Cannabigerol is a rare cannabinoid derived from the cannabis plant. Learn more about its effects and uses. CBG vs CBD: Detailed Breakdown and Best Products
What Is Cannabigerol (CBG)?
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What Is Cannabigerol (CBG)?
Cannabigerol (CBG) is a type of cannabinoid obtained from the cannabis plant. It’s often referred to as the mother of all cannabinoids. This is because other cannabinoids are derived from cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), an acidic form of CBG.
Other more common cannabinoids obtained from cannabis plants include cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
CBG is found in smaller quantities than other cannabinoids in cannabis plants. In most strains of the plant, only 1% of CBG can be found compared to 20 to 25% of CBD or 25 to 30% of THC.
This makes consumer products derived from the cannabinoid rare and often expensive. However, CBG is growing in popularity as a result of the host of potential benefits the cannabinoid has to offer.
How CBG Is Made
CBG is derived from young cannabis plants because they contain higher amounts of CBG than fully developed plants.
Some strains of cannabis like White CBG, Super Glue CBG, and Jack Frost CBG also have higher CBG content than other strains. These strains are specifically cultivated to produce higher quantities of CBG.
Both CBD and THC start as CBGA, an acidic form of CBG. This is why younger cannabis plants contain higher concentrations of CBG.
In fully developed plants with high concentrations of THC and CBD, you’ll find very low concentrations of CBG. This happens because most of the CBG has already been converted to CBD and THC as the plant developed.
Due to the difficulty of getting CBG, cannabis growers have been experimenting with cross-breeding and genetic manipulation to help cannabis plants produce more CBG.
How CBG Works
CBG is processed by the body’s endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system is made up of molecules and receptors in our bodies that are responsible for keeping our bodies in an optimal state regardless of what’s going on in our external environment.
In our bodies, CBG imitates endocannabinoids , the natural compounds our body makes.
Cannabinoid Receptors in the Body
Our body contains two types of cannabinoid receptors—CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are found in the nervous system and brain, while CB2 receptors are located in the immune system and other areas of the body.
CBG works by binding to both receptors where it’s thought to strengthen the function of anandamide, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in enhancing pleasure and motivation, regulating appetite and sleep, and alleviating pain. Unlike THC, CBG has no psychotropic effects, so it will not give you a high.
Potential Benefits of CBG
Like CBD, CBG has been used to combat pain without having the intoxicating effect of cannabinoids like THC.
Research shows that CBG can also have therapeutic effects. However, human studies on this are sparse and more research needs to be done in this area.
Some promising animal studies show that CBG might ultimately be found useful for the following therapeutic benefits listed below.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
Inflammatory bowel disease is a condition that causes chronic inflammation in the bowel. It affects millions of people across the globe and is incurable.
An experimental animal study conducted in 2013 observed the beneficial effects of CBG on inflammatory bowel disease.
Researchers induced inflammations similar to IBD in the colons of mice and then administered CBG. CBG was found to reduce the inflammation and the production of nitric oxide. It also reduced the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the intestines. They concluded that CBG should be considered for clinical experimentation in IBD patients.
In an animal study, researchers found that CBG has therapeutic potential for the treatment of glaucoma.
Reseachers administered CBG to cats with glaucoma and noticed a reduction in eye pressure and an increase in aqueous humor outflow, a fluid produced by the eye which maintains eye pressure and provides the eye with nutrition.
Huntington’s disease is a condition that causes a breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. In a 2015 study, researchers examined the potential neuroprotective properties of CBG and other cannabinoids in mice who had an experimental model of Huntington’s disease.
It was observed that CBG acted as a neuroprotectant, protecting the nerve cells in your brain from damage. It also improves motor deficits and preserves striatal neurons against 3-nitropropionic acid toxicity.
A 2020 study on the antibiotic potential of cannabis, found that CBG has antibacterial properties. Especially against methicillin-resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a bacteria which causes staph infections and is drug-resistant.
Fighting Cancer Cells
In a 2014 study, researchers observed the effects of CBG on rats with colon cancer. They observed that CBG showed some promise in blocking the receptors that cause cancer cell growth and inhibiting the growth of colorectal cancer cells.
They suggested that the use of CBG should be considered translationally in the cure and prevention of colon cancer.
How to Use CBG
The most common way CBG is produced for consumers is as an oil. You can get the benefits of CBG by using pure CBG oil. However, CBG oils are rare and expensive.
The good news is that you can also get some of the benefits of CBG from using broad-spectrum CBD oils. Broad-spectrum CBD oils contain all the cannabinoids found in a cannabis plant including CBG, but it doesn’t include THC.
When cannabinoids are used together, they can increase the effectiveness of each other by a phenomenon called the entourage effect.
CBG vs. CBD
CBG is often compared to CBD because it shares many similarities and they both act on the endocannabinoid system.
Both CBG and CBD are non-psychoactive which means they will not alter your state of mind in the way THC will.
