The following describes an effect only gained by consuming or inhaling the whole cannabis flower, versus extracting one or two compounds. Baker Bros. uses whole cannabis flower in our baked edibles. Consuming whole decarboxylated flower creates an “entourage effect” of many cannabinoids and terpenes working together for a well rounded high that is like no other. If we used butane hash oil, a lot of the cannabinoids and terpenes would be removed in the extraction process. Read on for a thorough explanation into this exciting phenomenon.
Those of you who believe in cannabis as much as we do respect the vast array of different strains the plant has to offer. The feelings and highs we experience for each strain can range from getting “stoned” all the way to a painkiller for specific ailments. So why do certain plants offer such different experiences than others? More and more compounds in cannabis are being discovered every day, and every single one of them contributes to the unique effects for each strain.
When different amounts of various compounds from cannabis mix together in your body, you get a feeling known as the “entourage effect”. The most well-known of these compounds is THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol. This is the chemical in cannabis that gets you high. When ingested or inhaled, THC travels to the brain and latches onto special receptors in our brains called cannabinoid receptors. These receptors are then stimulated, and release dopamine to various nerve cells throughout the body. However, this is only a fraction of the reason why we feel the way we do, because there are another 500 compounds left that all contribute. Another chemical commonly known is CBD, or cannabidiol. This is the chemical in cannabis that can be used as a medicine. Among other benefits, it has the unique ability to quiet excessive electrical activity in the brain. For a real world example, there was a 3 year old girl who went from having 300 seizures a week to only 2 per month after being given cannabis as a medicine by her parents. Keep in mind that the latter was only two of the approximated 500 compounds from cannabis. Just to name a few, the other chemicals known to be in the plant are terpenes, ketones, esters, lactones, alcohols, fatty acids, and steroids.
Terpenes, another highlighted chemical in the industry today is compound in cannabis responsible for its smell. You know how cannabis can smell familiar of other scents? Interestingly, the same terpenes found in cannabis are also found in pine trees. Terpenes are also believed to block certain cannabinoid receptors in the brain while others may actually promote binding. Over 100 different terpenes have been identified in the plant.
It is extremely important to note with the rise and popularity of cannabis that a single compound should not be extracted for its use. Marinol, a THC drug approved by the FDA in 1985 has over the years been decided against. THC, when taken alone, has been studied and found to produce depressive, emotionally negative feelings. This is due to the absence of other compounds that help create the aforementioned “entourage effect”. The bottom line: use the whole plant. Every chemical compound in cannabis works together and is the reason why each strain has its unique effects on the body.
Nature has made this plant perfect on its own. The human co-dependent biological relationship with cannabis has created a perfect medicinal plant through thousands of years of cultivation and breeding.
– The Wild West Gang