Vaping isn’t just for ex-smokers anymore. It’s come a long way from its initial popularization in 2008, when it was introduced as an alternative means of nicotine delivery with less health risks than combustible cigarettes. Today, people vape almost anything that comes in a vapable format, including CBD oil and concentrates. The latest addition to this selection are an equally beneficial plant compound known as terpenes.
What are terpenes?
Terpenes are an aromatic molecular compound found in the essential oils of plants. These compounds have evolved for two primary purposes: to attract creatures that could potentially aid in pollination and as a defense mechanism to ward off predators and pathogens.
Combinations of terpenes are responsible for the aroma and flavor of almost all plant life. Due to the increased public interest, many terpenes are currently being researched for a number of potentially beneficial properties, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antispasmodic effects.
Terpenes can be vaped two ways: by themselves and in combination with cannabinoids. In this post, we go over the why, the how and the best ways to do both while still ensuring you get their full spectrum of therapeutic benefits.
Maximizing The Therapeutic Potential of Cannabinoids
While cannabinoids like cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabigerol (CBG) are already shown to have therapeutic value in themselves, their potential benefits can be further augmented by terpenes in a synergistic interaction within the endocannabinoid system (ECS) known as the Entourage Effect.
The Entourage Effect refers to the amplification of the health-positive effects of both terpenes and cannabinoids when interacting with one another. Because of individual differences from person to person, there’s often a bit of trial and error involved in maximizing the benefits of the Entourage Effect.
Research & Testing for Personal Infusions
Whether you intend to mix terpenes into your e-liquids or infuse them into culinary creations in the kitchen, it pays to know the intensity of their respective flavor and aroma profiles before using them in large amounts. Quality terpenes don’t come cheap, which makes it prudent to not only test their influence on taste and smell in a test mixture, but their potential health-positive benefits as well.
Vaping terpenes isn’t just a viable use case for vapers uninterested in nicotine or marijuana extracts. It’s also a pleasant way to test infusion ratios and proportions before moving on to infusing entire bottles of CBD isolate or concentrate..
Three of The Best Terpenes to Vape
Let’s examine the aroma profiles and some of the health benefits of three popular terpenes among vapers. Their benefits on taste and smell aside, terpenes can add therapeutic benefits and even medicinal potential to an otherwise ordinary vaping experience.
Linalool is present in numerous plants including lavender and cannabis. It has a scent profile that is floral and musky, with a touch of spice. This terpene seems to be popular primarily because of its reputation as an effective anxiolytic, meaning it helps users feel calm and relaxed. Linalool is a favorite among those who suffer from anxiety or simply want to relax after a busy day.
Alpha-Pinene can be found in eucalyptus, rosemary, and most commonly in the needles of coniferous plants. Its scent can best be described as herbal, with hints of cedarwood and pine. This terpene is often used as a bronchodilator, and is currently being studied for its anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, and gastroprotective properties.
Limonene is most abundant in citrus fruits, rinds and leaves. Its aroma is zesty, sweet and fruity. This fresh and pleasing scent is why it’s often used in aromatherapy to calm, uplift and energize users. Limonene is one of the most common terpenes found in nature and has been shown to offer several health benefits including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial effects.