What Is Humulene Terpene? Benefits, Effects, Strains

Key Takeaways

  • Humulene terpene was formerly named alpha-caryophyllene with another Latin name of Humulus lupulus, coming from hops which contain a high amount of humulene.
  • Alpha-caryophyllene is a cousin of beta-caryophyllene due to its similarities in having the same number of carbon and hydrogen atoms.
  • The difference between alpha-caryophyllene and beta-caryophyllene is that alpha-caryophyllene can be found in hop, ginseng, sage, and cannabis while beta-caryophyllene is a dietary cannabinoid that exists in black pepper and cloves. 
  • Like many terpenes, humulene offers several therapeutic benefits such as anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and analgesic properties.
  • There are potential risks for those who are on a certain medication and those who are sensitive to terpenes should take the precautions seriously before consuming.
  • A list containing some cannabis strains high in humulene such as Ice Cream Cake, Girl Scout Cookies, and White Widow.


Before we dive into the in-depth information about humulene terpene, let’s familiarize ourselves with the word ‘terpene’ first which we have already discussed about it here on our website.

A brief story of what terpene stands for is that it’s a natural aromatic compound found in most plants all over the world, including cannabis, of course. It makes plants smell and taste different just like roses and lavenders. Now, humulene terpene is another type of terpene that is commonly found in cannabis plants. Let’s explore more together, shall we?

What’s Humulene?

Humulene terpene or alpha-caryophyllene appears to be similar but is not identical to beta-caryophyllene. It’s a natural compound with a woody and earthy scent along with its bitter flavor. Humulene, also known as Humulus lupulus, is a botanical name for hops which is one of the ingredients for beer production. It has a meaning in Latin for ‘Little wolf’. 

Alpha-Caryophyllene VS Beta-Caryophyllene: What’s the Difference?

As previously mentioned, humulene was once called alpha-caryophyllene. Of course, when there’s an alpha-caryophyllene, then, there’s beta-caryophyllene. Let’s see what makes them similar and different at the same time.

Alpha-caryophyllene is humulene which can be found in essential oils extracted from the majority of plants, especially hop, ginseng, sage including cannabis.

Beta-caryophyllene has another distinctive feature to be known as a dietary cannabinoid due to the fact that it exists in several edible plants. This type of terpene delivers a spicy and musky aroma that generally can be found in black pepper, cloves, and oregano.

Some chemists described both humulene and beta-caryophyllene as ‘cousins’ as they shared some similarities. They have the same number of carbon and hydrogen atoms, except that the atoms are arranged differently within each molecule.

Potential Medical Benefits

Humulene not only exists in your party supplies: weed and beer, but it also offers potential health and therapeutic advantages.  Here’s some more insight into how humulene affects our body.

  • Analgesic: With its outstanding properties, it has the potential to lessen pain such as headaches and joint pains.
  • Anti-Inflammatory: This terpene type can be beneficial for patients with inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, and inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Antibacterial: Humulene has proven to hold the properties of killing or slowing bacteria growth. Both humans and animals will get this highly beneficial ability when consuming this terpene. It also enhances our body’s immune response to fight off infections and diseases. 
  • Antitumor and Anticancer: Many studies are showing that humulene is an effective tool to battle and even destroy cancer cells. There’s more about it, humulene can also have the possibility for antitumor as stated in one 2016 study.
  • Appetite Suppressant: Humulene terpene can make you feel less hungry, making it easier for those who would like to lose weight.

Risks and Side Effects

Although humulene is rich in its medical benefits, some potential side effects should be aware of:

Firstly this precaution goes towards those who are sensitive to terpenes or with some specific medical conditions, humulene might cause allergic reactions such as skin irritation, respiratory irritation, and eye irritation, or negatively interact with certain medications. It is essential to consult with a doctor or a healthcare professional before consuming humulene terpene to ensure safety.

What Cannabis Strains Contain High Humulene?

I know some weed lovers may want to try it at this point. What was that? Where can I find it, you say? Well, let’s take a look at the lists below which contain some of the strains with high humulene you can find on the market.

  • Love Affair – A strain created by crossing GG#4 with Alien Rock Candy with its unique smell of cedar, creamy orange, and a little bit of sweet berry flavor.
  • Ice Cream Cake – An Indica-dominant hybrid strain made by crossing Wedding Cake with Gelato #33. With its sweet sugary and vanilla flavor, have gained a hit among cannabis enthusiasts.
  • Candyland – Another strain with popularity because of its sweet and candy-like flavor bred by the cross between Granddaddy Purple and Bay Platinum Cookies.
  • Girl Scout Cookies – This strain is commonly called just Cookies. It’s an Indica hybrid with an OG Kush and Durban Poison cross.
  • Headband – A three-way cross strain consisting of OG Kush, Master Kush, and Sour Diesel.
  • White Widow – It’s from a crossing between Brazilian and South Indian strains, breeding in Amsterdam under the Green House Seed Company.
  • Sour Diesel – It has a medium to strong odor. Some might say Sour Diesel tastes like peppermints or lemonade, and some might say it smells sourly like vinegar. 


Humulene can be found in beer production responsible for the ‘hoppy’ taste with its important ingredient, hops containing both alpha-caryophyllene (humulene) which is an isomer of beta-caryophyllene. This terpene gives off the aromatic of an earthy and woody with a slight bitterness of taste. 

Pretty much the same as other types of terpenes found in cannabis plants, humulene has potential medical advantages of something as preventing bacteria, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer. It also comes with risks and side effects such as skin, eyes, and respiratory irritation.

Cannabis lovers can find humulene terpene within some of these cannabis strains such as Love Affair, Candyland, and Headband.

Explore More Cannabis Terpenes at Siam Green Co.com!

Scroll to Top