Chemical Compositions of Cannabinoids

Cannabinoid 101: Understanding the Cannabinoid Chart

These statements about the cannabinoid chart have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The products below are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Consult your healthcare provider before use. Keep out of the reach of children. If nursing or pregnant, consult with your healthcare provider before use.

Interest in hemp is at an all-time high. Studies show that it lessens the negative impact of skin conditions, mental trauma, and mood disorders. In a recent study, hemp reduced traumatic flashbacks by 51% and mood tension by 57%. Today, scientists continue to study the cannabis plant’s active compounds and their effect on the human body. Of course, we know these compounds as “cannabinoids,” and two come to mind: CBD and THC. However, there are over 100 of these naturally-occurring phytonutrients, and the research into other lesser-known cannabinoids is just beginning. As scientific understanding grows, the cannabinoid chart continues to evolve. Here’s a run-through of the most important cannabinoids on the chart. 

CBD and THC: Famous Cannabinoid Heroes

These two are easily the best-known cannabinoids on earth. They are more plentiful than others and are the most familiar to consumers. For our purposes, hemp has negligible amounts of THC. We also feel strongly that, despite all the excitement about CBD, it doesn’t offer the whole story about hemp’s full benefits. To learn more, read our popular post on the differences between Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil and CBD Oil.

Next, we’ll take a look at some of the other cannabinoids that scientists have identified and studied. 

Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA): Powerful Mood and Physical Comfort Support on the Cannabinoid Chart

CBDA is known as the precursor to CBD. It’s converted to CBD through a procedure called decarboxylation. This process removes a carboxylic acid group from the molecule — the “A” in “CBDA” refers to that acid. Because decarboxylation occurs when the plant has been heated, CBDA is only present in hemp that hasn’t been heated or exposed to excessive amounts of sunlight. And, although its molecular structure is very similar to CBD, the effects are subtly different. 

Research suggests that CBDA primarily works as an inhibitor of the COX-2 enzyme. This enzyme is an important part of the pathway that regulates pain. In effect, COX-2 enzymes contribute to the formation of prostaglandins that, at high levels, cause physical discomfort (11). Because of this, scientists are interested in how CBDA may work as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Studies also suggest that it may help to down-regulate certain genes in highly aggressive breast cancers (2). This reduces the cancer’s spread. CBDA also shows promise in dealing with nausea and mood tension (1). Meanwhile, other research shows that it appears to have anticonvulsive effects and provides superior balanced mood support (4).

Cannabidivarin (CBDV): Robust Nervous System Support on the Cannabinoid Chart

Although this cannabinoid is very similar to CBD in terms of its molecule shape, its unique traits make it especially helpful with neurological disorders (3). In particular, CBDV shows exciting promise in helping with certain disorders that have historically been resistant to treatment. 

Researchers looked into how this cannabinoid affects the brain’s excitatory-inhibitory systems in people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). CBDV seems to help modulate this system by regulating the function of the glutamate-GABA system in the brain’s basal ganglia. This has the potential to help ASD patients who experience symptoms such as irritability. What’s more, these effects seem especially pronounced in the brains of people with ASD. 

Another disorder that CBDV is being studied for is Rett Syndrome (5), a rare genetic mutation that affects brain development. Rett Syndrome is devastating and leads to severe mental impairment. This disease affects girls more than boys. CBDV seems to have antagonistic effects on certain brain receptors, which can possibly affect the progression of the syndrome (6). This effect has the potential of improving sociability in people with Rett Syndrome, and it may even reduce brain atrophy. 

Woman Sitting In Armchair Reading Book

Because these hopeful results show how CBDV impacts brain function, the European Medicines Agency gave this cannabinoid “orphan drug designation” for Rett Syndrome in 2017 and Fragile X Syndrome in 2018. “Orphan drug designation” means that the agency acknowledges the medication has convincing potential and so, will provide financial incentives for its development.

CBDV is also being studied for use in dealing with seizures and as an anti-nausea treatment. 

Cannabinol (CBN): The First Known Phytonutrient on the Cannabinoid Chart

Although it’s not one of the more familiar cannabinoids, scientists isolated CBN in the 1930s, making it the first hemp phytonutrient to be identified. And, although researchers aren’t entirely sure if it has intoxicating properties, they agree that if it does, the effects are mild. 

