Sometimes mothers don’t get much recognition. Today there is a lot of hype surrounding cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the health and wellness community.
But what about the lesser-known “mother of all cannabinoids” cannabigerol (CBG) from which both of these are derived?
Found in as little as 1% of the cannabis plant, CBG has always played a supporting role (just like a good mother).
But in this article, she will take center stage as we explain many of her potential benefits that have surfaced through the help of research.
1. May Help Treat IBD
We might as well go here first. Your bowels. After all, who doesn’t want to learn about bowel health?
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
People with chronic inflammation of the bowel are said to have the unfortunate condition of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). There are two types of IBD:
Crohn’s disease: Crohn’s disease includes any part of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the *ahem* anus.
Ulcerative colitis: Ulcerative colitis affects the colon or large intestine.
IBD affects millions of people around the world and there is currently no cure. However, there are many ways to treat it, one of which may be CBG.
Animal studies have shown that CBG may help treat inflammatory bowel diseases.
In 2013, a study was done on mice on the effects of CBG on colitis. The researchers induced inflammation in the colons of mice, then treated them with CBG.
They noted that CBG was able to reduce inflammation and nitric oxide production. Excessive reactive oxygen species (ROS), which can play a central role in IBD, can cause cell damage, toxicity, and nutrient deficiency.
In this study, the formation of ROS in the intestines was reduced by CBG. It was concluded that CBG reduced colitis and the spread of bacteria related to IBD.
This meta-analysis reported on the findings of 51 publications and 2 clinical studies done on murine colitis. Of the 24 compounds used, CBG had the largest effect size on intestinal inflammation.
These studies show promise for both the treatment of IBD and colon cancer. There is also another possible application of CBG for bladder health.
This is the embarrassing affliction of when you gotta go, you GOTTA go. There is an array of possible causes of bladder spasms from anything as simple as your diet or medication to changes in blood supply and nerve function.
For those with bladder spasms that cause the urgent need to pee, of which sometimes you make it to the bathroom too late, CBG may be helpful.
A 2015 study indicated that cannabinoids can help lessen bladder dysfunctions and excessive contractions. CBG was the most effective of all cannabinoids tested to decrease contractions.
2. May Relieve Pain and Inflammation
The hemp plant’s CBG cannabinoid is capable of relieving chronic pain as well as relaxing muscles for added effects. Its analgesic effects are said to be even greater than THC’s.
CBG is also said to block lipoxygenase better than THC. Lipoxygenases are a group of oxidative enzymes that are involved in the regulation of inflammatory responses through the use of leukotrienes and lipoxins.
Inflammation, cancer, and oxidative lipoxygenase activity have been closely linked. And based on other research, it has been shown that the inhibition of lipoxygenase can have an anti-inflammatory effect.
CBG may work as a natural muscle relaxant due to its GABA uptake inhibition that is greater than THC or CBD.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a naturally occurring amino acid that works as a neurotransmitter in your brain.
GABA is considered an inhibitory neurotransmitter because it blocks, or inhibits, certain brain signals and decreases activity in your nervous system.
Due to its uptake inhibition, CBG could be a great asset in the treatment of sports injuries or chronic pain.
3. May Treat Glaucoma
Researchers have found that CBG may potentially treat glaucoma. Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions concerning damage of the optic nerve, which is essential for good vision.
These conditions are typically caused by extreme pressure in the eye. The damage is irreversible and there is no cure.
Glaucoma mostly occurs in adults over 60 years old and can lead to blindness. CBG was given to cats with glaucoma and the results showed a decrease in intraocular pressure.
The outflow of aqueous humor, the nutritional fluid inside the eye that maintains eye pressure, was increased. More evidence is needed on this possible potential treatment method.
4. Shows Neuroprotective Properties
CBG may be able to help fight against cognitive decline. This means possible treatment of serious neurological conditions in the future.
Animal studies have shown that CBG may be helpful in the treatment of Huntington’s disease, an incurable brain disease.
CBG was observed to act as a neuroprotectant, seemingly protecting the brain’s nerve cells from damage.
It also improved deficits in motor function and preserved striatal neurons against 3-nitropropionic acid toxicity.
Due to these improvements and potential for the treatment of this disease, it is also possible CBG may be able to help other neurological conditions like Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s diseases. More research is needed.
5. May Be Helpful in the Treatment of Cancers
Here is some amazing news. CBG can deactivate or antagonize the TRPM8, the “cold and menthol receptor.”
This receptor is connected to the progression of tumors, including prostate, melanoma, breast cancer, bladder, and colorectal cancers.
This means CBG can have some positive effects on cancer treatment. Cannabigerol has also been found to have potential therapeutic effects on glioblastoma, one of the most aggressive brain cancers.
Typically patients survive 16 months after diagnosis. In this study, CBG has been found to inhibit glioblastoma invasion similar to CBD.
It has been recommended that CBG replace THC in future clinical studies of this cancer.
