What is THCV? Everything you need to know

THCV has the potential to be a powerful tool in your wellness arsenal.
What is THCV? Everything you need to know
minute read

There are over 100 cannabinoids in the hemp plant, and many of them have the potential to enhance your wellness. CBD is well known and loved by many, but it’s far from the only cannabinoid with the power to provide holistic support to your body. 

Cannabinoids like THCV may provide benefits that can help you maintain a healthy weight. Learn about THCV and its potential power to reduce food cravings.* 

What is THCV?

THCV stands for tetrahydrocannabivarin, and it’s a naturally occurring plant cannabinoid within the family of cannabis plants, including hemp. Plant-based compounds like THCV can interact with the cannabinoid receptors in your body to produce specific effects or provide holistic support to many systems within your body.* 

THCV has been extensively studied for its ability to modulate appetite and satiety cues, as well as its ability to impact insulin sensitivity.* Your body releases and receives chemical messengers called neurotransmitters all the time. These chemical messengers can tell you when you’re hungry and when you’re full. THCV may support proper hunger signals and fullness signals. 

Are THC and THCV the same thing?

Delta-9 THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is a psychoactive cannabinoid that’s tightly controlled and heavily regulated because it produces psychoactive effects. THCV is a propyl analog of THC, which is a fancy way of saying that it’s a similar and closely related cannabinoid that is capable of producing completely different effects. 

They’re in the same familybut they aren’t twins. 

THCV isn’t known to produce any significant psychoactive effects. THCV can bind to the receptors of your brain, but it doesn’t change the way you experience sensations as delta-9 THC does. The effects of THCV will likely leave you feeling clearheaded, alert, and most definitely non-intoxicated.*

How is THCV different from THCA?

THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid) and THC are technically the same cannabinoid at different stages. THCA is called a precursor cannabinoid. Cannabinoids have a naturally occurring group of carboxylic plant acids attached to them, and these acids are removed in a process called decarboxylation. Decarboxylation uses heat to burn away the acid group, which converts THCA to THC. 

Although THCV has a similar chemical structure to THC, it is a different cannabinoid entirely. It’s not a stage of THC like THCA or CBN (cannabinol). It interacts with your body in a different way and is capable of producing a unique set of effects and benefits that differs significantly from the effects of THCA or THC.*

How does THCV work in the body?

Your body uses your endocannabinoid system to receive input and stimulation from cannabinoids. You naturally produce some of your own cannabinoids, called endogenous cannabinoids, to stimulate this system. Cannabinoids derived from plants can also interact with your endocannabinoid system, and each cannabinoid works uniquely.* 

Cannabinoids primarily work with two types of cannabinoid receptors: CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors. Cannabinoids like CBD will stimulate these receptors without binding to them, which encourages them to perform their natural functions. Contradicting, THC binds to these receptors and changes the way they work, creating euphoric feelings that alter your perception of reality.* 

THCV binds to these receptors, specifically preferring the CB1 receptor. The CB1 receptor plays a role in regulating appetite. When THC binds to CB1 receptors, it may cause feelings of hunger (also known as “the munchies”) by ramping up CB1’s ability to signal hunger cues.* 

Rather than enhancing or modifying messaging from the CB1 receptor, THCV partially blocks it. When the receptor is blocked, its ability to send hunger signals is reduced. The effects of THCV can essentially act as an appetite suppressant. This can potentially lead to you feeling generally less hungry and may lead to you feeling full slightly faster.*

What are the benefits of THCV?

THCV has very unique potential as a wellness cannabinoid.* Here are some of the potential benefits from incorporating this cannabinoid into your daily wellness routine: 

May support feelings of alertness

When THCV binds to CB1 receptors in the brain, it can help to boost alertness. Some people describe this feeling as enhanced focus or increased creativity. It isn’t a very jarring stimulant effect like you might experience from a few shots of espresso or an energy drink. THCV may have a gentle, uplifting effect that makes paying attention to the task at hand easier.*

May help support feelings of motivation

Some cannabinoids, like CBD, can have relaxing effects. On the contrary, THCV is thought to have stimulating effects. When you’re feeling alert, it’s easier to get motivated. The energizing effects of THCV may inspire you to get up off the couch and head straight for your to-do list. 

If you’re on a personal wellness journey, motivation is very important. You don’t need to feel motivated to change every single aspect of your life all at once. It’s nearly impossible to rapidly transition from a sedentary lifestyle to a highly active lifestyle overnight. It’s all about small, sustainable strides toward accomplishing your goals and finding a balance that feels right to you. 

You may want to get up and take a 20-minute walk after breakfast, but you need to feel motivated enough to commit to the idea. A little boost of THCV may inspire you to stick to the plan. As your health and fitness journey progresses, you may want to turn your 20-minute walk into a 30-minute walk. Getting motivated and staying motivated are the keys to progress and continual success.* 

May support weight loss efforts

THCV products are sometimes referred to as “diet weed” for their mild appetite-suppressant effects. THCV may help reduce cravings, which can assist you in the efforts you undertake to improve your health.* 

THCV won’t do all the work for you. It can’t replace proper diet and exercise, but it may play a role in helping you adhere to proper portion control if you have a tendency to overeat. If you feel less hungry and feel full sooner, it’s less tempting to eat more than your body needs to maintain a healthy weight. 

Anything that can help you achieve your wellness goals may be worth trying. If the appetite-suppressant effects of THCV can play a valuable role in your wellness journey, it’s worth consulting your doctor about incorporating THCV into your holistic wellness routine.* 

How can I start using THCV?

You can start using THCV as a part of your daily wellness routine. THCV cannabis products can have energizing effects, so it’s best to use them earlier in the day. It may not be ideal to experience these energizing effects at night when your body is attempting to wind down.* 

THCV is a great way to start your morning. You can use your THCV about 30 minutes before breakfast. This little heads-up will give THCV’s potential appetite suppressant effects enough time to begin working before you eat breakfast. You may find that you feel full sooner or that it’s easier to feel satiated from a smaller portion.* 

You can use THCV in whichever form works best for you. If you already use supplements in the morning, THCV soft gels are an easy choice. You can place the soft gel capsules into your supplement organizer to simplify your morning routine. THCV also comes in gummy form and oil tincture form. You might find gummies more appealing if you don’t like swallowing soft gels. 

At Sunmed, we use secondary ingredients to pair with our THCV formulas, like turmeric and apple cider vinegar, for the most well-rounded wellness experience for our customers.  

The bottom line

There’s still a lot of research to be done in the area of medical cannabis—and things may move slowly, but researchers are making steady strides to uncover the potential therapeutic benefits of minor cannabinoids like THCV. THCV may be valuable to you if you’re on a wellness journey, especially if losing weight may improve your health. 

While THCV can be a valuable aid in your weight loss journey, it’s important to remember that there is no magic pill. You’ll need to make meaningful changes in your daily diet and exercise routine to see significant results. THCV may make some of these changes easier with its potential to reduce appetite, increase satiety, and inspire motivation. 

Sunmed’s collection of expertly formulated, safe, and natural THCV cannabinoid products can become an important part of your daily wellness routine. Shop the collection here


The cannabinoid Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) ameliorates insulin sensitivity in two mouse models of obesity | Nutrition & Diabetes

The effects of cannabinoids on the brain | PubMed | NIH

The endocannabinoid system: Essential and mysterious | Harvard Health

Are cannabidiol and Δ9-tetrahydrocannabivarin negative modulators of the endocannabinoid system? A systematic review | NCBI

Tetrahydrocannabivarin | C19H26O2 | PubChem

Therapeutic Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids | NCBI