CBN is very different from CBD in how it relates to the receptors in the endocannabinoid system. CBD activates but doesn’t bind to these receptors. However, CBN binds with both CB1 and CB2 receptors (9). And, CB1 receptors are associated with the nervous system, while CB2 receptors interact with the immune system. 

As you may expect, the fact that CBN binds to both types of receptors gives it wide-ranging effects in the body. Researchers associate it with a mild sedative, although it doesn’t have sedating properties. However, it does seem to prolong sleep time (7), so it may help people with sleeping disorders. It also seems to help people relax, possibly by reducing mood tension. 

As with many cannabinoids, CBN shows promise as a pain reliever, possibly by acting on an endocannabinoid receptor that is a part of the body’s pain pathway. It also seems to be an effective appetite stimulant. 

Research seems to suggest that CBN may be a tool doctors could one day use in the fight against cancer. One study demonstrated that it reduced tumor size in a certain form of lung cancer (10). In addition, it also appears to have antibiotic properties (8). Researchers have shown that it even has promise in combating the antibiotic-resistant pathogen known as MRSA.

Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid (THCA): The Precursor of THC on the Cannabinoid Chart

Just as CBDA is converted into CBD through decarboxylation, THCA is the precursor to THC. Before the carboxylic acid group is removed, the molecule can’t bind with CB1 receptors, so it doesn’t cause intoxication as THC does. Because of this, raw cannabis, even high-THC strands, can’t get you high. Yet, despite its promising health benefits, many people prefer the non-intoxicating version, and some even juice the cannabis plant or eat it raw to get the benefits of THCA. Hemp isn’t able to produce the levels of THC found in marijuana, so THCA levels are also lower. However, THCA is still present in hemp.

THCA seems to have anti-inflammatory effects in the body, and studies have shown that it reduces nausea and vomiting even better than THC does (13). But, what’s most intriguing about THCA is that it may help with neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s (12). These brain conditions are notoriously resistant to treatment, so if THCA can help improve the lives of these patients, it will be a huge step forward. 

Scientists have also found evidence to suggest that THCA may help impede the proliferation of malignant cells (15) (18).

Cannabichromene (CBC): The Bliss Factor on the Cannabinoid Chart

CBC appears to function in a very unique way in the body. Scientists believe it inhibits the reuptake of an endocannabinoid called anandamide. The latter enhances mood, so health experts sometimes refer to it as the “bliss molecule.” While CBC doesn’t seem to act directly on the endocannabinoid receptors, it works to keep anandamide levels up. 

Perhaps, unsurprisingly, CBC seems to combat depression. Early research suggests that combining CBC with other cannabinoids results in an even stronger effect. CBC may also help support healthy brain function by battling oxidative stress, infection, and toxicity (14). It also seems to impede the proliferation of malignant cells (20). However, those effects appear to be less pronounced than with the cannabinoid CBG (next on this list).

Scientists remain committed to discovering how CBC supports physical wellbeing, particularly since it doesn’t cause the debilitating side effects associated with NSAID use. NSAIDs can lead to stomach irritation and bleeding problems with repeated use, but these problems don’t seem to come up with CBC (17).

There’s also promising research that suggests CBC may help combat acne, perhaps in part because it seems to be an effective anti-inflammatory agent (16).

Cannabigerol (CBG): The "Mother" of the Cannabinoid Chart

Remember CBDA and THCA? CBG is converted into both of these cannabinoids. Because of this, health experts sometimes call it the “mother cannabinoid.” And like any good mother, CBG is a force to be reckoned with. 

CBG also seems to boost anandamide levels in a similar way to CBC. It also appears to work as a GABA reuptake inhibitor, keeping levels of this amino acid high in the bloodstream. GABA is associated with effects such as calming the nervous system, reducing anxiety, and combating PMS (19)

Public interest in CBG is growing rapidly, but it’s expensive to isolate. The process is labor- and equipment-intensive, and CBG levels tend to be low in cannabis plants. Many contain only 2% CBG, and that amount drops even lower if CBG converts into CBDA and THCA. The result is that it requires a huge amount of cannabis plants to produce even small amounts of CBG, making it more expensive than most cannabinoid isolates. 