Additionally, CBG may increase appetite. This can be especially helpful for those experiencing the side effects of cancer treatment.
6. Shows Antibacterial Properties
CBG seems to be superior in the fighting of bacteria than THC, CBD, and CBC. This was shown by its effects on bacterial infections like methicillin-resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
This is the drug-resistant bacteria that causes staph infections. Another research team found that CBG prevented the bacteria from forming biofilms.
Biofilms are communities of microorganisms that attach to each other, as well as to surfaces.
CBG could destroy preformed biofilms and cells resistant to antibiotics by targeting the cell membrane of the bacteria.
These findings suggest the huge potential for cannabinoids as antibiotics. The development of this potential will come in the form of making the compound relate to more specific bacteria and lower the chance of its toxicity.
7. Possible Treatment for Anxiety and Depression
CBG may have the ability to regulate our mood. Due to being a highly potent agonist for the α2 adrenoceptor and a blocker of the serotonin 5-HT1A receptor, this suggests possible antidepressant qualities.
The a2 adrenoceptor is a G protein-coupled receptor that signals adrenaline and norepinephrine in the central and peripheral nervous system.
Being an agonist, or activator, of the a2 adrenoceptor, means CBG may have access to the signals that wire our brains in times of high stress.
Agonists of this receptor are frequently used in veterinary anesthesia, which means they can affect the sedation, muscle relaxation, and pain-relief processes of the central nervous system.
So, though direct evidence of CBG on anxiety is still lacking, we believe there is likely a link between the two.
Those suffering from depression are low in serotonin and dopamine. These hormones are signaling agents that help regulate our mental state, mood, happiness, and self-esteem.
The depletion of the receptors for these agents may indicate depression. It is important to understand that CBG cannot cure anxiety or depression.
However, it has been surmised that CBG may be able to bind to or block the serotonin receptor. Many antidepressants on the market today, essentially SSRIs, inhibit 5-HT reuptake.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is an amino acid that occurs naturally in your brain. Researchers believe that GABA functions to control fear and anxiety when neurons are overexcited.
CBG may prevent serotonin and GABA uptake in the brain. This may allow for the improvement of levels in the brain’s neurotransmitters.
Since depression is linked to decreased serotonin and GABA, this implies that CBG could be a helpful advocate in the treatment of depression.
CBG may even be more effective than THC and CBD in some ways. It can prevent the GABA uptake more than other cannabinoids and does so without intoxicating effects.
CBG may also help with Anandamide production. Anandamide is an endocannabinoid also known as “The Bliss Molecule.”
It can increase dopamine levels and regulates things like appetite, sleep, and mood. Having a high amount of anandamide may help reduce fear, and thus boost mood.
8. May Treat Skin Conditions
Along with other cannabinoids, CBG may be a viable treatment for psoriasis. Psoriasis is a skin condition that causes red, flaky, crusty patches of skin covered with silvery scales.
These patches are usually located on the elbows, lower back, knees, or scalp, but can be anywhere on the body.
It was indicated in this study that cannabinoids inhibit keratinocyte proliferation. This could mean CBG could have a role in psoriasis treatment.
This study funded by AXIM Biotech showed that a combination of both CBD and CBG oil applied topically can significantly reduce psoriasis symptoms. CBG may also help with skin redness due to its anti-erythema properties.
Erythema is a type of skin rash caused by injured or inflamed blood capillaries ranging from mild to life-threatening. It usually occurs in response to a drug, disease, or infection.
Still in the Early Stages, But More Research to Come
Though THC and CBD have taken the spotlight in today’s cannabis market, we are starting to see commercial cannabis strains containing CBG and cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) as the main cannabinoids.
Until recently, CBG has been relatively rare due to being found only in trace amounts in the hemp plant, and therefore being difficult and expensive to extract.
But with the further propagation of CBG and some of its cannabinoid “children,” we are sure to see more research and possible benefits of CBG over the coming years.
This means CBG no longer needs to be a minor cannabinoid that plays the supporting role.
As CBG enjoys its time in the spotlight, we also look forward to these other cannabinoid up-and-comers:
- Cannabigerolic acid (CBGA)
- Cannabidiolic acid (CBDA)
- Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabichromene (CBC)
- Cannabigerovarin (CBGV)
- Delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol
These minor cannabinoids may provide therapeutic effects as well as therapeutic benefits as we continue to explore the possibilities in the world of Cannabis sativa.
Try CBG with an Entourage
As you can see, there is great potential for this non-psychoactive cannabinoid. And here at Juna World, the entourage of CBD products and CBG products are waiting for you.
If you are interested in a high-quality full-spectrum tincture complete with different cannabinoids and terpenes, try Ease. With as much CBG content as CBD, the entourage effect allows for ultimate relaxation.
Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only. It is not provided to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or ailment. It should not be interpreted as instruction or medical advice to displace the advice of your doctor or other medical professionals. We recommend talking to your doctor to prepare a treatment plan for any diseases or ailments.