What are Cannabinoids?
Cannabinoids are natural compounds found in the Cannabis sativa plant. Of over 480 different currently know compounds that are present in the cannabis plant, only around 66 of them can be referred to as cannabinoids.
Cannabinoids are discharged by cannabis flowers that have shown to provide help for an array of symptoms including pain, nausea and inflammation. Cannabinoids work their magic by emulating compounds that are naturally produced in the human body (endocannabinoids), which help to maintain internal stability and health.
When medical cannabis is consumed, these cannabinoids bind to receptors throughout the brain/ Each specific cannabinoid has a diverse effect depending on which receptors they bind to. By pointing the right cannabinoid at the correct receptors, various types of relief are achievable. All marijuana strains offer varying levels of cannabinoids and affect how much to dose when used for medicinal purposes.
The most well known among these cannibanoid compounds is the delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC), which is ingredient in cannabis that invokes that hallucinatory feeling, but there are a multitude of other compounds present, including Cannabidiol (CBD), which makes up about 40% of the plant's resin extract.
The various major differences between the different cannabinoids are classified by how psychologically active they are. The following is a list of the medical marijuana cannabinoid subclasses:
Classes of cannabinoids
This is the most well-known compound of the cannabinoid class. THC has been proven to have a wide range of medical benefits with the most obvious being the “high” that one feels when using marijuana. But, THC has a plethora of other medical benefits including; anxiety control, pain control, the suppression of muscle spasms, helping with the growth and treatment of certain cancers, alleviating nausea, slowing down inflammation, appetite stimulation, and relieving eye pressure and pain caused from glaucoma.
CBD, of all medical marijuana components, has been found to be the most medically beneficial. With minimal psychoactive characteristics compared to THC, these cannabidiols can help to control certain cancers , stimulate bone growth, inhibit the growth of bacteria, slow down inflammations, assist with nausea, decrease blood vessel wall pressure, reduce blood sugar levels, assist in controlling all kinds of seizures, and alleviate the risk of nerve damage.
CBN and THC work against each other. The more CBN present, the less THC present. While CBN does have medicinal value, high levels of CBN can backfire and provide undesirable symptoms such as lightheadedness, confusion, and an antagonist against the cannabinoid receptors. The medicinal values of CBN include; helping one get to sleep, slowing down inflammation spots, ontrolling pain, and helping in suppressing convulsions and muscle spasms.
Cannabichromenes are the least studied of the cannabinoids, but research shows that CBCs do have medical benefitis without introducing any psychoactive characteristics to the body. CBC has been shown to help with controlling pain, stopping Fungi growth, slowing down inflammation, stimulating bone growth, encouraging cell growth, and inhibiting bacteria growth.
THCV helps to increase the benefits of THC when administered in small doses. We say, “small doses” because research has shown that large doses of THCV can have and adverse effect on the medicinal effects of THC. THCV provides limited psychoactive characteristics, but can act as an appetite suppressant and may help to control obesity (Type II diabetes human testing is currently underway).
CBG is not abundantly found in medical marijuana. CBG has no psychoactive characteristics, but can be helpful in halting the growth of bacteria, encouraging bone growth, and stimulating cell growth.
Tetrahydrocannabinoli acids (THCA)
THCA is a precursor of THC, but has no psychoactive effects compared to THC. This particular cannabinoid can be used as an anti-inflammatory with medical benefits that include; slowing inflammation, controlling cancer cell growth, and suppressing muscle convulsions and spasms.