February 20, 2019
Cannabis is an extremely complex plant, and it contains many more cannabinoids than just THC and CBD. How many cannabinoids do you think this plant contains? So far, more than 60 cannabinoid compounds have been discovered, and Cannabigerol (CBG) is one of them. CBG is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that can help treat multiple medical conditions, diseases, and illnesses. Although THC and CBD are two commonly consumed cannabinoids, CBG is gaining more popularity and attention due to its medicinal value. Read on to find out more about CBG and how it can positively impact your life.
Background Of CBG
It’s important to know that CBG is the non-acidic form of CBGA, and CBGA is the parent molecule from which several additional cannabinoids are produced. Once a cannabis plant fully matures, the majority of the CBG within the plant is already converted into CBGA. As a result, CBGA turns into other cannabinoids. Despite this conversion, CBG is often referred to as the ‘stem cell’ or ‘parent’ of other cannabinoids.
In 1975, researchers discovered that CBGA (the acid form of CBG) was the first cannabinoid formed in the cannabis plant. Based on limited research findings, it appears that CBG works with other cannabinoids to provide synergy and balance to the cannabis user. It’s also believed that CBG can partially counteract the cerebral head high associated with THC consumption, which is similar to CBD’s abilities in this regard.
CBG Medicinal Properties & Benefits
Before learning about CBG’s medicinal properties, it’s essential to know that CBG is non-psychoactive, non-impairing, and non-intoxicating. CBG can act on the body’s central nervous system without creating a psycho-active high. Therefore, users don’t have to worry about feeling high after consumption. Not only does CBG contain anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, and anti-septic properties, but it also holds efficacy in battling against MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus). Specifically, in a 2008 study, CBG demonstrated its effectiveness against MRSA.
In addition, one 2009 review article found that CBG and other cannabinoids can slow the progression and growth of various tumors and cancer cells. Due to CBG’s ability to inhibit the growth of cancer cells and tumors, this cannabinoid shows a significant promise in helping treat different forms of cancer. Similarly, in recent years, CBG was found to be an extremely active neuroprotectant, especially regarding Huntington’s Disease. It has been discovered that CBG can help protect neurons, which can be useful in treating many neurodegenerative diseases.
Aside from these benefits, CBG has shown significant potential for helping treat glaucoma. In particular, CBG can reduce intra-ocular pressure while acting as an effective vasodilator and increasing fluid drainage from the eyes. The medicinal benefits don’t stop here though. CBG also contains anti-inflammatory properties, which could help treat symptoms related to inflammatory bowel disease and other inflammatory-related issues. This cannabinoid can reduce inflammation by targeting specific molecules responsible for inflammation including pain syndromes, cancer, and IBD.
CBG’s Mental Health Benefits
Now, what are CBG’s non-physical benefits? For starters, a 2016 report showed that CBG could be an alternative form of treatment for anxiety and depression. Thus far, CBG’s anti-anxiety properties have been revealed through different research findings, but more research needs to be done. Additionally, since CBG can block serotonin receptors, this suggests a potential role for this cannabinoid helping treat depression.
CBG also possesses the ability to inhibit the uptake of the brain’s GABA. GABA is often referred to as an amino acid that acts as a neurotransmitter within the central nervous system and also calms the system down. GABA can block nerve impulses, and when GABA is inhibited, it can result in lessened anxiety and muscle tension. Thus, it’s believed that CBG can provide anti-anxiety and potentially anti-depressant effects.
Additional Medicinal Properties
CBG has been found to act on very specific physiological systems and problems, and results for medicinal use are promising:
- Endocannabinoid receptors are prevalent in eye structures, and interestingly, CBG is thought to be particularly effective in treating glaucoma because it reduces intraocular pressure. It is a powerful vasodilator and has neuroprotective effects to boot.
- In animal experiments involving mice, CBG was found to be effective in decreasing the inflammation characteristic of inflammatory bowel disease.
- In a recent 2015 study, CBG was shown to protect neurons in mice with Huntington’s disease, which is characterized by nerve cell degeneration in the brain.
- CBG is showing great promise as a cancer fighter. Specifically, CBG was shown to block receptors that cause cancer cell growth. In one such study, it was shown to inhibit the growth of colorectal cancer cells in mice, thereby slowing colon cancer growth. CBG inhibited tumors and chemically-induced colon carcinogenesis, therefore demonstrating a very exciting possibility for a cure for colorectal cancer.
- European research shows evidence that CBG is an effective antibacterial agent, particularly against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) microbial strains resistant to several classes of drugs. Since the 1950s, topical formulations of cannabis have been effective in skin infections, but researchers at the time were unaware of the plant’s chemical composition.
- In a very recent 2017 study, researchers showed that a form of CBG purified to remove delta-9 THC was a very effective appetite stimulant in rats. This may lead to a novel non-psychotropic therapeutic option for cachexia, the muscle wasting and severe weight loss seen in late stage cancer and other diseases.
- In a study that looked at the effects of five different cannabinoids on bladder contractions, CBG tested best at inhibiting muscle contractions, so it may be a future tool in preventing bladder dysfunction disorders.
Aside from the many medical benefits mentioned above, CBG even contains analgesic properties, which can help treat numerous diseases and illnesses. Now, rewind over a decade to when one 2007 study was conducted, which revealed that CBG inhibited keratinocyte proliferation. This suggests a significant role for CBG aiding in the treatment of skin disorders including psoriasis. In general, though, CBG can simplify the making of natural skin-moisturizers, thus, this cannabinoid could be used to combat dry skin and other skin disorders.
Lastly, did you know that CBG can impact the body by increasing anandamide levels? It turns out that this cannabinoid can do just that. For those who don’t know, anandamide is a naturally-occurring cannabinoid that helps regarding the regulation of biological functions like sleep, memory, pain sensations, and appetite.
Overall, not only does CBG contain a plethora of medicinal properties, but it can also have a positive impact on people’s lives. Whether you currently experience health issues or not, this cannabinoid shows significant potential in helping treat different conditions, diseases, and illnesses.