What is limonene and its properties?

As we know, terpenes are aromatic compounds present in all plants, including marijuana. They play an important role in obtaining therapeutic results, as well as in giving the different strains of cannabis their distinctive aromas. On this particular occasion we will focus on the terpene limonene and we will also tell you about its properties.

You should know that there are over 100 different terpenes in the cannabis plant and, although each has its own benefits, they interact synergistically when combined with THC, CBD, or other terpenes and our own biological makeup, thus generating the famous entourage effect.

Below we delve a little deeper into the terpene limonene, its properties, as well as its potential health benefits.

What is limonene?

If you’re wondering, what is lemonene? The first thing you should know is that terpenes are a ubiquitous part of our daily lives that many people are unaware of. Terpenes, however, are not only found in vegetables, but also in all plants, such as nerolidol, not only in hemp.

Limonene is a terpene found in botanicals such as peppermint, rosemary and juniper, as well as in the peels of citrus fruits such as lemon, orange and grapefruit. It is also one of the most popular terpenes in cannabis.

It is often used in foods and perfumes because of its fresh and stimulating aroma. Ever wondered what gives your favourite cannabis strain its pungent aroma? The culprit for the citrus aroma emitted by certain strains is precisely limonene.

D-limonene, as it is also known, is sold as a dietary supplement, and has a number of health benefits, including its ability to dissolve fats such as cholesterol. Proponents of D-limonene say it can help with weight loss, as well as cure or prevent diseases such as cancer. Even cosmetic limonene is used in many beauty products.

D-limonene is named after lemon and is commonly used as a food flavoring. It is different from L-limonene, a less common form of limonene found in peppermint oil.


Properties of limonene

Limonene has a number of benefits, including the potential to improve concentration and mood. Consider this: if he smells something citrusy, he’s unlikely to fall asleep right away. Instead, you’ll feel more encouraged.

Limonene can also relieve stress and help in the treatment of depression as well as anxiety. Not only that, this terpene has antifungal, antibacterial and even anticarcinogenic effects, as well as contributing to mental well-being.

D-limonene has long been touted as beneficial to health, with claims that it not only destroys fat, but also decreases inflammation and kills disease-causing germs.

Many of these concepts are derived from limonene’s widespread use in industry, where it is used in hand sanitizers, perfumes, pesticides, and chemical solvents.

The terpene limonene is believed to prevent or treat a variety of ailments, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Gallstones
  • Bronchitis
  • Cancer
  • Heartburn and gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • High Cholesterol
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Obesity
  • Peptic ulcers
  • Inflammatory bowel disease

Helps you lose weight

The terpene limonene has been shown to help people lose weight by reducing blood sugar and lipid levels related to metabolic syndrome.

Obese mice fed a high-fat diet supplemented with limonene experienced lower levels of blood glucose, total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol, as well as higher healthy HDL cholesterol, according to a 2013 study.

These results indicate that limonene may be used to prevent or treat metabolic syndrome. However, more research is needed to confirm these findings and to establish the dose required for use in humans.

limonene properties

Reduces the risk of peptic ulcer disease

Accordingto 2009 research, limonene may help reduce the risk of peptic ulcers and other inflammatory gastrointestinal conditions. High concentrations of this terpene in bitter orange essential oil protected the stomach lining of rodents fed high doses of alcohol and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Contrary to expectations, it did so by increasing the intake of gastric mucus rather than by suppressing stomach acid.

limonene benefits

May Help Fight Cancer

The anti-cancer effects of limonene terpene have long been touted by alternative medicine practitioners. It is believed that perillic acid, a material released into the bloodstream when the body breaks down D-limonene, is responsible for this effect.

D-limonene has been shown to induce apoptosis in cancer cells in a variety of test tube assays, i.e. programmed cell death. This is important because cancer cells do not naturally experience this, allowing old cells to be replaced by new cells.

In studies involving colon cancer, skin cancer, and other common cancers, this apoptosis effect was observed. However, it is unclear at this time whether taking limonene by mouth will have the same effect.

side effects limonene

Possible side effects of limonene

As already mentioned, limonene is widely used as a flavouring in food. It is therefore considered safe, and has even been used without incident for a year in various investigations. However, some side effects such as reflux and stomach upset are possible.

The safety of limonene in infants, pregnant women, or nursing mothers has not yet been determined. Accordingly, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should consult with their physician before taking limonene. Because the benefits of D-limonene in children are uncertain, it is wisest to avoid its use altogether.

If limonene is applied topically to the skin, it may cause irritation. The same is true of citrus essential oils, which are known to have high concentrations of limonene. In any case, if you are going to use essential oils for massage, always mix them with a carrier oil to avoid these effects.

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