What is THCV?

I keep hearing that THCV in cannabis can suppress my appetite. What is it?

Angela W.

What is THCV? THCV, or tetrahydrocannabivarin, is a cannabinoid found in marijuana that is quickly becoming famous for its appetite-suppressing effects. THCV produces the opposite effects of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and its unique benefits are making it known as the “weight loss” cannabinoid. To be clear, THCV doesn’t directly cause weight loss. But its appetite-suppressing and energy-inducing qualities could inspire you to eat less and exercise more.

Wonder how it works? THCV blocks the CB1 receptor. That’s the same receptor that THC stimulates to increase appetite and causes the “munchies.” Blocking the CB1 receptor suppresses your appetite and can increase energy and focus while relieving stress. Multiple studies show how THCV works with the endocannabinoid system to suppress appetite.

The Research:

A study published by the British Journal of Pharmacology concluded that THCV is a potential treatment for obesity after it caused appetite reduction and weight loss in animals. Another study on THCV published in the Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology discovered that it puts the brain in Executive Control (EC) versus Default Mode Network (DMN). This cognitive change makes you more conscious of your choices, so you choose vegetables and whole foods over sugary and fatty snacks, take more walks and make plans with friends. These types of daily changes in behavior lead to long-lasting weight loss results.

THCV also affects metabolism and the way we process food. The study in the Journal of Hepatology found that THCV and CBD reduce lipid levels, increase metabolism, and increase insulin sensitivity. The study suggests THCV and CBD as potential treatments for diabetes and obesity-related conditions.

If you want to find THCV for yourself, it’s not very common. Cannabis growers have not been cultivating cannabis with high levels of the cannabinoid, and few strains have a higher percentage of THCV, Durban Poison being one of them. As more people find out about its benefits, that may change.

Brands to look for:

Some cannabis brands are maximizing the unique properties of THCV. Woman-owned company Wana Brands just released the Wana Optimals Fit THCV gummies designed to support weight loss management. The clear-headed and focused effects of THCV and CBD are meant to help break unhealthy eating habits. Gummies are easy to add to a daily routine; these are fast-acting and not intoxicating. Eat one at the beginning of the day, or anytime you need support in making healthier choices. The Wana Optimals Fit gummies are available in Colorado but should be available in other cannabis markets soon.

THCV is non-intoxicating, so you won’t get high like you will with THC. It doesn’t cause anxiety but instead relieves stress and promotes relaxation. THCV’s only real “negative” side-effect is that some people find it gives them too much energy to fall asleep. Overall, THCV is an exciting cannabinoid that we will be seeing a more of in the future because of its unique benefits.

Sharon O.

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