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What is CBG?

Describe what CBG is, how it works, and what symptoms it is best used for.

With so many different cannabinoids, we could potentially talk about a new one very other day for almost an entire year, and by the end of that year, more may have been discovered. Most strains contain large quantities of THC or CBD, which is why they’re talked about so frequently. Some cannabinoids only appear in small percentages, if any at all, and these are called minor cannabinoids. Today we’re looking at another minor, yet very important, cannabinoid called CBG. 

CBG is short for cannabigerol. It non-intoxicating and is sometimes referred to as the mother cannabinoid, because it is one of the first to develop. It starts out as all cannabinoids do, in their initial acid form, so it begins as CBGA. Then, during the plant’s growth process, it evolves into one of three of the major cannabinoids initial acid forms, THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid), CBDA (cannabidiolic acid), and CBCA (cannabichromenic acid). CBGA is rapidly transformed into mostly THCA or CBDA. That’s why most strains have such low CBG content, making it a minor cannabinoid. 

The medicinal benefits of CBG mirror a lot of the same benefits as some of the other major cannabinoids. It’s been found to work in reducing inflammation throughout the body, and specifically in the gut, helping patients with bowel disorders. It can contribute to the reduction of  interocular pressure, making it hopeful for patients with glaucoma. 

It provides neuroprotection, is antibacterial, and shows hope as being a tool in fighting cancer by blocking certain receptors known to cause the growth of cancer cells. CBG has also been found to cause hyperphagia, the medical term for excessive hunger. This could make CBG a good choice for patients suffering from lack of appetite. Unique to CBG is how well it inhibits muscle contractions in the bladder, so it might prove useful for patients with dysfunctional bladder symptoms. 

With so many medicinal benefits of CBG, the interest and demand from patients has been growing for some time. Since it’s typically only found in small quantities, the best way to find a high concentration of CBG is usually in an isolate form. If you’re interested in CBG, talk to your patient care specialist about what CBG products are available. There may even be strains of cannabis flower with solid amounts of CBG. 

As more research points toward CBG being a medicinal powerhouse, and patients gaining interest, cultivators are creating breeding programs with the intent of producing plants with high percentages of CBG. Some cultivators have been successful in raising their CBG content, but it is usually rare to find. It takes time to crossbreed certain characteristics, like high CBG content,  into new cannabis strains.

It’s going to take several years of hard work in the science labs to confirm, and maybe even discover more, of the health benefits of CBG. Cultivators have just as many years ahead of them, cultivating and crossbreeding plants, before strains potent in CBG are widely available as the growth of cannabis medicine continues.

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