Brands promote CBD and THC products as having a number of benefits. There’s a lot of research to suggest that these benefits are real and effective on a number of ailments, but there may be a flaw in the way we see these products as consumers.
Something called the entourage effect tells us that a lot of the products we see with only CBD or THC may not be exactly what we think they are. There is some dispute over this idea, though, and we’re here to help you understand the situation.
So, what is the entourage effect? Let’s find out.
What is the Entourage Effect?
Cannabis and hemp are hosts to a number of cannabinoids and terpenoids which operate on our bodies in a number of ways. Things such as pain relief, anxiety relief, and anti-inflammatory properties are all suggested to come from specific cannabinoids and terpenoids present in cannabis and hemp.
Large parts of the booming marijuana industry and hemp industry are supported by products which only contain one or two of these cannabinoids, claiming that these chemical compounds result in the desired effect even in isolation.
These effects are said to be the same even when cannabinoids and terpenoids are used in isolation, but there’s a chance that they may not. The entourage effect suggests that the effect that cannabis or hemp’s chemical compounds have on human beings are different when the entire plant is consumed.
In other words, one cannabinoid needs the other to truly have the same effect.
What is the Big Fuss?
Something that a lot of people are getting concerned about is whether or not things like synthetic CBD are effective in the absence of the plants’ other compounds.
It can’t be denied that there is certainly an effect that comes from these products, but they may not be the same, and they could even be less effective.
Our products are all made from hemp, but we’ll use marijuana in the example below because it is the most common item discussed when people bring up the entourage effect.
Marijuana is host to a few primary compounds, THC and CBD being the most well known. A quick description of these will tell you that CBD is the element that relaxes you and eases the pain, while THC is the psychoactive piece that gets the user high.
There are a lot of other, subtler effects that marijuana can have in the short and long term, so that description doesn’t do the plant justice. At the same time, that’s an easy way to understand the plant for our purposes.
On top of those two primary compounds, there are a number of secondary compounds in cannabis. While each strain is going to come out with different secondary cannabinoids at different ratios, our best estimates say that there are over 100 cannabinoids in cannabis.
Because there’s limited research on the subtler effects and benefits of cannabis, there’s some uncertainty on how big of a role those secondary compounds play in the plant’s effect on human beings.
Is an Entourage Effect Always Good?
Many people suggest that the entourage effect only produces benefits and that the result of all cannabinoids working in synergy is the way that nature intended the plant to be used.
The idea is that full-spectrum oils are the only products that will give you authentic benefits. These are oils that don’t have synthetic products and contain the full range of cannabinoids.
People who aren’t in support of the entourage effect will tell you that you can’t be specific when it comes to natural extracts anyway. Because the entourage effect doesn’t have definitive scientific research, some people will wholly deny any possible benefits.
There’s some variation plant to plant, and from strain to strain, the differences are significant when it comes to secondary cannabinoids. It’s difficult to say that specific effects will come about when nature doesn’t provide specific ingredients.
So, when you’re dealing with entirely natural, full-spectrum products, it can be tough to make definite claims. At the same time, we’re talking about very subtle differences that have little scientific research behind them.
Natural products come unchanged, as nature designed them, and there is definitely something to be said about that. Synthetic products, on the other hand, can be created in very specific ways.
It’s not always the case, though, that labs and synthetic products can end up with a product that trumps the effects that nature’s unadulterated products can provide.
Natural vs Synthetic Products
There are a number of holistic benefits of using entire plants and testing out the entourage effect. That being said, the specificity available in products that have been made with specific ratios of CBD can be attractive.
The effects caused by secondary cannabinoids are going to be absent in synthetic products. While it may be the case that synthetic products can be specific in the amounts of ingredients that they use, they are stripped of the subtler ingredients that are integral to the natural effects of a plant.
At the same time, most people aren’t looking at those subtle effects. Most people seek to relieve pain or treat their inflammation when they take CBD. Those effects can be measured.
Things like anti-anxiety, help to sleep, and pain relief can all be helped by CBD, and synthetic CBD products are sure to help you there. You might get better results, though, when you’re dealing with a product with the entourage effect.
Looking for CBD Products?
So, what is the entourage effect? It’s something that could be the difference between good results and great results. It’s our belief that whole plant extracts are always going to be the best choice.
If you’re looking for products to try out CBD, we’ve got you covered. All of our products are made from hemp and contain less than 3 or 10 percent THC, meaning that they’re legal in all states.
Visit our site to learn more.