Phytocannabinoids may appear to be a complex term, but they are simply the chemical compounds produced by cannabis plants in their natural state. The majority of biological organisms contain natural cannabinoids. Endocannabinoids are the generic name for them.
These naturally-produced cannabinoid profiles in the body can interact with a foreign substance to cause various side effects.
Before getting into cannabis products, it’s crucial to understand what goes into the plant’s raw material. It can also tell you how many of these compounds are used in tinctures, tablets, vitamins, vapes, candies, essential oils, and a variety of other trendy cannabis and hemp products.
Understanding how these compounds function can also aid you in selecting the next cannabis product. It never hurts to be informed of anything that goes inside your body, whether you’re doing it recreationally or for therapeutic reasons. Please continue reading to learn more about phytocannabinoids and how they work.
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What are Phytocannabinoids?
Researchers have discovered over 500 chemical compounds in cannabis plants so far. Phytocannabinoids are a class of compounds that includes over a hundred different compounds. While they are more widely known as cannabinoids, these compounds are not very well known by the general public. CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are two of the most common and well-known phytocannabinoids.
Terpenes and flavonoids are classified as “minor” cannabinoids, but they play important roles. They can boost THC and CBD’s therapeutic effects while also adding flavor and color to the finished product. Cannabinoids such as cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabidivarin (CBDV), and cannabichromene (CBC) are also growing in popularity nowadays.
Compared to studies performed ten years ago, the research behind how phytocannabinoids function now contains a wealth of information. This is largely due to technological advances and the repeal of federal and state laws that imposed a zero-tolerance policy on plant matter. However, there is still a long way to go. To fully comprehend how cannabis works, further research is needed.
What is the Difference between Phytocannabinoids and Endocannabinoids?
The main difference between phytocannabinoids and endocannabinoids (also known as endogenous cannabinoids) is who manufactures them. The prefix “phyto” refers to the fact that the first is derived from plants. Mammalian cells produce the latter. Humans and animals both produce endocannabinoids naturally. They also have medicinal effects on the body.
Anandamide and 2-Arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) are the two main endocannabinoids found in the human body. Their primary purpose is to keep homeostasis or a state of general well-being. Cannabinoid receptors are found in various systems’ central parts, including the digestive, respiratory, and central nervous systems. When the body generates enough of these compounds, they interact with these different vital systems.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a complex system for generating and processing natural chemical compounds. Digestion, pain tolerance, memory, brain activity, mood, energy, and even the reception of happy hormones like serotonin are all regulated by the ECS.
The CB1 and CB2 receptors are the ones that will react most to phytocannabinoids. Any phytocannabinoid introduced into the body will bind to CB1 receptor antagonist and produce side effects in the body if it is psychoactive. CB1 cannabinoid receptors also regulate and control the brain’s limbic and reward circuitry.
Unfortunately, not everybody can create endocannabinoids naturally. Several autoimmune disorders and medical conditions obstruct the body’s normal healing abilities. External cannabinoids, such as phytocannabinoids formed by plants, may be used in this situation.
While phytocannabinoids are more commonly found in cannabis plants, chemical phenotypes of phytocannabinoids may also be found in other plant species. This includes those with their own terpenes and flavonoids. THC and CBD, as previously mentioned, are usually the most widely known and well-studied cannabinoids. This is due in part to THC’s psychoactive properties and CBD’s lack of them.
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What are the Benefits of Phytocannabinoids?
When people use cannabis and hemp-derived products, they look for a wide range of supposed health benefits. Some people are looking for a natural alternative to strong over-the-counter treatments for chronic pain, muscle spasms, and skin conditions. THC and CBD both show promise as remedies for many of these ailments.
Others use the drugs to help with emotional and physical issues such as stress and anxiety, depression, ADHD, PTSD, and other related conditions. Many athletes and even daily exercise enthusiasts tend to take CBD for physical support to boost their stamina and keep it up during the day. This is what cannabidiol does without the high.
The ECS is said to work well with phytocannabinoids. Their antioxidants, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory effects help to strengthen the immune system. What’s the best part? These substances are created in the natural world. If you choose your products carefully, you could end up with CBD oil free of GMOs and pesticides.
