THCV Effects – A Comprehensive Guide
Posted on December 10th, 2020
Not all cannabinoids cause psychoactive effects. Researchers acknowledge that if they could continue researching on the non-intoxicating ones like CBD, there is a high likelihood of cannabis being even more widespread in medicine. Generally speaking, this article focuses on one of such cannabinoids, THCV.
If you’re not familiar with THCV, this article will introduce you to this intriguing compound that is certain to make major waves in the near future. Before diving into THCV Effects, it would help to understand what THCV is and its difference with THC that is way beyond having an extra letter.
What Is THCV?
THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin) is a cannabis compound that potentially offers users with a wide range of benefits and unique effects. Although it isn’t as well-known as THC or CBD. This cannabinoid was discovered in 1973 and has been the subject of quite extensive research.
THCV is a molecule, and its chemical formula is C19H2602. That means that it consists of two oxygen atoms, 26 hydrogen atoms, and 19 carbon atoms. Although it copies the usual phytocannabinoid characteristic of being insoluble in water, it’s highly soluble in lipid-based solvents. In terms of structure, it’s similar to the popular psychoactive cannabinoid THC. However, you’ll learn that there are more than a few key differences between them as you read on.
THCV is an unusual cannabinoid insofar as the fact that it’s only psychoactive if taken in significantly high doses. Most famed cannabinoids are CBG-synthesized. CBG undergoes a metabolic process from which several cannabinoids, including THC and CBD, form from. THCV usually develops after the joining of geranyl phosphate and divarinolic acid. The resulting THCV acid is then decarboxylated to form THCV.
THCV typically acts as a CB1 receptor’s antagonist in low doses. That means you won’t experience the “high” feeling. However, as you increase the dose, something unusual happens. The cannabinoid changes its behavior and acts as an agonist instead, just like THC does. Simply put, it will do get you stoned if you take too much of it. If you are smoking relatively large doses of a strain high in THCV, you’ll experience a clear-headed and stimulating high. Unfortunately, said high does not last very long. Although THCV might work quicker than THC, it doesn’t have the latter’s longevity at all.
THCV & THC: What Is the Difference?
As mentioned, THCV could somehow mimic THC’s psychoactive effects in large doses because they have similar structures. For instance, their atoms have this closely identical arrangement. THC’s side-chain has a pentyl group but THCV’s comprised of a propyl side-chain. The most popular cannabinoids consist of pentyl groups. However, a few follow THCV’s propyl group, such as CBV and CBDV.
One of the most intriguing differences between THCV and THC is that THCV suppresses appetite while the latter increases by causing the well-known ‘munchies.’ Based on several studies, THCV can actually limit the THC’s effects. That makes it the best cannabinoid if you’re looking to get high while maintaining a stable weight.
Potential THCV Effects & Benefits
Apart from providing a quicker and more intense high when used in large doses, studies show that THCV might have many medical benefits on its own. THCV and other cannabinoids usually bind to receptor sites found in the brain, major organs, and immune system.
– Reducing Anxiety
According to research, THCV may reduce or even eliminate panic attacks. That means it can be effective for patients with PTSD or an anxiety disorder. In general, most scientists concluded that THCV was effective since it suppresses the “panic” mode. Panic is a response that happens during the natural fight-or-flight reaction to threats that can’t achieve a clear resolution.
In a study by Riedel discovered that THCV reduces pain and swelling in mice. In general, these are two of the primary inflammation symptoms after exposure to inflammatory substances. The interesting part is that the research team also looked at the Rimonabant’s impact. They discovered that it limited THCV effects. Undoubtedly, this is a sign that THCV actually activated CBD receptors.
The mice in that study were offered THCV after inflammatory exposure every day for four consecutive days. Apart from proving to be beneficial in lowering inflammation, the scientists discovered that the mice didn’t develop a tolerance to the compound.
– Weight Loss
Based on 2016’s stats from the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 1.9 billion adults are either obese or overweight. In other words, this is equal to 39% of the total adult population, and 13% are obese. These figures also include data from certain impoverished nations. Therefore, the statistics are much different in Western countries.
