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January 22, 2021

THCa Cannabinoid. What is it, How to Use it, Benefits of THCa

THCa is a cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant. It is a precursor of THC, which offers psychoactive effects.

Is THCa Psychoactive? THCa vs CBD. THCa vs THC.

THCa or tetrahydrocannabinolic acid is a non-psychoactive compound which turns into THC when heated and is thus responsible for the potential high feeling. It is rarely used in its pure form, although it has been reported to help with a number of ailments.

THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol is the main provider of psychoactive effects. It is also known or reported to help with a wide range of symptoms.

CBD or Cannabidiol is one of the most used cannabinoids, with no psychoactive effects. It is one of the most studied cannabinoids, and it has shown its benefits - proven and potential - in helping with a great variety of ailments. 

When heated, THCa turns into the intoxicating THC through the process known as decarboxylation. Thus, lab test results on the product label will often show either THC (calculated by the testing company) or THCa. The latter is often the case with concentrates and flower, and when you are asking “What’s the highest THC flower you have?” you are actually asking about THCa.

If you want to understand the THC percentage but only have the THCa numbers, you can convert it by using this simple formula:

THCa x 0,877 = THC

In other words, we use the conversion rate for THCa into THC of about 88%. 

What Are the Benefits of THCa?

THCa has not been studied as much as its more popular fellow components THC and CBD, but preliminary research has already revealed great potential.

THCa has been found to show potential in help with or effecting the following:

- Weight Loss

- Inflammation

- Nausea

- Insomnia

- Muscle Spasms

- Joint Ache

- Neurodegenerative Diseases

- Immune System Modulation

- Alzheimer’s 

- Epilepsy

- Anti-Proliferation (cell growth inhibition observed in cases of prostate cancer)


With legalization and decriminalization of cannabis laws and further realization of the potential benefits of cannabinoids, we are likely to see more definitive results as to the effects and benefits of THCa in the near future. 

Is THCa Illegal? Does THCa Show Up on Drug Test?

As a non-psychoactive cannabinoid, THCA is not scheduled under the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances. 

But legally THCA could be considered an analog of THC and treated as such in accordance with the law.

In practice, because THCA spontaneously decarboxylates to form THC, no real sample of purified THCA will be completely free of THC. Any laboratory analysis of THCA using any technique involving significant heat will generate THC in the handling and analytical process, according to Wikipedia.

What Products are High in THCa? What Are THCa Diamonds?

Flower, especially raw, is extremely rich in THCa. As the plant dries this content decreases, and with decarboxylation through heating it simply turns into THC. Thus, grinding the plant and adding it to your food or juicing it is a great way to get your hands on THCa.

There are various products on the market focused on bringing THCa to customers in a convenient form but not too many of them. There is a transdermal patch from Mary’s Medicinals and some vendors also offer THCa in tinctures and oil. 

There are of course the ever popular THCa crystals or crystalline, which are extremely pure (over 99.9%) but they are meant for dabbing, i.e. turning it into THC.

In Conclusion

THCa has a huge potential in terms of health benefits, and with the growing interest in it, as well as medical properties of cannabis on the whole, we are bound to hear more on this exciting cannabinoid and its properties.

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