What is THCV? Facts about this energizing, appetite suppressing rare cannabinoid

Have you heard of THCV but aren’t quite sure what it is?

The short answer is: THCV is a rare cannabinoid found in hemp, cannabis and some other plants. It is believed to have uplifting, energizing, appetite suppressing stimulant effects. It is also being studied for possible antipsychotic and neuroprotective effects as well as for use treating type 2 diabetes and stimulating bone growth.

Read on to learn about this extremely rare cannabinoid, its potential health and wellness benefits, where to buy THCV and how to take it.

An extremely rare cannabinoid

THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin) – not to be confused with psychoactive THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) – is a rare cannabinoid that naturally occurs in hemp and cannabis. A “rare” or “minor” cannabinoid is a chemical compound just like THC and CBD. However, unlike THC and CBD which occur in larger quantities, rare cannabinoids are rare because they are found in such small quantities.

THCV is especially rare. It is best known for being found in African landrace sativas and is the compound responsible for the energetic, stimulating effect one gets from them versus the sleepy, couch-lock feel of indicas. Whereas many cannabis flowers and THC oils promote hunger, THCV is well known for reportedly acting as an appetite suppressant. Although it’s believed to offer stimulating effects, THCV does not get one high like THC does.

This combination of potential energy and weight-loss promoting appetite control makes it a highly prized commodity.

But, it’s rarity made it extremely difficult to find and extract.

Hunting down THCV in Africa

Until recently, THCV was so rare that cannabis strain hunters traveled to Africa to source specific landrace strains high in THCV. VICE News followed the “Kings of Cannabis” Franco Loja and Arjan Roskum, to the Democratic Republic of Congo on a quest for these genetically unique strains. Landraces are unique as they have developed in their local, natural environments for decades or centuries without being inbred with other cannabis varieties.

On that trip, the strain hunters traveled in a hollowed-out canoe for two days and two nights through an area infested with malaria-ridden mosquitoes to find untouched wild cannabis plants. When they found the cannabis plants, they asked the local Congolese if they used it for medicine. But, highlighting the strain’s uplifting effect, the people living in the area told the strain hunters that they only used their cannabis plants as a recreational stimulant.

An in-depth scientific review of the cannabinoids found in Congo’s energizing, sativa landrace cannabis strains show that they contain 1% THCV. While that doesn’t sound significant, most other marijuana strains contain less than 0.2% THCV.

Sadly, highlighting the dangers of strain hunting, Franco Loja died of malaria on a subsequent expedition to the Congo at the age of 42 in 2017.

THCV now sold online and in stores

Over the last few years, science and technology have advanced at lightening speed. These biological and technological advances have allowed rare cannabinoids to be isolated and offered in products in much higher quantities than ever before.

Over the last year, CBN (cannabinol), CBG (cannabigerol) and CBC (cannabichromene) have appeared in higher quantities in CBD and THC oils and other products and are also being sold as pure extracts. THCV is now joining the line-up.

Cannabis flowers such as Durban Poison have a higher ratio of THCV than other flowers. But, Rare Cannabinoid Company is the first brand to offer pure THCV sublingual tinctures and one-to-one blends of THCV with full spectrum CBD oil. This is the first time pure THCV is sold online and in stores.

The precise dosing of Rare Cananbinoid Company’s offerings is ideal for those who want to see how THCV can effect their health and wellness.

THCV does not get one high like THC does. So, being able to take THCV alone or with a full spectrum CBD oil blend is better for those who with to receive the therapeutic wellness benefits of THCV without the psychoactive effects of THC.

According to Leafly, the world’s largest cannabis website, there are many potential health benefits of taking THCV. These include its possible effects on diabetes, anxiety attacks, Alzheimer’s, and bone growth. You can read the full Leafly article on THCV here.

How to take THCV

Rare Cannabinoid Company’s single extracts contain 500mg pure THCV in certified organic MCT coconut oil. The oil is naturally flavorless and it is recommended that it be mixed or taken in conjunction with a full or broad-spectrum CBD or THC oil so that one receives the full benefits of the entourage effect.

THCV Uplift
Rare Cannabinoid Company THCV Single Extract.

The bottles have spray caps for easy sublingual dosing without the risk of touching a dropper to one’s tongue.

Each spray contains 6.7mg THCV. One should shake the bottle and spray it under their tongue one to two times, hold it for 30 seconds and then swallow. This can be repeated up to two times a day or per a cannabis physician’s recommendations. Since THCV can have stimulant effects, it is better to take it in the daytime. It’s always ideal to list the days, times and quantities of any supplements one is taking and then write down any effects so that it can be reviewed and adjusted after a week or two of consumption.

For those who want a one-and-done, ready-made cannabinoid tincture capable of offering the entourage effect, Rare Cannabinoid Company’s THCV + CBD blend is a good option.

Full Spectrum THCV CBD Uplift
Rare Cannabinoid Company THCV-CBD blend.

Each 30ml bottle contains 250mg pure THCV and 250mg full spectrum CBD from organic Hawaiian hemp. Each spray contains 3.3mg THCV and 3.3mg CBD. The cannabinoids are suspended in certified organic MCT coconut oil and lightly flavored with organic good-grade Italian lemon and wild orange oils. It’s recommended that one take 1-3 sprays up to twice a day or as needed. Again, it’s best not to take it too close to bedtime. CBN (cannabinol) is a much better choice of cannabinoid for those who wish to promote relaxation and sleep along with their CBD regime.

It’s a very exciting time for the world of hemp and cannabis as more and more cannabinoids are discovered, studied and made available to the public. Rare Cannabinoid Company is pleased to be the first brand to offer THCV as well as CBN, CBG, CBC and Hawaiian CBD and looks forward to expanding the line-up as more cannabinoids become available.


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