, and earthy aromas found in some cannabis strains. Examples of diterpenes include humulol, guaiol, and cadinene.
Each terpene has its own unique aroma, flavor, and therapeutic properties. For example, pinene has a pine-like aroma and is believed to be a bronchodilator and anti-inflammatory. Limonene is believed to be an antidepressant and antifungal. Myrcene is believed to be a sedative and anti-inflammatory.
Cannabis strains are often categorized according to the type of terpene they contain. For example, strains with high levels of pinene are often categorized as “piney”, those with high levels of limonene as “citrusy”, and those with high levels of myrcene as “earthy”.
As research into the therapeutic benefits of cannabis continues, more information on the different terpenes and their effects is becoming available. For those looking to maximize the therapeutic benefits of their cannabis, understanding the different terpenes and their effects can be beneficial.