What you need to know about terpenes in CBD oil


Terpenes are an integral part of our daily experiences in nature. They are responsible for most of the appealing odors in our environment including flowers. Terpenes are strong-scented compounds produced by plants to ward off destructive pests and attract birds and insects that help in pollination. Over 60 terpenes are found in the cannabis plant, with various effects useful in the medical field. They also work effectively against inflammation and are good antioxidants. This article analyses and lists some of the terpenes found in CBD oils.

Terpenes in Cannabis

The cannabis plant is one of the most abundant sources of terpenes. According to Bonni Goldstein, MD and proprietor of Cannacenters, Los Angeles, each cannabis breed possesses a distinct terpene structure. Terpenes react differently depending on the consumer. Effects of CBD oils or edibles depend on the terpene profile in the product. Familiarizing with terpene profiles can help pick out the best products. Below are among key considerations regarding CBD terpenes, their general health effects and intoxicating capacity.

Terpenes in CBD Oils

Terpenes are naturally existing compounds found in the cannabis flower. When the cannabis plant bud or flower dries and is cured, terpenoids are formed. Basically terpenoids are terpenes that have undergone a chemical alteration. They are found in full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD oils. CBD isolate products do not contain any terpenoids. However, terpenes may sometimes be added to some products for boosting purposes.

Less processed oils are the best as they have more integral terpenes from the original cannabis plant. For effectiveness, highly processed CBD products, like those with the CBD isolate, require higher doses since the quality of terpenes has been tampered with by the refining process.

Effects of Terpenes

Some terpenes have a positive effect in reducing anxiety and may also have sedative or tranquilizing properties. However, terpenes don't possess the intoxicating effect from tetrahydrocannabinol.

Main Terpenes Contained in CBD Oils

Below are some of the main terpenes contained in CBD oils


It is a terpene contained in most citrus fruits and pine thorns. Ancient and organic Chinese healers used it to contain cancer-related illnesses, with the belief that it helps reduce reproduction of cancer cells. A biomolecule study conducted in 2019 points to the same findings. Pinene is also believed to help suppress inflammations.


This terpene is contained in citrus peels. It produces the lemon flavor in various products such as food substances, spices, additives, and cleaning detergents and colognes. According to a study from 2020, limonene may help reduce anxiety. This terpene also works well in solvents as well as pesticides.


The term myrcene is derived from a Brazilian term Myrcia sphaerocarpa, a Brazilian shrub used by traditional medical practitioners to treat conditions like high blood pressure, diarrhea, and diabetes. Myrcene delivers a tranquilizing effect on the consumer. It is contained in mango, Ocimum basilicum, and lemongrass. It is also found in several cannabis strains and hops.


It is contained in spices such as Chinese parsley and cinnamon. It has a tranquilizing effect and relaxing properties. It also helps to contain seizures and convulsions.

Alpha humulene

A terpene found in most cannabis strains, ornamental plants and medicinal herbs like ramona, hops, and ginseng. Alpha humulene has a fresh, loamy, fruity fragrance. It is effective in suppressing inflammation and helps reduce appetite.


This terpene is found in many hemp plant varieties. It is responsible for the characteristic aroma of black pepper. Research shows that beta-caryophyllene reacts with CBD receptor 2 in the body to help in pain reduction. It may also have anti-inflammatory effects. In October 2020, a medical journal discovered that this terpene suppressed addictive behavior common in mice.

Terpenes and the Entourage Effect in CBD Products

CBD oils and other products containing terpenes deliver what experts call the 'entourage effect,' which occurs when terpenes and other compounds work together to deliver produce to the consumer. This makes CBD products with more natural cannabis compounds, such as broad and full-spectrum CBD oils, more effective, unlike the pure CBD isolate. Terpenoids work together with cannabinoids to help reduce pain and inflammation, manage anxiety and other mental health challenges and also prevent bacterial infections. Nevertheless, more scientific research is needed to determine its effects and functions in the consumer's body, among other medical claims.

How to Identify Terpenes When Buying CBD Oils

When buying CBD oils or any other CBD product, ensure that it has undergone verified testing and authentication by a certified lab and a legally acceptable certificate of analysis. The certificate must contain a plant-based cannabinoid profile listing the levels of THC, CBD and other terpenes and cannabis compounds. This will help to identify the presence of terpenes. Based on the terpene profile, choose the product of your choice.


Terpenes work with other cannabis compounds in CBD oils to create the entourage effect, making the product more effective and increasing the potential health benefits. Although more research needs to be done to understand this product, each terpene in CBD has a unique medical effect attributed to it. For instance, some are good for pain reduction while others work best as anti-inflammatory agents. More terpenes in CBD oil mean a stronger entourage effect, making the oil stronger and more natural. The terpene profile found in particular CBD oils dictates the potency of the product and its suitability to a particular consumer.

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