Some people prefer taking CBD alone. However, some studies have proved that taking a cannabis product with several other cannabinoids can produce better results. Understand that the cannabis hemp plant has more than a hundred compounds. So, a combination of several of these compounds can interact with the endocannabinoid system to produce the entourage effect. But what is the entourage effect and how important is it?
Entourage Effect Definition
The entourage effect is a synergistic effect that occurs when several compounds or chemicals in the cannabis plant work to produce better effects than they would when taken alone. The hemp plant has more than 100 different compounds that interact with the endocannabinoid system. Taking a product with a multitude of this compound can produce stronger and lasting results with beneficial effects.
Research into The Entourage Effect
Combining different cannabis compounds to create a single spectrum of products can seriously improve the effectiveness of the individual compounds. CBD, on its own, can be effective in promoting wellness. However, a 2011 research by the British Journal of Pharmacology indicates that a combination of cannabinoids and terpenes can produce more powerful results. This is to treat epileptic seizures, pain, inflammation, fungal infections, sleeplessness, and anxiety among others. This points to the general guideline that if you want to use a CBD product, you should probably consider a product that has other organic cannabis compounds.
How Does the Entourage Effect Work?
There are more than 100 cannabis compounds. You need to know that the entourage effect is usually powered by the interactive synergy that happens between cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. All these make up the profile of cannabis compounds.
By working synergistically, these compounds produce different but more significant effects on the body. Their beneficial results are more pronounced than what it would have been if these compounds were working alone. Each compound has its properties including:
They are naturally occurring compounds that interact with the endocannabinoid system. The most popular cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant include:
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC): It’s one of the most popular cannabinoids that’s known for its psychoactive properties. THC is effective in treating seizures, nausea, muscle spasms, and cancerous tumors among others.
- Cannabidiol (CBD): The second-most popular compound that’s known for its beneficial health benefits. CBD is nonpsychoactive and it is known to ease pain, treat inflammation, and reduce symptoms of nausea, etc.
- Cannabinol (CBN): It is ideal for reducing pain, treating muscle spasms, and promoting good sleep patterns.
- Cannabichromene (CBC): It’s another nonpsychoactive compound that has anti-inflammatory, antibiotic,anti-cancer, and antifungal properties.
- Cannabigerol (CBG): It’s an antibiotic and powerful antifungal agent. In addition to that, it’s a great muscle relaxant that is sometimes used to reduce high blood pressure and treat depression.
They are organic compounds that are responsible for giving different cannabis strains their unique fragrances. Pinene is the most common terpene and it usually gives some cannabis strains a pine-like smell. It also has powerful anti-inflammatory effects hence it’s great for treating inflammation. Other popular terpenes include:
- Myrcene: It has an earthy taste and a fruity smell. Myrcene has strong muscle-relaxing and sedative effects. additionally, it also has strong anti-inflammatory benefits.
- Limonene: It has a citrusy smell. This terpene is often used to make cannabis-infused ointments since its quickly absorbed through the skin. Besides that, it can treat infections such as bronchial issues and stimulate the process of weight loss.
- Linalool: It’s a helpful terpene that is responsible for giving the cannabis plant its floral aroma. Note that you can also find linalool in some mushrooms, cinnamon, and mint. It supports neural function and its anti-inflammatory properties are good for cancer treatment.
- Alpha Bisabolol: It’s renowned for its strong anti-bacterial properties. as a result, this terpene is ideal for treating inflammatory conditions. Generally, alpha-bisabolol is responsible for giving some cannabis strains their flowery scents.
- Borneol: It’s one of the most versatile terpenes with strong pain-relieving effects. Borneol jas antiseptic properties and can be used to treat insomnia and asthma. This terpene usually gives some cannabis strains their earthy camphor scent.
These are antioxidant-rich compounds that are responsible for the formation of pigments in the cannabis plant. Besides that, flavonoids are also responsible for attracting pollinators. The cannabis plant contains super active flavonoids such as quercetin, orientin, and silymarin. They all have powerful anti-inflammatory as well as anti-fungal properties. This makes them ideal for the treatment or prevention of inflammatory conditions such as arthritis.
