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CANNABIS SEPTEMBER 29, 2022

Cannabinoids You Didn’t Know: Part 2

We recently dropped a quick read on some cannabinoids you might not be familiar with yet. For those of you that missed it, you can check it out here. Now comes Part 2! Unsure of what a "cannabinoid" is? These compounds that cannabis produces interact with a network of receptors in our body known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS).

Cannabinoids are compounds found in cannabis plants. In fact, they're the most abundant natural compounds found in any plant. There are over 100 types of cannabinoids produced by these plants.

Even for those of us who consider ourselves cannabis aficionados, the speed of discovery and the complexity of cannabinoids continually being discovered can be brutal to keep track of. The cannabinoids produced by plants are of great interest to scientists and consumers interested in natural remedies and healthy lifestyles. Although many people know about THC and CBD (the two most abundant cannabinoids), not many know about all the others that can be found in cannabis plants. So below, we round out the list of the most common cannabinoids you've probably never heard of!

CBGa

CBGA, or cannabigerolic acid, is one of perhaps hundreds of cannabinoids produced by the cannabis plant.

 

CBGA - Cannabinoids


CBGA is widely regarded as a foundational compound of the cannabis flower. You might even think of CBGA as the "granddad" of cannabinoids. This is because CBGA is at the top of the cascade reaction that produces the three major cannabinoid branches:

  • THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)
  • CBDA (cannabidiolic acid)
  • CBCA (cannabichromenic acid)

These three eventually become THC, CBD, or CBC, respectively, and this is why CBGA is called the precursor cannabinoid. 

Performing a protective function for the cannabis plant, CBGA is produced in the plant's trichomes and acts as a trigger for targeted plant cell necrosis, for natural leaf pruning, to allow the plant to maximise its energy towards its flowers.

 

What is CBGa Good for?

Not much research has been conducted on the medical applications of CBGa; however, early work has provided some key insights into the possibilities. CBGA is independently recognised as a potential anti-inflammatory and anti-tumour agent. Additionally, studies suggest that it can help treat anxiety and related disorders.

 

Cardiovascular Disease

CBGA has shown that it might help diabetic patients combat some of the disease's complications and comorbidities, such as cardiovascular disease. CBGA was also studied in vitro and significantly inhibits the enzyme aldose reductase, a major contributor to the oxidative stress that leads to heart and other problems.

 

Colon Cancer

Finally, CBGA may one day prove crucial for patients with colorectal cancer, the third most common form of cancer and the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death. Researchers looked at the cytotoxic effects of CBGA extracted from cannabis. They found that not only did the CBGA kill colon cancer cells but also arrested the cancer cell cycle. While undoubtedly, more research is needed, the researchers were encouraged that CBGA may effectively target not just colon cancer cells but could also prevent the growth and proliferation of polyps. Left untreated, these polyps grow into carcinomas.

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THCa

 

THCa - Cannabinoids

 

This cannabinoid is only found in the plant before its decarboxylated, meaning that you won't receive its unique benefits if it is heated. THCA is the acid form of THC, and it is a precursor to THC. 

Also very important to note that THCA is not psychoactive — it does not activate CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the brain. To make psychoactive THC from THCA, you would need to heat it. This can be done by smoking or vaporising raw cannabis flowers, baking edibles, or heating cannabis in a process called decarboxylation. When smoking cannabis, it is estimated that more than 95% of the THCA is converted into THC.

 

What is THCa Good for?

  • Anti-inflammatory properties for the treatment of arthritis and lupus. 
  • Neuroprotective properties for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. 
  • Antiemetic properties for the treatment of nausea and appetite loss. 
  • Anti-proliferative properties noted in studies of treatment for prostate cancer. 
 

Delta(8) – THC

Delta-9-Tetrahydrocannabinol is usually referred to as THC, but did you know there is a Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol as well?! Although similar to Delta-9-THC, its potency is nowhere near as strong. The primary value of this cannabinoid is in its low potency, which translates into lower psychoactivity. When taken in higher doses, delta-8-THC has shown to cause lower levels of anxiety than its relative delta-9-THC and prompted researchers to look deeper into its conversion, concluding that, generally speaking, delta-8-THC produces similar psychoactive effects to delta-9-THC but is 50 to 75 per cent less potent.

 

Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol - Research

 

The U.S. National Cancer Institute conducted research to confirm the benefits of Delta-8-THC.

Even though these were studies conducted by the NCI, funded by the government, we continue to see the demonisation of these plant chemicals by the same government.

What is Delta-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol Good for?

  • Antiemetic.
  • Appetite-stimulating.
  • Anti-nausea.
  • Anticancer.
  • Antitumoral.

 

Cannabicyclol (CBL)

CBL is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis; CBL is a carboxylic acid soluble in water and ethanol. CBL is a promising cannabinoid that can improve health and provide many benefits for humans and animals if used correctly. Though it has many similarities with CBD, CBL is less abundant than CBD and is found in lower quantities in both the leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant.

What is Cannabicyclol (CBL) Good for?

CBL is known to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects. It's also been associated with neuroprotective effects, but these are still being currently researched. CBL has been shown to stimulate the receptors responsible for controlling the immune system. Thus, it can reduce inflammation and pain. 

CBL has also been said to have anti-psychotic effects. Though it's not yet fully understood, it seems that CBL activates serotonin receptors in the brain. CBL can also reduce anxiety and improve sleep. It has also been noted to reduce tremors associated with Parkinson's disease. Still, more studies are needed to verify these results. 

Our Terpene Essentials range works on the same receptors as cannabinoids in this article do!! 

The cannabinoids found in cannabis plants are of great interest to scientists and consumers interested in natural remedies and promoting healthy lifestyles. As these compounds have been researched for their potential benefits on human health, it is safe to say that cannabinoids can be found in many different places, not just cannabis plants. For example, limonene is a terpene-like molecule found in fruits, peppermint oil, and citrus fruits. Limonene has been researched for its potential benefits on human health, and if you would like to find out how terpenes can help you? Please read our in-depth article on terpenes 101

If you want to speak to someone about the pathways available to you to access CBD in Australia legally, feel free to reach out to us via our contact form or call 1300 402 420, and a team member can point you in the right direction!

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