The Entourage Effect

Written by Art McGinley | 28 Mar 2020
📷 Cosmos Magazine

In this day and age, it is easy to feel isolated and alone. We all know it feels good when the whole team is together. When we group together with our friends, we are stronger. In this article, we will be introducing you to the "entourage effect".

The entourage effect is a theory concerning the effects of different cannabinoids and terpenes when they are used together, sadly the entourage remains unproven due to neglect by the pharmacology industry and to some extent, the consumers. When we smoke or vaporise cannabis, we take in hundreds of botanical compounds into our body. Each one has a unique character and a unique effect when combined with the others. This is the entourage effect that you might be missing out on should you chose pure extracts.

The two main cannabinoids you will have heard about are THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol), THC as a paranoia causing compound and CBD as a miracle drug. Neither of those are true but if we combine the two compounds, we come closer to understanding the effect of cannabis upon our body. It is said THC causes anxiety and it is said that CBD lessens anxiety. In 2010 there was a study amongst cancer sufferers where patients were either given pure THC extract or an extract containing near level ratios of CBD to THC. Those making use of the entourage effect reported less pain. THC and CBD seem to pair well together, but there are many other therapeutic compounds involved in the entourage effect.

Find your nearest bud (go get some if you haven’t got any). They will be covered (hopefully) in sticky white dots of resin known as trichomes. It is in these trichomes we find the many cannabinoids that complete cannabis. Other cannabinoids we have discovered are THCA and CBGA, with hundreds more undiscovered or misunderstood


We are yet to unlock the secrets of THCA, but preliminary research dictates it has a pivotal role in the medicinal side of cannabis. It is reported as having anti-inflammatory properties suitable for managing arthritis, Neuroprotective properties for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases


CBGA acts as a low infinity antagonist to the body’s CB1 receptors (endocannabinoid system) which helps make the body more receptive of the other cannabinoids.

The production of Cannabigerolic acid is a unique characteristic of cannabis. Medicinal strains tend to contain high levels of CBGA. However, heating cannabis through a process known as decarboxylation turns CBGA into CBD which can then be used.

Combination of cannabinoids and terpenes is also known as synergising. Synergising is to combine the activity of two agents to produce a joint effect greater than the sum of their parts. Here are a few examples of potential synergies.

  • The pine-scented terpenes pinene may help counteract compromised memory caused by THC.
  • A combination of CBD and peppery terpene caryophyllene may be beneficial to treat addiction.
  • CBD and the citrus-scented terpene limonene might work together to alleviate anxiety.

Sadly, it needs to be reiterated this remains unproven but with time we will know more. We also need to demand more. The supply available to us as consumers is what we demand and for far too long we have misunderstood the plant, believing THC is all that matters. This has led to cannabis changing as a genome to the point where most cultivars produce slim pickings when it comes to other cannabinoids. Let's demand access to all of this plants potential.

We are at the beginning of a cannabinoid revolution, get your entourage together!