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What Are Cannabinoids? The Ultimate List of Cannabinoids

January 23, 2024

What Are Cannabinoids? The Ultimate List of Cannabinoids

With the increased popularity of THC and CBD products, you’ve probably heard of “cannabinoids.” But what are cannabinoids, and what do they do?

THC is the most well-known cannabinoid. However, did you know that the cannabis plant contains over a hundred more cannabinoids? We continue discovering more as time passes, adding to a never-ending list.

We have assembled the most recent list of known cannabinoids in this article. We’ll review all you need to know about cannabinoids, including their benefits, types, and uses. We’ve also selected ten of our favorites. Knowing about them may enable you to begin looking for cannabis products that best match your needs.

What are Cannabinoids?

Cannabinoids are a class of chemical substances present in cannabis as well as other plants and animals. Depending on their type, dose, and consumption mode, they have various effects on the human body and mind. Some cannabinoids are psychoactive, meaning they can alter the user’s mood, perception, and cognition. Others are non-psychoactive, meaning they do not cause any noticeable changes in the user’s mental state. There are many different types of cannabinoids which we will discuss in the ultimate cannabinoids list in this article.

The Benefits of Cannabinoids

Cannabinoids can bring numerous benefits, though the exact benefits depend on the type of cannabinoid and the specific user. Cannabinoids interact with the human body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS), or the complex network of receptors and molecules that regulate many physiological and psychological processes. Cannabinoids can help various medical conditions.

Though everyone reacts to cannabinoids differently, some of the potential benefits include:

  • Relieving pain and inflammation

  • Reducing nausea and vomiting

  • Improving appetite and metabolism

  • Enhancing mood and well-being

  • Alleviating anxiety and depression

  • Protecting the brain and nervous system

  • Improving skin health and appearance

However, not all cannabinoids are beneficial or safe. Some synthetic cannabinoids are illegal and dangerous, as they can cause severe side effects. Therefore, it is essential to be aware of the different types of cannabinoids and their effects before using them.

Cannabinoid Types and Their Effects

Let’s go over some of the types of cannabinoids and the effects they can have on users.

Synthetic Cannabinoids

Synthetic cannabinoids are artificial substances that are designed to mimic the effects of natural cannabinoids. They are usually sprayed on dried herbs or sold as liquids or powders that can be smoked, vaped, or ingested. Synthetic cannabinoids are often marketed as “legal highs” or “herbal incense” under various brand names, such as Spice, K2, or Black Mamba.

Synthetic cannabinoids are not regulated or tested for safety or quality. They can vary widely in their potency and composition, making them risky. Due to a lack of regulation, some synthetic cannabinoids may contain other harmful substances, such as rat poison, pesticides, or heavy metals.

Some examples of known synthetic cannabinoids include:

  • JWH

  • HU-210

  • UR-144

  • 5F-ABD

These synthetic cannabinoids are dangerous and unpredictable and have been known to have adverse effects, such as seizures, heart problems, psychosis, and even death.


Phytocannabinoids are natural compounds that the cannabis plant and other plants produce. They are usually found in the resinous glands or trichomes of the cannabis plant. Phytocannabinoids can have various effects on the human body and mind, depending on their type, dose, mode of consumption, and interaction with other present cannabinoids.

Phytocannabinoids include traditional THC, CBD, and CBG, among others. These compounds naturally interact with receptors in the ECS to create psychological and physiological effects in the body.

Phytocannabinoids can be psychoactive, producing a drug-induced high (e.g., THC), or non-psychoactive with no cognitive effects (e.g., CBD). Unlike synthetic cannabinoids, many phytocannabinoids are thoroughly regulated, tested, and safe. However, they should always be obtained from reputable sources, like BaySmokes

Psychoactive Cannabinoid

Psychoactive cannabinoids can be natural or synthetic compounds that affect the brain and cause a high or euphoria. They can also alter the user’s mood, perception, and cognition. As mentioned, synthetic psychoactive cannabinoids are unregulated and dangerous to use. On the other hand, psychoactive phytocannabinoids (naturally occurring cannabinoids) are associated with bringing many benefits to one’s medical, mental, and emotional health. 

