What are terpenes?
Terpenes are aromatic compounds that plants have evolved to produce for a wide variety of reasons. They assist in growth, protection from the sun, defense from hungry herbivores and harmful pathogens, as well as attracting pollinators and other beneficial organisms. They exist throughout the natural world in tremendous abundance.
We notice terpenes primarily through our sense of smell. Pinene is the most recognizable as it is the most abundant of all the terpenes. You can’t help but notice this punchy aromatic when strolling through an evergreen forest. There’s no doubt that interacting with nature makes us feel good, but have you ever thought about. why? Pinene actually has antidepressant properties—no wonder trees make us happy! These wonderful scents and odors, so functional for plant growth, have a myriad of therapeutic benefits for us, and they go way beyond enhancing our mood.
So why are terpenes so relevant to hemp and cannabis?
Because terpenes are responsible for the odor and flavor of cannabis! Cannabis plants are extraordinarily rich in terpenes, over 100 of which have been identified. Referred to as the life force or the spirit of the plant, cannabis terpenes are a hugely important component in achieving the entourage effect, a synergistic interaction of compounds that magnifies the overall therapeutic benefits.
Whereas the cannabinoid profile of a plant is pretty much defined by the seed genetic, the terpene profile is heavily influenced by the environment it’s grown in. The appellation matters as much with cannabis as it does in the wine industry. Factors such as the native soil composition, topography, altitude, other local flora, distance to the ocean, and the way in which the plant is cultivated will influence the resulting profile of terpenes. The effects will be noticeably different from region to region.
If you care about the wine you drink, you should care about the cannabis you consume. Study the terpene profile and consider what you are looking for beyond just the cannabinoid content.
Interested in trying out oHHo’s distinct hemp oil for yourself? Shop our new tasting kit with 6mL samples of our sustainably sourced NEW YORK and COLORADO blends.
Our Big 5! This chart depicts some of the most prominent terpenes present in our NY, CO, and our up-and-coming OREGON blend.
- Limonene – The citrus fruit one: Used often within the cosmetics industry, limonene offers noted therapeutic properties such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-anxiety, sedative, anticancer, anti-diabetic, pain sensation, antiviral. Frequently used to reduce drug-dependency behavior, limonene also serves as an antidepressant that boosts gastro-intestinal health. Wow.
- Humulene – The hops one: anti-inflammatory, anti- Tumor, wound healing & sedative, Humelene has also been recognized as an aphrodisiac for females.
- Caryophyllene – The cloves & pepper one: Very interesting terpene, as it acts like a cannabinoid on the ECS. This terpene boasts huge therapeutic potential, beneficial for conditions such as, anxiety, cancer, inflammation, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, pain, kidney function, skin repair, and long life!
- Myrcene – The juicy mango one: This is the one that glues stoners to their couches…the sedative properties are well established. Also great for pain, inflammation, increasing skin absorption, and possesses a strong potential for therapeutic applications with osteoarthritis.
- Bisabolol – The chamomile one: You’ve probably felt the gentle soothing of a chamomile tea. If you haven’t, we’re not sure that you’ve been doing. Famous for its sleep-improving qualities, Bisabolol is well suited for use in care products for sensitive skin. It also has anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, antioxidant and pain-relieving properties.
Explore new regions without even leaving your house with oHHo’s unique tasting profiles…