But, despite the expense of CBG, researchers are very interested in it. It appears to function as a neuroprotective agent, and if further research shows that to be true, it may help treat Huntington’s Disease and other neurodegenerative disorders (22)

It also appears to strengthen the immune system and impede the proliferation of malignant tumors (20). If that’s not enough for you, it appears to be a powerful antibiotic that’s effective against MRSA (21)

Better Together

As mentioned above, the research on these cannabinoids is still in the early stages. CBD and THC received the lion’s share of public attention in the past, and researchers have only begun to scratch the surface of their potentialities. Today, scientists are working hard to expand their understanding of other cannabinoids and how they function in the body. 

Still, the march of scientific progress is reliably slow. And, much remains to be done before we understand exactly how these compounds work together.

What we do know is that the whole of the hemp plant seems to be greater than the sum of its parts. Not only do the different cannabinoids seem to boost each other’s strengths, but the other compounds in hemp contribute to their efficacy, as well. In other words, the Entourage Effect is real.

Gently coaxing all of the beneficial compounds out of the hemp plant is exactly why we’ve worked so hard to perfect our LipidTrans™ Infusion Process. This unique process carefully hand-presses the hemp plant to release as many of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and phytochemicals as possible, without damaging them. Our manufacturing phase creates a Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil that’s not only potent but is also full of bioavailable compounds, so your body can actually use them. For research purposes, it’s important to isolate different cannabinoids to understand how they work. However, to experience all of those benefits for yourself, they’re best taken together. 

We’re passionate about hemp, and we’d love to help you discover what it can do for you. Want to learn more about the cannabinoid chart? Send your questions to us here or connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.


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Cannabinoids, Homeostasis, and Mood: A Hemp Oil Expose

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Consult your healthcare provider before use.

Recent research suggests that CBD may play a role in balanced mood support and discomfort relief. But, how? The answer may surprise you: Hemp Oil (which contains CBD) may actually have the power to help regulate mood. In fact, it may also support your body’s most critical function — homeostasis.

Have you ever felt out of sorts? The human body is a complex biological structure. It comprises a multitude of cells, a series of neural networks, and trillions of microscopic processes that help us breathe, feel, see, and taste. But, sometimes, the balance gets thrown off-kilter.

And, that’s a big deal. Our bodies can’t subsist in a state of internal chaos. That’s why “homeostasis” is critical to our survival. But, what is homeostasis, and what are the three components that enable it? Above all, what ancient secrets lie in the relationship between cannabinoids, homeostasis, and mood?

What is Homeostasis?

Homeostasis refers to the bodily processes that contribute to a stable and balanced internal environment. Claude Bernard first introduced the idea of homeostasis in 1865. He suggested that all living organisms must maintain a constant internal environment to survive. In 1930, physician Walter Cannon used Claude’s work to coin the term “homeostasis” — a combination of the Greek words homoios (“stable”) and stasis (“standing still”). As the name suggests, homeostasis is how the human body maintains a stable temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, and fluid levels.

When homeostasis gets disrupted, you’ll immediately feel its impact. For example, when you go running on a hot day, your body temperature may rise. This can cause you to feel light-headed, nauseated, and fatigued. Eventually, if your body fails to maintain a constant temperature, you may suffer heatstroke. Similarly, if water levels fall drastically in your body and your kidneys fail to maintain constant fluid levels, you may become dehydrated.

Our bodies continually deal with environmental factors that can disrupt homeostasis. When the latter occurs, your body will go into overdrive in an attempt to return to stability. In other words, homeostasis is how organisms maintain stable physiological harmony. Luckily, the human body is incredibly talented at staying in homeostasis, but how does it do so?

How Does the Body "Maintain" Homeostasis?

According to the Journal of Medical Physiology & Therapeutics, there are three mechanisms the human body uses to maintain homeostasis:

  1. Fluid regulation
  2. Temperature regulation
  3. Chemical regulation

These three mechanisms are controlled by virtually every system in your body. For example, your respiratory system (lungs, sinuses, mouth, nose, etc.) maintains oxygen levels, circulates blood through your body, and regulates carbon monoxide waste.

Meanwhile, your endocrine system (thyroid, sexual organs, etc.) distributes the hormones that regulate processes in your heart, liver, kidneys, and brain. Above all, your nervous system (brain, spinal cord, nerves, etc.) is the most critical of all: it regulates all chemical reactions that play a role in virtually every internal body function.

