THCA vs THCV: What’s the Difference?

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Delta-9 THCA
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Table Of Contents

There are so many different cannabinoids contained in hemp and cannabis plants that it can be really hard to keep track of. Two cannabinoids that most people probably don't know too much about are THCA and THCV.

These are both naturally occurring cannabinoids that can be found in hemp or cannabis plants. Today, we are here to do a side-by-side comparison of THCA and THCV to figure out what they're all about.

However, before we do a comparison, we're going to take a look at these two cannabinoids individually to figure out exactly what they have in store for you. What are these cannabinoids? How are these cannabinoids made? What are their benefits and effects? We will answer these questions and more below.

Key Takeaways

  • THCV may be slightly intoxicating, but is only 25% as potent as Delta-9 THC.
  • THCA is the precursor to Delta-9 THC, but will not get you high if not decarboxylated.
  • Although both cannabinoids should not be very intoxicating, they do have a variety of potential medical benefits worth exploring.

What is THCV?

THCV stands for Tetrahydrocannabivarin, and this is a very rare form of THC. Although THCV and THC have many similarities in terms of molecular structure, their properties are very different. This is a cannabinoid that can only be found in Sativa landrace strains, for the most part, and it's quite rare to come across. One important note is that the parent molecule of THCV is CBGVA or cannabigerovarinic acid.

THCV products are made from hemp plants, with a process known as chromatography being used to separate the various compounds in the plants, which allows for the extraction of THCV. Unlike some other cannabinoids and compounds out there, THCV does not turn into THC no matter what you might do to it. Furthermore, unless it is taken in very high doses, THCV will likely not produce any psychoactive effects whatsoever.

How is THCV Made?

THCV is a naturally occurring cannabinoid, not a synthetic or man-made one, therefore it's technically not made but extracted. A process known as chromatography helps to separate the different components or constituents of the plant, and this is based on their molecular weight.

This, therefore, helps scientists extract THCV directly from the hemp plant. However, this cannabinoid is generally present in very small quantities, which makes the process lengthy and somewhat difficult.

Benefits of THCV

So, if this particular cannabinoid won't get you high, why would you bother consuming it? One of the biggest benefits that THCV might have is that it may act as an appetite suppressant, unlike many other cannabinoids that stimulate your appetite. It is not 100% known why this is the case, but it is assumed that THCV may block CB1 receptors, which therefore helped to prevent appetite stimulation. THCV may directly result in decreased food cravings.

It is also thought that THCV may act as both an analgesic and an anti-inflammatory agent, which means that it may be able to help relieve inflammation and pain. Although this has not been confirmed 100%, it is thought that THCV may be able to help regulate blood sugar levels. It may be able to help reduce your glucose intolerance, plus it may also be able to help restore insulin signaling, therefore improving your insulin sensitivity.

This therefore may be able to help improve your overall health in terms of blood sugar levels. Although also not 100% confirmed, some research indicates that THCV may have the ability to help stimulate the production of collagen, which would therefore help increase bone strength, and may be able to help increase skin health as well.

Effects of THCV

Unless it is taken in extremely high doses, THCV is not psychoactive or intoxicating, and really should not get you high. However, THCV is a mild stimulant.

One could compare it to a mild Sativa high, without any of the psychoactive effects. There may be some extremely slight intoxicating or psychoactive effects, mainly characterized by euphoria, although these are very short lasting, and it takes a lot of THCV to feel this in the first place.

In other words, THCV may make you feel a bit talkative, energetic, uplifted, and stimulated, but without impairing your cognitive abilities or motor skills. It's almost like drinking a coffee, but without the crash that you get from caffeine. That said, it will not get you high like regular THC.

How Strong is THCV?

THCV is not very strong at all. Sure, it has many potential medical benefits, but it's just not very strong in terms of how high it can get you. It is thought that THCV is up to 25% as strong as regular Delta-9 THC.

Why Take THCV – Best Uses for THCV

There are a few reasons why you might want to try taking THCV, with a bit of energy being one of them. Simply put, if you need something a bit stimulating and uplifting, kind of like a cup of coffee without the caffeine crash, then THCV is something worth trying. Furthermore, if you are trying to reduce food cravings and food intake, the appetite-suppressing benefits of THCV may work to your benefit.

These potential benefits have not yet been 100% confirmed, but it is thought that THCV may be able to help regulate blood sugar levels and increase collagen production. As studies continue, further articles on the benefits of THCA become available to the public. If you think that either of these benefits may serve you, then THCV is something worth trying.

Of course, it may also act as a mild anti-inflammatory or analgesic painkiller, although regular THC, as well as other cannabinoids, are probably better bets on these fronts.

What is THCA?

THCA is also known as tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, and this is the precursor to regular THC, Delta- 9 THC. This is the acidic compound or cannabinoid that you can find in raw or unheated cannabis.

When heat is applied to THCA, which is otherwise known as the decarboxylation process, which results in the loss of the carboxyl group and the conversion from its acidic form, it turns into regular Delta- 9 THC.