Psychoactive cannabinoids work by activating the CB1 receptors in the brain and nervous system, which mediate the effects of THC, the primary psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis. The main psychoactive cannabinoids in cannabis plants are THC, CBN, and THCV.

Psychoactive cannabinoids can have various positive effects, such as relaxation, happiness, enhanced creativity, increased appetite, reduced pain, and improved mood. However, the adverse effects of psychoactive cannabinoids can include anxiety, paranoia, impaired judgment and coordination, dry mouth, and dependence.

The Endocannabinoid System and Cannabinoids

The ECS is a complex network in the human body that assists with carrying out specific physiological and psychological processes. It consists of two main types of receptors: CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors affect the brain and nervous system, while CB2 receptors affect the immune and peripheral tissues.

The ECS also produces cannabinoids, called endocannabinoids, such as anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). These endocannabinoids act as neurotransmitters or messengers that bind to the cannabinoid receptors and modulate their activity. 

The ECS is involved in various functions, such as:

  • Pain, inflammation, and healing

  • Mood and emotional regulation

  • Appetite and metabolism

  • Memory and learning

  • Sleep and circadian rhythm

  • Immune function and response

Cannabinoids can activate or inhibit the cannabinoid receptors in the ECS, altering specific processes of the bodily system that result in noticeable physical or mental changes. Some cannabinoids can also interact with other receptors or enzymes related to the ECS, such as serotonin, dopamine, and GABA. These interactions in the ECS produce the positive and negative effects associated with marijuana use.

So, what do we know about certain cannabinoids for now? Here is a list of the top 10 significant cannabinoids, including a few of our favorites. 

Top 10 Cannabinoids 


THC, also known as delta-9tetrahydrocannabinol, is the most abundant and well-known psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis. It is responsible for most of the psychoactive effects of cannabis, such as euphoria, relaxation, creativity, appetite stimulation, pain relief, and more. It can also cause anxiety, paranoia, or other adverse effects in high doses or sensitive individuals. THC works by activating the CB1 receptors in the brain and nervous system.

This compound has been determined to be safe and effective for chronic pain. It has 20 times the strength in fighting inflammation, like aspirin, which can ease the pain. Medical marijuana shows promise in the treatment of the following conditions: 

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Nausea

  • Vomiting

  • Muscle spasms

  • A variety of neurologic disorders


Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, is the second most abundant cannabinoid in cannabis. It is non-psychoactive but can modulate the effects of THC by reducing its adverse side effects, such as anxiety, paranoia, and psychosis. It can also have various medicinal properties, such as anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, anti-depressant, and neuroprotective qualities. Cannabidiol can regulate pain by interacting with the brain cells. It can also influence dopamine receptors that help control behavior. 


Cannabigerol (CBG) is known as the “mother of all cannabinoids.” CBG is a precursor cannabinoid converted into other cannabinoids in the plant. It is non-psychoactive but also offers medicinal benefits, such as reducing inflammation and pain. CBG can also stimulate appetite, reduce intraocular pressure, and modulate mood. 

Both THC and CBD begin as CBG and are broken down into their final forms. It appears in minimal amounts of cannabis, typically less than 1%. 

Since it is rare, it must be properly extracted from the plant, which can be expensive. For this reason, CBG is not well-known and needs to be better known by CBD on the market today.

Here are some benefits:


Cannabichromene (CBC) is another abundant cannabinoid CBC that is derived from CBG-type cannabinoids. It is non-psychoactive and is often used for medical prescriptions. CBC works by interacting with various receptors and enzymes related to the ECS, enhancing the effects of other cannabinoids.

In some strains, it may even be found more commonly than in CBD. It is said that it could be helpful for pathophysiological conditions like:

  • Intestinal secretion

  • Mucosal inflammation

  • Visceral pain


Cannabinol (CBN) was the first cannabinoid to be uncovered. It has a mild psychoactive compound and can have sedative, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and anticonvulsant properties. CBN is not produced naturally but forms as THCA degrades in a plant due to age or exposure to light. Typically, recreational users don’t like CBN in their cannabis because it is an indication that the product is old and stale. Although it may not be ideal for a fun high, it can help you sleep better. 

