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A Beginner's List of Cannabinoids

A pipette fills a block of test tubes

It is impossible to assemble a full list of cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, as new cannabinoids are being discovered on a regular basis. To complicate matters, until recently, cannabis was not legal to cultivate or use in the United States in any form, and while industrial hemp was legalized by the 2018 Farm Bill, high-THC strains, also known as marijuana, are still controlled substances at the federal level. This has stunted research, but as cannabis becomes increasingly legal, our modern-knowledge of this millennia-old plant is growing in leaps and bounds.

What Are Cannabinoids?

Before we look at a list of cannabinoids, it’s important to understand what they are. These active compounds, more properly known as phytocannabinoids, are active compounds found in the cannabis plant. This differentiates them from endocannabinoids, which are similar naturally occurring compounds produced by the human body. These compounds bind directly to CB1 and CB2 receptor sites found throughout your central and peripheral nervous system, where they cause biologic responses.

The endocannabinoid system plays a part in regulating many of your bodily functions through the use of neurotransmitters and direct action on the nervous system. When consumed, phytocannabinoids interact with the same receptors, altering the balance of neurotransmitters released or nerve stimuli applied by these receptors. While some compounds on this list of cannabinoids, such as THC, have well-documented effects, others, like cannabitriol or cannabicitran, remain relatively unstudied.

A layer of leaves from cannabis plants


  • THC - Perhaps the most well-known active compound found in the cannabis plant, tetrahydrocannabinol is the primary psychoactive compound responsible for marijuana’s intoxicating effects. As the body metabolizes THC, it is converted into other chemical compounds and stored in fat. As these metabolites break down, they enter the blood and are eventually eliminated through urine and feces. It is these metabolites that drug screenings test for, which is why Green Gone was made to help you support natural THC metabolite elimination.
  • CBD - The other well-known member on our list of cannabinoids, cannabidiol, is found in high concentrations in industrial hemp and is the active compound driving the resurgence of legal hemp products at the federal level. It has been approved in prescription strength Epidiolex for the treatment of some kinds of seizure, but users of non-prescription strength CBD attribute a host of benefits to it. While not all of these anecdotal stories are supported, there is plenty of evidence that it does have some therapeutic properties.
  • CBG - Cannabigerol is a parent cannabinoid. Other phytocannabinoids, like CBD, are synthesized from this compound in a series of chemical reactions.
  • CBN - Cannabinol is a mildly psychoactive compound that occurs as THC and its precursor, THCA, break down in the cannabis plant once exposed to air or ultraviolet lights.
  • CBT - This abbreviation is used to refer to two separate cannabinoids. Cannabitriol has been discovered, but there is no known research on its potential effects. Cannabicitran, on the other hand, showed a potential for decreasing intraocular pressure in a single study that is decades old with no research since, but it is useful as a marker during the analysis of cannabis, as it is the last identified phytocannabinoid to be retained in chromatography.

Further Research Is Needed

One thing we can be sure about is that the list of cannabinoids we’re aware of is incomplete. As new discoveries are made, we’ll do our best to bring you the facts about cannabis, what it does in your body, and how you can maintain your privacy with the help of Green Gone Detox.

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