They can however reduce the psychotropic effect of THC if you consume a cannabis plant. One of the biggest differences between CBD and CBG is the quantity which is found in most cannabis plants. Most cannabis plants contain only 1% of CBG, but up to 25% of CBD.
The way CBG interacts with our endocannabinoid system is different from CBD. CBG binds directly to both CB1 and CB2 receptors and might be more efficient at delivering its benefits into our systems.
The production difficulties of CBG makes it very scarce. It’s much harder to produce than other cannabinoids like THC and CBD. Since CBG shares many similarities with CBD, manufacturers would rather produce CBD.
When CBG is produced, products derived from it are very expensive. However, CBG has a host of promising potential benefits and more research is being done into easing the production and availability of the cannabinoid.
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
Orrego-González E, Londoño-Tobón L, Ardila-González J, Polania-Tovar D, Valencia-Cárdenas A, Velez-Van Meerbeke A. Cannabinoid effects on experimental colorectal cancer models reduce aberrant crypt foci (Acf) and tumor volume: a systematic review. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2020;2020:1-13.
By Toketemu Ohwovoriole
Toketemu has been multimedia storyteller for the last four years. Her expertise focuses primarily on mental wellness and women’s health topics.
CBG vs CBD: Detailed Breakdown and Best Products
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CBD and THC are definitely two of the most well-known cannabinoids. CBD is known for its calming, therapeutic effects while THC is famous for its psychoactive effects that cause feelings of euphoria and sometimes confusion. While CBD and THC have both had plenty of time in the spotlight, lesser-known cannabinoids, such as CBG, are capturing interest from consumers and scientists alike.
Initial studies show that CBG may have similar characteristics of CBD. Both of these cannabinoids have no psychoactive properties. Instead, they offer antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, and analgesic properties.
Here’s what you need to know about the similarities and differences between CBG and CBD. We’ll also take a look at some of the top CBD products on the market.
What is CBG?
CBG, which stands for cannabigerol, is one of more than 100 cannabinoids found in hemp and cannabis plants. Young hemp plants produce cannabigerolic acid (CBGA). As the plant matures, CBGA breaks down into cannabidiolic acid (CBDA) and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA). These two compounds are then converted into CBD and THC. Any leftover CBGA is converted into CBG.
Even though CBG was first isolated back in 1964, the cannabinoid didn’t get a lot of attention, so there are very few studies about the compound. Modern research is in preclinical stages, but from what we know so far, CBG may have various therapeutic side effects.
It’s possible that CBG has strong pain-relieving properties that may be more effective than THC. CBG may interact with the CB1 and CB2 receptors of the endocannabinoid system, which influence inflammation, pain, and even heat sensitivity. The cannabinoid may also have antidepressant, anticancer, and antibacterial qualities.
What is CBD?
CBD, which stands for cannabidiol, naturally occurs in high concentrations in hemp and cannabis plants. CBD was first isolated all the way back in the 1930s but was mostly put aside until the 1970s when scientists determined it may be an effective anti-convulsant.
Over the years, research has confirmed many of the therapeutic benefits that CBD offers, including anti-anxiety, pain-relieving, anti-nausea, and sedative qualities. CBD has also shown to be an effective treatment for severe forms of childhood epilepsy and is used in an FDA approved drug, Epidiolex.
Over the last few years, CBD has become the cannabinoid of choice, not only for the many therapeutic benefits it offers, but also because it has no psychoactive properties. Unlike THC, CBD offers pain relief and other benefits without the risk of paranoia, anxiety, or impaired cognitive function.
Like CBG, CBD interacts with the CB1 and CB2 receptors.
Differences Between CBG & CBD
Though they offer very similar therapeutic properties, CBG and CBD do have some differences. For example, the two cannabinoids have different molecular structures. This means that the arrangement of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen is different. Molecular structure impacts how the cannabinoid binds with receptors and also impacts bioavailability.
CBG and CBD are also unique in how they activate receptors. One study looked at how CBG and CBD interact with the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor . CBG behaves as an antagonist at that receptor, where CBD has strong anti-nausea effects, which means it acts like an agonist.
So even though the two cannabinoids are similar, when bound to the same place, they have opposing effects on this specific receptor.
CBG and CBD differ in how they stimulate the appetite. A study conducted on rats found that CBG encouraged the animals to eat two times their normal food intake. But, a study conducted on CBD found that the cannabinoid significantly reduces total food intake .
Therapeutic Benefits of CBG vs CBD
There isn’t a lot of research that has delved into the therapeutic effects of CBG. However, preclinical studies offer a little bit of insight as to how the cannabinoid may interact with the body. Like CBD, CBG doesn’t have any psychoactive properties. Instead, it offers other therapeutic benefits, including:
● Potential treatment for MRSA bacterial infections
As interest in CBG continues to grow, we can expect to learn more about the cannabinoid over the next few years. The hope is that more clinical studies and research will be conducted so that we can get a better understanding of the benefits that CBG offers.
