Introduction to Terpenes:
If you partake in the occasional joint there is a good chance terpenes are one of your favorite things that you’re totally unaware of. If you aren’t into cannabis, you’ve still probably experienced them day to day. Thinking of cannabis, the first thing to come to mind is the smell. Sour, pungent, and herbal aromas are all too common when you pop open a jar of your favorite strain. Terpenes are the aromatic compounds which create the scents of many plants in nature, specifically though they are responsible for the aromas in weed. If you love all of the different smells and tastes in all the amazing strains out there then you should be thanking terpenes.
Similar to essential oils there are a huge list of them all with different scents and flavors, also with differing effects and feelings associated with them. Some with a more or less energetic high for example. Believe it or not the reason that your favorite strain is your favorite strain, may be due to its specific blend of terpenes. Most of the time strains have roughly 3 main terpenes which contribute to the aroma, flavor, and effects.
We love this terpene because it is so unique and complex in how it can make you feel and produces an alluring piney aroma. Something called the entourage effect, is how the combination of certain terpenes and cannabinoids can alter the effect as opposed to having these compounds affect you as a stand alone. Pinene is especially affected by the entourage effect, and it actually comes in two forms . Alpha and Beta Pinene are both different isomers of the terpene, however most strains with pinene in them have a balance of both and they have similar effects. Fun fact, pinene is the most common terpene in the natural world!
- The Feel:
- Distinctly focused and motivated feeling
- Often enhance mental clarity and productivity
- Can shift effects of other terpenes or cannabinoids
- The Benefits
- Seen as an effective anti-inflammatory, many arthritis patients report looking to strains high in pinene for help with reducing inflammation
- Used by some as a bronchodilator, popular with asthmatics
- Very effective at providing mental clarity and cognitive improvement, even said to improve memory retention
- The Palate
- Sharp and crisp scent sometimes even herbal
- Very distinctive pine aroma, can actually be somewhat similar to cleaning products when very potent
- The Connections
- Very common in essentially all conifer trees worldwide
- Found in many herbs including sage, basil and rosemary
- Also present in orange peels, think of those tangy and slightly bitter notes
- The Strains
- Big Smooth: This is actually one of the few pinene dominant strains out there, however does have a very relaxing and sometimes even sedating effect. However the presence of pinene also makes this a great solution for anxious thoughts as it will clear your mind and provide a strong body high as well.
- Blue Dream: This one you will be able to smell the pinene in, that blueberry aroma is almost always accompanied by a slightly sharp note of pine or fresh cut grass even. A wonderful strain for peaceful mindfulness.
- Mac 1: This is a wonderfully well balanced strain that will give you a great motivation and functional high with mental clarity. A perfect example of the terpenes prime effect.
- Pineapple Strains: It’s in the name even! Pinene is often found in these sweet but sharp fruity strains and provides those sharper notes. Other cannabinoids in these strains often add that more relaxing layer to pinene.
- Tips & Tricks
- Remember this terpene’s effects can be easily shifted by the entourage effect, so don’t be surprised to find some of the strains with this to be on the more relaxing and even sleepy side depending on other cannabinoids or terpenes present.
- When looking at terpene testing, always look for both alpha and beta pinene to know how much is present.
- Some of these high pinene strains are great for meditation, the mental clarity associated with this terpene makes a great pairing for mindfulness exercises.