Marijuana Flower and the Entourage Effect
Cannabis flower is legal in Florida, and its access may give patients new health benefits. Is there a medical advantage to using the female flowers of the cannabis plant? Is the entourage effect real, and should it be a factor in the doctor's cannabis prescribing guidance? In other words, does Florida flower consumption offer healthier options than other methods?
Flowers are less potent, with only 15% to 30% tetrahydrocannabinol THC. The cannabis extracts are potent and contain from 50% to 80% THC and CBD. Other plant extract components are cannabidiol CBD oils, terpenes, and flavonoids. They also have healthy vitamins, oxygen blockers, and minerals.
Patients who struggle with pain want to live healthy, productive lives. In our opinion, medical pot patients do not seek 'body buzz' or 'high.' They smoke weed flowers to relieve the symptoms of their illness.
The cannabis plant consists of over 400 distinct chemical entities. These THC and CBD type cannabinoids compounds give weed its unique traits. Cannabis strains do not taste or smell the same from one to another. Users also feel different effects. Research has found many terpenoid compounds in plant essential oils. As in wine tasting, many traits have been described. 'Relaxed', 'energy', 'soothe', 'munchy', ‘orgasmic’, 'uplifting' are some examples. Of note, some scientists debate the notion of these distinct cannabis ‘notes.’ CBN cannabinol is but one example. The British Journal of Pharmacology has done some research on these compounds.
Theory Behind the Entourage Concept
The sums of each part create a healthier whole. Linking the THC, CBD, with synergy from other cannabis compounds, is more pronounced with smoking weed.
Two main types of entourage synergy effects are thought to take place. The first type is between two cannabinoids. The second type is between cannabinoids and terpenes. Terpenes give cannabis plants their unique smell and flavor. We find Pinene in many conifer species and herbs such as sage. It is the most common terpene, and it gives weed its piney aroma. Pinene may help with memory and alertness. Terpenes such as pinene, limonene, and myrcene are believed to increase THC’s effects.
The logic behind the entourage effect stems from observed data points.
Case 1. Non-THC cannabinoids can affect or block cannabinoid receptors. These ways may be the same, or distinct from those of THC.
Case 2. CBD serves as a good case. It appears to lower the high and paranoid effects seen with THC.
Case 3. Patients report adverse side effects with Marinol, a pure, synthetic THC. Since it lacks other CBD types, adverse effects may occur due to their absence.
Case 4. The terpene pinene increases acetylcholine. Pinene is a brain compound that helps with short term memory. Some interpret these cases as a potential for CBD to dampen THC effects. In also makes sense to think pinene may help play a role in memory. Research has not yet studied other compounds that might have a like synergy.
Users Have Gone All-In on the Entourage Concept
Many cannabis users swear by the entourage effect. There is no doubt about the effect weed has on pain and appetite. They believe the synergy of smoking weed flower raises terpene healing. This increase only occurs with smoking or vaping weed flower crossbreeds. For them, the "entourage effect" of CBD, THC, and CBN is indeed real.
Cannabis product vendors list and market the entourage effect. Specialized labs now test weed for various ratios of CBD and THC types. They provide detailed terpene profiles in certain strains and products. The cannabis industry boldly pushes the concept to weed users. User focus groups support these claims, but they seem far from neutral. We do note that scientists have established the placebo effect as real.
A Possible Future for CBD
Weed growers strive to design THC mixtures with exact levels of common terpenes. These hybrids are fine-tuned with unique flavors to create certain patient outcomes. Breeders now use the plant's genetic ID markers. These help to design more precise and efficient hybrids. They may yet be able to create weed plant products tailored to each patient.
We Need Studies
There’s not a lot of data or firm evidence for the entourage effect. Most of our data comes from user stories or product vendors. Double-blind clinical trials are the gold standard for research studies. To date, we do not have randomized clinical trials. These trials look at and compare at least two subject groups. One group gets real terpene; the other group takes a fake terpene. These types of studies are not so easy now because of weed’s Schedule I status. We need this type of medical research to learn the real beneficial effects of these compounds. There may be an entourage effect, but we will never know without legit studies. Until then, breeders will keep creating hybrids both legally, or any other way.
Why is the Strain of Weed Flower So Important?
Weed growers mine the flowering stage to create hybrid plants. These hybrids have varying amounts of THC and CBD. Growers toss aside the male plants and use only the female part of the cannabis. Breeders tend the female flowers for THC and CBD variants. Higher THC levels are good for calming nausea and some types of pain.
Variants lead to useful designs for focused treatment. These treatments target pain, stress, and other symptoms. Patients have access to tinctures and capsule extract forms. Also, growers offer compounds, ointments, creams, and transdermal patches.
Cannabis Flower: More Patient Options
By and large, flower from plants in bloom offers new options. Many patients like cannabis Sativa strains for the daytime. Also, some prefer Indica strains to relax in the evening. Crossbred hybrid flowers from Sativa and Hybrid strains are always proper.
Raising Cannabis Strength During the Growing Process
When it comes to growing weed, growers pursue lots of diverse goals. Many farmers grow cannabis to sell on the health market. For most growers, the goal is to max out the amount of THC, terpenes, and CBD. They can increase the strength of the buds using new planting methods. Plant nutrients, grow lights, and farming techniques are always evolving.