CBD is in a similar situation, but there are far more studies that have been conducted. Research has found that CBD offers a host of therapeutic benefits, including:
● Lowered stress and anxiety
But as with any cannabinoid, there is always more to learn. Most studies have been conducted on animals, so human trials are crucial to fully understand how CBG and CBD interact in the body.
Are you interested in trying CBD, CBG, or maybe a product that contains both? Here are some of the best hemp-derived products available on the market today.
Top 4 CBD Products
Penguin is another top brand that we highly recommend. They offer some of the purest and most potent CBD products on the markets. With a well-rounded selection of products, you’re sure to find the CBD that best meets your lifestyle needs. Choose from gummies, oils, topicals, and capsules.
Penguin only uses the best ingredients, including broad-spectrum CBD oil that is extracted from Oregon grown hemp. Because these products contain no THC, you can enjoy peak mental performance while also enjoying the many therapeutic benefits that CBD has to offer.
What’s even better is that the brand offers some delicious flavors. Penguin’s CBD gummy worms are coated in a tangy sugar that will make your taste buds go wild. There’s also deliciously flavored CBD oil, including options such as Cookies & Cream, Citrus, Strawberry, and Mint.
2. Verma Farms
Verma Farms is one of the highest-quality CBD brands that we’ve found. All of their products are made with top notch ingredients that are organic and all natural. They offer an extensive collection of items to choose from, including gummies, oils, capsules, topicals, and even tropical dried fruit!
Verma Farms uses broad spectrum extract, which contains all of the wellness-boosting plant compounds, with the exception of THC. This means you can enjoy the benefits of minor cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and fatty acids!
This is a brand that takes a Hawaiian approach to making CBD. All of their products are influenced by the islands, so you can drift off to your own tropical paradise.
3. BATCH CBD
Organically grown and highly effective, BATCH CBD’s products are deeply therapeutic and create lasting benefits for both the body and the mind. Whether you are seeking a better night’s sleep, a way to ease day-to-day stress, or a natural approach to relieve pain and inflammation, BATCH has got you covered.
BATCH CBD prioritizes product quality and customer service to deliver truly life-changing results. From seed to shelf, the BATCH team carefully manages every aspect of their product development, ensuring that each and every product is sustainably crafted with ingredients of the highest quality.
BATCH has an incredible line of CBD products, including their CBG Oil , which includes a 1:1 CBD to CBG ratio . Made with a vegan formula and flavored with citrus extracts, BATCH’s CBG Oil tastes great and offers the substantive benefits of both CBD and CBG!
4. Colorado Botanicals
Colorado Botanicals once again makes our top spot. Despite years of product innovation from its competitors – they stay ahead of the curve with superior quality and some of the most potent CBD oils, capsules, topicals, and gummies on the market.
Initially offering broad-spectrum CBD extracts, Colorado Botanicals recently added full-spectrum CBD oils and several CBG products enhanced with a clinically studied curcumin ingredient and Boswellia. With so much variety and customizability, there’s something for every health-conscious shopper.
Colorado Botanicals is unique in that they can naturally retain terpenes and flavonoids thanks to their proprietary extraction and purification process. The end product is a highly pure and concentrated product without any impurities. Also, their products are constantly tested for contaminants such as heavy metals, pesticides, solvents, and microbes.
5. Extract Labs
Extract Labs is known for providing the purest, highest-quality CBD products at the lowest price, a promise which is made possible by keeping every step of production in-house. Few companies offer CBG products because it is difficult to extract and not as abundant as CBD. Extract Labs offer an extensive collection of CBG products, including full spectrum CBG oil, a THC free CBG tincture, CBG isolate, CBG softgel capsules and CBG gummies. CBG gummies are one of their most popular products, with 33mg CBG and 33mg CBD apiece – they are made with natural ingredients and quality broad spectrum hemp oil. They also have a vast array of high-quality CBD products to try.
6. Joy Organics’ USDA Certified Organic CBG and CBD Tincture
Joy Organics is one of the first CBD oil tinctures on the market to be made entirely of USDA Certified Organic ingredients. This is a brand that doesn’t compromise on quality, using only the highest quality ingredients such as broad and full spectrum CBD, along with organic MCT oil, stevia, and oil-based flavoring.
Joy Organics continues to expand its USDA Certified Organic CBD tinctures with their new CBG and CBD tincture. Their CBG + CBD Tincture contains two hemp-derived compounds to support homeostasis in the body. CBG is known as the “mother of all cannabinoids” and works synergistically with CBD to support mental and physical wellness.
In addition to this tincture, Joy Organics offers a wide array of both full and broad spectrum products that focus on clean and organic ingredients along with extensive lab testing for purity. These products include
Gummies (full and broad spectrum)
Delta 9 products
CBD and CBG are two similar yet unique cannabinoids. While hemp plants contain a much higher dose of CBD, CBG can also be extracted and used in all sorts of products. These two cannabinoids offer a variety of therapeutic benefits, and when combined, can provide highly effective relief that keeps you feeling your best.