The Entourage Effect with Cannabinoids
A study that was done to establish the effectiveness of THC in managing cancer pain found that the entourage effect had better efficiency. Well, this is because the combination of THC and CBD showed more promising results than the use of CBD or THC alone. While these results were initially intriguing, evidence suggests that combining these two cannabinoids is what usually leads to great results. But how exactly does this happen?
The mechanism of action, in this case, involves the CBD amplifying the analgesic properties of THC. Besides that, CBD has also been shown to be effective in reducing THC’s psychoactive effects. This means that giving patients a combination of CBD and THC products won’t significantly alter the way the mind functions.
However, consumers must understand that CBD’s mechanism of action in enhancing THC’s analgesic effects is complex. Its thought that CBD usually interacts with the CB1 receptors in the body indirectly in a way that stops the ability of the THC compound to bind to these same receptors.
The Entourage Effect with Terpenes
This is important in providing the body with therapeutic effects. A combination of cannabinoids and terpenes can help ease pain and inflammation. It should be noted that terpene has a unique chemical profile. So, its effects may be quite different from those of other cannabinoids.
But what’s clear is that most cannabis strains feature a wide range of terpenes hence it’s impossible to tail what cannabinoid-terpene pairing is the best for the entourage effect. However, preliminary research studies indicate that myrcene is a powerful sedative terpenoid found in the cannabis plant. Its combination with THC can help to produce couchlock.
Potential Benefits of The Entourage Effect
The entourage effect covers several compounds found in the cannabis plant. so, with their different benefits, this means that this effect can have several powerful effects on the human body. The collective benefits of these compounds include:
- Easing Stress and Anxiety: A combination of CBD and THC can help to ease symptoms of stress and anxiety. This is because they can effectively help the body to produce more anti-stress and anti-anxiety chemicals.
- Treating Inflammation: You can manage inflammation due to injuries or underlying medical complications with a cannabis product with entourage effect. This includes muscle swellings, joint pains, and arthritis among others.
- Treating Pain: This is one of the main benefits of the entourage effect. treating progressive pain, especially those that involve incurable conditions isn’t easy. But rather than relying on addictive prescription painkillers, this effect from CBD products can be ideal for managing chronic conditions.
Note: this effect can also be ideal in managing migraines, muscle cramps, epilepsy, and multiple sclerosis, etc.
How to Take Advantage of The Entourage Effect
Understand how the entourage effect works are one thing and perfectly utilizing it is another. So, how can you take the effectiveness of this effect to the next level? Well, you have to understand why you want to use a cannabis product and what type of product you should use.
It should be noted that there are three types of cannabis-based products on the market. You can buy CBD isolate, full-spectrum CBD, or broad-spectrum CBD. But one thing you should know is that you won’t get the entourage effect from CBD isolate. This is because such a product only contains cannabidiol and lacks other compounds that promote synergistic effects.
For potent effects, you should consider buying either broad-spectrum CBD or full-spectrum CBD. These two products contain other compounds that can synergistically work to promote the therapeutic and effective entourage effect in the body. However, full-spectrum CBD has the strongest effect on these two products since it also contains trace amounts of THC content. If you are just starting, remember to experiment by first using a smaller dose of the product.
The Bottom Line
The entourage effect provides the endocannabinoid system with wholesome benefits. Rather than experiencing the benefits of cannabinoids, terpenes, or flavonoids only, you can experience a multitude of benefits, unlike what you would experience when using an isolated product.
The entourage effect is usually therapeutic, relaxing, and long-lasting. It’s good for your immune system, especially when you are fighting infections. It makes it possible for the body’s endocannabinoid system to work optimally. However, you need to be careful when choosing CBD products since CBD isolate won’t produce such an effect. for best results, consider using broad-spectrum or full-spectrum CBD products.