Terpenes are the medicinal molecules extracted from essential oils.
Their healing properties for a variety of disease and conditions have been studied for centuries. Terpenes are non-psychoactive, pungent hydrocarbons.
Terpenes can not only relieve chronic targeted pain, inflammation and muscle tension, they can be a very relevant alternative to anxiety and depression medications.
As examples: limonene is a strong anxiolytic (drug used to reduce anxiety), is active against bacteria associated with acne and can induce the suicide of cancer cells, b-caryophyllene is a non psychoactive anti-inflammatory via CB2 binding, b-myrcene is a sedating muscle relaxant anti-inflammatory and a-pinene is an antimicrobial and more importantly acts as an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor which may aid in memory loss associated with several human neurological diseases.
From a pharmacological standpoint, terpenes are highly evolved lipophilic molecules that can interact with other lipophilic structures like membranes and the many embedded receptors that reside there, resulting in neurological responses, the detection of odors, and downstream enzymatic changes. Terpenes’ lipophilic (hydrophobic) nature also gives them the unique ability to permeate skin.
Remarkably, terpenes are potent even when inhaled in ambient air and can subsequently be detected at quantifiable levels in your serum.