CBD or CBG or CBN – Which One Works For Me?

CBD vs. CBG vs. CBN: How Does Each Cannabinoid Affect You?

Within the flowering buds of the hemp plant, you will find over 100 distinctive compounds known as cannabinoids, which have a vital role in the potential benefits associated with cannabis.  There are three cannabinoids in particular that appeal to those seeking out these benefits without the high derived from THC:

  • CBD (cannabidiol)
  • CBG (cannabigerol)
  • CBN (cannabinol)

By comparing these cannabinoids to one another, this in turn, will help you discover which cannabinoid can meet your direct needs the best.

Cannabinoid Basics 101

Cannabinoids are compounds that are found in the cannabis genus – the genus responsible for bringing us both hemp and marijuana.  These compounds have the fascinating distinction of being the only compounds in nature that attach to cannabinoid receptors in the body, belonging to the endocannabinoid system.  

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a network of cannabinoid receptors and endocannabinoids, each in charge of regulating physiological functions of the body.  This is primarily done via two categories of cannabinoid receptors:

  • CB1 receptors that’re located in the nervous system.
  • CB2 receptors that’re located in the nervous system along with the digestive system, immune system, and, to a lesser extent, other systems of the body.

The endocannabinoid system has the job of keeping us in homeostasis, and this is why cannabinoids found in hemp are so important.  Taking cannabinoids like CBD, CBN, and CBG provide the ECS with what it needs to regulate important functions of the body that pertain to our health and wellbeing.  

Now that we have all that covered, let’s examine these amazing cannabinoids individually.

CBD (Cannabidiol)

CBD, or cannabidiol, is the dominant chemical compound in the hemp plant, making up between 10-25% of its chemical composition, roughly.  A nonintoxicating cannabinoid, along with CBG and CBN, CBD was discovered back in the 1940s, and has been researched extensively ever since.  

What Kinds of Effects Does CBD Offer?

CBD, like we said, has been studied extensively for its potential benefits.  Let’s go over the key benefits that we associate with CBD based on the research that has been done over the last several decades.

  • Positive Effects on Mood: CBD attaches itself to cannabinoid receptors that regulate neurotransmitters that affect mood, like dopamine, serotonin, and cortisol.  This is why so many people find that they experience a mood boost by taking CBD, and also report that they experience lowered stress.  The effects on cortisol and other adrenal hormones in particular gives CBD its noted anxiolytic properties.
  • Positive Effects on Sleep: CBD can play a significant role in managing sleep, again because of the way in which the cannabinoid interacts with receptors that control our nervous system functions.  CBD’s anxiolytic effects allow a person to feel less stressed out at bedtime, while easing the body as well.  Aside from that, CBD works with our circadian rhythm to regulate our sleep cycle.
  • Appetite Increase and Anti-Nausea: One well-known effect of CBD is having an increase in appetite, with studies reporting an increase in food cravings and pleasure derived from eating.  This could have positive implications for anyone who struggles with a frequently low appetite.  The effect comes from the way in which the cannabinoid interacts with receptors that regulate serotonin, as appetite is managed by serotonin.  Another manner in which serotonin regulation improves our wellbeing is by reducing nausea – a property that many people turn to CBD for.  
  • Neuroprotective Properties: A lot of research on CBD has been in the area of  neurological health in recent years, as CBD has been shown to be a neuroprotectant.  This means that it protects neurological functions by boosting neurogenesis, preventing neuronal death, and strengthening neural pathways.  

Best for:

Cannabidiol is an all-around great cannabinoid to incorporate into your routine.  It brings all kinds of potential benefits pertaining to both our physical and emotional well-being, and even has a balanced effect that doesn’t necessarily make a person feel too sleepy or too energized while it’s active in their system.  We recommend CBD to everyone, whether or not they’re trying to address any specific symptom, due to its fascinating regulatory effects.

CBN (Cannabinol)

CBN, or cannabinol is a minor cannabinoid in hemp that comes from oxidized delta 9 THC – in other words, as the plant matures, some of the naturally occurring delta 9 THC in hemp oxidizes due to age and environmental exposures.  Some of that converts into CBN, which is a cannabinoid that takes on entirely new properties as its chemical structure changes the way in which it attaches to cannabinoid receptors in the body.

