What Are The 9 Major Cannabinoids?
The cannabis plant has dozens of known cannabinoids with some scientists reporting over 100 different compounds that make this plant especially therapeutic. Here are the top nine.
Cannabis is mostly known for producing the cannabinoids THC and CBD, but the plant itself has dozens of compounds that are as medicinal and useful as the ones we know best. Especially when used together, the effect that is created helps each cannabinoid to work better within your system.
What Are Cannabinoids?
Cannabinoids are compounds naturally produced by the cannabis plant. None are harmful, and all have their own unique characteristics, benefits and therapeutic uses. Though some processes of making cannabis products separate and isolate many of these compounds, producers and consumers have realized that they are better together and offer a much more effective result of use. This is called the ‘entourage effect’ or the synergistic effect one compound has on the other making each and all stronger than if consumed alone.
What Do Cannabinoids Do?
The cannabis plant interacts with our bodies through our naturally occuring endocannabinoid system. This is a system of receptors just waiting to latch onto cannabinoids as they enter your body. Our bodies naturally produce cannabinoids, hence the endocannabinoid system, but plants produce phytocannabinoids that interact with our receptors in the exact same ways.
Directly and indirectly, cannabinoids affect these receptors we all have and end up creating the results of ingesting the compounds in one form or another. Terpenes, flavonoids and other compounds found in many plants including hemp, also create their own unique effects. Through various extraction methods, manufacturers are able to create unique products with very specific results.
What are the Nine Major Cannabinoids?
It is difficult for scientists to determine exactly how many cannabinoids there are because strains of cannabis vary widely and some compounds are only present in miniscule amounts. Though studies have uncovered roughly 100 or more different cannabinoids, there are a select few worth noting more than the others.
- CBGA (Cannabigerolic acid)
- THCA (Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)
- CBDA (Cannabidiolic acid)
- CBCA (Cannabichromenenic acid)
- CBGVA (Cannabigerovarinic acid)
- THCVA (Tetrahydrocanabivarinic acid)
- CBDVA (Cannabidivarinic acid)
- CBCVA (Cannabichromevarinic acid)
- CBN (Cannabinol)
Cannabinoids start off as acids, which is what the ‘A’ stands for. The ‘V’, simply put, means the molecular structure is shorter than the other. The cannabinoid CBGA turns into THCA, CBDA and CBCA as the plant grows and is found only in small amounts once it matures.
Upon harvest, CBGA converts to CBG when exposed to light and air. However CBGA is potentially one of the most important cannabinoids due to its role in developing other aspects of the plant which affect the products it later gets turned into.
Although THC and CBD are attributed as cannabinoids, those compounds are not present in the plant until the THCA and CBDA acids they start out as in raw form become heated and activated, or decarboxylated.
CBD is the cannabinoid credited for reduction of stress and promoter of overall well-being among other health benefits. THC is the cannabinoid that causes the psychoactive and euphoric effects sought by recreational marijuana users, though it is equally medicinal in value. Other cannabinoids do not have the intoxicating properties of THC although they do provide their own benefits.
CBN is the result of aging THC as it breaks down when exposed to light and oxygen. It is mildly intoxicating, less so than THC, yet still maintains medicinal value as the compound breaks down.
How Can You Tell Which Cannabinoids are in Your Product?
The only way to be sure of what cannabinoids are in a product you want is to buy it from a reputable source that utilizes lab testing and honest labeling of the ingredients they use, their methods, and the final product that you end up purchasing.
The cannabis market is unregulated. We are lacking the legislation within the industry that could create consistency in product, pricing and competition between producers that ultimately benefits the consumer. It is unfortunately common practice in unregulated markets for suppliers to use deceptive practices to convince people to buy their products since no one is holding them accountable and profit over people is their bottom line.
Companies are self-responsible for providing transparency and some are taking it upon themselves to do better and show their competitors how to lead in a growing market. This is exceptional behavior to expect from a corporation.
One World Pharma is that exception and they are showing the rest of the world how it’s done as an industry leader that has made honesty, integrity, and ethical practices part of their business model.
From working directly with the indigenous Popayan communities in Colombia as a Certified Fair Trade company, to lab tested analysis of the bulk wholesale hemp and boutique retail products that hit the shelves, OWP ensures its customers are aware of every aspect of where their cannabis is coming from and how it is produced.
OWP has discovered that consumers want eco-friendly and socially-progressive products that make them feel good about their choices. This, they have found, is the secret to long term success and sustainability in a budding industrialized hemp market.