When you think about cannabis and its counterparts, what comes to mind? Perhaps you think of two of the most well-known cannabinoids—THC or CBD. Or, maybe you envision traditionally smoking cannabis and the effects that come with it. However, you might think of the medicinal properties this plant contains, especially if you consume cannabis for medical purposes. Although THC and CBD are both well-known and commonly used cannabinoids, the cannabis plant contains many other medically beneficial cannabinoids including THCV. Although THCV (Tetrahydrocannabivarin) is similar to THC, it contains its own unique benefits. Read on to learn more about THCV and how you could potentially benefit from the consumption of this cannabinoid.
If you’re new to cannabis, you may be unaware of the many cannabinoids this plant contains. However, if you’re a regular cannabis user, you may understand the significant complexity of it. Even though THCV isn’t as widely used as other cannabinoids, it contains several medicinal benefits.
THCV is extremely similar to THC in regards to its chemical structure. However, the process of creating these cannabinoids is very different. For example, THCV doesn’t begin as a cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) like THC and CBD do. THCV goes through a different process, which results in cannabigerovarin acid (CBGVA). From here, CBGVA breaks down into tetrahydrocannabivarin carboxylic acid (THCVA). Then, THCVA can be decarboxylated via a UV light or heat to create THCV.
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Once individuals consume cannabis through different methods, the cannabinoids within the plant such as THCV activate specific receptors within our body. These receptors are known as CB1 and CB2. So far, it has been found that THCV is an antagonist of the CB1 and CB2 receptors. In other words, THCV blocks THC, which prevents users from getting the munchies. Although several cannabis users enjoy the appetite stimulating effects that occur after consumption, others feel the opposite. Contrary to THC’s effects, THCV is one cannabinoid that suppresses one’s appetite.
THCV’s Medical Benefits: Appetite Suppressant
Moreover, THCV contains its own medicinal properties including its ability to suppress an individual’s appetite. Bonni Goldstein, the medical director at Canna-Centers expressed that THCV can block CB1 receptors within the brain when it’s consumed at very low doses. As a result, not only can THCV lower body fat levels, but it can also increase energy expenditure and even increase weight loss.
It has also been found that THCV in its purest form can calm the unreasonable urge to overeat while also reducing hunger cravings. Thus, consumption of THCV can be beneficial for those who are overweight, obese, or individuals who want to fight off frequent food cravings. Since THCV can help curb one’s appetite, researchers believe there’s a potential for THCV helping people fight obesity and other related health issues.
Currently, research points to THCV’s ability to block the body’s rewarding sensations that transpire while eating different foods. If you’re looking to keep your food cravings at bay or prevent the munchies, check out strains high in THCV, which will suppress your appetite.
THCV’s Potential in Helping Treat Type 2 Diabetes
Thus far, one of the most significant medicinal benefits of THCV is its ability to potentially help treat type 2 diabetes. Recently, it has been found that THCV contains a strong potential in assisting type 2 diabetics by helping control glycemic levels. One 2016 study focused on the investigation of THCV and CBD and how they could affect glycemic and lipid parameters in diabetic individuals. It was discovered that THCV could represent a new therapeutic agent in type 2 diabetes patients regarding glycemic control.
After the study was completed, researchers found that THCV significantly decreased fasting plasma glucose levels while also improving pancreatic cell function. This demonstrates the potential THCV contains in helping treat medical conditions like type 2 diabetes.
THCV’s Anti-Convulsion Properties & Body Tremor Management
Aside from THCV’s appetite suppressing properties and its potential in helping treat type 2 diabetes, this cannabinoid contains other medicinal benefits. For example, THCV contains anti-convulsive properties. Therefore, this cannabinoid could be used to raise the seizure threshold for epileptic individuals. Additionally, THCV could also help manage body tremors while also improving motor control abilities. However, more studies and clinical trials should be conducted on this linkage before individuals consume THCV for this specific reason.
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Overall, the cannabis plant and various cannabinoids like THCV contain a multitude of medicinal properties. Although THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids are medically vast, THCV is gaining more popularity and attention for its unique medical benefits. If you’re interested in consuming THCV, try finding landrace cannabis strains from Africa or Asia that will likely contain a high percentage of THCV.