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Hexagon, Prism, and Glassware are now available in the USA Hexagon, Prism, and Glassware are now available in the USA
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Rise higher: Meet Ascend

Rise higher: Meet Ascend

The Ascend is the latest addition to the BRNT line of accessories, although it may look familiar: Ascend was originally the result of a collaboration between BRNT and cannabis-growers Tweed. After months of being a Tweed exclusive, we are pleased to announce that the Ascend is now available for purchase at BRNT.ca

Re-Introducing Ascend.

The Ascend is a statement, a sturdy and stable addition to your cannabis accessories collection. Poured from concrete, and given either a matte black or white marble finish, the Ascend is built to blend in with your Faro, Briq, and Malua. The first concrete rolling tray from BRNT, the Ascend’s minimalist design makes cleaning – and rolling – easy.

We’re very excited that more people will be able to get their hands of the Ascend than ever before. Welcome to the future.

Click this link to purchase the Ascend.

“Do I detect an oaky flavour?”

“Do I detect an oaky flavour?”

There are those that drink their morning double double from Tim Hortons on the way to work; those who pick up a $15 bottle of wine when they have plans with friends; and those that eat sushi from a grocery store. Then there are those who brew their own artisanal coffee using expensive machines; expert sommeliers who can tell you exactly where a wine is from and what year it was made; and those who fly to Japan and pay $300 for a twenty-minute, twenty-piece sushi experience.

What we’re saying is, there are people who “like” something, and others who “really really love” it. And cannabis, as a thing that can be enjoyed, is no different.

We’re not naive enough to say that October 17th was the first time Canadians tried recreational cannabis, ever. However, we are coming up on four months since Legalization Day, and maybe the people who first tried cannabis last October want to start developing their newly-legal interest in cannabis. For those people, we would like to welcome you to the wonderful world of terpenes.

 

Terpenes: For your enjoyment

Just like experienced coffee drinkers can tell the difference between coffees brewed from Arabica and Robusta beans, different strains of cannabis each have their own unique flavour. These flavours come from terpenes, natural oils that give each strain a unique scent and flavour.

Terpenes aren’t solely found in cannabis – they’re also what give plants their unique scents. Terpenes are what make lemons smell like lemons, and pine trees smell like pine trees.

There are more than 20,000 terpenes in existence and at least 100 produced by the Cannabis plant. Terpenoid production evolved over time in plants, including cannabis, to attract pollinators and to act as defense compounds.

(From Green Relief)

Unlike cannabinoids, of which there are two to keep track of, there are dozens and dozens of prominent terpenes. Which is bad news if you want to become a comprehensive, walking cannabis encyclopedia, but very good news if you are a picky connoisseur.

If you love camping and the smell of the great outdoors, try to find a strain with Pinene (that’s the stuff in pine trees). If you’re in a more flowery mood, Linalool might be a better bet, as it’s found in plants like lavender and coriander. And if you’re feeling the citrus, Limonene will bring that lemony smell to the party.

 

Complementary Tools

Maybe you’re a more recreational smoker, and so how your cannabis tastes and smells is of utmost importance to maximize your enjoyment. Plenty of people, however, take cannabis for medicinal purposes. For them, terpenes become a lot like broccoli: you might not like the flavour, but you still eat it because it’s good for you.

Like with the rest of the crazy world of cannabis, there hasn’t been a ton of research done in these fields. But what research exists suggests that terpenes effect how your endocannabinoid system interacts with good old CBD and THC (click here for our post on these cannabinoids).

The effect profile of any given terpene may change in the presence of other compounds in a phenomenon known as the entourage effect. More research is needed to understand each terpene’s effect when used in harmony with others.

(From Leafly)

Linalool, in addition to smelling like pretty purple flowers, might also reduce the levels of anxiety brought about by big doses of THC, making it a popular terpene in the THC-heavy strains that are being cultivated right now. Humulene, found in cloves and hops, might play a role in lessening your appetite, making Humulene-laden strands munchie-resistant.

It’s not all good news for terpenes though. Myrcene, for example, is a potent muscle relaxer, which might “couch lock” (when you feel like you can’t lift your limbs) you if your strain is made up of more than 0.5% of the terpene. As always, if you’re taking cannabis medicinally, you need to talk to your doctor before exploring anything by yourself.

