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The list of terpenes found in cannabis grows each day. Here’s a list of the most prominent and well-known terpenes in cannabis.
Citrus, Lemon, Orange
Limonene is one of the most recognizable terpenes, with its citrus odor and bitter taste. It is an active ingredient in medicine, food, perfume, and even household cleaners. Limonene can help treat a range of issues including gastric reflux, depression, and anxiety. The terpene also has anti-fungal and anti-tumor qualities and can act as an immunostimulant.
Humulene is found in beer, most sativa strains of cannabis, and Vietnamese coriander. It is anti-tumor, anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anorectic (suppresses appetite). In Chinese medicine, Humulene is blended with β–caryophyllene to be used as a remedy for inflammation.
Sharp, Sweet, Pine
Pinene is characterized by a sharp, sweet odor reminiscent of walking through a forest of pine trees and Douglas firs. It’s found in conifer trees, orange peels and is a major component in turpentine. The terpene is anti-inflammatory and can help open up the bronchi when asthma patients are suffering.
Floral, Citrus, Spice
Linalool is most commonly known for lavender’s calming scent. Linalool is found in several hundred different plants including lavenders, citrus, laurels, birch, coriander, and rosewood. Its vapors are known to act as an insecticide, protecting plants from fruit flies, fleas and cockroaches. The terpene is used as a natural sleep aid or anti-epileptic agent, and can also help treat psychosis and anxiety.
Pepper, Wood, Spice
Caryophyllene is found in many plants like Thai basil, cloves, and black pepper. It has a rich spicy odor. The terpene is known to be antiseptic, anti-bacterial, antifungal, anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory.
Musk, Cloves, Herbal, Citrus
Myrcene can be found in mango fruit, hops, bay leaves, eucalyptus and lemongrass. Myrcene is known to be anti-tumor, anti-inflammatory, and used in the treatment of spasms. It is also used to treat insomnia and chronic pain. High myrcene levels also result in the classic “couch-lock” effect associated with classic indica strains of cannabis.
Floral, Herbal, Pine
Terpinolene is known for its anti-oxidant, immune-modulating and anti-biological (anti-tumor, antibacterial, antifungal) qualities. It has been historically used in the treatment of insomnia. Terpinolene is found in oregano, marjoram, cumin, lilac, nutmeg, tea tree, apples and some citrus rinds.
Fruity, Floral, Citrus
Citronellol is found in mustard, geraniums, rose, and some citrus rinds. If the name sounds familiar, its because Citronellol has been used as a natural mosquito repellent (citronella) for over 2,000 years and is a common ingredient in repellants on the market today. Like other terpenes, it is anti-biological, anti-inflammatory, immuno-regulating.
In exploring the science behind terpenes, it is important to understand we are scratching the surface here. This is an introductory guide to terpenes. If you’d like to learn more about the complex world of terpenes, read on here.