Positive and Negative Feedback

To stay in equilibrium, your body is constantly sending out signals to increase or reduce your fluid levels, chemical levels, and temperature. To do this, your body relies on two feedback mechanisms: positive feedback and negative feedback. Here, we define feedback in terms of the body’s reaction to internal and external stimuli.

  • Positive feedback: In positive feedback, a bodily action results in more of the same actions. For example, when you eat a delicious slice of pepperoni pizza, your digestive system must secrete enzymes and acids to digest the food. So, when the pizza enters your stomach, pepsinogen (an inactive enzyme) transforms into pepsin (a molecule that helps digest the proteins in pepperoni). When pepsinogen transforms into pepsin, it signals nearby pepsinogen enzymes to do the same. So, a chain reaction sets off where an enzyme activates other enzymes. The result is an army of protein-digesting pepsin molecules “eating away” at that pepperoni you just consumed.
  • Negative feedback: In negative feedback, a bodily action results in a counteraction. For example, when your temperature rises, your body sends out signals to different receptors to tell them to lower your temperature. Similarly, if your blood glucose levels decrease, your body releases the hormone glucagon. This process stimulates the conversion of stored glycogen to glucose. Negative feedback is the primary method of maintaining homeostasis. In fact, our cells are constantly using negative feedback to help us adjust to our environment. As you read this post, there are cells in your body undergoing this process.

The Control System Behind Positive and Negative Feedback

The internal conditions in our bodies need to be regularly controlled against internal and external factors. Both positive and negative feedback are the mechanisms that control changes, but how do all your cells communicate with each other? The short answer: control systems. All control systems comprise three parts:

  • Receptors: These are cells that detect changes in the environment.
  • A coordination center: These complex systems can detect stimuli from receptors and send corresponding signals to effectors. Your respiratory, endocrine, and nervous system are all coordination centers.
  • Effectors: These receive instructions from the coordination centers to make changes in your body based on information from receptors.

Homeostasis In Practical Terms

We can send signals at 268 miles per hour (approximately 431 km/h) from receptors to the spinal cord. Given the shortness of the distance, the time span comprises milliseconds. From the moment a receptor notices a change, your effectors react before your conscious brain can possibly comprehend the change.

Let’s put that all together with an example:

The human body likes to maintain an optimal temperature of around 98.6°F (this slightly varies by individual). Let’s say you take a quick run in the park on a hot July summer’s day. Specialized receptors in your body (thermoreceptors) detect that the temperature outside is higher than your body temperature.

They send signals to a coordination center (your brain) to let it know that it’s getting steamy in the temperature region. In response, the coordination center sends out signals to effectors (your blood vessels) which start to contract. This results in your body generating sweat to cool your body down, counteracting the effects of the heat. Yay! Your body stays at 98.6°F despite the rise in external temperature. This is an example of temperature regulation and negative feedback.

Cannabinoids, Homeostasis, and Mood: The Unseen Power of the Endocannabinoid System

Here’s where things get interesting. Some of those receptors in your body are located in your endocannabinoid system (ECS). As a matter of fact, many of those receptors are located in your ECS. But, these aren’t just “typical” receptors. They’re CB1 and CB2 receptors. More specifically, they’re found throughout your body but don’t work like other receptors.

Generally, receptors receive signals from chemicals (called neurotransmitters), send those signals to the control center, and then instructions are relayed to effectors. On the other hand, endogenous cannabinoids are created after chemicals make contact with receptors. And, they’re created on-demand. These cannabinoids travel back to the original receptors and relay messages from the control center. In other words, they fine-tune interactions between cells.

The Historical Truth About Cannabinoids, Homeostasis, and Mood

These interactions play a massive role in the way your body maintains homeostasis. Take the cannabinoid THC. When too much THC binds to your cannabinoid receptors, it can temporarily overwhelm them. This makes them slower at relaying messages. Hence, the reason some people feel sluggish after smoking THC. However, other cannabinoids (like CBD in Hemp Oil) may actually activate receptors — making them more efficient at helping your body maintain homeostasis.

This may be why many people claim that CBD improves their mood or reduces emotional tension. Research on CBD and homeostasis is ongoing, but early results are promising. Your body already produces cannabinoids. But, phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids found in natural hemp plants) may be able to influence how well your body maintains homeostasis.

According to archaeologists, ancient wisdom corroborates this. As far back as 4,000 B.C., the ancient Chinese used hemp as a means of reducing health discomfort levels. Meanwhile, people in ancient India considered cannabis one of the “five sacred plants for its ability to convey “happiness,” “joy,” and “freedom.”

