.Expand 4/20:T HCV is almost an anti-weed

Looking for a new way to enjoy 4/20 this year? Enter the cannabinoids! CBN, CBG, THCA, THCB, THCL, the list may never end.

THCA is one such cannabinoid.

Among the most abundant chemicals in the cannabis plant, THCA is what converts to THC when the plant is burned or otherwise “processed” with enough heat. Often found in tinctures and topicals—or in the lovely sleepy time olive oil emulsion I made last year that my buddy named “Teddy Bear” for how cozy you feel when you take it—THCA has many reported, although not quite scientifically, proven benefits. According to probably unreliable big-weed corporation Cresco Labs, THCA can increase appetite for anorexics; slow down cancer growth; treat multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and seizures (not clear what kind of the many seizures the Cresco Labs webpage on TCHA is referred to here); and reduce inflammation and pain.

What it won’t do is get you high. In my experience, it gets you something. Maybe we need a new word for not-quite high but feeling it. In higher concentrations like the THCA Protab by LEVEL, I’m not sure what the word should be. Not high, but I’m here to tell you, not straight either. I would definitely put it in the “do not operate heavy machinery” category.

TCHV is another, even less familiar cannabinoid to most.

THCV is almost an anti-weed. It is said to suppress appetite, improve focus and boost energy. Interestingly, it will reduce the psychoactive effects of THC at low concentrations and increase the effects of THC at high concentrations. I have yet to try THCV formulations, but I am super interested in accidentally amplifying that THC psychoactivity. Good times follow.

Please don’t get me wrong if I sound skeptical of some of the claims. I love the advancement of plant technology we are seeing in the market. It is such a long way from when I used to drive 45 minutes just to keep buying from the same weed guy for 10 years (whaddup Ant!). Now we can choose morning, afternoon, evening formulations in vapes, gummies, bevies and 39% THC flower.

It’s just that we don’t have the science yet to back up these claims. And when a publicly traded company makes claims about a product without adequate research to back it, we should really take it with a grain of salt. While this column is thrilled to support the cannabis renaissance, let’s still be smart. I’m here to be skeptical for you.

Elsewhere in this edition of East Bay Express, I had the honor of writing about some of the institutions and businesses that are creating a quality employment ecosystem around cannabis. I had sooo much material that I just couldn’t incorporate it into the feature article. So here are a couple of other thoughts from folks who have found their way to work in service of the plant.


“My new job satisfaction metric is the customer emails I receive—it feels pretty amazing to realize that something you created really makes a difference to someone’s health and well-being.”

Sarah Kotlova, founder and CMO of Impact Naturals, San Diego


“I’m lucky enough to work for a company that recognizes my strengths, compensates me fairly and always makes me feel supported at work. But with the cannabis industry being so new, and given the flooded market … there are quite a few grossly mismanaged businesses out there. Don’t be afraid to be selective. You don’t want to jump aboard a sinking ship.”  

Veronica White, Lux Pot Shop, Seattle


“Cannabis in California is a great place to start a new career because interest in the product and culture is at an all-time high and only increasing year over year. Being in California, we’re at ground zero for the cannabis industry worldwide. We set the trends and we have the history and the culture locally. 

Cannabis has every kind of career possibility: there’s need especially for people working in law and accounting, media and marketing, community relations, medical services and general consumer knowledge—all that apart from growing and selling weed directly.” 

Dan Wilson, editor, Visit Hollyweed, Los Angeles


Happy 4/20 everyone. Stay safe, stay high. If you have a wild 4/20 experience to share, write in. I’ll be sharing mine next week. If I survive.
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