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What is the entourage effect?

What is the entourage effect?

CBD has built a fervent following in the wellness arena since its approval in 2018, gaining attention as a legal and potentially therapeutic remedy for a variety of health concerns. One concept frequently associated with CBD oil is the "entourage effect", a phenomenon that suggests the combined effect of all the compounds present in the hemp plant may be greater than the sum of their individual effects. Here, we delve into what that means by exploring the term itself, some of the entourage constituents, and what to look out for so that you can leverage it when choosing your CBD oil.

Understanding the entourage effect

The entourage effect refers to the synergistic interaction of the multiple compounds and natural constituents present in hemp plants, which enhances the therapeutic potential of CBD.  While CBD is one of the most well-known cannabinoids, hemp plants contain over a hundred other cannabinoids, along with terpenes and flavonoids. When preserved and presented together, these compounds work in synergy, enhancing and modulating each other's effects, thereby influencing the overall therapeutic potential of CBD oil.

Terpenes and flavonoids: the unsung heroes

Terpenes and flavonoids are two groups of natural compounds found in hemp plants that contribute to the entourage effect. Terpenes are aromatic molecules responsible for the distinct scents and flavours of different hemp strains. They also possess therapeutic properties and can influence the way cannabinoids interact with receptors in our bodies. For example, myrcene, a common terpene, has sedative effects, while limonene offers potential mood-enhancing properties.

Flavonoids are a diverse group of phytonutrients known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. They contribute to the colour and taste of plants and have been linked to various health benefits. In hemp plants, flavonoids like cannflavin A and cannflavin B have shown potential anti-inflammatory properties that can complement the effects of cannabinoids, providing a more holistic therapeutic experience.

Preserving integrity

The extraction method used to obtain CBD oil plays a key role in preserving the integrity of the entourage effect. Cold-pressed extraction is one of the methods that ensures minimal heat exposure, preventing degradation and loss of sensitive compounds. This gentle extraction process involves mechanically pressing the hemp flowers to extract the oil without the use of solvents or high temperatures.

By avoiding excessive heat and harsh chemicals, cold-pressed extraction retains a wider range of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, maximising the entourage effect. This method results in a CBD oil that contains a rich blend of beneficial compounds, providing a more comprehensive and effective therapeutic experience compared to isolated CBD products.

Nature's therapeutic synergy

The entourage effect highlights the sophisticated therapeutic capabilities inherent in nature's offerings and by embracing it, we can employ a more holistic approach to wellness. Recognising and preserving the intricate interplay of cannabinoids and their synergistic allies allows us to tap into nature’s wisdom as it intended to harness a force for healing and well-being. By choosing the most natural formulation, we acknowledge the collective power of nature where the whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts, and in doing so we can recapture a naturally effective approach to achieving balance in the body.

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