It is said that when cannabinol is ingested, it can create a soothing effect that can be helpful for people with insomnia. It may also be potentially immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory. When combined with THC, it may significantly decrease levels of pain.


Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV) is similar to THC but has fewer carbon atoms. It can suppress hunger and increase energy expenditure, which is potentially helpful for weight loss or diabetes. It can also have anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. If you consume a strain high in THCV, you may experience a short, clear-headed psychoactive high that is high in energy. Intoxicating effects are very minor. 

Strains that are high in THCV can typically be found in India, Pakistan, China, Thailand, and Afghanistan. Some cannabis strains have THCV levels of 53% of total cannabinoids, which is relatively high. 

THCV is prohibited due to it being an analog of THC. However, it is not listed as a Schedule I drug at this time. 


Cannabidivarin (CBDV), like CBD, is non-intoxicating. It is found in strains that have a lot of CBD.

CBDV has more potent anti-inflammatory properties than CBD. It can also reduce nausea, pain, and inflammation.


Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) is not intoxicating like THC and is only found in raw cannabis. It comes from the resin concentrates and makes up 50% to 90% of the weight. The ‘A’ at the end signifies it as the acidic form of THC. When it is exposed to decarboxylation (i.e., heat), it turns into THC and gains psychoactive properties. 

Strains high in THC will also be high in THCA. The best way to experience it is by trying raw cannabis without heating it. Some people juice high-THCA strains to experience their effects without the THC high.  


Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) is the acidic precursor to CBD. It does not produce a high. Just as THCA turns into THC, CBDA turns into CBD when it has been exposed to heat through decarboxylation. CBDA is found in raw CBD-rich cannabis. 

It was surmised that CBDA did not have any medicinal benefits. However, it has been found that CBDA does activate the 5-HT1A serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter found in the brain that affects anxiety, sleep, mood, and nausea.

Delta-8 THC

Delta-8 THC, also known as delta-8-tetrahydrocannabinolis an aged form of THC that has similar therapeutic effects but is less potent and less likely to cause anxiety or paranoia.

When Delta-9 starts aging, the double bond moves to the eighth carbon, turning it into Delta-8 THC. Scientists call it a degraded form of THC because it is produced as D9 ages. 

Delta-8, like THC, is a psychoactive cannabinoid but has a more clear-headed high. The experience is said to be somewhere between CBD and THC. In addition to an incredible high, Delta-8 also boasts “antiemetic, anxiolytic, appetite-stimulating, analgesic, and neuroprotective properties,” according to the National Cancer Institute.

Banned Synthetic Cannabinoids

Some synthetic cannabinoids are illegal and dangerous, as they can cause severe side effects, such as psychosis, paranoia, hallucinations, agitation, seizures, heart problems, kidney damage, and even death. In the US, each state has its regulations on banned synthetic cannabinoids.

Some of the household names of the commonly banned synthetic cannabinoids include:

  • K2

  • Spice

  • Scooby Snax

  • Kush

  • Kronic

  • AK-47

  • Mr. Happy

These and more synthetic cannabinoids are unsafe and should be avoided. Always obtain medical cannabis products from trusted recreational dispensaries. At BaySmokes, we only sell you fully legal products, thoroughly researched and tested, and safe for consumption, ensuring that you can safely enjoy the benefits of your product each time. 

