All About Terpenes

All About Terpenes

Terpenes are the organic compounds found in plants. Cannabis has large levels of terpenes and terpenoids. Terpenes are what give cannabis it's fragrant aroma. Cannabis users should consider terpenes when choosing a product because the compound can support other cannabis molecules to affect your high, otherwise known as the entourage effect.

Studies on Terpenes have found that cannabinoids and terpenes work together to promote the effects of one another in the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS). Dr. Russo, neurologist and researcher has stated that terpenes “could produce synergy with respect to treatment of pain, inflammation, depression, anxiety, addiction, epilepsy, cancer, fungal and bacterial infections.”

Terpene Types

Myrcene:

The most common terpene in cannabis. It is known for its highly-sedative effects.

Limonene:

Found in citrus, it is a known anti-depressant and provides a highly-energetic effectt.

Terpinolene:

A smokey or woody aroma that is slightly sedative, antioxidant, anti-cancer and antibacterial.

Beta-Caryophyllene:

This terpene has a peppery taste and is know to be a strong anti-inflammatory with a woody, peppery taste.

Alpha-Pinene:

Energizing, this terpene is common in pine needles.

Humulene:

This terpene is commonly found in hops and is a strong anti-inflammatory agent and a hunger-suppressent.

HOW TO TALK TO YOUR BUDTENDER: A Guide to Getting the Most out of Your Dispensary Experience

HOW TO TALK TO YOUR BUDTENDER: A Guide to Getting the Most out of Your Dispensary Experience

BUDtender.jpg

The cannabis industry has taken off in an explosive fashion and only continues to grow. From frequently updated legal regulations to an endless cycle of new products and companies, how are consumers expected to keep up with all the information? With strict state governance on industry advertising and limitations on federal research, it can be difficult to track down general information on cannabis commodities.

A ”budtender” by definition, is a dispensary sales associate responsible for helping you find and purchase cannabis-related products. Budtenders have played a crucial role in consumer education since before recreational legalization. Aside from simply selling products, budtenders provide a bridge between general plant information and consumption recommendations. There are knowledgeable budtenders in today’s industry, but with such a selection of shops, brands, and products how do you ensure that you’re getting the best option? We’re here to help you help you navigate the vast Oregon market and make the most out of your dispensary experience by learning how to talk to your budtender.

Personalize Your Cannabis Consumption  

Perhaps you are a patient looking for specific relief. Maybe you are a simply looking for rest and relaxation. Whatever has compelled your trip to the dispensary, going in with a purpose can help you and your budtender pinpoint relevant and effective products. If you’re not visiting for something specific, try narrowing your search and questions down to what matters. Is there a method of consumption you prefer? Are you looking to smoke, vaporize, eat, or apply your cannabis topically? Do you want a quick and strong effect or a lasting, dispersed one? Are you a seasoned consumer searching for potency, or someone new looking for light doses? Maybe you’re not sure and that’s absolutely fine. We’ll share a few pointers on how to find what’s right for you.

Avoid Common Cannabis Misconceptions

This industry is evolving fast. There are bound to be growing pains with such rapid growth. A collective community knowledge and several years of legal sales have provided us with a considerable amount of feedback, but how do you determine the myths from reality as a newcomer? There may not be a plethora of scientific information available, but there are years of trial and error and seasoned industry veterans to learn from. Here, we’ll discuss a few industry misconceptions to look out for on your next dispensary visit.

Cannabis connoisseurs and new consumers alike are generally familiar with the terms “sativa,” “hybrid,” and “indica”. This method of cannabis categorization began as a way to separate distinguishing physical characteristics such as plant structure, and growth patterns. Over time the cannabis community began to associate the effects of consumption with these terms and naturally, when legal dispensaries began to open, budtenders passed this info along. This was merely an effort to explain a complex plant to an entirely new population and for many, it was a loose (but somewhat effective) guideline. As our knowledge and assemblage of feedback has grown, however, professionals and consumers alike have noted that this method lacks the complexity needed when recommending products to individuals. We would caution you not to shop for products solely based on this method and instead recommend steering your budtender in the direction of the desired outcome, flavor, potency, or other characteristics more closely tied to effect.

Now that you’ve navigated your way through finding the right product, how do you calculate the correct dose? It’s important to remember that there are no official guidelines for cannabinoid consumption and that each individual’s molecular composition will play a part in cannabinoid effect. We can’t tell you for sure what will work for your body, but we can give you a few guidelines to start your shopping.

Start low and go slow - this is the best way to ease yourself into a new product without overdoing it. Oregon regulations require producers to mark all products with a “serving size” and even for beginners, it is often a modest starting point. If you have any doubts about dosing, ask your budtender to point out the suggested serving size on any products you choose to purchase. Remember that each type of product will have its own “activation time”. When consuming it’s important to keep in mind that due to the processing mechanisms of the human body, each type of product will have varying activation times. When ingesting edibles, for example, it’s important to wait for the full effects to kick in post-digestion, while sublingual applications, smoke, and vaporization provide more immediate effects.

Another common misconception is that physical size, gender, or age plays a part in a consumer’s tolerance when in reality, tolerance levels have a number of factors. Before you jump to any conclusions, consider the following: Have you eaten before consuming your cannabinoid product? Are you hydrated? Do you have a preexisting condition? Are you on any medications? We consider these factors when taking in other physiologically-altering substances, why not consider them before your cannabis consumption? We’ve heard first-hand accounts of large, grown men struggling with 10 milligrams of THC and we’ve seen young women at half the age and size consume 100 milligrams or more! Don’t misjudge your own tolerance!

