A Guide to Cannabigerol (CBG): Health Benefits, Cost, and Production

Cannabigerol (CBG) is one of hundreds of compounds found in the cannabis plant. CBG is a precursor compound that begins as cannabigerolic acid (CBGa) and is converted to CBG following the application of heat.

As with other cannabinoids, CBG interacts with cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) in your brain, and it is said to produce several health benefits.

In this guide, we’ll look at those health benefits and discuss everything else you need to know about CBG.

Will CBG Get You High?

Whether minor cannabinoids are psychoactive or not is a topic of much debate. Many have argued that cannabidiol (CBD), cannabinol (CBN) and cannabigerol (CBG) are psychoactive, as they have a mild effect on mood. However, while they might produce minor effects, they don’t illicit the euphoria or perception-altering “high” that you get from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

People smoke CBG and other minor cannabinoids for the moderate, low-risk health benefits, and not for the potent pain-killing properties and sedative effects of medical cannabis.

How is CBG Produced?

Many hemp plants contain less than 1% CBG. As CBD is the cannabinoid of choice right now, most strains are bred to produce high concentrations of this compound and go as high as 20% CBD. This means that it can take 20x more biomass to produce CBG than CBD, which is why the former is so expensive.

As the popularity of this compound rises, more high-CBG strains will be produced, But that’s not the only obstacle that CBG faces.

CBG is precursor to other cannabinoids and will convert to these cannabinoids in time. A producer, therefore, either sacrifices their crop early to harvest high levels of CBG, or waits for maturity, by which time most of the compound has converted into other cannabinoids. The equipment needed to extract low levels of CBG is also expensive, although it becomes cheaper and easier if high-CBG strains are used.

How Much Does CBG Cost?

Expensive production methods, low demand, and limited strains mean that CBG is much more expensive than the more popular CBD. It sells for around $20,000 to $50,000 a kilo, which means those tinctures, gummies, and oils carry a premium price tag.

However, the same was true for CBD many years ago. There was a fairly recent when CBD ran for over $20,000 a kilo, but these days, following massive market growth, you’ll pay less than 1/10th of that.

The Health Benefits of Cannabigerol

Much of what we know about CBG has been learned in the last few years. We’re still learning about this compound and its potential health benefits, and many more studies are needed before concrete conclusions can be made. However, early signs are very promising and suggest that CBG could provide the following benefits:

Appetite Stimulant

THC is a well-known appetite stimulant, and these effects are mimicked by other phytocannabinoids. A study on rats, for instance, noted a significant improvement in appetite, with the CBG group consuming nearly twice as much food as the placebo group.

It’s a benefit that seems a little unnecessary in a country where over 40% are classified as obese, especially when you consider how dangerous long-term obesity is. However, for individuals recovering from eating disorders, surgery, and cancer treatment, as well as those who struggle to meet their daily calorie requirements, it’s a godsend.

Furthermore, while THC can produce an almost insatiable hunger, CBG oil may stimulate the appetite in a more natural way, making it easy to abstain if necessary.

It Has Anti-Inflammatory Effects

Inflammation is the root of countless chronic diseases, and by reducing inflammation, you can reduce the risk of these diseases and aid in the treatment of chronic pain, arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease. In fact, a 2013 study noted that CBG displayed potential as a treatment for IBS, before recommending further studies.

Reduces Neuroinflammation

CBG may provide some benefits in the management of Huntington’s Disease, a genetic condition that can seriously impact a person’s quality of life and reduce their life expectancy. It’s believed to provide some neuroprotective benefits, effectively reducing inflammation in the brain and protecting against a host of ailments.

That doesn’t mean that it will cure this disease. Unfortunately, we’re a long way from finding a cure right now. Regardless, it could help to reduce some of the symptoms, and regular use may lower the risk of similar conditions presenting themselves.

Fight Bacteria

CBG exhibits potent antibacterial effects. It is one of the many compounds that could be used to treat antibiotic-resistant strains of MRSA and other deadly bugs. Other cannabinoids have similar properties, but CBG seems to possess stronger anti-bacterial effects than other minor cannabinoids.

Reduce Anxiety

CBG and CBD tinctures are often consumed for their apparent anti-anxiety benefits, and there’s no shortage of anecdotal evidence concerning these effects. If true, it could be a natural way to improve mental wellness and negate the need for strong and highly addictive sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs.

Other Benefits of CBG

As CBG can fight inflammation, it could be beneficial in the treatment of cancer. Studies on mice suggest that it could reduce the growth of cancer cells, potentially slowing the spread of this deadly disease. It may also improve eye health and has been studied as a potential treatment for glaucoma, offering relief from intraocular pressure without the psychoactive effects or side effects of THC and prescription medications.

Although CBG oil is very well tolerated, you should never rely on it to cure or prevent disease and should consult with a medical professional if you have a pre-existing illness or have been prescribed medication.

How is CBG Consumed?

You can purchase CBG as tinctures, oils, and crystals. These pure forms can be placed under the tongue or added to food. It cannot be made into pure kief, as CBG-only flower is not available yet, but it can be extracted using several different methods.

CBG can be smoked in hemp flowers or the pure form can be added to vaporizers. It’s worth noting, however, that it has a low boiling point, and may lose its potency when placed in most standard vapes.

CBG Strains

As the popularity of cannabigerol increases, so does the prevalence of CBG-dominant strains. These are nowhere near as numerous as CBD strains, but will likely continue to increase in variety. The strains available right now include:

  • Jack Frost CBG: Produced by the Oregon Seed Co., it has accumulated countless good reviews and is said to have a CBG content of up to 13.5%.
  • Super Glue CBG: This rare strain was developed by the Black Tie Group and has an astonishing CBG content of up to 22%.
  • White CBG: Another Oregon Seed Co., product, White CBG goes up to 20% CBG with less than 0.03% THC. It is said to have a creamy flavor with a hint of citrus.

Conclusion: A Contender for CBD Oil

CBG oil’s popularity is rising and it’s quickly becoming the must-have cannabinoid. It’s expensive, as noted above, but thanks to all of its potential health benefits, the demand just keeps getting bigger. With every passing month, it seems that CBG’s stock keeps rising, and within a few years it could be just as big as its better-known cousins CBD and THC.

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Disclaimer: According to The American Lung Association, inhaling smoke of any kind is considered harmful to the lungs, regardless if it’s coming from cigarettes, hemp flower or campfire.

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