The Entourage Effect

Black Rabbit is more than just an online dispensary and today we’re back to continue our quest for higher learning by taking a look at the cannabis phenomenon that is the entourage effect.

Before we jump in, all this weed talk might have you craving so a friendly reminder that Black Rabbit does same day weed delivery in Toronto and 21 additional regions within the GTA and we also do weed delivery Canada-wide.

Before we deep dive into the entourage effect and how it works, we’ll need a refresher on three contributing concepts to the entourage effect – cannabinoids, the endocannabinoid system and terpenes

What are cannabinoids?

Cannabinoids are naturally occurring chemical compounds found in and secreted by cannabis flowers that have psychoactive effects and provide relief to an array of symptoms including pain, nausea, anxiety, and inflammation.

Research shows that cannabis plants can produce between 80 to 100 varying cannabinoids and about 300 non-cannabinoid chemicals – the two most commonly known and most abundant in the cannabis plant are delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).

Cannabinoids can be differentiated based on their degree of psychoactivity. CBD for example has antidepressant-like effects due to its impact on the brain’s natural receptors for serotonin – a chemical that is produced by the body’s nerve cells and impacts everything from emotions to motor skills. There is a misconception that CBD is non-psychoactive, however because it is a mood-altering substance, it’s technically considered a psychoactive – it just won’t give you the traditional high that you might get from THC. On the flip side, THC regulates neurotransmitters such as serotonin.

What is the endocannabinoid system?

According to A Simple Guide to the Endocannabinoid System on healthline.com, “the endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a complex, cell-signaling system identified in the early 1990s by researchers exploring THC”. The ECS is a complex communications system found in the brain and body that is capable of interacting with the cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.

What are terpenes?

Terpenes are the aromatic molecules of the cannabis plant. They are secreted in the tiny resin glands of the cannabis flowers – the same glands that produce cannabinoids like THC and CBD. Terpenes are aromatic oils that colour cannabis assortments with a distinctive flavour like citrus, berry, mint, and pine. 

What is the entourage effect?

Essentially, the entourage effect refers to the phenomenon that looks at the synergy that takes place when cannabinoids like THC and CBD work together or with terpenes to provide specific health benefits. The entourage effect is also often referred to as “whole plant synergy” on the grounds that the many diverse compounds within the cannabis plant can deliver health benefits that cannabinoids and their compounds on their own cannot.

In other words, when we consume cannabis, our bodies absorb the botanical compounds found in the plant. Each compound carries unique effects and benefits which could vary or change in the presence of other compounds.

How does the entourage effect work?

According to a study done at the Department of Natural Products, Medical Faculty, Hebrew University by Professors Raphael Mechoulam and Shimon Ben-Shabat, the body’s endocannabinoid system responds better to cannabis when the activity of two primary cannabinoids is increased. The synergy between two cannabinoids will boost their respective effects.

Let’s say for example, you as an individual are seeking pain relief and do so through a dose of THC but you can’t necessarily tolerate the potential side effects of the dose i.e. memory impairment – CBD in synergy with THC can help offset those effects.

The above is often referred to as the inter-entourage effect which looks at cannabinoid to cannabinoid or terpene to terpene synergies however there is also the intra-entourage effect which looks at the synergy between cannabinoids and terpenes. An April 2020 study on mice showed that three terpenes – humulene  (earthy, woody), pinene (pine) and geraniol (floral) – activate the CB1 receptor which is responsible for reducing pain perception and thus suggesting that terpenes offer therapeutic benefits.

Same day weed delivery and weed delivery Canada wide

While our understanding on the alchemy of the entourage effect continues to be studied, there’s no harm in some self-experimentation. Don’t forget, we do same day weed delivery in Toronto and 21 other regions within the GTA. Live outside the GTA? We have you covered with same day weed delivery Canada wide.

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