Welcome to the Talking Terpenes: Cliff Notes educational series. This collection of articles summarizes the science of one of the most common types of molecules in nature, terpenes, into an easy read for the average consumer. New articles will be released periodically that explore their characteristics, including many health benefits, offered by terpenes and—more specifically—terpene blends.
Terpenes are chemicals made by plants. They have different smells that help plants survive and reproduce. Terpenes keep away bugs and animals that want to eat them. They also attract insects and people to help spread their pollen and make more plants. Terpenes can also support our health by working with a system in our bodies called the endocannabinoid system, or ECS.
The Talking Terpenes series teaches people about the many ways terpenes can help us stay healthy. In this series, we learn about different terpene blends and terpene flavors that not only have nice smells but also support our overall well-being. Discover why humans have been using terpenes and terpene flavors in their drinks, food, lotions, and perfumes for thousands of years.
This edition of Talking Terpenes investigates the organic Extract Consultants solvent-free Do-Si-Dos Terpene Blend.
The special mix of terpenes in our Do-Si-Dos Blend gives it a strong earthy smell with a bit of sweetness and a flowery twist. The terpenes that make up the blend, like alpha-pinene, beta-pinene, and others, create this unique smell. People love the way Do-Si-Dos smells, but it's not just about the smell – it can be beneficial for your well-being too.
Do-Si-Dos is an indica cannabis blend that comes from mixing two different types of cannabis plants: GSC (formerly Girl Scout Cookies) and Face Off OG. This combination is really popular among cannabis varieties. People think that using Do-Si-Dos might help with things like reducing inflammation, fighting cancer, and easing anxiety. It even has antioxidants that are good for you.
Among the many types of terpenes, alpha-pinene stands out as the most common. There are over 40,000 types of terpenes made by about 20,000 plant species. Alpha-pinene is a terpene produced in large amounts by trees like pine and other similar plants. It's not just trees that make this terpene; other plants like basil, cannabis, eucalyptus, oranges, and more also have it.
Sometimes, people call this terpene α-pinene. It smells earthy, fresh, and a bit musky, with a strong pine scent. This scent is quite appealing to us humans, so industries that make food, drinks, and cosmetics use it to add flavor and fragrance.
Alpha-pinene has a sibling, a similar molecule called beta-pinene. Both of them are found in hemp and cannabis plants. They share some benefits like reducing inflammation, fighting cancer, and helping with breathing.
Medicinal Research on Alpha Pinene
Scientists did a study in 2012 called "Protective Effects of Alpha-pinene in Mice with Acute Pancreatitis." They put their findings in the journal Life Sciences. The study looked into whether α-pinene could help treat pancreatitis. This is a sickness where the pancreas gets swollen, and doctors aren't sure why it happens.
The scientists discovered that when they used alpha-pinene, it helped to reduce damage in the pancreas and lungs of mice with pancreatitis. They thought this meant that alpha-pinene might be able to lower inflammation. This could be really important for treating pancreatitis and other diseases like cancer that cause a lot of inflammation in the body.
Notable Strains that Feature Alpha Pinene
- Durbin Poison
- GG#4 (Gorilla Glue #4)
- White Widow
- Northern Lights
- Fruity Pebbles
- Tahoe OG
- GSC (Girl Scout Cookies)
Beta-pinene, also known as β-pinene, is a lot like its close relative alpha-pinene, but it has some differences in how it smells and what it can do for our health. You can think of them as siblings – similar, but not exactly the same. However, there's something interesting: beta-pinene is not as common as alpha-pinene in nature.
People like beta-pinene because it has a smell that's earthy, kind of like wood and plants, and sometimes it even has a touch of spicy freshness. While alpha-pinene mostly smells like pine, beta-pinene has more of a focus on the wood and spice aspects.
Just like other terpenes and cannabinoids, beta-pinene does good things for our bodies. It can help with pain, has qualities that could fight cancer and work against harmful stuff in our bodies (antioxidant), and it's really strong at reducing inflammation. One cool thing it shares with alpha-pinene is that it can help our breathing by opening up our airways. This could be helpful for people with asthma, allergies, or bronchitis.
But that's not all – beta-pinene is pretty awesome for the brain too! It can help slow down or even stop the progression of brain problems like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases.
Medicinal Research on Beta Pinene
Scientists did a study in 2013 called "Identification of Proapoptopic, Anti-Inflammatory, Anti-Proliferative, Anti-Invasive, and Anti-Angiogenic Targets of Essential Oils." They put this study in the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention. In the study, they looked into how different terpenes from essential oil made from cardamom could help our health. Of these terpenes were alpha-pinene, β-pinene, eucalyptol, d-limonene, and geraniol.
They found out that these terpenes can help in a way that makes cancer cells die, and this process is called apoptosis. Think of it like cells deciding to shut down on their own. The study said that the essential oils from cardamom, specifically eucalyptol, beta-pinene, and geraniol, can help with making cancer cells go through this process.
The scientists finished their study stating that they learned a lot about how these terpenes from cardamom can fight against tumors in many different ways, and have special effects against cancer.
Notable Strains that Feature Beta Pinene
Beta-caryophyllene, or BCP, is different from the other 200 terpenes in cannabis plants because it acts like cannabinoids when it interacts with our bodies.
BCP is unique because it's the only one that can directly talk to our endocannabinoid system (ECS) cells. It’s as if it has a key to unlock special doors in our bodies, and these doors are called CB2 receptors. You can learn more about how this works by checking out a research study from 2008.
Besides its interesting effects on our bodies, BCP smells wonderful too. It mostly has a scent like pepper and spices. Some types of hemp and cannabis plants make a lot of BCP, similar to another common terpene called myrcene.