The Ultimate List of Cannabinoids 

Now that we have an idea of what the ECS is and how cannabinoids work inside of it, here is a comprehensive list of the known phytocannabinoids:

  • Cannabigerovarin (CBGV)

  • Cannabigerovarinic acid (CBGVA)

  • Cannabigerol (CBG)

  • Cannabigerolic acid (CBGA)

  • O-Methylcannabigerol

  • Cannabigerolic acid methylether

  • Cannabinerolic acid

  • Cannabinerol

  • Carmagerol

  • rac-6′-Epoxycannabigerol

  • rac-6′-Epoxycannabigerolic acid

  • rac-6′-Epoxycannabinerol

  • rac-6′-Epoxycannabinerolic acid

  • γ-Eudesmyl cannabigerolate

  • y-Cainyl cannabigerolate

  • Sesquicannabigerol

  • Deprenyl O-methyl cannabigerolic acid (Amorfrutin 2)

  • 5-Acetyl-4-hydroxy cannabigerol

  • Acetylcannabigeroquinol

  • Cannabigeroquinone

  • Abnormal cannabigerol 

  • Acetyl abnormal hydrocannabigeroquinol

  • Abnormal cannabigeroquinol

  • 2′-Hydroxy-1′, 2′-dihydrocannabichromene (Cyclo-CBG)

  • Cannabiorcichromene

  • Cannabiorcichromenic acid

  • Chlorcannabiorcichromenic acid

  • Cannabivarichromene (CBCV)

  • Cannabichromevarinic acid

  • Cannabichromene (CBC)

  • Cannabichromenic acid

  • 4-Acetoxycannabichromene

  • Anthopogochromenic acid

  • Confluentin

  • Daurichromenic acid

  • 8′-Hydroxyisocannabichromene

  • 4-Acetoxycannabichromene

  • Cannabidiorcol

  • Cannabidivarin (CBDV)

  • Cannabidivarinic acid

  • nor-Cannabidiol

  • Cannabidiol (CBD)

  • Ο-Methlycannabidiol

  • Ο-Propylcannabidiol

  • Ο-Pentylcannabidiol

  • Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA)

  • CBDA-THC ester

  • Ferruginene C

  • Cannabioxepane

  • Cannabinodivarin

  • Cannabinodiol

  • Cannabifuran

  • Dehydrocannabifuran

  • trans-Δ-8-Tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-8-THC)

  • trans-Δ-8-Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid

  • 10α-Hydroxy trans-Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 10β-Hydroxy trans-Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 11-Acetoxy-Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinoic acid

  • 10-Hydroxy-9-oxo-Δ-8-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabiorcol

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabiorcolic acid

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV)

  • Tetrahydrocannabivarin Acid (THCVA)

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabivarinic acid

  • Δ-9-trans-nor-Tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Δ-9-trans-nor-Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ-9-THC)

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid A

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid B

  • 8α-Hydroxy-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 8β-Hydroxy-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 8-Oxo-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Ο-Propyl-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Ο-Pentyl-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 2-Formyl-Δ-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • β-Fenchyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • α-Fenchyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • Bornyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • epi-Bornyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • α-Terpinyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • 4-Terpinyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • γ-Eudesmyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • α-Cadinyl Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinolate

  • Hexahydrocannabinol

  • Hydroxy Δ-9,11-hexahydrocannabinol

  • Methylen-bis Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinol (Cannabisol)

  • Tetrahydrocannabinol epoxide

  • Δ-9-trans-Tetrahydrocannabinol glycol (cannabiripsol)

  • 6a,7,10a-Trihydroxy-Δ-9-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Δ-9-cis-Tetrahydrocannabivarin

  • Δ-9-cis-Tetrahydrocannabinol

  • Cannabicitran (citrilidene-cannabis)(CBT)

  • Cannabiorcicitran

  • Bis-nor cannabitriol

  • Bis-nor-Cannabitriol isomer

  • 10-Ο-Ethyl bis-nor cannabitriol

  • Isocannabitriol

  • Cannabitriol

  • Cannabitriol isomer

  • 10-Ο-Ethyl cannabitriol isomer

  • 10-Oxo-Δ6a(10a)-tetrahydrocannabinol

  • 9,10-Anhydrocannabitirol

  • Cannabiglendol

  • 7,8-Dehydro-10-Ο-ethylcannabitriol

  • Δ-7-cis-Isotetrahydrocannabivarin

  • Δ-7-trans-Isotetrahydrocannabivarin

  • Δ-7-trans-isotetrahydrocannabinol

  • Bis-nor-cannabielsoin

  • Bis-nor-Cannabielsoic acid B

  • Cannabielsoin (CBE)

