Tetrahydrocannabivarin, also known as THCV, is becoming more popular among THC isomers currently being mass-produced. This cannabinoid is a not-too-distant cousin of THC and is found in trace amounts in most cannabis and hemp strains. It has been nicknamed “diet weed” or “weederall” for its appetite-curbing and energy-boosting properties.
THCV is most abundant in Sativa strains, mainly those descended from Africa. Growers have even begun exploring methods and lineages that result in higher THCV yields. In low doses, THCV is non-intoxicating, but at higher doses, it can behave much like THC, so it does have the ability to make you feel high.
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While THCV is still understudied, there have been some studies around THCV’s effects on suppression of appetite, diabetes, anxiety, Alzheimer’s, inflammation, and bone growth.
The theory behind the concept of appetite suppression is that THCV can block the CB1 receptor, which is well known to stimulate appetite. Research shows promise in THCV’s ability to regulate blood sugar levels and reduce insulin resistance. In rodent studies, THCV decreases appetite, increases satiety, and boosts metabolic function, making it a clinically useful remedy for weight loss and management of obesity and type two diabetes. When it comes to mental health, THCV has the potential to curb anxiety attacks in PTSD patients without suppressing emotion.
Exploration in human effects is still in very early stages, as any research up until this point has been done on rodents and other small animals. Inquiries are in progress to monitor THCV’s assistance in improving tremors, motor control, and brain lesions associated with Alzheimer’s. Since some THCV research has shown to promote the growth of new bone cells, it’s being further studies for osteoporosis and other bone-related conditions.
Additional findings are needed to test theories on THCV’s potential to reduce seizures, regulate emotional reactions to food, reduce cravings for addictive substances, and treating a variety of mental illnesses.
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