The Problem with Potency

As the number of producers and products soar, customers and patients look for consistencies to shop by. Oregon labeling requirements make THC and CBD potencies an easy choice as cannabis products are required to feature these results. A considerable amount of consumers use it as a starting point or basis of comparison, and while it’s important to consider potency, we’re here to caution you from choosing products with this method alone.

It’s always wise to consider your preferred route of ingestion and the variables that may affect absorption in the human body. You may choose your edible products based on cannabinoid potency, but when it comes to products aimed at inhalation, you’d be selling yourself short if you didn’t consider other factors. The cannabis plant offers a diverse array of compounds. The effects you seek are not exclusively achieved with THC or CBD.

If you’re not familiar with the “Entourage Effect” we highly suggest a little research of your own, but for the purpose of this piece, we’ll give you a basic breakdown of the concept: various cannabinoids and terpenes found in cannabis work together in a synergistic manner. Essentially, the sum of all the parts (cannabinoids, terpenes, etc.) is more effective together than on their own. Terpenes help facilitate the “high” that consumers associate with THC alone. If you’ve never heard of “terpenes” before there’s no need to feel overwhelmed. You may be more familiar with them than you think! These fragrant compounds are found in nearly every living plant on Earth! They’re largely responsible for the unique smell of each cannabis strain, but offer so much more than fragrance. Once consumed with cannabinoids, terpenes can actually facilitate specific interactions with receptors and neurotransmitters in our brain and body. Next time you shop try talking to your budtender about these amazing compounds! You may just find something low in THC and high in a particular combination of terpenes that has a stronger desired outcome than a simple, high THC product!

Ask Questions

Ask all the questions and don’t be shy. This industry is still in its infancy and no question is too simple. Whether you’re new to cannabis or simply stepping into a legal facility for the first time, it’s important to remember that budtenders help consumers with widely ranging levels of knowledge every single day. If you personalize your consumption methods, avoid common cannabis misconceptions, and refrain from choosing based on potency alone, you’ll be well on your way to making the most of your dispensary experience. If you’d like some help on your next visit, check out our handy “Dispensary Guide” below!



A Guide to Enjoying Edibles

A Guide to Enjoying Edibles

In 9 states adults 21 years of age and older can now enjoy recreational edibles—from your classic chocolate bar or gummy to newer creations such as hot sauce or tea blends. There’s an edible to fit every lifestyle and palette. This guide is for those who are new to edibles, self-proclaimed foodies, people who seek a healthier way to consume cannabis, and curious folks who wants enjoy all of the wonderful effects cannabis has to offer.

 

Why Does Eating Edibles Feel Different?

Eating edibles is not like smoking a joint or hitting a bong. Your body metabolizes cannabis differently based on your method of consumption. Often times, when you smoke, you feel altered almost instantly but the effects fade away after an hour or two. Eating edibles is a different story. Edibles take a lot longer to take effect and last anywhere from two to six hours. When you ingest edibles, your body metabolizes them through the stomach and then passes them through the liver. This process alone takes time and may be why the edible high lasts much longer than a joint high.

 

These Aren’t Grandma’s Brownies. Choose the Right Edible for You.

The edible industry is made up of an extensive network of creative foodies, chefs, and culinary artists looking to bring you the best-tasting edibles experience. You can find your traditional chocolate bars and cookies, but we encourage you to look a little further into the the incredible variety at your favorite local dispensary. You’ll find gluten-free brownies, paleo treats like roasted almonds, and inventive beverages such as kombucha, chai, coffee and tea. You can even find small batch vegan ice cream! If you have any dietary preferences or restrictions, your perfect edible is out there. Just ask your budtender.

Every edible affects its consumer differently. If you are looking for a specific outcome, we suggest seeking out edibles that are strain-specific (which means only one kind of cannabis is used in the recipe). Looking to take a nature hike or have a productive work day? Check out Cannavore edibles, as they use TJ’s Durban Poison, a Sativa-dominant strain known for its high-functioning and energizing effects.

 

Pace Yourself and Know Your Limit.

Patience is the key to edibles. Everyone has their limit—but everyone does not have the same limit. Finding your sweet spot is an important part of ensuring you have a positive edibles experience. One person may feel relaxed and comfortable with a 10 milligram dose; others may not feel much until they eat 50 milligrams. For the first-time edibles enthusiast, we recommend starting low and going slow. By this we mean: start with the standard 10 milligram dose and wait. Edibles can take anywhere from thirty minutes to two hours to kick in; effects may last anywhere from two to six hours. Remember to take a moment and read the information on the label. It will tell you how much is exactly in each piece. Take a bite, relax and enjoy.

 

Whoa, I Feel Really High!

Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. It happens. Sometimes that cookie is so delicious, you just want one more bite. Then you suddenly realize that you feel uncomfortable or withdrawn. This is why finding your sweet spot is so important.

If you feel like you may have ingested too much cannabis, here are a few tips to help curb your high:

  1. Hydrate and drink water.

  2. Have a snack or a meal. Eating edibles on an empty stomach may allow for stronger effects. Munchie time!

  3. Breathe deep, take a bath, or go for a walk. Relaxation is key.

  4. If all else fails, eat some black pepper or try some CBD (cannabidiol). Some cannabis connoisseurs have reported curbing their high by eating black pepper or smoking a joint of a CBD strain.

 

Plan Your Day

Edibles take time to kick in. So make sure to plan your day for maximum enjoyment. Don’t plan on driving or operating heavy machinery when eating edibles. A good day may consist of working in the garden, reading that book you meant to finish, sitting in some hot springs, or taking a walk to your local park to play some bocce ball or frisbee golf. So eat up and recreate responsibly!

 

By Stephanie Calderon, Cannavore Staff Member