In previous articles, we’ve alluded to the fact that there are more cannabinoids in weed than just the two we are normally concerned with, THC and CBD. In actual fact, there are hundreds of cannabinoids yet to be explored, tested, and understood for function. The current buzz (no pun intended) surrounds the cannabinoid, CBG. But what is CBG?
What is CBG?
CBG (Cannabigerol) is present in cannabis plants in quantities as low as 1%. It is considered to be the precursor, the parent, to both THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) and after their creation, remains in the plant at much lower levels.
CBG, just like THC and CBD, first appears as CBGA, the acidic version, and with heat, time, and through digestion by the plant’s own enzymes, it is converted to CBD. Just as heat and time convert THCA and CBDA to THC and CBD.
It is thought that both CBGA, the acidic version of the cannabinoid, and CBG, the non-acidic, or neutral version, have effects on the body and potential medicinal benefits.
The cannabinoids found in cannabis react with the human body’s own, natural cannabinoid receptors, collectively known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is the molecular system responsible for regulating and balancing a myriad of bodily processes; immune response, communication between cells, appetite, metabolic rate, stress, memory, and more. Cannabinoids interact with the human body through this system of receptors and metabolic enzymes and can provide beneficial effects.
There have been very few human tests with CBG, so little is understood about the exact impact it has on the human body and its potential benefits. However, with increasing interest in non-psychoactive cannabinoids and their distinct clinical uses, this looks set to change.
Like CBD, CBG is not psychoactive, which means that it will not get your stoned, or high.
What is CBG good for?
Cannabis, in general, is imbued with a host of medicinal properties, many of which are well understood and some that are less well known. Studies into weed’s medical uses are ongoing, so it is understandable that research into it’s individual cannabinoids is less common. CBG, falls into this category.
It is reported that animal studies have shown that CBG stimulates receptors involved in pain and heat sensation and can also stimulate those receptors which are involved in blood pressure regulation. This means that CBG might have a role to play in blood pressure and pain regulation, together with possible anti-inflammatory properties.
Interestingly, CBD also produces similar effects, so it’s unclear whether or not CBG has any differentiating properties, in this respect.
So, what does CBG do? There are some clear indications that CBG shows some promising benefits in the treatment of specific diseases.
Two, well documented, animal tests have shown CBG to have beneficial effects in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease and incurable brain disease, called Huntington’s disease.
CBG has also been shown to have anti-bacterial properties, which could kill MRSA, and other elements may even help prevent colon cancer. It could also increase dopamine levels, improve sleep, and help to regulate appetite, as well as offer support for the treatment of glaucoma and bladder dysfunctions.
Cancer patients, who may be suffering the side-effects of chemotherapy, or those suffering from conditions like cachexia, should derive some help from CBG’s appetite boosting properties, in particular.
Whilst all these studies are very promising, none are conclusive. It is very clear that more investigation is needed to discover the potentially huge benefits of CBG. Sooner, rather than later, we think.
How do you take CBG?
Whenever you smoke weed or eat a cannabis edible, you are ingesting CBG but, as we’ve said, it occurs at very low levels naturally. So, if you are looking for CBG benefits, in particular, you should consider a CBG tincture or Cannabigerol oil, where CBG is present in larger quantities.
Because CBG is still in its infancy, in terms of research and the available products on the market, you’ll be lucky to find the sort of vape juices you’ll come across regularly for THC and CBD. You may fancy making your own vape juice, though.
What is CBG oil?
To release the medical benefits of CBG in a CBG hemp oil, mature hemp (cannabis) plants are milled and ground, making it easier to extract all the phytochemicals from the cannabinoid, flavonoid, and terpene-rich leaves and flowers. The extraction uses CO2, which binds to the cannabinoids and other elements, enabling further separation and selection. The CBG cannabinoid extract is then added to hemp oil, which is used as the carrier medium.
What is CBG tincture?
In many cases, ‘CBD oil’ and ‘CBD tincture’ are used interchangeably. In actual fact, there are a few subtle differences.
The primary differences lie in their makeups. CBD tinctures are made by soaking all of the milled cannabis matter in an alcohol and water solution. After a few weeks, the weed’s natural compounds soak into the solution. It’s then strained and filtered and the remaining fluid is your tincture.
How to use CBG oil and tincture
There are many different ways to use both products and most are interchangeable. Both products are regularly available in a bottle with a handy dropper and by far the easiest and most convenient way to take it is sublingual administration. This simply means under the tongue. Place a few drops under the tongue and hold for a few seconds, before swallowing. It is said that this way of administering the CBG is the quickest way to reap its benefits. If you’re using CBG for pain relief, this might be ideal?
Just like CBD oil and tinctures, you can use the CBG variant by adding it to food or drink. Don’t be tempted to use the oil in the cooking process though, the heat will most likely destroy the cannabinoids.
Always check the bottle for the recommended dosages and start low, to check your sensitivity to the substance. As a general guide, 3-4 drops can be taken, up to 3 times a day.
Can I make CBG oil at home?
You can give it a damn good go, yes! You can, probably more easily, make a cannabis tincture, using a high CBG strain. (We’ll be looking at how to make homemade cannabis tinctures soon, so watch this space.)
In the meantime, why not try a cannabis strain with a reported higher than average CBG content. Remember, it’s still lower in content than a commercial oil, but you can enjoy getting high, whilst reaping the benefits of all the cannabinoids the plant has to offer.
Recommended Cannabis Strains for CBG Extraction
Girl Scout Cookies
Available in feminized and autoflower varieties, Girl Scout Cookies has a weighty THC content of 22%, on average, and can even reach 28%. So, you’re going to get high, right? Very, very high! Newbies, beware and take it easy. Read up on its parentage and phenomenal power.
Medicinally, GSC provides the body with a number of powerful cannabis components. Primarily, its heavy load of THC, but it also contains highly beneficial terpenes; Pinene, Linalool, Myrcene, and Limonene.
It boasts anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, making it ideal for alleviating chronic and acute pain. Medicinal users report that it soothes swelling and reduces and even stops physical pain, in its tracks. For this reason alone, sufferers of arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraines, and neuropathic illnesses turn to it for help.
Muscle cramps, hyperactivity, and tension can all be eased under its calming influence. While those seeking something to boost appetite or combat eating disorders may find this strain beneficial, easing nausea, vomiting, and the inability to keep food down.
It doesn’t stop there, Girl Scout Cookies Autoflower is said to be effective in battling stress, depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
All this and CBG, too!