Eucalyptus, Mint, Turmeric, Dill
Minty, Woody, Citrusy
Anti-Depressant, Pain Reliever
This is the 15th installment in our weekly series, “Let’s Talk Terpenes,” published every Monday. For more information, read the introduction to this series, “Let’s Talk Terpenes: A Guide For Medical Marijuana Patients.”
Out of all the secondary terpenes, phellandrene is probably the most overlooked. Whether it’s those within the cannabis industry or the customer, people aren’t often very attracted to the particular properties phellandrene offers. Phellandrene brings together two noteworthy organic compounds: alpha-phellandrene and beta-phellandrene. These two compounds are usually distilled from the eucalyptus plant species and may offer beneficial medical properties to those who seek out this terpene.
Despite the lack of extensive research, a few studies have been conducted regarding the therapeutic and medicinal benefits of phellandrene.
So far, research suggests that phellandrene possesses antidepressant and antihyperalgesic qualities. A study from 2014 investigated the antihyperalgesic and anti-depressive actions of phellandrene along with other terpenes and found that phellandrene reduced pain sensitivity (excluding a cold stimulus) and elevated energy levels.
A 2015 study tested the stimulating properties of phellandrene and limonene, displaying that the two terpenes exhibit both antihyperalgesic and antidepressive properties. It isn’t clear though whether phellandrene would display these same attributes in isolation.
Phellandrene is also believed to have other potential anti-cancer (in vitro study) and anti-inflammatory (rodent study) benefits. This initial research doesn’t offer much regarding phellandrene’s effects in humans, particularly at the trace levels in which it’s found in cannabis.
Phellandrene has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to treat digestive disorders. It is one of the main compounds in turmeric leaf oil, which is used to prevent and treat systemic fungal infections.
Although most predominant in eucalyptus, phellandrene can be found in a number of herbs and spices, including mint, cinnamon, turmeric leaves, garlic, dill, ginger, and parsley. A number of plants produce β-phellandrene as a constituent of their essential oils, including lavender and grand fir. The recognizable aromas of some essential oils depend almost entirely upon the presence of phellandrene. Oil of pepper and dill oil are composed almost entirely of phellandrene. The principal ingredient in oil of ginger is phellandrene. Phellandrene, particularly α-phellandrene, is absorbed through the skin, making it appealing for use in perfumes. It is also used as a flavoring for food products.
Understanding individual terpene characteristics can play a key factor in selecting the ideal strain. Whether inhaled or used aromatically or topically, valencene can be a key component in the broad spectrum of terpenes and cannabinoids that maximize the therapeutic effects cannabis may provide. Feel free to email us to assist with any questions you may have.