Space Blog Episode 2: The Entourage Effect, Bring a Bud(dy)!
There has been a good deal of talk thrown around about the Entourage Effect lately and we decided to tackle it head on. No Fluff, just some facts. Okay, maybe a little fluff...
In our last post we discussed how Ice Water Hash contains the full spectrum of cannabinoids and terpenes, while cannabis products made using distillates contain only one or two specific cannabinoids: THC and/or CBD. Ignore all the terpenes missing from distillate products, as they contain only two of nearly two hundred cannabinoids identified in cannabis. It's about time we started tapping into those other 198 cannabinoids (and still counting) through the simplicity of products made from ice-water hash. To understand the true recreational and medicinal value of our ice-water hash infused products we need to cover: The Entourage Effect.
Just as we are better together and among our family and friends, so are cannabinoids and terpenes. Even when discussing CBD applications for medical reasons, research has shown CBD to be increasingly beneficial when used in combination with THC and all the other cannabinoids we hear so little about. This is why you will often see cannabis products containing some amount of THC and CBD in medicinal products. The THC:CBD content is often sold as 20:1,10:1, or 1:1 ratio products. That's fine and dandy, however the other 200-some cannabinoids and all the terpenes are forgotten, despite playing a crucial role in determining a products efficacy. These ratios are made by mixing a THC distillate and CBD distillate, but removes all other terpenes.
When all the cannabinoids and terpenes are present in a cannabis extract, (something ONLY Ice-Water Hash achieves), it leads to what researcher's titled The Entourage Effect, or what we sometimes call, a miracle.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
To understand the Entourage Effect, the human Endocannabinoid System or ECS is our answer. The ECS was discovered by Allyn Howlet and William Devane in 1988, showing how cannabis compounds interact with receptor sites in the body and brain. These receptors, known as cannabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2, turned out to be the most abundant of all our neurotransmitter receptor sites. Researchers were able to prove that THC, along with nearly 200 (and counting) other cannabinoids, bind and activate these cannabinoid receptor sites. Discovering the receptor sites helped researchers find naturally occurring neurotransmitters, now known as endocannabinoids. Numerous naturally occurring endocannabinoids bind to the CB1 and CB2 receptor sites located throughout the body and brain.
The Endocannabinoid System
Continued research found an unknown molecular signaling system that regulates biological functions. This system became known as the Endocannabinoid System or ECS, and is activated by a broad range of naturally occurring endocannabinoid neurotransmitters. Yes, you read that right! We produce endocannabinoids similar to cannabis . Under stressed conditions, the body's natural production of endocannabinoids interact with these CB1 and CB2 receptor sites, helping regulate our internal well-being.
The Entourage Effect
The Endocannabinoid system is proven to be activated by a range of cannabinoids that produce varied effects. Increasing one cannabinoid such as THC for example, makes very little difference, while the presence and combination of different cannabinoids and terpenes (most of which are destroyed during chemical extractions) activate cannabinoid receptors to distinguish the quality and effects of the high. This combination of terpenes and cannabinoids work in unison with THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids causing The Entourage Effect (a freaking miracle).
This term full spectrum has been thrown around so much that it's hard to tell what spectrum, or ratio, or profile we're talking about anymore. Full-Spectrum normally would mean that all the terpenes and cannabinoids present in the cannabis flower remain present in the final product. By extracting whole trichome heads, only ice-water hash products can contain anything close to the entire profile or spectrum of terpenes and cannabinoids. Therefore, we wouldn't make Space Gem products from anything but ice-water hash.
Using Ice and water to extract, a natural ratio and proportion of terpenes are undisturbed by harsh chemical solvents. Our Space Gem Spacedrops and Gem Juice provide a complex array of terpenes and cannabinoids all rolled up in delicious, all-natural, vegan, and chemically unaltered products that just may cause miracles.
Are They Really?
Many products claiming to be full spectrum have simply reintroduced or recombined terpenes that were removed during the chemical extraction and distillation process. Any product claiming full spectrum profiles that are made from a distillate, are not a full spectrum product. Much like the booming wellness industry, terminology is used at will and marketing material is loosely based on facts, without regulation, standards, or means of testing most of the claims. This is the biggest reason ice-water hash and infused products are the safest, cleanest, and medicinally beneficial form of cannabis extraction available today.
Distillation and other chemical extraction techniques are forced to “play god” so-to-speak, when reintroducing extracted molecules back into the final product. Or, worse yet, adding non-cannabis derived (food-grade) terpenes back into THC distillates. Distillation creates this kind of guessing game, where Mother Nature’s intended profiles (amounts of each cannabinoid and each terpene) are altered, removed, sometimes reintroduced, but always depleted during distillation.
Without an Entourage
Having already removed hundreds of cannabinoids to isolate the THC molecule, these THC Distillate products go against our current understanding of how and why cannabis works. They ignore our understanding of the Entourage Effect, thereby sacrificing quality exponentially in exchange for profit. The edible market is almost entirely made from distillates, where they don't even bother to reintroduce the terpenes. When it comes to edibles, distillate has defined the industry for nearly a decade already, despite our continually evolving understanding of how and why cannabis works.
With so many unknowns still in the cannabis industry, the only sure-fire strategy left is to consume solventless, ice water hash products like those from Space Gem. This is the only way to ensure an experience that rivals the value of cannabis flower consumption. Rest assured, that the few companies producing solventless products and ice-water hash have their priorities straight. Space Gem edibles always puts the consumer first. How couldn't we? You Are A Gem!
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