What is CBG? What are the Benefits?
Today, more and more people are looking for adjuncts or alternatives to taking over the counter (OTC) and prescription medicines. The growth in popularity of CBD based products over the past several years is proof there is a demand for natural solutions that can address symptoms like lack of sleep, anxiety or pain etc… CBG, or cannabigerol, is one of over 100 cannabinoids found in cannabis and hemp.
It is considered a minor cannabinoid because it occurs in trace amounts in cannabis and hemp plants. Although CBG is much lesser known than its famous cousin, CBD or Cannabidiol, it is a powerful and beneficial cannabinoid for a person’s overall health and has been used in medicines for millennia.
Sometimes CBG is referred to as the “mother of all cannabinoids” because without it, there would be no THC or “high” produced by the marijuana plant. As hemp and cannabis plants go through their growth and flowering phases, certain enzymes and other plant compounds coalesce to create the pre-cursor to CBG, called CBGA or Cannabigerolic Acid.
In fact, CBGA is where all the cannabinoids in cannabis and hemp come from, so without CBGA, cannabis or hemp plants would not exist. As cannabis and hemp plants near the end of their growth lifecycle, they continue to absorb Ultraviolet (UV) light. The UV light ultimately converts the CBGA into CBDA and THCA, the precursors to the two most famous and abundant cannabinoids in cannabis, CBD and THC!
So, what are the benefits of incorporating CBG into a daily health regiment? Like CBD, CBG is non-intoxicating and non-habit forming, so ingesting it will not make you feel “high.” Also, like CBD, CBG has anti-inflammatory properties, and it may also counteract the psychoactive effects of THC. This is pretty much where the similarities between CBG and CBD stop. CBG has the ability to bind to both CB1 and CB2 receptors, whereas CBD only has an affinity for the CB2 receptors in our body. Below are 4 more benefits of CBG.
May Benefit Symptoms of Crohn’s and IBD:
The anti-inflammatory properties of CBG have been studied in animal models for its use against symptoms of Crohn’s Disease and Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD.) The studies showed that CBG reduced the amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the intestines. The more ROS that is present, the more inflammation in the body, which increases the severity of the symptoms.
May Stabilize Blood Pressure and Promote Heart Health:
In one medical study, CBG was shown to be an agonist to Alpha(2)-adrenoceptors that are primarily concentrated in the nervous system. These adrenoreceptors have a beneficial effect on blood pressure and heart rate, both of which play an important role in heart health. Furthermore, CBG also plays a role in balancing the sympathetic nervous system’s “fight or flight” response.
May Benefit Symptoms of Glaucoma:
CBG has been shown to reduce intraocular pressure, which is damaging eye pressure that can damage the optic nerve. CBG acts as a vasodilator to allow the blood vessels to expand, relieving pressure build up in the eyes and it was also shown to stimulate the production of a fluid in the eyes that helps to regulate and maintain eye pressure.
May Possess Neuroprotective Properties:
Neuroprotection refers to the preservation of neuronal structure and/or function. People are suffering from several neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease etc… and there are several medical studies to support this conclusion. While protecting neurons, CBG may also act as a brake pedal, slowing down the progression of neurodegeneration. While there is no cure for these diseases, CBG may temporarily improve some other symptoms associated with neurodegenerative diseases like cognitive and motor deficits.
As previously mentioned, there are several other health related benefits associated with taking CBG in one form or another, and science and medical studies are only beginning to understand the many potential therapeutic uses of cannabis sativa L (hemp and marijuana.) As advocacy for cannabis continues to grow, we will see more exciting and innovative uses and applications for CBG and other cannabinoids.