THCA is far more closely related to regular THC than THCV. This is a naturally occurring cannabinoid that can be found in many hemp and cannabis plants. At the same time, it is also generally non-intoxicating and non-psychoactive.

How is THCA Made?

Just like with THCV, THCA is also a naturally occurring cannabinoid, so it is not man-made or synthesized. This means that it is not made at all, but rather extracted from cannabis plants. That chromatography process is used to extract THCA from hemp plants, just like it is also used to extract THCV.

Benefits of THCA

The benefits of THCA are quite different from those of THCV. First, some studies indicate that THCA may have the ability to help slow down the degradation of the brain and help prevent neurodegenerative diseases. In an experiment conducted on mice, it was found that THCA was potentially able to help protect the brain cells from cell death due to a neurotoxin known as MPP.

Some studies indicate that THCA may be able to help protect the brain from cytotoxicity. This may therefore help protect the brain from developing various neurodegenerative issues, such as Huntington's disease, and may also be able to help reduce or control symptoms for people who already suffer from such neurodegenerative diseases.

The other big potential benefit of THCA is that it may act as an anti-inflammatory agent. In other words, it may be able to help prevent your body from producing prostaglandins, which are lipid compounds that can lead to inflammation. Therefore, THCA may be able to help reduce inflammation in your body, potentially also helping to reduce pain.

Effects of THCA

Although THCA does have a variety of potential benefits for the human mind and body, it does not actually have any effects in terms of being psychoactive. THCA is not psychoactive at all and will not get you high in any way.

Although, if properly decarboxylated (which means that it is heated up), THCA will convert into THC, which can get you high. Therefore, if you want to reap the potential benefits of THCA, you need to find a way to consume it raw without heating it and decarboxylating it.

How Strong is THCA?

Exactly how strong THCA is in terms of its medical benefits is not yet known at this time, although if we are talking about psychoactivity, it is not strong at all. If we were to compare it to Delta-9 THC in terms of psychoactivity, it would be about 0% as strong.

Why Take THCA—Best Uses for THCA

If you like the potential neuroprotective benefits of THCA and you also like having some inflammation and pain relief, then THCA is something to consider.

Difference Between THCA and THCV

Let's now take a look at the main differences between THCA and THCV. Although we don't list this below, one of the biggest differences is of course in terms of the molecular structure. If you were to examine both of the molecules for these cannabinoids, they look quite different.

THCV is a totally different compound from regular THC. On the other hand, THCA is the acidic precursor to Delta-THC. The differences in the molecular structure are what lead to the other differences discussed below.

Chemical Nature Precursor to Delta-9 THC, non-psychoactive in its raw form A rare form of THC, distinct in molecular structure from THC
Psychoactivity Non-intoxicating and non-psychoactive unless decarboxylated (heated) Mildly intoxicating in very high doses, about 25% as potent as Delta-9 THC
Occurrence Found in raw or unheated cannabis Found mostly in Sativa landrace strains
Extraction Extracted from cannabis plants using chromatography Extracted from hemp plants, also using chromatography
Potential Benefits May have anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties May act as an appetite suppressant, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and potentially regulate blood sugar levels and stimulate collagen production
Effects No psychoactive effects in its raw form Mild stimulation, energy boost, and euphoria in high doses, without significant impairment
Usage Consumed raw for its potential benefits Used for mild stimulation and potential health benefits

THCA vs THCV Potency

One of the biggest differences here is in terms of potency. In terms of psychoactivity, THCV is said to be around 25% as potent as Delta-9 THC, if not less. This means that when consumed in very high quantities, THCV may still get you a little high. On the other hand, THCA is even far less potent or technically speaking, not potent at all. It is not intoxicating or psychoactive in any way and will not get you high.

THCA vs THCV Effects

THCV, when smoked or consumed in any other way, may produce a very short-lived and mild psychoactive high characterized by mild euphoria. Although, unless consumed in very high quantities, you probably won't feel much from THCV at all, at least not in terms of being high.

It might give you a bit of stimulation and make you feel energetic and uplifted, but it won't impair you. THCA, on the other hand, produces even fewer effects. Unless you decarboxylate it to turn it into Delta-9 THC, you will not feel anything from THCA at all, especially not in terms of being high.

THCA vs THCV Benefits

As you can see from above, the benefits that you get from both of these cannabinoids are a bit different as well. THCA is thought to be an anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective agent.

On the other hand, THCV is thought to be a mild stimulant, an analgesic and anti-inflammatory agent, an appetite suppressant, and potentially even a blood sugar regulator and collagen production stimulator.

Where to Buy THCV Online

If you are looking to buy some THCV online, then right here at botany Farms is the best place to be. One of our most popular products is this Pink Panther THCV Live Resin + Delta- 8 THC Vape Cartridge. It tastes really nice, and thanks to the addition of Delta- 8 THC, it still has psychoactive effects.

Final Thoughts

Although both THCA and THCV are not the number-one choices if you actually want to get stoned, they do have certain benefits. The benefits that these cannabinoids contain are definitely worth checking out further!

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A man is holding a lit joint in his hand while standing in a mountain valley
A man is holding a lit joint in his hand while standing in a mountain valley