 

Conclusion

All in all, our growing awareness of terpenes is broadening the ways we think about cannabis as a recreational substance, as well as a medicinal drug.

Your cannabis label might not tell you what terpenes are in which strain, but your growers might. We highly suggest talking with your growers to select the strain for you.

THC and CBD: An Introduction to Cannabinoids

THC and CBD: An Introduction to Cannabinoids

In our first Mind(Full) post, we started talking about the two major classifications of cannabis: Indica and Sativa. In that post, we mentioned that as far as the effects of cannabis goes, the classification doesn’t matter nearly as much as the cannabinoids in the plant.

There’s going to be a lot of speculative information in this post – that’s just because we still don’t really know how cannabis works – but this is something we do know: inside your body, right now, is the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). Now, what that system actually does is still the subject of even more research, but what we can tell you is that the ECS serves a crucial role in making sure a bunch of your body’s functions actually work together.

 

Your Endocannabinoid System is everywhere… including your brain

Here’s what the Government of Canada says about how cannabis works:

Cannabis contains hundreds of chemical substances. Over 100 of these are known as cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are made and stored in the plant’s trichomes. Trichomes are tiny, clear hairs that stick out from the flowers and leaves of the plant. Cannabinoids have effects on cell receptors in the brain and body. They can change how those cells behave and communicate with each other.

(Source)

So basically, there are hundreds of chemicals in cannabis, and they each do different things by bonding with different receptors in you brain and in the rest of your body. There are two chemicals that we are looking at today: delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol. Or, as they are better known: THC and CBD.

Effects-wise, both THC and CBD are fairly similar: they generally relieve pain, help reduce inflammation, and lessen feelings of anxiety, among other effects. But THC is also an intoxicant, a word which here means “makes you feel as high as a kite.”

What makes THC so special? Well, let’s go back to the receptors.

 

Receptors and You

Receptors are protein molecules that bond with other chemicals that then make your body do different things. In short, these receptors are how your brain knows what’s going on inside of your body. Scientists have identified two major receptors used by the Endocannabinoid System: CB-1 and CB2.

(Before we get too far into the weeds here, we should mention that this can get really complicated really, really fast. We’re going to be very vague and brief with our explanations here, and if you want more accurate, more specific information, we encourage you to read into this subject further.)

CB-1 receptors are mostly found in the brain, but they are also found in the lungs, liver, and kidneys. Whereas CB-2 receptors are basically confined to your immune system. And each receptor does its own thing: CB-1 (at least, the ones in the brain) react to cannabinoids and make sure they don’t completely overpower your basic brain functions, and CB-2 mostly helps to regulate pain.

THC and CBD are almost identical on the atomic level: they’re made up of exactly the same stuff. And when we say “exactly,” we mean it: there’s no difference between the chemical makeups of THC and CBD. The difference comes in how those atoms are arranged, and again, it’s super close: THC and CBD have one atom that’s arranged differently.

That might seem like a super microscopic difference that can’t possibly have that huge of an effect, but as any identical twin will tell you, there’s a huge difference between a person and their twin. In fact, they’re entirely different people! In this case, that one atom of difference allows THC to bond with CB-1 and CB-2, while CBD can only bond with CB-2.

To put it simply:

 

CBD can’t get you high

Because CB-2 receptors aren’t located in the brain, CBD doesn’t affect the brain at all. That’s why you’ll find a growing number of medicinal cannabis products that have more and more CBD and less and less THC. While THC also bonds to CB-2, and therefore has many of the same health-related effects as CBD, it also bonds with CB-1, which means that getting those same effects comes with getting baked.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but many medicinal users rely on the effects of cannabis at times when getting high would be inappropriate, like at work or a fancy dinner with one’s grandmother. Or, medicinal cannabis users might just not like the sensation of being high.

As more and more people become comfortable with cannabis as a legal substance, more and more research on THC and CBD (and the other dozens of cannabinoids) will discover more and more uses for the plant. There may be even more differences we uncover in the years to come regarding these two wonderful chemicals.

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