How Much Does THC Matter in Marijuana Flower? High Vs. Low THC Cannabis
With smokable flower being added to Louisiana dispensaries, 2022 will be an eventful year for medical marijuana in the Creole state.
Registered medical marijuana patients in Louisiana will have the opportunity to use cannabis flower in a variety of ways, and whether baking or smoking, there is sure to be a large range of strains to choose from.
In choosing the right strain, one question that frequently comes up is the difference between cannabis flower with a high THC content, and cannabis flower with lower THC contents.
While this can play a role in deciding which strain to purchase, in many cases there are other factors that will play a more significant role in getting the right cannabis strain for you.
In this article, we’ll discuss what the differences are between high THC cannabis flower and low THC cannabis flower, and how to choose between them!
What is High or Low THC Cannabis Flower?
Defining High and Low THC Cannabis
While “high THC” or “low THC” can be a very subjective thing depending on your location,
the strains in question, and personal tolerance, there are some averages we can use to define high or low THC flower.
High THC flower typically consists of a total THC content around or above 25%.
Low THC flower usually has a total THC content below 25%, often below 20%.
Some cannabis flower may be as high as 35%-40% total THC, and some cannabis flower
may be as low as 7%-12% total THC.
For the purposes of this article, we will be discussing total THC content, which is different from THCA content.
How to Determine the Total THC Content of Cannabis Flower
Different States list THC Content in Different Ways
Some states may not list the total THC content, instead opting for the THC percentage in addition to the THCA percentage.
It’s not until the acid is converted into Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which occurs when combusting (smoking) or decarboxylating (baking) the flower, that it begins to contain psychoactive properties.
Thus, it’s important to derive the total THC content, which is sometimes not listed alongside the THC and THCA content.
To determine the total THC content, you only need to use a simple formula:
THCA content + Delta9-THC content x 0.877 = Total THC content
The 0.877 accounts for the change in molecular weight when THCA is converted into THC.
By adding the THCA content to the Delta-9-THC content and multiplying by 0.877, you’ll be able to accurately determine the total THC content of the cannabis flower.
Why THC Content Matters, and Why it Doesn’t
THC is Only Part of the Story
The differences between high or low THC content flower typically represent higher or lower values of psychoactive properties and inebriation. The tricky difference is that high or low THC content does not necessarily change the effects of the strain, but instead influences the potency of its perceived strength.
In other words, higher THC content can certainly feel much more potent psychoactively, but the actual potency of the flower is determined by a combination of factors, rather than just THC content alone.
Just as the difference between an indica dominant strain or sativa dominant strain can play a more significant role than THC, so can many other combinations of cannabinoids and terpenes.
Compounds in Cannabis that Determine Effects
THC is an important cannabinoid for the cannabis plant, and it offers a range of therapeutic properties, but it is not the sole contributor to health benefits. Other cannabinoids and compounds offer an extraordinary number of potential health benefits, such as CBD, CBN, CBG, and terpenes.
Terpenes also play a significant role in determining the aroma and taste of cannabis, and they contain many therapeutic properties.
CBD, CBN, and CBG, represent a range of cannabinoids that have many independent benefits, and some are even psychoactive alongside THC, furthering the potency of the cannabis flower regardless of its total THC content.
The Entourage Effect Matters
The process of all these parts of the cannabis plant working together is called the entourage effect, and it represents the most significant factor when choosing a cannabis strain.
How the cannabinoids and terpenes interact with each other in a single cannabis strain can make for unique mixtures of compounds that can work alongside each other to target very specific problems such as inflammation, pain, or nausea.
THC is only one compound, and it represents the primary psychoactive effects of cannabis—but it doesn’t do its job alone. When other compounds are concentrated more effectively, it plays a secondary role to the combination of other cannabinoids.
Is High or Low THC Flower Better?
The Benefits of High THC Flower
While THC content is not the ultimate factor to choose a cannabis strain on, it certainly does play a part in the decision making. High THC flower can be great for certain reasons, and it should be avoided for other reasons.
And while finding the most potent cannabis flower will require more information than just THC content, a high THC cannabis flower can certainly make a difference in perceived effects.
Especially for those with high tolerances, high THC cannabis flower can be the difference between using a little or a lot of flower, and it can also make a difference in the duration of the experience.
Higher THC cannabis flower is also looked for by those who are looking for the strongest psychoactive effects, such as those with PTSD or depression.
The Negatives of High THC Flower
On the flipside, higher THC contents can sometimes cause heightened anxiety, and that’s especially true for patients with little or no tolerance to cannabis. As a result, newer patients should use caution when experimenting with high THC cannabis flower as its effects can be quite overwhelming, and in some cases, temporarily debilitating.
Another negative side to using high THC cannabis flower is in how fast you develop a tolerance for THC. Using high THC cannabis flower will lead to a higher tolerance quicker than slowly moving up the ladder of THC content, and consequently will make lower THC cannabis flower seem less effective.
This can easily be reversed by taking a tolerance break or alternating cannabis products, but it is a factor that patients should be aware of.
How to Choose Between High and Low THC Cannabis Flower
Putting it All Together
Taking the total THC content into consideration is an important factor in determining the right cannabis strain for you. As mentioned, identifying the concentration of terpenes and other cannabinoids in a cannabis strain likely plays a more significant role in how a strain will benefit you medically.
But taking THC into consideration is also an important factor, as you’ll want to be able to judge how potent a strain will be overall, preventing you from using a dosage that is too high or too low.
Each Cannabis Strain is Different
Another important note is that you can always use more cannabis, but you can’t get off the ride once you’re on it. If you’re unfamiliar with cannabis or see yourself as a beginner with cannabis, it’s best to remain on the lower side of the THC scale until you’ve built familiarity and tolerance with the plant.
Each cannabis strain can have extremely different effects, and as such it is critical to build a relationship with how the cannabis plant will interact with your unique biology.
Part of the fun in using cannabis medicinally is the opportunity to experiment with different strains, THC levels, and product types. You may have to experiment a little to determine what THC level is best for you, and that sometimes changes over time.
Louisiana will likely offer a wide variety of cannabis flower strains in 2022, and with a Louisiana medical marijuana certification you are free to choose from any of them that you like!
Get Your Louisiana Medical Marijuana Certification
Louisiana will offer many different cannabis flower strains in 2022, and to get access to cannabis flower you need to be a registered medical marijuana patient in Louisiana.
Louisiana Marijuana Card makes getting a medical marijuana certification simple and stress-free, and you can even get certified online for ease of use and convenience.
For questions about Louisiana’s medical marijuana program, or how to become a medical marijuana patient in Louisiana, consult with one of our trusted doctors and book an online medical marijuana appointment today!
Doctors Who Care.
Relief You Can Trust.
At Louisiana Marijuana Card, our mission is helping everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce the stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.
Call us at (833) 253-2943, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!
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