9 Plants That Contain Therapeutic Cannabinoids
By Allie Beckett
Cannabinoid is a term that is thrown around a lot in the cannabis industry — but did you know there are many different types of cannabinoids that are found throughout Mother Nature’s complex web?
Phytocannabinoids are the cannabinoids produced by plants.
Endocannabinoids are the cannabinoids produced within the body of humans and animals.
Synthetic Cannabinoids are the cannabinoids produced in a laboratory.
Interestingly enough, cannabis is not the only plant that produces healing phytocannabinoids. Many superfoods (and flowers) contain the healing compounds that nourish our endocannabinoid system.
There are also a few common plants we will cover today that contain compounds that mimic the biological activity of the classic cannabinoid but have a slightly different structure. These are called cannabimimetic compounds.
Cacao (Theobroma cacao)
Cacao is rich in anandamide (uh-non-da-mide), an endocannabinoid that is naturally produced in the human brain; it regulates mood, memory, appetite, and pain perception. Anandamide is known as the “bliss” neurotransmitter because it causes a euphoric “high” when released — it is often called the body’s natural version of THC.
Plant-derived anandamide (as found in cacao) lingers in the body, drawing out the joyful feeling longer than your average runner’s high. Cacao and cannabis are the only known plants containing compounds that connect into certain receptor sites in the human brain in a “lock & key” system.
In order to absorb all the health benefits of cacao, it’s important to source raw, organic, fair-trade cacao — NOT processed or milk chocolate. It’s the addition of powdered milk to cacao that blocks the body’s absorption of the healing nutrients of cacao.
Black Pepper (Piper nigrum)
Helichrysum (Helichrysum italicum)
More research needs to be done on the discovery of CBG in helichrysum flowers but strict South African native plant laws make it near impossible to study the plant out of the country. Giovanni Appendino, the researcher who discovered “non-cannabis” CBG, believes the cannabinoid-like compounds made by all plants begin from an aromatic acid. Because of its use in African ritual ceremonies, Appendino believes helichrysum has psychotropic effects similar to cannabis.
Black Truffles (Tuber melanosporum)
Interestingly enough, researcher Mauro Maccarrone, who is studying anandamide in black truffles, notes that truffles are much older than cannabis. A study recently showed the black truffle has been around for nearly 156 million years, while cannabis is believed to date back 70-110 million years ago.
Dried rhodedendron leaves for medicinal tea.
A 2011 study, New Cannabinoid-Like Chromane and Chromene Derivatives from Rhododendron anthopogonoides, found that “Two new cannabinoid-like chromane and chromene derivatives named anthopogocyclolic acid and anthopogochromenic acid and five related compounds known as synthetic analogues of cannabinoids: cannabichromene (CBC) type, cannabicyclol (CBL) type and cannabicitran (CBT) type, have been isolated together with geranyl orsellinic acid from the Chinese medicinal plant Rhododendron anthopogonoides”.
Electric Daisy (Acmella Oleracea)
Japanese Liverwort (Radula marginata)
Traditional Kava, the national drink of Fiji. Kava is a mildly narcotic drink made from mixing the powdered root of the pepper plant with water.
Kava (Piper methysticum)
I’ll leave you with this fun fact:While it’s not a plant, studies show that there are natural cannabinoids present in breast milk that are crucial for infant development. The cannabinoids found in breast milk protect against viruses, bacteria, and even cancer. A very important endocannabinoid is passed from mother to baby, a type of neuromodulatory lipid that stimulates the suckling process and basically teaches a newborn child how to eat. Without these cannabinoids in breast milk, newborn children wouldn’t know how to eat, but more importantly, they wouldn’t really have the desire to eat. Similar to how cannabis triggers the munchies, the cannabinoids in breast milk trigger hunger in infants that promotes growth and development.
Thanks to: https://www.marijuana.com