Among the primary reasons for THCV’s accomplishment in this matter is because it plays a vital role in suppressing CB1 receptors. Studies suggest that approximately 3mg/kg of body weight is the proper dose when it comes to weight loss. Research also shows that strains high in CBD and THCV work better than those that are high in THC and THCV.
It is quite remarkable that THCV is not yet a go-to weight-loss treatment if you consider the Rimonabant tests. That anti-obesity drug led to severe depression and other side effects, and that trials ended because of a high suicide rate.
As mentioned before, THCV helps lower your appetite. Therefore, it is an excellent weight-loss tool, and it might potentially become a lifesaver for patients with diabetes. A study by Wargent published in 2013 suggested that THCV has potential as a treatment method for diabetes patients who struggle with obesity-associated glucose intolerance.
Other Potential THCV Effects & Benefits
Studies prove that THCV may be highly effective in lowering the tremors linked to conditions like Parkinson’s disease and ALS. There are also indications it might reduce brain lesions from Parkinson’s as well. The compound might also enhance bone growth, making it a potential alternative when it comes to addressing osteoporosis. There is more proof that THCV might minimize seizures and because it’s non-intoxicating in relatively smaller doses. Thus, it might be an effective way to treat epileptic kids.
High THCV Strains
Compared to cannabinoids such as CBC and CBN, there are significantly high THCV levels in a wide variety of cannabis strains. For example, an article in the American Journal of Botany published in 2004 illustrates how many tests were conducted on landrace populations throughout the world to identify their cannabinoid levels. Based on that detailed research, there are more than 150 cannabis strains with a measurable THCV level.
In a 1973 study, one particular South African strain’s tests had a THCV level above 53%. If you’re looking for high THCV strains, it would be best to focus on African sativas. Some of the common high THCV strains you may want to get your teeth into are Slim Hash, Doug’s Varin, Pineapple Purps, Agent Orange Nug Run, and Ace of Spades.
Mostly, Slim Hash and Doug’s Varin are particular breeds made to have significantly high THCV content. Andrew Campbell discovered Slim Hash, and his creation won an award at the Cannabis Classic in 2017. Willie Nelson is a high THCV strain, but it’s hard to find trusty info on the actual THCV content of it.
Where Can You Find THCV?
You might know now that you want to taste THCV’s effects, but do you even have any idea of where to find THCV products. Most strains only have a trace, unnoticeable THCV quantities, making it hard to obtain the expected therapeutic effects. We could assume that the market will be chockfull of THCV-rich products as awareness of them increases. Meanwhile, here are a few tips for finding this rare therapeutic gem.
– Go for African sativas. According to lab results, THCV is commonly found in sativas, especially landrace strains from Africa.
– Inquire about parent genetics. Are you experiencing problems locating African Sativa? Many strains out there have hybridized African genetics. This usually predisposes them to a relatively higher THCV potential. You could ask your budtenders to specify their African hybrids.
– Request test results. Apart from genetics, there are other contributing factors to high-THCV content. Besides, cannabinoid contents may vary from harvest to harvest. So, if you can, ask your provider to show you lab results from the strains to guarantee that you’re actually receiving a THCV-rich product.
THCV Effects – The Takeaway
If you were not aware of THCV Effects before reading this article, now you know that it is one of the most interesting lesser-known cannabinoids. It doesn’t have psychoactive impacts at low quantities, but it offers users a euphoric, intense, and short-lived high if used in large amounts.
As of now, studies hint that THCV might become the basis for a therapeutic treatment for type-2 diabetes and obesity. Other potential benefits include reducing seizures, acting as an anti-inflammatory, controlling anxiety disorders, and minimizing Parkinson’s patients’ tremors.
Know that although THCV has little similarity with THC regarding psychoactivity, it prevents some of THC’s adverse side effects like weight gain or increased heart rate. For a long time, few cannabis strains were exceeding 2% THCV. However, growers are now breeding unique THCV-high plants knowing that this cannabinoid might become very popular very soon.