Have you ever wondered about the smell and taste of certain CBD products?
Why do some tinctures used in cosmetics have an earthy smell, some have minty aromas and still others seem to have no odor? How do some CBD oils taste nutty, grassy, or even bitter? Here's everything you need to know about CBD, terpenes, and essential oils.
Cbd and full spectrum terpenes
Terpenes (terpenoids) are the chemical compounds responsible for the aroma and flavor of a plant. They perform an essential function in plants: terpenes can attract pollinators or even repel predators that can consume the plant.
It is a combination of terpenes that gives many CBD oils their unique smell and taste.
The hemp plants used to make CBD include a variety of terpenes. Some of the common terpenes found in cannabis include limonene (also found in citrus fruits), pinene (also found in pine), linalool (found in lavender and over 200 species of plants), and myrcene (also found in thyme and lemongrass).
In CBD oil products, these terpenes interact synergistically with cannabinoids.
Some call it the entourage effect, and that's why terpenes have become such an important piece of the cannabis puzzle.
Full spectrum CBD is best at preserving natural elements valued for their beneficial effects. These include: cannabinoids, vitamins, beta-carotene, minerals, essential fats, and protein.
Full spectrum CBD oil products also preserve natural hemp terpenes, which is why you may notice an earthy smell and flavor.
Experts recognize that this natural aroma and taste is associated with full spectrum CBD and therefore offers the benefits of a full spectrum product.
Other types of CBD may not include all of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and other beneficial elements found in “full spectrum” CBD.
There are two ways to make broad spectrum CBD
The first is to add beneficial cannabinoids (minus THC), terpenes, and flavonoids to the CBD isolate.
The second method is to make broad spectrum CBD through an additional CBD extraction process to remove all traces of THC.
The CBD isolate, obtained with supercritical CO2, contains only one cannabinoid: CBD (cannabidiol). This CBD extraction process removes all terpenes, leaving little to no flavor or aroma. It also removes flavonoids and other valuable cannabinoids like CBN, CBDV, THCV, CBG, CBC, and THCA, which work with your endocannabinoid system (ECS) to help promote balance or homeostasis.
Keep the body in balance
The endocannabinoid system is involved in multiple physiological processes. It is one of the 12 systems that help keep your body balanced.
Ongoing research to understand how cannabis affects our bodies has led to this system being found and named as it is claimed.
ECS receptors and endocannabinoids, which are chemical messengers produced by the body, work together with enzymes to promote homeostasis.
Plant substances or phytocannabinoids like CBD can stimulate or interact with your ECS.
And other natural plant compounds, especially terpenes, have complementary actions to phytocannabinoids.
Despite the importance of terpenes, cannabinoids, and other beneficial elements, some companies will attempt to mask the taste, smell and appearance of CBD by adding unnecessary ingredients such as artificial flavors, sweeteners, and colors.
Consumers looking for a full spectrum natural remedy with clean, simple ingredients should read labels carefully. .
Essential oils and terpenes
Hemp is not the only plant to provide terpenes.
Almost all plants contain terpenes which can be extracted to create essential oils. Essential oils are highly concentrated oils obtained by cold pressing or steam distillation of the seeds, leaves, stems, roots and fruits of plants.
Terpenes are the main component of essential oils along with other hydrocarbons.
Essential oils are not the same as a natural or artificial flavor, which may help the flavor of the product but does not provide the benefit of terpenes.
Don't confuse essential oils with perfume. Produced with potentially harmful chemicals, fragrances are not suitable for consumption.
There are hundreds of varieties of essential oils, each containing a specific blend of terpenes, and each offering a unique set of benefits.
For example, lavender contains a high concentration of linalol terpenes and is known for its soothing and relaxing properties.
Many people think that essential oils are only used for aroma. Diffusers have become a popular way to use essential oils.
Others apply essential oils topically or add them to products like lotions and balms. It's important to note that not all essential oils are made for human consumption, but some food and supplement companies are taking advantage of their terpene-rich benefits.
Several essential oils are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) for foods and other products intended for ingestion, including CBD sublingual oils.
Examples include the essential oils of thyme, coriander, lemon, ginger, peppermint, and others.
These essential oils will add both aroma and flavor, and of course beneficial terpenes.
CBD and essential oils finally brought together
A few pioneer companies recognized the importance of terpenes in full-spectrum CBD oils and essential oils, and they investigated the ways these substances can work together.
In some cases, essential oils provide terpenes already present in full spectrum CBD, so that existing terpenes have a greater effect.
In other cases, essential oils provide terpenes not found in CBD and provide an added benefit by improving the overall terpene profile.
Either way, essential oils can enhance the intrinsic benefits of CBD, and savvy brands offer CBD oil-based tinctures formulated with essential oils to support specific health goals and regimes.