Dreaming of a tropical getaway but can’t leave your home? Today’s terpene spotlight is sure to conjure up exotic memories, fantasies, and whatever other wanderings of the mind you might care to indulge in. Limonene-dominant cannabis strains can taste like the lime (or lemon) in your coconut and, at the same time set your mind to full beach mode. Let’s take a deeper look into this compound, one of the most commonly found terpenes in cannabis, and what it can do for you.
The primary terpene in many Sativa-heavy cannabis strains (Sour Diesel for example) is Limonene. It unsurprisingly shares an etymology with the lemon and can be accurately described as citrusy and lemony. Aside from citrus fruits, limonene is also naturally prevalent in rosemary, juniper, mint, peppermint, and tea tree. In these plants, it protects from environmental hazards by deterring bacterial attacks, insects, and other animal consumption.
Knowing the psychotropic as well as the physiological effects of a terpene increases a cannabis user’s ability to choose a strain that suits their preferences, medical necessities, or whims. The therapeutic effects of limonene are often related to its bacteria-fighting qualities as well.
When Life Gives You Lemons...
A list of proposed physiological effects of limonene include: weight loss, gallstone dissolution, immune system stimulation, anti-bacterial/microbial effects, gastrointestinal regulation, and heartburn reduction. Ongoing NIH research also points to possible anti-carcinogenic properties.
Limonene's psychoactive and mental effects match the general profile of Sativa-dominant cannabis: stress relief, elevated mood, and increased energy levels. More specifically, it has been characterized as a possible anti-depressant and anti-anxiety agent.
What Are Terpenes?
Terpenes are chemical compounds that give a plant (or strain) its particular smell and taste. A terpene profile can provide smokers and other plant smellers with cues into the types of effects they can anticipate from the plant. Each cannabis strain will contain a multitude terpenes, as there are more than 100 possibilities when it comes to major terpenes.
Smells Like Terpene Spirit!
Although this endless variety might seem overwhelming, there are several quick reference points you can use to understand your flower, wax, or edible's profile. Cannabis taste and aroma, especially from a well-grown flower or well-made concentrate, can express itself just as clearly as any other household essential oil. In examining a strain, start by weighing the prevalence of the most common terpenes. The five most commonly found cannabis terpenes, and a rough description of their smells and associations, are:
Myrcene: “musky, dank”
Limonene: “citrusy, sour”
Caryophyllene: “peppery, woody”
Again, most cannabis flowers will have varying amounts of most or all of these compounds, as well as various others in smaller amounts.
Try Some (Again)
Chances are that most cannabis users have already come across some sour citrus flower before. Limonene-prominent strains include Super Lemon Haze, Jack the Ripper, OG Kush, Sour Diesel, Durban Poison, Lemon G, Hindu Kush, Cookies and Cream, and the Glue variants (Original and Gorilla). As mentioned previously, limonene is one of the most common cannabis terpenes. These strains, or hybrids containing one or several of them, can be found in most dispensaries.
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