Terpene: Pulegone

Cannabis has been used for human consumption for centuries. Cannabis has been a source of food, fuel, paper, and building materials, a textile fiber, and a folk medicine remedy for thousands of years.

As the cannabis plant gains more notoriety for its medicinal uses, more research is proving what humans have known for thousands of years. Cannabis possesses healing properties which can aid in a patient’s overall healthcare routine. The entire cannabis plant has chemical compounds which are known to be beneficial to treat an assorement of physical and mental ailments. Science is proving that nature can provide the medications that humans need to improve their health.

Paduch, Kandefer-Szerszeń, Trytek and Fiedurek, in their article titled “Terpenes: Substances Useful in Human Healthcare,” established that “Terpenes are naturally occurring substances produced by a wide variety of plants and animals. A broad range of the biological properties of terpenoids is described, including cancer chemopreventive effects, antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral, antihyperglycemic, anti-inflammatory and antiparasitic activities.”

According to P.M. Dewick in Medicinal Natural Products: A Biosynthetic Approach. 2nd. Edition (2001): Medicinal plants contain a variety of bioactive compounds such as terpenes, which are composed of essential oils.

Hundreds, if not more, essential oils have been used for centuries in folk remedies. This is due in part to their antibacterial properties.

This article in PPAR Research, an indexed science citation journal, states that “terpenoids constitute one of the largest families of natural products accounting for more than 40,000 individual compounds of both primary and secondary metabolisms. In particular, terpenoids are contained in many herbal plants, and several terpenoids have been shown to be available for pharmaceutical applications. Various terpenoids are contained in many plants for not only herbal use, but also dietary use.

This study concluded that “daily [ingestion] of these terpenoids might be useful for the management for obesity-induced metabolic disorders, such as type 2 diabetes, hyperlipidemia, insulin resistance and cardiovascular diseases.

The healing cannabis plant is most notably known for the compounds THC and CBD. As researchers dive into the depths of the cannabinoid system it is becoming clear that cannabis terpenes are just as vital to a plant’s efficacy as are THC and CBD. Many terpenes exist within the same cannabis plant thus proving the efficacy of the entire plant. As more research and cannabis quality testing is performed, pulegone is likely to become recognized as one of the most beneficial terpenes.

Pulegone naturally occurs in cannabis, however it is typically found to be in smaller amounts within the plant.

Pulegone is a minty tasting naturally occurring organic compound found in cornmint, orange mint, peppermint and spearmint. It is also naturally occuring in Rosemary and Pennyroyal. Pulegone does have expectorant properties as well. Within other industries, it is used as a flavor enhancer.