What is CBG?: A Beginner's Guide to Cannabigerol
It doesn’t matter if you follow hemp closely or not, you’re probably well aware of the rise of CBD products. And while CBD oils, lotions, and edibles continue to grow in popularity, there is a new cannabinoid making its way to the stage, CBG.
Cannabigerol (CBG) is one of many naturally occurring compounds located in hemp, but compared to others, this cannabinoid is considered one of the most important. CBG stems from its chemical precursor called cannabigerol acid (CBGA).
While CBGA production is key for producing other cannabinoids, consumers have found CBG can offer them a different experience than CBD and THC.
How is CBG Different from CBD?
CBG is like the ‘parent’ of cannabinoids because every cannabinoid starts as CBG—however, as the plant matures, it eventually converts into other compounds.
From a quick look, it is easy to assume that CBD and CBG would be similar, but they are quite different. For one, CBG has its own chemical formula, meaning it does not have the same arrangement of atoms. As a result, it binds to our cannabinoid receptors (CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors) differently than CBD.
How CBG Works in Your Body
Speaking of cannabinoid receptors, let’s talk about the endocannabinoid system and how CBG affects it. Similar to CBD, CBG interacts with our cannabinoid receptors that are found throughout the human body. Regarding what makes this compound affect people differently than CBD is determined by how it interacts without receptors.
CBD is known to predominantly bind with the CB2 receptors, whereas CBG binds to CB1 and CB2. While both cannabinoids do not cause acute effects, customers have reported that each compound offers them a different experience.
Like any cannabinoid, CBG can incite an array of effects but keep in mind, our list below is not guaranteed. Depending on the amount you take and the consumption method, you may respond differently than others. With that said, cannabis enthusiasts have reported feeling:
Some have suggested that CBD and CBG have similar effects, but with CBG, it is more pronounced. All in all, if you have enjoyed CBD in the past, CBG may be worth giving a try!
The Importance of CBG
Without the acidic form of CBG, known as CBGA, we would not have the products that we have grown to love because CBGA is the chemical precursor for well-known cannabinoids, Delta-9 THC and CBD. But this transition doesn’t happen overnight.
As the plant begins to grow, enzymes will slowly convert CBGA into cannabinoid acids. Some include:
Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA)
Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA),
Cannabichromenic acid (CBCA)
The concentration of CBGA is at its highest during the early stages of the plant's development. Still, as the plant continues to grow, CBGA is converted into other acidic forms until it reaches maturity. And just like other cannabinoids, if you draw out CBGA and apply heat to it, it will transform into CBG. You can do this by putting it in an oven, lighter, or by using a vaporizer.
How Is CBG Made?
CBG is naturally produced in young hemp plants, but as the plant develops, it starts to convert into other cannabinoids. With CBG production in mind, hemp growers have had to choose—do they halt hemp’s natural growth process to gain a higher yield of CBG but a low concentration of other compounds?
The downside of this method is the amount of plant material it takes to achieve CBG production, and growers miss out on drawing out other compounds. Instead, some cultivators harvest hemp after it reaches maturity because it is more economically viable to produce not only CBG but also CBD and Delta-9 THC.
There are some instances of farmers that cross-breed with different genetics to achieve a higher concentration of CBG while still maintaining additional cannabinoid production.
CBG Potential Benefits
Unfortunately, we are not at liberty to discuss the potential benefits of CBG or any other compound. But if you do want more information surrounding this topic, we recommend conducting thorough research by reading peer-reviewed articles and seeking advice from your physician.
How to Consume CBG
CBG can be found in many different products. Some include CBG hemp flower, tinctures, and even edibles. But if you’re looking for a product with a mix of cannabinoids, a good place to start is broad-spectrum CBD. Within this mixture, you will have a variety of compounds, along with CBG, that balance out to offer you the Entourage Effect. This effect has been reported to provide consumers with a whole new experience compared to a cannabinoid on its own.
Whichever consumption method you choose, remember to have the tools you need. If you plan to purchase CBG flower, make sure you have an instrument or pre-rolls. But if you would rather keep it simple, you can buy tinctures or edibles. Tinctures and edibles are wonderful for those looking to have convenience and a user-friendly experience.
When it comes to hemp products, THC and CBD reign over everything else, but as CBG continues to make its way to the surface, there is no doubt that it too, will reach the top. For those looking to try CBG, remember to do your research and consult your doctor to determine if it is the right fit for you.