What's Cannabigerol (CBG)?
Same plant, another great use!
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What is CBG?
You’ve probably heard of CBD (cannabidiol), but haven’t heard of CBG (cannabigerol) There are several compounds that can be extracted from the cannabis plant, such as CBD or CBG. CBG is not as abundant in cannabis as CBD but is worthwhile to know about.
Please note that CBG is a non-psychotropic molecule. Meaning, it will not give you a “high” that could affect your mental state or normal day-to-day activity.
Where does CBG come from?
CBG is the precursor to CBD. As the cannabis plant is growing it’s the base upon which other cells are made. Once it’s broken down, it becomes the foundation for other molecules like CBD, CBC and THC form.
What Are the (Potential) Benefits of CBG?*
All of this has yet to be proven in clinical trials, but there are some early studies showing that CBG may be a promising treatment for several conditions. Keep in mind, this isn't definitive proof, and while some studies show promise, the assertations are "unfounded as of now," says Dr. Solomon.
- May treat glaucoma and relieve intraocular pressure. This could be a huge deal because CBD on its own does not help with glaucoma, but THC does-so for patients who want to treat glaucoma using cannabis, this may be a way to do so without the intoxication effect. A 1990 study looked at the use of CBG for glaucoma and found that "cannabigerol and related cannabinoids may have therapeutic potential for the treatment of glaucoma." However, you should continue to take doctor-prescribed glaucoma medication, and only take CBG or cannabis as an addition to your Rx meds and after consulting your doctor, says Dr. Solomon.
- Have antibacterial properties, particularly for MRSA. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or "MRSA" is a type of staph infection that is resistant to methicillin (a common type of antibiotic), rendering it a particularly threatening or even fatal bacterial infection. In a 2008 study, CBG showed promise for treating MRSA as an antibacterial agent. Dr. Solomon said this is an area where CBG shows real promise. "It's thought to help with MRSA," he said. "CBG has potential to treat bacteria that are resistant to traditional antibiotics."
- Contributes to GABA reuptake inhibition. CBG inhibits GABA uptake, which could lead to muscle relaxation, tension relief, and sensation of calm and peace in the body and brain, according to Bonni Goldstein, M.D., a physician with a distinguished background in pediatrics and a current specialty in cannabis medicine, as she noted in a recent video. A 1975 study corroborated this. Pharmacologically, GABA uptake inhibitors are already used to treat anxiety. Dr. Solomon adds that because of this decreased "GABA uptake," CBG could "potentially decrease anxiety."
- Could help inflammatory bowel disease and colitis. Rats were studied in 2013 for the use of CBG for colitis, and the results were positive, concluding that CBG reduced the effect of colitis. According to the study, IBD patients have been experiencing "successful management of abdominal pain, joint pain, cramping, diarrhea, poor appetite, weight loss, and nausea" with the use of cannabis, but there are not many studies just yet exploring CBG as an isolated compound.
- May work for Huntington's and neurodegenerative diseases. A 2015 study on mice found that "the use of CBG, alone or in combination with other phytocannabinoids or therapies, [could be a] treatment of neurodegenerative diseases," such as Huntington's disease. "CBG normalized expression of abnormal genes linked to brain degeneration, showing that it's a neuroprotective compound," says Dr. Goldstein to Shape.
- Potentially fights cancer. "CBG is also proven in laboratory studies to inhibit the growth of certain cancer cells," says Dr. Goldstein. A review article in 2009 showed that CBG could potentially slow tumor growth. Another study from 2016 concluded that "the preclinical data strongly support the notion that non-psychoactive plant-derived CBs [cannabinoids, including CBG] can act as direct inhibitors of tumor progression as well as enhance the activity of first-line therapies." A 2014 study found similar results, reporting that CBG inhibited tumor growth in colon cancer, and 2006 study including cannabigerol noted it may help with breast cancer. In 2016, it was shown to be an appetite stimulant in rats, which could help patients undergoing chemotherapy.
- Showing major promise for inflammation, including of the skin. A 2007 study looked at CBG's ability to treat eczema and psoriasis, and as mentioned, it may help reduce the inflammation caused by IBD.
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Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Disclosure
CBD related products are not for use by or sale to persons under the age of 18. This product should be used only as directed on the label. It should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing. Consult with a physician before use if you are taking prescription medications. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
*Benefits of CBG and content were pulled from Shape.com