The Role of Flavonoids and Terpenoids in Homeostasis

At Synchronicity, our Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil doesn’t just contain CBD and other cannabinoids, it also contains the full range of flavonoids. And, these tiny molecules may also help you maintain homeostasis. Supplementing with CBD alone is like buying an engine without the car. Hemp contains hundreds of cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenoids. Studies show that all three combines synergistically to deliver a “True Entourage Effect™. In other words, flavonoids and terpenoids complement cannabinoids to help your body maintain a balance of essential physiological states.

Flavonoids and terpenoids aren’t found only in hemp. Fruits and vegetables are packed with flavonoids — which help improve the efficiency of your cellular signaling pathways. In fact, flavonoids have been shown to improve the body’s ability to digest glucose. Once digested, these flavonoids provide ample benefits to the body.

Terpenoids (or terpenes) are the compounds that give hemp its sweet, slightly acidic smell. Again, terpenoids exist abundantly in nature. In fact, the entire practice of aromatherapy is based on terpenes. However, the terpenes specifically found in hemp can revolutionize your body’s ability to interact with cannabinoids. After all, they come packed in the hemp plant for a reason. So, why not leverage the extensive power of Full Spectrum Hemp Oil to your advantage?

Does Hemp Oil Help You Maintain Homeostasis?

You know that cannabinoids like CBD can positively impact your ECS system. You also know that your ECS system helps regulate homeostasis. Finally, flavonoids and terpenes can combine synergistically with cannabinoids to deliver a True Entourage Effect™. To put it all together, Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil’s phytocannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes offer a great chance at increasing the capabilities of your ECS system.

In animal-based studies, Hemp Oil has shown potential for improving mood, supporting a healthy night’s rest, and reducing physical discomfort — all things that contribute to greater happiness. By extension, these benefits may be due to the role Hemp Oil plays in homeostasis. Our bodies crave internal balance. But, maintaining that balance remains a complicated process. In essence, there are trillions of internal and external stimuli that consistently force our cells to adjust accordingly. Over time, mistakes happen. And when they do, the consequences can be dire. Failure to maintain homeostasis can result in imbalanced physiological states that endanger our health.

Sometimes, this imbalance is minor. We may feel “out-of-sorts,” “moody,” or “sleepy.” Unfortunately, these are difficult experiences to endure on a prolonged basis. However, Hemp Oil can help our bodies maintain homeostasis and has shown initial promise for its mood-boosting capabilities. Although scientists don’t yet know the full range of Hemp Oil’s benefits, the value of GMO-free Hemp Oil continues to be supported by ongoing research.

But, for now, we do know that the ECS plays a hyper-critical role in homeostasis. And, we also know that Hemp Oil can strengthen the efficacy of your ECS system. Certainly, the relationship between cannabinoids, homeostasis, and mood still remains somewhat of a mystery. However, judging by ancient proof and ongoing research, the answers may prove critical to public health.

Cannabinoids, Homeostasis, and Mood: Synchronicity Fills In the Gaps

Across the globe, athletes, workers, and even dogs ingest Hemp Oil to help them feel their best. But before you go out and try that new tincture or body lotion, think about their holistic benefits. Despite the CBD craze, CBD isn’t the only cannabinoid that’s showing promise. There are over a hundred cannabinoids in hemp besides CBD and THC. And, each of them plays a unique role in our bodies. There are also flavonoids, terpenes, chlorophyll, and other nutritional elements in hemp. Unless your provider is extracting them all, you’re paying for an incomplete product.

Here at Synchronicity, we believe in the power of the True Entourage Effect™. And, our sustainable farming and manufacturing practices leverage a unique hand-pressed LipidTrans™ Infusion Process to create a superior product. In addition, our products contain over a hundred cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes. So, don’t settle for mediocrity when it comes to your health. Experience the Synchronicity Whole-Plant difference for yourself and feel the difference in your life.

If you’re ready to rethink Hemp Oil and experience the full spectrum of hemp’s incredible nutrients, browse our list of Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil products. Have any questions about our hemp products? Contact us, and let’s talk cannabinoids, homeostasis, and mood. We’re happy to help you find the perfect hemp solution for your needs. Let’s embrace a culture of wellness together!