chemical structure of cbg over an image of marijuana plants

CBG: EXPLAINED WITH RESEARCH

Part 1


Author: Heather Allman



All quotations come from a list of References provided at the end with corresponding notated numbers throughout.

In Dec 2019, Jack Woodhouse illuminated Why Could CBG Flowers Become the Trendiest Bud of 2020. Mainly, CBG has been overlooked in favor of it's more popular relatives: THC and CBD.

But now, more research has been conducted into the amazing properties of CBG, such as its positive use as a bronchodilator, antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, and antibiotic –all while strengthening your immune system and protecting your brain. 

Stay tuned because Part 2 of this article will discuss my personal CBG experiences and successes in more detail, including symptoms treated and stopped or reduced pharmaceutical medications. 

CBG BACKGROUND¹ —

"Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD-rich hemp flower has gone mainstream. Available in nearly all 50 states, it’s popularity has revealed a huge demand for non-psychoactive cannabinoids.¹ 

But fast on the coattails of CBD is a lesser-known but equally interesting cannabinoid known as CBG. As the precursor to all other cannabinoids, CBGa has been rightfully dubbed the 'Mother of Cannabinoids'. Its ability to synthesize all known cannabinoids makes it of interest to researchers and consumers alike.¹

CBG strains have a naturally lower THC content than CBD-rich varieties. As CBG is synthesized into other cannabinoids including THC, strains high in CBG are generally very low in other cannabinoids. That means high-CBG strains are consistent in producing less than 0.3% total THC, which is now the limit under the recently-released USDA rules for growing hemp."¹

CBG BASICS¹ — WHAT IS CBG?

CBG or Cannabigerol strains offer potent aromas combined with smooth flavor from their rich trichomes. Specifically, 

"Cannabigerol does have an important role as a precursor to other cannabinoids, and thus, CBGA has been rightfully dubbed the “Mother of Cannabinoids”. Its ability to synthesize major cannabinoids has pushed into the limelight for researchers, investors, and consumers alike.¹

CBGA (cannabigerolic acid) is a direct line to three main cannabinoids: tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA), cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), and cannabichromenic acid (CBCA). Once exposed to heat or light in a process known as decarboxylation, THCA, CBDA, and CBCA will shed their carboxyl acid group and become THC, CBD, and CBC, respectively. When it comes to CBGA though, certain enzymes break it down and it is immediately converted to THCA, CBDA, or CBCA. This is why more THC means less CBG, because of the unique way these compounds interact and are synthesized.¹

Because of this, plants that do convert to CBG will have their highest cannabigerol content early in the flowering stage. In most cultivars, if left to fully mature, almost all CBG will be converted into other cannabinoids. However, as mentioned above, some hemp strains naturally produce high amounts of CBG rather than CBD or THC."¹

 

CBG ISOLATE⁵ —

Let's examine the basics covered in CBD Tester's Everything You Need To Know About CBG Isolate from February 19, 2020:

"As the name implies, this CBG Isolate is made by completely isolating the cannabidiol from all the other plant matter and compounds. That means all other cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and inactive compounds like plant waxes are stripped from the extract, leaving only CBD. The final product is a fine white powder that has over 91% – 99% CBG.⁵

"To make isolate, the CBG must be extracted from the plant – and there are numerous ways to do this. The industry gold standard and consumer favorite is CO2 extraction.⁵

"A more cost-efficient but equally effective method is with an ethanol extraction involving application of the solvent ethanol directly to the hemp plant in order to extract the cannabinoids. Ethanol extraction is an FDA-approved method."⁵

Isolate can be used just like whole cannabis containing CBG to make anything that you desire to have CBG in it – edibles, topicals, tinctures, softgels, for example. 


CBG BENEFITS FOR DEPRESSION/ANXIETY¹,²,⁴ —

Cannabis research has found it to be antidepressive, neuroprotectant, antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory. It’s also believed to help treat gastrointestinal disorders and vision disorders, such as glaucoma.¹

"CBG is also being used as a safe and effective antidepressant and its effects mimic those of SSRI medications. It’s also believed that CBG can boost production of the endocannabinoid Anandamide, which naturally increases dopamine levels as well as regulates various functions such as sleep, mood, and appetite.⁴

When consumed, CBG produces body relaxation, a boost in energy, and improved focus.⁴

A 2015 study, which examined both humans and rats, found that high levels of anandamide contributed to mood enhancement and fear reduction. When the enzymes that break down anandamide were inhibited, that led to a decrease in fear and anxiety when threats were perceived. This is another way that CBG can be used for depression.⁴

Another area of interest is the role of CBD in mental health and the treatment of clinical depression. Researchers have discovered that CBG can inhibit uptake of GABA and serotonin in the brain, which can lead to increased levels of these neurotransmitters in the brain.² 

Decreased levels both GABA and serotonin have been linked to depression, making CBG a promising option when it comes to treating this disorder.²

What’s also interesting is that when it comes to GABA, CBG is said to inhibit uptake more effectively than other cannabinoids, namely CBD and THC. This is noteworthy because, just like CBD, Cannabigerol is also non-psychoactive and has no intoxicating effects whatsoever. It can be a mild, alternative mood enhancer."²

Increased appetite, similar to that of THC, is reported by some people. But for me, that food craving drives me to more natural ingredient, non-processed, fresh food –and not junk food.


CBG BENEFITS FOR ANTIBIOTIC/ANTIBACTERIAL¹,³ —
"

CBG has many potential medicinal benefits. Research has found it to be neuroprotectant, antioxidant,
antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory. It’s also believed to help treat gastrointestinal disorders, glaucoma, and might also have a positive effect on cancer.¹

A 2008 study found CBG to be beneficial in the treatment of MRSA due to its antibacterial and antifungal properties. Its neuroprotective properties may help people with Huntington’s disease, while further research has looked into its potential to treat bladder dysfunction. A more recent study has found CBG to be effective for increasing appetite.¹

CBG is also being used as a safe and effective antidepressant and its effects mimic those of SSRI medications. It’s also believed that CBG can boost production of the endocannabinoid Anandamide, which naturally increases dopamine levels as well as regulates various functions such as sleep, mood, and appetite."³

Tune in next time to read all about my personal experiences utilizing CBG in my medical cannabis intake, including conditions resolved and medications discontinued. I will also discuss the benefits to my overall condition of Multiple Sclerosis and my resulting symptomatic relief. 


[CBG: My CBG Personal Experiences to be continued in Part 2]


CBG REFERENCES


¹Why Could CBG Flowers Become the Trendiest Bud of 2020?, Jack Woodhouse 
²CBG Can Inhibit Uptake of GABA and Serotonin, Eleni P. Papagianni & Carl W. Stevenson
³CBG May Be A Leading Defense Against Drug-Resistant Superbugs, Excerpt, Alexandra Hicks 
Using CBG To Treat Clinical Depression, Excerpt, Alexandra Hicks 
Everything You Need To Know About CBG Isolate, Alexandra Hicks