All About the Mother Cannabinoid
What is CBG? How is it related to hemp’s other cannabinoids? And what benefits does CBG offer users? With the explosion of cannabinoids’ popularity, it’s easy to get lost in the weeds.
In this article, we go in-depth on all things cannabigerol (CBG) to help you disambiguate the “mother” cannabinoid from its many descendants.
Whatever you may be looking for, we answer all the most frequently asked questions about this increasingly popular cannabinoid, so you can make the best decision about whether CBG products are right for you. Let’s dive into our CBG exposé.
What is CBG?
Cannabigerol (CBG) is one of the many natural compounds known as cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant family. However, it makes up a comparatively small portion of cannabis’s total cannabinoid content (usually less than 1%), making it a relatively “minor” cannabinoid.
CBG is gaining more attention in the cannabinoid community, owing to the therapeutic applications it offers. Some of these overlap with those of other cannabinoids like CBD, while others may be unique to CBG. More on CBG’s benefits below.
Why is CBG Called the Mother Cannabinoid? What is Its Relation to CBD and THC?
Despite being a “minor” cannabinoid, CBG may be the single most important cannabis compound. Indeed, all other cannabis cannabinoids started out as CBG, slowly transforming into CBD, THC, and the like over time.
Without CBG, cannabis would be unable to produce CBD, THC, CBN, or any of the other therapeutic cannabinoids that we know and love. Because of this, CBG is often known as the “mother cannabinoid”.
Is CBG psychoactive?
CBG is not psychoactive, at least under the most commonly used definition of the term.
When most people ask whether a substance is psychoactive, they’re really asking about whether it will cause intoxication. And no: CBG, just like CBD, will not get users high or cause any other form of intoxication.
But “psychoactivity” actually refers to a much broader effect. Anything that affects the mind is, technically speaking, psychoactive. Just like CBD, CBG can affect anxiety and several other mental health issues. Because these, strictly speaking, affect the way your mind works, CBG is psychoactive under this broader technical definition.
Again, though: most users mean to ask whether CBG will get you high. The answer is a resounding “no”.
What is the Difference Between CBD and CBG?
CBD and CBG are both natural cannabis compounds known as cannabinoids. Both have numerous potential health and wellness applications and are increasingly embraced by individual users and the medical and science communities.
However, there are several key differences that differentiate CBD and CBG.
- CBG is present in cannabis in only very small amounts, while CBD is the second most prevalent cannabinoid (behind only THC).
- CBD’s therapeutic applications are comparatively well researched, while research interest in CBG is only beginning to take off.
- CBD is thought to interact only indirectly with the body’s cannabinoid receptors, while CBG is believed to interact directly with them. This potentially opens up a new world of therapeutic applications for CBG, but more research must be conducted.
- Under certain conditions, CBG can transform into any other cannabis cannabinoid. By contrast, CBD is relatively stable and can only transform into a handful of other cannabinoids, such as Delta-8.
Is CBD or CBG better for anxiety?
While there is some debate about whether CBD or CBG is better for anxiety, current research and product availability cuts heavily in favor of CBD.
Some users report great success using CBG for anxiety, but there is little to no current research to support such claims. While CBG may indeed be as effective (or even more so) than CBD for anxiety, reports on its efficacy are at this point purely anecdotal and should be taken with a grain of salt. By contrast, the effects of CBD on anxiety are well documented and supported by an ever-growing abundance of clinical research.
Additionally, CBG is comparatively scarce in terms of its concentration in raw cannabis and product availability. CBG is naturally found in only trace concentrations, so it requires far more hemp biomass to extract. As such, current CBG products tend to be more expensive than comparable CBD ones, and far fewer CBG products are currently available.
In terms of both clinical research and product pricing and availability, CBD is likely the better option for users seeking to reduce anxiety.
What are the side effects of CBG?
Users generally report experiencing no noticeable side effects following CBG use. However, little to no formal research has been done on the short- or long-term side effects of CBG, so it is impossible to make conclusive observations at this time.
As with any substance, overuse is likely to cause some issues. After all, even drinking too much water can be toxic!
But, when used in moderation and within a product’s recommended dosage guidelines, CBG is not known to cause any adverse reactions. As always, it’s best to talk to your doctor before beginning to use any new product, and CBG is no exception.