Advocates tout the holistic benefits of mmj herb. With cannabis leaf legal in many states, they actively market weed flowers. Growers now breed cannabis buds with a purpose. Expert knowledge of the flowering stage process raises bud quality. Users now expect high quality and precise treatment from their weed. All this to increase their health gains.
Some patients seek relief from smoking Sativa strains. Legal Sativa flower doesn’t make them feel “sleepy high.” Many mmj patients get better results when vaping Indica strains. The smoking of leaf can be great therapy.
The Performance of Cannabis Conveyance Methods
Smoking weed flower is an efficient way of using it. Methods include vaping, water pipe, bong, joint or blunt. Smoking weed flowers through the lungs send it to the bloodstream. These options are great news for anxious patients or people with seizures.
The Potency of Smoking and Topical Routes
The potent full-spectrum effects of THC and CBD felt in weed smoke is instant. The psychoactive effects of the 'high' impact from THC flowers are quicker and stronger. Smoking weed gets its compounds into the blood much quicker. The brain effects of smoking last a shorter time than with other oral types.
On the other hand, other routes of taking weed last longer. Taking pot by mouth travels the length of the stomach system. The skin absorbs creams, ointments, and salves. Less potent creams last some time longer as they don’t enter the bloodstream.
The Timing of Effects
The cannabis flower THC bliss or 'high' peaks at about 30 minutes. This effect tapers off after about 1 to 4 hours. Since this route doesn’t pass through the liver or skin, the response is at once.
Doctor's Prescribing Judgment Process
The “entourage effect” figures into the doctor's judgment process. Smoking or vaping weed flowers produce treatment synergy. For this reason, they may benefit Parkinson’s, seizures, or distress. Doctors prescribe specific weed flower strains to get the most of this synergy.
Common Drugs vs. Medical Weed
Smoking flowers is a strong treatment remedy. Cannabis relief tends to be safer than most drugs on the market today. Weed flower is often cheaper than drugs in both net and out-of-pocket costs. Patients and doctors choose to try to smoke weed. Smoking the cannabis plant flower provides an option for drugs to:
Achieve better outcomes with the synergy of CBD, THC, and terpenes
Avoid harmful drug warning clauses.
Reduce side effects about scope, strength, and likely harm.
Treat or cure the same symptoms as Big Pharma drugs.
Cannabis short-term and long-term side effects are much less harmful.
Many veterans swear by flowers. Some claim its use as treatment gets close to a sacred level.
Vets have long used marijuana for PTSD
Many vets are quite vocal about the harms of doctors who prescribe too much.
Harmful drug treatments include drugs to treat mental health, pain meds, and others.
Smokable Weed Flower and Cannabis or Tobacco Addiction
People may develop a dependence or addiction to weed flowers. An Addiction Journal study shows CBD modifies our brain’s addiction pathways. CBD modulates our internal cannabinoid system. This system is vital as it regulates the processes of our human body. On the whole, weed addiction does not seem to be a big problem yet. States with legal weed saw a 30% drop in deaths related to opioids.
National Library of Medicine and National Institutes of Health
The NLM and NIH publish research on alcohol, tobacco, and weed use. Studies show weed flower dependence as a bit lower a risk. The flower does not impact tobacco cravings or withdrawal. Using some strains of cannabis buds may help patients quit tobacco.
Does Weed Flower Create More Patient Choices or Problems?
National trends show the flower industry manages itself well. There seems to be more focus paid to product quality and safety. There is a push toward informing the public.
We now have public teaching (e.g., such as how to smoke bud) and other events. These events help with patient safety and decrease patient harm. It may also reduce illegal sales and the expense of jail time.
The Practice of Flower Dispensing
Female cannabis plant products now focus on a distinct illness. This rigor will change weed store dispensing patterns. Stores may sell smaller dose packages of weed flowers. This effort allows you a short trial to see what works best for your problem. Amounts of grams and eighths lend to trials of different strains.
So Many Choices
People shut down when they have too many choices. This because there are only so many things we can process at one time. Stores with multiple products may offer too many options. Look for cannabis drug stores that order their products and pricing.
Cannabis Flower Increases Patient Choice
Distinct health needs and personal desires demand choices in healthcare. Taking control of healthcare choices for our-selves is vesting. To have this type of patient choice is crucial. Cannabis users gain options with the convenience of weed flowers.
Many argue support of human rights equates to support for healthcare choices. Therefore, one reason pot doctors prescribe flowers as nature's medicine. Access to herbs and high CBD extracts gives patients more options. Having this choice promotes self-control over their health care. Thus raising one's sense of well-being in the long run.
For a detailed read on the entourage effect, see Dr. Ethan Russo's article. "Taming THC: Potential Cannabis Synergy and Phytocannabinoid Terpenoid Entourage Effects." Cannabis has been used as medicine all over the world for thousands of years. Want to learn more detail about the health effects of smoking weed? Looking to find the secrets behind the safe way to smoke flowers? Browse our blog, or give us a call. 786.953.6838 Or text us at our email at email@example.com