All About THCv
Did you know that over 100 unique cannabinoids have already been discovered within the cannabis plant? A lot of people are pretty familiar with the headliners, THC and CBD, but far fewer have even heard about most of the so-called minor cannabinoids. However, with more research examining the potential therapeutic effects of the cannabis plant as a whole, we’re learning a good amount about many minor cannabinoids along the way.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at one of these cannabinoids, tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCv)–which has started to receive a fair amount of attention from researchers and within the cannabis industry. We’ll dive into what THCv is, how it compares to THC, and whether or not it’s safe for you to use this up-and-coming cannabinoid.
What is THCv?
THCv is a cannabinoid derived from the Cannabis sativa plant. THCv was first discovered in the early 1970’s, but interest in this little-known cannabinoid really started to pick up following the 2018 Farm Bill. It’s found in relatively small amounts in most cannabis plants as its status as a minor cannabinoid might suggest, but it typically appears at higher concentration in cannabis plants from Africa and the Middle East.
How does THCv compare to THC?
Due to similarities in molecular structure, THCv is considered an analog to THC, and it appears to have much different effects than its “chemical cousin.”
THC is a CB1 receptor agonist, making it responsible for the psychoactive effects marijuana users famously experience while high. In contrast, THCv is a neutral antagonist on the CB1 receptor and is generally considered non-psychoactive. However, this interaction may depend on the serving size, as many THCv users report experiencing a high that’s different from THC, yet still noticeable. Interestingly, some users also note that THCv appears to have the ability to balance some of the less desirable effects of THC, though more research is needed to support this.
Is THCv safe to use?
Because THCv didn’t start receiving much attention until recently, little is known about the long-term effects of regular use… And like many new cannabinoids coming onto the market, regulation is lacking. With that in mind, it’s probably smart to be cautious using it until more research has been done to better understand THCv’s health and safety risks. But if you’re one of the adventurous types, we recommend only purchasing from companies that undergo third-party testing and certification to ensure their product meets a baseline of quality standards.Important Note: People with certain medical conditions may want to avoid use of THCv. As always, we highly recommend that you speak with your doctor prior to adding new supplements to your wellness routine.