THC and CBD are the dynamic duo when it comes to cannabinoid popularity. Lesser-known cannabinoids are seeing their time in the spotlight as of late, however. Unlike THC, most of the other minor cannabinoids aren’t as psychotropic. Some are non-intoxicating so you can have a relaxed and clear-headed experience when taking them.
There are hundreds of cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant, many of which are found in only in trace amounts. Cultivators and manufacturers can extract these little-known cannabinoids to produce tablets, dabs, crystals, edibles, and more cannabis-infused products. If you’re looking for a different type of high or want to test out different products to compare their effects, consider these minor cannabinoids.
THCA is an acronym for Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid. In most cannabis strains, THCA is the most abundant cannabinoid. THCA converts into THC when heated. Some dispensaries will list THC levels instead of THCA levels. THCA does not produce a high.
Guild Extracts produces a THCA powder that enables users to add it to their food or consume it orally without experiencing a high. Fiddler’s Greens infuses THCA into topical balms. Users can also juice raw cannabis for its benefits to the immune and endocrine system. The research is scant, but anecdotal evidence suggests THCA provides relief for inflammation, nausea, and chronic diseases.
Cannabinolic acid (CBDA) is CBD’s precursor compound. Heat converts CBDA into CBD. Although there are minimal studies, CBDA is shown to provide relief for nausea and anxiety, similar to CBD’s effects. CBDA can be consumed from raw cannabis in a juice or smoothie, although un-dried cannabis can be hard to find if you’re not a grower. CBDA crystalline or oils are popular products.
Cannabinol (CBN) is a compound that comes from THC. When exposed to heat and light over time, THC will turn into CBN, a less-potent and sleep-inducing cannabinoid. CBN products aren’t meant for high potency users, but instead, used as sedatives for people with insomnia or sleep disorders.
CBN can be found in very old flower buds and specifically-produced CBN products made from THC that has been heated and converted to CBN. Additionally, CBN has been shown to reduce pain and inflammation pretty well. In some preliminary studies, CBN has been a age-defying compound, which can be useful in cosmetics and skin products.
Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) is another non-psychotropic cannabinoid found in trace amounts in the cannabis plant, primarily from African landrace strains like Durban Poison. Structurally, THCV looks like THC. THCV, however, doesn’t get users as high, which is part of its appeal. In low doses, THCV may provide no high at all. In larger doses, users can experience euphoria and elation. Studies have shown that THCV can be neuroprotective, reduce seizures, and reduce inflammation.
THCV has been touted as the cannabinoid that doesn’t give you the munchies. The research is lacking, but preliminary findings suggest that THCV can reduce appetite as well as regulate blood sugar levels and symptoms of Parkinson’s disease and PTSD. Level Blends in San Francisco makes THCV-enriched tablinguals that can dissolve under the tongue for quick onset of effects.
Delta-9 THC is the THC that gets you baked. Delta-8 THC is similar, but not as intoxicating. Some studies have shown that delta-8 THC provides similar effects to THC, just not as strong. It’s not found in high amounts in the plant, which is why extracting delta-8 THC requires distillation to make a dab or cartridge.
There are hundreds of cannabinoids that haven’t been studied enough. Part of the reason lies in the government’s prohibition of cannabis. Also, studies on cannabis have, generally, been performed on low-potency flower. It’s hard to say what the actual effects of these minor cannabinoids are, but many people are finding relief with them and incorporating them in between their THC and CBD use.