CBG and CBN The Two Little-Known Cannabinoid Cousins to CBD

by Alfred van der Heide
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Anyone familiar with the cannabis scene knows all about CBD or at least has an idea of what it does. Its various properties make it an alluring cannabinoid that’s seen popularity to the point of having strains explicitly developed for it. But did you know that CBD isn’t the only cannabinoid that’s rumored to have similar if not better properties?

Move over, CBD, as we introduce to you a couple of strong contenders – CBG and CBN. They’re not just any cannabinoid – they’re special cannabinoids with the potential to rival and even surpass CBD in terms of health benefits. Though research may indeed be lacking for these relatively unknown chemicals, with enough time, they’ll be as popular as CBD was in its peak, as long as research continues to show its benefits to the human body.

Remember that the research claims mentioned in this article don’t necessarily prove the cannabinoid’s effectiveness – these studies are still in its early stages, and we need more data like CBD does to get a more accurate idea on what they do to our body.

CBG – The Mother of All Cannabinoids
What is CBG

Ever wonder where cannabinoids come from? They don’t just form by themselves into many different compounds right away; they first exist as a general cannabinoid and then develop into the many different substances that are found in cannabis.

This cannabinoid that acts as the blueprint for all the other substances is known more commonly as CBG or Cannabigerol. It’s regarded as the “stem cell” of cannabinoids, and for a good reason – the rest of the cannabinoids originate from this one. In other words, CBG acts as a framework that the other cannabinoids then develop on to become their final selves.

Like its more famous cousin CBD, CBG is said to have similarly beneficial properties. It’s been reported to be able to relieve symptoms of glaucoma, cancer, Crohn’s Disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and a lot more. This is due to CBG’s ability to lessen inflammation and pain, as well as slow down the spreading of cancer cells throughout the body.

These benefits, however, haven’t been proven, and research on CBG hasn’t found anything just yet, due to it not being as popular as CBD. The entire CBD trend as a whole was what caused it to be so well-researched in the first place. As it’s still popular among many cannabis enthusiasts out there, it’s hard for CBG to establish a presence with CBD taking the spotlight.

What’s even more unfortunate for this cannabinoid is that it’s just too expensive to produce in high concentrations, as most strains only contain less than 2% of CBG. To put that into perspective, CBD in high-CBD hemp flowers can be as high as 25% or more, meaning that you get way more of it in dry weight than you would for CBG. So even though CBG is starting to get attention, CBD offers so much more at the moment that CBG can’t compete.

And even if it were possible to get a lot of CBG from some future hemp strain, the process of extracting the chemical is pretty costly. Sure, you could smoke the entire thing, but there are benefits to intaking via isolates, oils, and extracts.

There aren’t too many CBG-high hemp flowers available in the market, so users have to resort to expensive isolates to get their fix mainly. There is a hemp flower that’s as close as one can get to a CBG-high hemp flower, though, its called “Special Sauce.” Special Sauce is a unique hemp strain sold by Industrial Hemp Farms. The hemp itself contains only around 2.1% CBG – however, that’s a lot for current standards, and you probably won’t be able to find a similar percentage in most other hemp strains available at the moment.

CBG isn’t a famous cannabinoid like CBD or THC. You may think that affects only sales, but it does much more than that. The lack of popularity is what’s causing the development of CBG-focused hemp to be so slow. With a growing interest in CBG, though, it’s only a matter of time before the cannabinoid manages to catch up on CBD in popularity, and research will then pick up some speed. Until then, CBG can be considered as a nice little bonus to your hemp or cannabis, and maybe, later on, it can be an actual reason for people to buy hemp altogether.

CBN – Just THC, But More Relaxed

What is CBN

CBN, also known as Cannabinol, is another cannabinoid found in cannabis plants. It’s extracted by exposing the highly psychoactive THC to carbon dioxide. It’s like a cross between CBD and THC in terms of psychoactive potential, with it being more toned down than THC but stronger than CBD’s minuscule (yet existent) psychoactive properties. In fact, both THC and CBN come from the same compound – tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, or THC-A. You’ll be able to work with CBN in your system, unlike THC, which pretty much keeps you on your couch until the high finally subsides.

What makes CBN so appealing is that it serves as a sedative and gives users a sense of relaxation when taken into the system. If you have insomnia or want an excellent sleep for the night, CBN can help you by taking a dose or two of it, and you’ll feel a lot better (and sleepier too).

Aside from its sleep benefits, CBN is said to stimulate a person’s appetite – which is the opposite of what CBD does, which acts as an appetite suppressant. Other than that, though, there isn’t much to say about CBN in terms of overall psychoactive effect, other than the fact that it’s a middle ground between the two most popular cannabinoids, THC and CBD.

When it comes to medical benefits, though, CBN offers quite a bit. For one, it’s said to be an excellent treatment for patients suffering from epileptic seizures. CBN acts as an anticonvulsant, meaning that your body won’t move involuntarily as much with it in your system. It also has anti-inflammatory properties like many other cannabinoids, which can help patients with disorders such as Crohn’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis.

Another benefit one can get from CBN is its antibacterial properties. Yes, weed can be an antibiotic, and CBN has been tested to work effectively against bacteria that can resist more traditional antibiotics. It has the potential to get rid of bacteria that usually require special antibiotics, which is helpful for those who have had a history of bacteria-related diseases.

And the benefits don’t stop there – CBN has been tested on mice with ALS, and the studies show that it’s able to delay the condition altogether, making it a possible neuroprotectant. Future studies could then lead to CBN as a chemical that can deal with other neurodegenerative diseases.

But where can you find CBN, though? Although there aren’t any fixed percentages known so far when it comes to CBN, you can get a general idea of how much of it there is in cannabis by knowing its age. As mentioned earlier, both THC and CBN come from THC-A. CBN is formed through the oxidation of THC-A, so older cannabis that’s been oxidized for an extended time should contain more CBN than cannabis that has just been processed.

You don’t have to buy yourself some old cannabis or shelf your own until it ages to get some CBN, though. Like all the other popular cannabinoids, there are options available for you like isolates or edibles that allow you to try out CBN for yourself. That way, you can test how effective it is to you, and you’ll know if you need more of it or not afterward.

So, the next time you get riled up once again over the next CBD hype train, remember that there are plenty of other cannabinoids that could receive just as much attention, such as CBG and CBN. These cannabinoids offer not only clear and useful health benefits, but the potential to even surpass CBD entirely. They’re beginning to garner interest in the community for that very reason.

They might not offer the same benefits as CBD does, but their unique traits are worth looking into so that we can learn more about what happens when we smoke a joint, and maybe help you find your perfect strain.

Just remember that the success and potential of both CBG and CBN are dependent on the research that’s put into it, and that, in turn, is dependent on the demand of consumers of cannabis. If you want to support the increasing trend of less popular cannabinoids, then you can do so by purchasing products that use them as a selling point, or strains that are dedicated to maximizing the cannabinoid itself such as Special Sauce. Eventually, and with enough popularity, these cannabinoids will become frontrunners in the cannabis scene.

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