What are Terpenes in CBD?

CBD is filled with cannabinoids and terpenes. Terpenes can also be found in essential oils, and are partly what gives essential oils their benefits! If you don’t know what terpenes are or how they can benefit you, keep reading to take a deeper look into the multiple types of terpenes and what properties they offer that could make a difference in your life!.

What are Terpenes in CBD?

what are terpenes in cbd full spectrum oil sitting in a clear glass jar next to marijuana plant trimming

Cannabis plants contain a variety of compounds in the bud or flower of the plant called terpenes. Depending on how the flower of the plant is cured or dried, different terpenoids will form, which are terpenes that have been chemically altered.

It's important to note that the type of CBD depends on whether or not terpenes are present.

If you use CBD isolate, it will not have any of these components of the plant. But if you use CBD that is either broad- or full-spectrum, it will have these terpenes in them. There are certain manufacturers that create CBD isolates that then add the terpenes back into the final product.

When these compounds are present, they can produce a variety of effects depending on the type of terpenes present.

And when these compounds mix, they can create what is known as the “entourage effect,” which we’ll be talking about shortly.

Note: Terpenes do not cause psychoactive effects or a feeling of being “high.”

Types of Terpenes and Their Benefits

If you’re wondering why terpenes in CBD are important to understand and know, it’s because they each produce their own effect. When using oils, creams, eating edibles, or even vaping or smoking CBD, these effects could be present if the product is full- or broad-spectrum.


A common compound found in cannabis, alpha-humulene is known for its “hop” flavor, and it is a natural anti-inflammatory. Studies on the terpene found that when either sprayed or taken orally, the compound was able to prevent inflammation and can reduce inflammatory markers.

There is also some evidence that this key compound can suppress appetite.


If you have addictive behaviors, an infusion of beta-caryophyllene compounds may be able to help. Studies suggest that this compound is powerful enough to help inhibit cocaine addiction in mice.

The compound activates CB2 receptors in the tissues, which has numerous benefits, such as:

  • Reducing inflammation
  • Reducing chronic inflammation damage

Research into this terpene is limited, but what is known is that it can act as a pain reliever, according to a study on mice. The strength of pain relief is similar to a lower dose of morphine.

Anti-inflammatory properties may also play a role in brain aging, but more studies are needed to verify these claims.


Linalool is known for having a floral scent and has been shown to have anti-microbial properties. The compound is found in over 200 plants, including in hemp plants. Found in many fragrances and used in aroma-related products, this terpene may also help with:

  • Inflammation, with one study indicating that inflammation was inhibited in vivo and un vitro.
  • Difficulty sleeping and acts as a natural sedative.
  • Pain reduction according to a 2007 study.

Linalool has also been linked to being an anti-depressant and to relieving anxiety.


Pinene has a “forest” aroma and is a natural pain, anxiety, and inflammation reliever. A lack of research has led to many claims needing to be verified, but it’s thought that this terpene may be able to help provide relief from:

  • Inflammation
  • Anxiety
  • Pain
  • Short-term memory impairment

Studies have shown that pinene offers antimicrobial effects, antioxidant effects, and there’s also evidence suggesting that pinene has neuroprotective properties.


what are terpenes in cbd marijuana leaf sitting on lemon slices and ice on a yellow background limonene

Limonene is found in the peels of many citrus foods, but it’s also present in CBD. This powerful terpene has a wonderful profile that is known to produce numerous effects, including:

  • Antifungal protection
  • Antibacterial protection
  • Stress relief
  • Mood enhancement

When added to creams and oils, limonene has the ability to enhance terpene absorption into the skin and digestive tract. There’s also some evidence that this key compound can relieve gastric reflux and heartburn.

Most studies on limonene have been done on animals or in test tubes.

The studies done on limonene suggest that the terpene can help:

  • Reduce inflammation and markers relating to osteoarthritis.
  • Offer anticancer properties. One study found that limonene was able to reduce breast tumor cell expression by 22%.
  • Reduce risk factors relating to heart disease.
  • Much more.

Limonene is one of the key terpenes to consider for general overall health and well-being.


Traditionally, this terpene is used in Brazilian medicine to treat hypertension, diabetes, and diarrhea. In cannabis, this is the most abundant terpene and is also used as a sleep aid and muscle relaxant in many countries.

Brazilian folk medicine also suggests that this terpene can influence the body’s production of natural pain relievers.

Additional research is needed to verify many of the potential benefits of myrcene, but it’s also thought to promote anti-inflammatory effects.

The Entourage Effect

Now that you know what terpenes in CBD are, it’s time to understand how they work together. When you use full-spectrum cannabis, there’s what is known as the entourage effect. The botanical compounds and there are hundreds of them, will create this effect.


One of the benefits of CBD, and/or THC, when they’re full-spectrum is that there are a variety of synergies that will work together to make you feel amazing.

Cancer patients experience less pain, others are filled with energy, and others have a completely different experience.

One review by Dr. Ethan Russo aimed to better understand how the many compounds in CBD could work together. He found that CBG and CBD, for example, were able to inhibit MRSA. The different chemical makeups, and the terpenes found in CBD, can:

Achieving the entourage effect is a science, but it’s also one of the lesser-studied areas of CBD. For a lot of people, they’ll purchase a product like our Inner Warrior+ nerve relief cream because it has been designed with full-spectrum CBD and specially chosen essential oils to help provide nerve and muscle pain relief.

You can also experiment with different CBD to see what synergies you’re able to experience.

Final Thoughts

Terpenes are naturally occurring compounds, and they can work together to provide pain relief, calm anxiety, and even protect against certain types of cancer. When using CBD for medicinal or health purposes, understanding terpenes can help you find products that provide the targeted relief you desire.

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