What is Cannabigerol (CBG)?
Like CBD, CBG is present in most strains of cannabis. But unlike THC and CBD, which is present in those strains in relatively larger amounts, CBG is present in small amounts (generally below 1%) and is, therefore, known as a minor cannabinoid.
As a result, it takes a great deal of cannabis to extract enough CBG to produce a CBG-based cannabis product for sale.
CBG vs. CBD
To understand why CBG works differently than CBD, it helps to first look at the differences in the fundamental makeup of the two substances. When looking at the chemical structure of CBG and CBD, specifically, you’ll see differences in how the cannabis plant produces the substances from the CBGA it produces as a precursor.
The plant uses a process of decarboxylation to produce CBG. Decarboxylation only removes the acidic element of CBGA (or the “A” in the acronym.) But CBD has also gone through a preliminary process transforming its chemical structure preceding that.
Health Benefits of CBG
Scientists and doctors have found that CBG acts on very particular issues and systems of the body. Below are some of the primary therapeutic actions detected in CBG and the illnesses and other health conditions for which CBG has been found potentially beneficial.
Researchers in Europe have found Cannabigerol to be effective as an antibacterial agent against microbial strains of MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) that are resistant to other, more conventional, medications. Researchers believe this may be the reason that topical cannabis formulations have been found effective in treating skin infections since the 1950s, though CBG had not been identified in cannabis at that point.
Inflammation studies in rats have shown great promise for the cannabinoid’s potential anti-inflammatory benefits for humans. From this inflammation research, researchers found this cannabinoid to be proven inflammation relief in rats associated with IBD (inflammatory bowel disease.)
The eyes are not the only parts of the body to which it provides neuroprotective effects. A 2015 study in mice with Huntington’s disease found it effective in protecting brain neurons from cellular degeneration associated with the disease.
Showing great promise as a potential colorectal cancer cure. Specifically, it was found in studies to block receptors in the body that promote the growth of cancer cells, including one study in which it was found to inhibit colorectal cancer cell growth.
It also slowed chemically-induced carcinogenesis of the colon and inhibited tumor development and growth.
Glaucoma and Eye Health
The eye is abundant in endocannabinoid receptors, and it is the cannabinoid that seems most effective in triggering these receptors to relieve intraocular pressure, such as is associated with glaucoma. It has neuroprotective benefits for the eyes as well and is a strong vasodilator.
Appetite and Wasting Syndrome
Studies in rats have found a formulation of cannabigerol, to be effective in stimulating appetite.
This could suggest a potential benefit of CBG against wasting syndrome, or cachexia, the extreme weight loss, and muscle depletion that takes place in people with late-stage cancer and certain other illnesses.
CBG scored highest among five cannabinoids tested in inhibiting bladder muscle contractions. This suggests CBG may be an effective prophylactic against disorders involving bladder dysfunction.
The CBG proven inflammation benefit may also play a role in this area.
One way many cannabis users are reporting CBG helps reduce anxiety in them is by countering the psychoactive effects of the THC in the cannabis products they intake. As such, some users are finding CBG relieves some of the paranoia they associate with a THC high.
Other Potential Uses
Other areas where scientists are currently testing the potential efficacy of Cannabigerol include the following:
- A psoriasis treatment
- An antidepressant
- An analgesic
So, what is the state of CBG in this “not so great so far year” of 2020? That is, how can a cannabis user incorporate CBG effectively into their regimen, and how can a person new to cannabis who’s facing health symptoms and medical conditions for which CBG may confer benefits avail themselves of those benefits?
While cannabis plants generally only contain low levels of CBG, cannabis breeders of late have been experimenting with crossbreeding and genetic manipulation to produce high-CBG cannabis strains.
So, whether your CBG regimen includes capsules, flower, gummies, CBG only tincture, oil, or any combination thereof, taking CBG regularly can provide you a range of physiological protections while potentially helping to relieve any of a number of medical conditions or symptoms you might be experiencing. Many cannabis products contain CBG and CBD combined, which is an excellent way to reap the therapeutic benefits of both cannabinoids without any mind-altering effect.
Now that you know about CBG and its effects, uses, and health, it’s excellent to learn about different cannabinoids and their uses. CBD is not the only kid on the block. Expect to see CBG everywhere soon.