Because BCP helps us feel calm, people have used things like black pepper (which has BCP) for a long time to help when they feel too anxious or worried after using too much THC.
But guess what? BCP isn't only made by cannabis – many other plants also make it. You can find it in things like basil, black caraway, cinnamon, clove, and more.
Medicinal Research on Beta Caryophyllene
The terpene BCP benefits our health in many ways. The first being that it can help protect our brain. It's like a natural medicine that fights against problems like depression, inflammation, and pain. It can also stop fungus and bad germs from growing.
In 2018 study, scientists wanted see how helpful BCP can be for our brains. They found out that BCP is like a superhero, fighting off things like inflammation, cancer, and issues with our heart, liver, and more. The study also showed that BCP is like a shield for our nervous system, helping with issues like pain, anxiety, and even Alzheimer's disease. It's similar to a local painkiller that protects our nerves from bad things like stress and swelling.
Notable Strains that Feature Beta Caryophyllene
Just like alpha-pinene and beta-pinene, there's another terpene called d-limonene. It's part of a pair with another terpene called l-limonene. D-limonene is very common in cannabis and nature, and it's the second most common terpene found in plants.
D-limonene gets its name because it smells like limes and other citrus fruits. It's sweet, crisp, and sometimes even flowery. Apart from being in cannabis, you can find it in fruits like grapefruit, lemon, and orange.
D-limonene is good for our health, just like other terpenes. It helps with fighting inflammation and has antioxidants that are helpful for different diseases. One special thing about it is that it can help our lungs work better, just like alpha-pinene and beta-pinene. Products with terpenes like d-limonene might be able to help with lung problems like asthma and allergies.
But the coolest thing about d-limonene is that it might help fight cancer. A study from 2007 said it can help stop different kinds of cancer. It's most often found in certain types of cannabis that make people feel energetic and happy. Another study from 1998 said it's safe to use for treating breast cancer.
Medicinal Research on D-Limonene
In a 2018 study, scientists attempted to learn how d-limonene might help fight lung cancer. They wanted to figure out how d-limonene worked to stop cancer cells from growing.
The researchers found that d-limonene could slow down the growth of lung cancer cells. When they tested it on mice with lung tumors, it slowed down the tumor growth. They noticed that certain genes related to a process called apoptosis and another process called autophagy became more active in the tumors after using d-limonene.
In simple terms, d-limonene seemed to make lung cancer cells die off while helping the body's natural defense mechanisms. So, this natural compound could potentially be used as a treatment for lung cancer in the future.
Notable Strains that Feature D-Limonene
Linalool is a natural substance found in cannabis and hemp, but it's also found in other plants like basil and lavender. It gives off a flowery smell with hints of spices and wood. Some cannabis strains like Do-Si-Dos and Kosher Kush produce linalool.
This substance has some health benefits. It can help fight germs and lower anxiety, which makes it useful for people with social anxiety or Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. Studies have even shown that linalool might reduce seizures in people with conditions like epilepsy.
Just like other substances in cannabis, linalool can reduce inflammation and relieve pain. If used in the right amount, it can also make you feel relaxed, like a sedative. Plus, it has properties that could help in the fight against cancer. So, it's a pretty powerful natural compound that might have lots of health benefits.
Medicinal Research on Linalool
In a 2015 study titled "Linalool Induces Cell Cycle Arrest and Apoptosis in Leukemia Cells and Cervical Cancer Cells." It was published in a science journal called the International Journal of Molecular Sciences. This study looked at how linalool can affect cancer cells in the human body.
The study found that linalool could be a helpful treatment for cancer. They also figured out some of the ways it works to fight cancer, especially by causing apoptosis. In simple terms, it means that linalool can make cancer cells stop growing and even die.
Notable Strains that Feature Linalool
Myrcene is what gives some strains of cannabis an earthy, musky smell, and it can also have hints of fruity, sweet, or clove-like scents. This terpene is often found in indica strains of cannabis, which are known for their relaxing effects. When you have a lot of myrcene, it can help reduce anxiety and make you feel sleepy, like a sedative.
Myrcene isn't just in cannabis; it's also found in other plants like chamomile, hops, lemongrass, parsley, and wild thyme.
A study from 1997 found that myrcene is the most common terpene in cannabis, meaning it's the one you'll find the most of in terms of weight. Myrcene has some great health benefits too. It can help with pain, reduce inflammation in your body, fight germs, and like some other terpenes we've talked about, it might even be useful in treating cancer.
Medicinal Research on Myrcene
In a 2015 study titled "Evaluation of the Anti-inflammatory, Anti-catabolic, and Pro-anabolic Effects of E-caryophyllene, Myrcene, and Limonene in Osteoarthritis." It was published in the science journal European Journal of Pharmacology. This study looked at whether terpenes could help treat a joint disease called osteoarthritis.
The study found that myrcene and other terpenes have strong healing properties that could be useful in treating osteoarthritis. They can help reduce inflammation in the joints and prevent the breakdown of cartilage, which is important for people with osteoarthritis.
So, these terpenes, like myrcene, might be able to slow down or even stop the progression of osteoarthritis. This is good news for people with this disease, and scientists want to learn more about how these terpenes work to help them even better.
Notable Strains that Feature Myrcene
The terpenes in our Do-Si-Dos blend have different natural benefits. They can help with things like reducing inflammation in your body, supporting your brain health, easing anxiety, fighting germs, and even potentially fighting cancer.
When we put these terpenes together to make our Do-Si-Dos blend, it gives off a smell that's earthy and raw, with a hint of flowers. Scientists have been studying these terpenes for a long time, and they've found that they can be helpful for people with social anxiety, depression, Alzheimer's disease, different types of arthritis, and even cancer.
So, these terpenes are like a natural medicine that can have a positive impact on many health conditions and different groups of people.