In the world of terpenes, Limonene is a pretty big deal. We smell it frequently and it has a number of surprising properties.
Limonene has been historically used in medicine, so it should come as no surprise that the limonene found in cannabis offers therapeutic benefits as well. Some of these studied effects include:
May help relieve heartburn and gastric reflux
Improves absorption of other terpenes and chemicals by way of the skin, mucous membranes, and digestive tract
Strains High In Limonene
Whereas THC levels typically makes up 10 to 20 percent of a flower’s biomass, limonene occurs in more trace amounts – generally from none at all to 1 to 2 percent. Some strains exhibit higher levels of limonene than others, and these levels can vary widely across harvests depending on the growing and curing process. Strains well known for Limonene production include:
Super Lemon Haze
Uses and Effects Per WebMD
“Limonene is a chemical found in the peels of citrus fruits and in other plants. It is used to make medicine.
In foods, beverages, and chewing gum, limonene is used as a flavoring.
In pharmaceuticals, limonene is added to help medicinal ointments and creams penetrate the skin.
In manufacturing, limonene is used as a fragrance, cleaner (solvent), and as an ingredient in water-free hand cleansers.”
Limonene has antioxidant properties, allowing it to counteract the effects of free radicals, which damage DNA and lead to cancer [R, R]. As an antioxidant, limonene can prevent cell damage and reduce the risk of cancer.
Limonene increased the effectiveness of an anti-cancer treatment with docetaxel (Taxotere) against prostate cancer cells without harming healthy cells [R].
In an animal study, orange oil with limonene reduced the growth of liver tumors, while increased the growth of and new connections between normal cells [R].
Limonene also caused dose-dependent cell death in human stomach cancer cells [R].
In a pilot trial in patients with advanced cancer, limonene reduced the size of lymph nodes in a female breast cancer patient [R].
In another study of 43 women with breast cancer, limonene administered before surgery decreased cyclin D1, a protein that stimulates the growth of cancer cells [R].
Moreover, lemon extract prevented pancreatic and intestinal damage in mice caused by the chemotherapy drug cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan) [R].
In a study of 32 cancer patients, one patient with breast cancer and three with colorectal cancer were given limonene, which slowed tumor growth. However, side effects like nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea prevented them from taking high doses of limonene [R].
In rats, limonene reduced pain (induced by physical stresses) and sensitivity to pain [R].
Limonene reduced widespread pain in the bones and muscles of mice, likely by acting on nerves [R].
Inhaling limonene reduced pain severity in 63 women (out of 126 women in labor with similar levels of pain) [R].
Limonene as an aromatherapy agent reduced nausea, vomiting, and pain during the first stage of labor in a study (DB-RCT) of 100 pregnant women [R].
In the spectrum of active terpenes, Limonene is one of the most active. Possessing a remarkable range of healthful benefits, Limonene is one of the reasons cannabis is an excellent medicine.