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What is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and what does it do?

What Is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)?

Health

What is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and what does it do?

THC is a cannabis user’s best friend. That’s because Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the chemical in marijuana that gets you high.

A Quick Introduction To Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

Cannabis contains a bunch of different chemicals called cannabinoids. These chemicals naturally interact with cannabinoid receptors that are located throughout the human body, and especially in the brain. Two of the most prominent cannabinoids are Cannabidiol (CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the one we’re talking about here. It’s also a cannabis user’s best friend. That’s because Tetrahydrocannabinol is the chemical in marijuana that gets you high.

How Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) Affects Your Body & Brain

The key to everything is your body’s endocannabinoid system. Your body naturally produces endocannabinoids. These chemicals bind to cannabinoid receptors. This entire system helps regulate a bunch of basic functions like appetite, sleep, mood, and many others.

The cannabinoids in cannabis act a lot like the ones your body naturally produces. And THC is one of the most powerful cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. When you consume cannabis, the THC enters your bloodstream. If you smoke it, the THC gets into your blood through your lungs. And if you eat or drink it, the THC enters your bloodstream after being metabolized.

Either way, once the chemical is in your blood, it gets carried throughout your body and into your brain. Just like the cannabinoids your body naturally produces, THC bonds to your cannabinoid receptors. And when it does, all sorts of interesting things start to happen.

According to the NIDA, you get high when THC “over activates” the parts of your brain and body with the most cannabinoid receptors. Those hyper-stimulated receptors trigger various changes in mood, appetite, sleep, thought processes, memory, body movement, and sense perception.

It’s All AboutTetrahydrocannabinol Balance

When Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) interacts with your endocannabinoid system it can trigger a ton of positive reactions. It can cause your brain to release the dopamine that creates pleasurable sensations of happiness and euphoria. It can also help your body relax and can ease tension and pains.

But it can also cause your body to experience some unpleasant things as well.Tetrahydrocannabinol can sometimes make people feel paranoid or anxious. And in some cases, Tetrahydrocannabinol can give you headaches, elevate your heart rate, and impair your ability to remember things or move around well.

But keep in mind that cannabis has a bunch of different cannabinoids. And they all work together. Researchers have found that other cannabinoids, and especially CBD, actually help balance out the negative effects of Tetrahydrocannabinol.

CBD helps mellow out the anxiety and memory loss some users experience. It also plays a big role in reducing pain, decreasing inflammation, and treating health conditions like epilepsy.

The cocktail of cannabinoids found in cannabis also means you can tailor your cannabis use to give you the experience you’re looking for. Strains that are higher in Tetrahydrocannabinol and lower in CBD tend to give you more powerful highs, while strains that are lower in THC will generally give you a less pronounced high.

Maintaining Potency Of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)

One final thing about Tetrahydrocannabinol. If you want your bud to be as potent and powerful as possible, you need to understand what happens to THC when it’s still stuck in a cannabis bud’s resin.

The more that Tetrahydrocannabinol is exposed to air, the more it deteriorates. In fact, if you leave a bud on the plant until the resin turns from clear to milky white to brownish, what you’re really seeing is the Tetrahydrocannabinol degrading into CBD. This obviously has big implications for how you should grow and harvest your cannabis.

But it also has implications for how you store and use your bud. To keep the Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) from deteriorating, you should store it away from light and air. You can buy a bunch of different storage options to help with this. You can also check out our guide for how to store cannabis for more great ideas.

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Nick Lindsey

Nick is a Green Rush Daily staff writer from Fort Collins, Colorado. He has been at the epicenter of the cannabis boom from the beginning. He holds a Masters in English Literature and a Ph.D. in cannabis (figuratively of course).

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