Updated: May 11
If you’re into smoking, vaping, or digesting cannabis products, you’ve probably known the term THC. Cannabinoids or THC is a compound responsible for that intoxicating effect when you consume cannabis. Unlike THC, THCA is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid found in raw and live cannabis plants and it was known to have therapeutic benefits that can treat chronic pain and even fight cancer.
If you're first time smoking weed. I suggest to check out our smoking weed 101 article to learn more about smoking, vaping, or digesting cannabis products.
How is THCA different from THC?
The major difference between these two compounds is that THCA won’t get you high while THC is responsible for that intoxicating effect when consuming or smoking cannabis that you get in your local cannabis delivery service.
How THCA becomes THC?
The simple answer is through smoking, vaping, or dabbing. Heat removes a carboxylic acid group from THCA, altering the THC chemical structure. This makes it the perfect shape to fit into our endocannabinoid system (ECS) and the CB1 receptors that run throughout our central nervous systems, allowing for that classic elevated experience
Although THCA doesn't have intoxicating effects, some people consider THCA as a “super-food” thru eating or juicing raw cannabis to smoothies for health enhancement.
What are THCA’s effects and benefits?
But just because THCA won’t get you high like THC, it’s hardly not a useless compound. On the contrary, THCA has been shown to have more therapeutic usage than THC. These benefits include:
Anti-inflammatory properties for treatment of arthritis and lupus
Neuroprotective properties for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases
Anti-emetic properties for treatment of nausea and appetite loss
Anti-proliferative properties noted in studies of prostate cancer
Other possible medicinal treatment benefits of THCA include insomnia, arthritis, and chronic pain. Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait for more studies to substantiate all of the above benefits before we can fully understand what THCA means for the future of cannabinoid-based medicines.