CBN was actually discovered accidentally in 1899, through one of the very first attempts to isolate individual compounds in cannabis.  Researchers had acquired a sample of cannabis that had oxidized in transport, and in an effort to isolate THC, they actually discovered CBN.  Since then, CBN has been researched for its own unique benefits, but not to the extent of CBD.

What Kinds of Effects Does CBN Offer?

Like we said, cannabinol hasn’t been studied to the extent of CBD.  That means that it’s likely CBN has lots of beneficial properties that haven’t been uncovered yet, so what you will find below is just what we know so far.

  • Antibacterial Properties: CBN has been studied heavily for its antibacterial properties that go beyond topical.  In fact, medical researchers see a lot of promise within the context of antibiotic-resistant infections, a concern that’s been growing within the medical community.  Numerous studies have shown that CBN can offer antibacterial benefits, and one in particular demonstrates its effects against staph infection, which can be a huge deal moving forward.
  • Sleep-Enhancing Properties: The most common reason for taking CBN is to get better sleep at night.  The cannabinoid is renowned for its ability to ease stress that can keep us awake, and even strengthen our innate sleep cycle so that we fall asleep more easily and stay asleep throughout the night.  Surprisingly, there’s a lack of research in this particular area, but cannabinol has long been regarded as the most sleep-enhancing in the hemp plant.
  • Stress Relief: CBN gets some of its sleep-enhancing properties from its anxiolytic effects.
  • Influence on Appetite: CBN, like CBD, has been shown to increase a person’s appetite, which again can be extremely useful.

Best for:

CBN is a phenominal cannabinoid to take at nighttime if you’re looking to unwind and get a good night’s sleep.  By far, that’s the most common reason for taking it, which is why you’ll find a plethora of formulas made with CBN that are intended to take at bedtime.  But, as you can see, it offers other benefits as well, and likely has many that we don’t even know about yet.

CBG (Cannabigerol)

CBG, or cannabigerol is a cannabinoid that has an interesting relationship to the other two, as it’s nicknamed the “mother cannabinoid” for a reason.  When cannabis is still an immature plant, its chemical composition contains only one cannabinoid, which is CBG.  As the plant ages, CBG splits itself into 113 or so cannabinoids including CBD, CBN, THC, and every other cannabinoid that we know of.  This means that all cannabinoids start out as CBG, and it also explains why all cannabinoids are isomers of one another.

What Kinds of Effects Does CBG Offer?

Similar to CBN, CBG has not undergone the extent of research that CBD has.  But, we still have some pretty good ideas on its benefits that have been studied over the years.

  • Serotonin and GABA Regulation: Research shows CBG to balance serotonin and GABA levels in the brain, and these two neurotransmitters play a major role in our emotional wellbeing.  Serotonin plays a role in our mood that has to do with feelings of happiness and contentment, and, as a sidenote, serotonin also regulates our nausea response, which means that CBG can alleviate nausea.  GABA, meanwhile, is a neurotransmitter that relates to our stress response, which is why increased GABA levels can promote a feeling of calm.
  • Bladder Benefits: CBG has shown surprising effectiveness at regulating bladder functions thanks to the presence of cannabinoid receptors in the bladder, and this may offer improved bladder control while helping prevent infections of the bladder.
  • Appetite Increase: CBG is another appetite stimulant, like CBD and CBN, because of its regulatory effects on neurotransmitters that control our appetite and food cravings.
  • Energy Boost: People often describe a feeling of enhanced energy and focus after taking CBG, which leads us to believe that CBG works with cognitive functions in the brain.  This is an area that hasn’t been explored by clinical researchers yet, however.

Best for:

Cannabigerol may give you a nice daytime boost if you’re feeling sluggish or foggy.

Which Cannabinoid is the Winner?

CBD, CBG, and CBN all offer fantastic benefits that have been confirmed by medical researchers over the last several decades.  There’s no “bad choice” or “clear-cut winner” when trying to choose between these amazing cannabinoids.  And, now that you have a bit more insight into the distinctive benefits that set each cannabinoid apart, you can choose which cannabinoid(s) to make part of your daily/evening routine here at Tillmans Tranquils.