Reputable labels ensure that hemp-derived products are phytocannabinoid-rich and completely safe to consume. Since cannabis plants consume soil components naturally, you must select products that have undergone third-party laboratory testing to ensure the quality and potency of the cannabinoids.
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Phytocannabinoids vs Cannabinoids
Although cannabis plants have been around for thousands of years and have been used, science has only recently discovered evidence of how they communicate with the human body. The widespread ban on plant species made it impossible to perform experiments, testing, or additional clinical trials in light of its medical potential.
Thankfully, current laws in the United States and elsewhere have become more lenient toward cannabis research and even recreational use. As a result, many questions about how the plant’s compounds work have arisen from curious potential users. The distinction between phytocannabinoids and cannabinoids is a point of contention.
To put it another way, all cannabinoids and phytocannabinoids are phytocannabinoids, but not all phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are a subgroup of phytocannabinoids, which are themselves a subgroup of cannabinoids. As previously mentioned, phyto- refers to a plant, making phytocannabinoids a literal translation of cannabinoids derived from plants.
Cannabinoids, on the other hand, have a stronger connection to marijuana. People immediately think of THC, CBD, CBN, and CBC when they hear the words “cannabinoids.” Phytocannabinoids and cannabinoids interact with the ECS’s CB2 and CB1 receptors to help keep the body balanced in any situation.
Do Phytocannabinoids Get you High?
Although these wonder compounds can be found in cannabis and hemp plants, they do not always produce a high-like effect. Except for THC and other potentially psychoactive substances, most phytocannabinoids are relatively stable. The World Health Organization (W.H.O.) has determined that CBD is a safe drug.
When CBD is combined with other phytocannabinoids, a new subtype emerges. CBD oils that are full-spectrum or broad-spectrum contain several cannabinoids, while isolates are pure, potent cannabidiol. Industrial hemp and CBD were also made legal under the 2018 Farm Bill in the United States. The cannabinoid’s popularity skyrocketed as a result of this.
Phytocannabinoids are very common in the health community. Most notably, those with health benefits such as CBD for pain relief and relaxation, CBN for sedative effects, CBD for brain function enhancement, and CBG for digestive benefits. When used together, they can perform in unison and much better than when used separately.
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Can Phytocannabinoids Get you High?
When different phytocannabinoids are combined, it creates an entourage effect, according to experts. Essentially, this explains how each phytocannabinoid collaborates to enhance the healing and therapeutic effects of the others. The main aim is to maintain body homeostasis and keep the patient in the best possible health.
Even a good dose of cannabinoids should not generate a high or intoxicating side effect unless combined with significant trace amounts of THC. Even though most of the products advertised are said to produce the entourage effect, it only has one dominant cannabinoid and combined with other phytocannabinoids acting as help.
To summarize, scientists have just begun to scratch the surface of what phytocannabinoids are and how they affect the body and mind. Due to decades of strict prohibition on the use and research of cannabis, humanity has been left in the dark regarding scientific evidence that it may be used for proper medicines and treatments.
Despite the Farm Bill revisions and CBD’s newfound legal status, the Food and Drug Administration has yet to authorize or research any cannabis or hemp-derived byproduct. They continue to warn people against taking unregulated supplements that appear to have medicinal properties.
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FAQs about Phytocannabinoids
What is phytocannabinoid hemp oil?
Hemp oil contains a large number of phytocannabinoids. Cannabidiol, or CBD, is the most active and abundant cannabinoid found in raw hemp plants. CBD is derived from the flowers and leaves of hemp and used in various products, including tinctures, pills, topicals, gummies, and even pet treats.
How many phytocannabinoids are there?
More than 120 phytocannabinoids have been isolated from various cannabis species to date. Some are more well-known than others, but most of them have specific characteristics that could be useful to users. There are over 500 compounds in cannabis plants, including terpenes and flavonoids.
Why don’t raw phytocannabinoids have a psychoactive effect?
Raw phytocannabinoids, including CBDA (cannabidiol acid) and THCA (tetrahydrocannabinol acid), are non-psychoactive since they are fatty acids. They’re either decarboxylated or heated. As THCA is heated, it transforms into THC, which can give users a high.
Updated on March 15, 2021.