  • Cannabielsoic acid A

  • Cannabielsoic acid B

  • Ferruginene A

  • Ferruginene B

  • Cannabiorcicyclol

  • Cannabiorcicyclolic acid

  • Cannabicyclovarin

  • Cannabicyclol (CBL)

  • Cannabicyclolic acid

  • Anthopogocyclolic acid

  • Rhododaurichromanic acid A

  • Cannabiorcol

  • nor-Cannabivarin

  • Cannabivarin (CBV)

  • nor-Cannabinol

  • Cannabinol (CBN)

  • Cannabinolic acid

  • Ο-Methylcannabinol

  • Ο-Propylcannabinol

  • Ο-Penthylcannabinol

  • 7-Hydroxcannabinol

  • 8-Hydroxycannabinol

  • 8-Hydroxcannabinolic acid

  • 7,8-Dihydrocannabinol

  • 4-Terpenyl cannabinolate

  • Cannabicoumaronone

  • Cannabicourmarononic acid

  • Bisnor-Cannabichromanone

  • Cannabichromanone

  • (6aR)-Cannabichromanone B

  • (6aR)-Cannabichromanone C

  • Cannabichromanone

  • Cannabimovone

  • Anhydrocannabimovone

  • Demethyldecarboxyamorfrutin A

  • Tetrahydrocannabiphorol (THCP)

  • Cannabidiphorol (CBDP)

  • Cannabimovone (CBM)

Most of these cannabinoids have been unexplored, meaning there are also many exciting benefits on the horizon! Stay tuned in the coming years as the world of cannabis products expands, and science continues to make amazing discoveries.  

The Rich World of Cannabis Enhances Our Lives

Cannabis plants have over 100 unique cannabinoids, each with its properties and uses. Cannabinoids seamlessly interact with our ECS to create psychoactive and physiological effects. 

The world of cannabis is rich and exciting and enhances our lives. The idea that lingered for decades that cannabis is “bad” is long gone. Your grandmother uses CBD for her aches and pains, while your parents pretend they don’t get high off THC in the garage.

As a disclaimer, we want to state that this content is for informational purposes only. It is not provided to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or ailment. It should be interpreted as something other than instruction or medical advice to displace the advice of your doctor or other medical professionals. We recommend talking to your doctor to prepare a treatment plan for diseases, ailments and overall wellness.


What are four examples of cannabinoids?

Four examples of cannabinoids are THC, CBD, CBG, and CBC.

What are the top 5 cannabinoids?

The top 5 cannabinoids, or the naturally occurring ones most abundant and well-known in cannabis, are THC, CBD, CBG, CBC, and CBN.

What drugs contain cannabinoids?

Recreational drugs containing cannabinoids include cannabis products like flowers and concentrates.

What are two common cannabinoids?

Two common cannabinoids are THC and CBD. THC is the primary psychoactive cannabinoid in cannabis, while CBD is non-psychoactive. 

What is the best type of cannabinoid?

There is no best type of cannabinoid, as each has various purposes that may be more beneficial depending on the user’s needs. However, naturally occurring or phytoactive cannabinoids are typically safer and more reliable than synthetically occurring ones. Additionally, psychoactive cannabinoids may be best if one wishes to experience a marijuana high. In contrast, non-psychoactive cannabinoids may be best for those who only want to relieve pain.

What are the three main cannabinoids?

The three main cannabinoids found in cannabis plants are THC, CBD, and CBG. 

What is the rarest cannabinoid?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as different cannabinoids may have different abundance levels and availability depending on the source, strain, cultivation, extraction, and analysis methods. However, some examples of rare cannabinoids identified in cannabis include THCV, CBDV, CBT, and CBL.


Legal Disclaimer: Bay Smokes products are not approved by the FDA to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any illnesses. All products are compliant with the US Farm Bill and under 0.3% THC. Bay Smokes products and website are intended for ADULT use only. Full disclaimer in Terms of Service. Delta8 or other Hemp-Derived THCs will not be shipped to states where the product has been expressly banned. Product availability varies from state to state per each product’s regulation.

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