The cannabis plant contains many different cannabinoid compounds, THC and CBD being the best-known among them. While THC is sought after for its psychoactive effects, CBD is useful for its medicinal properties. A third compound, called cannabigerol, or CBG, was first isolated in the 60s. With most scientific interest in cannabis being directed at CBD and THC, CBG has been relatively ignored. Recently, however, there has been renewed interest in CBG and the benefits that it offers.
How does CBG act on the body?
Just as with CBD, CBG goes to work in the body by acting on a group of receptors known as the endocannabinoid system. Endocannabinoids are chemicals that the body produces to bind with endocannabinoid receptors known as the CB1 and CB2 receptors. CBG is able to bind with endocannabinoid receptors because it is similar to the body’s own endocannabinoids.
CBG can be beneficial to the health
Research into the health benefits of CBG has only recently begun to take off. At this point, scientists realize that CBG may be valuable in the treatment of various physical and mental conditions.
CBG is an anti-inflammatory
CBG has powerful anti-inflammatory effects that could make it useful in the treatment of various conditions. One study into the effects of CBG in laboratory mice has found that it can help with inflammatory bowel disease and colitis. Once CBG’s effects are more thoroughly understood, it may be applied to the treatment of conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, depression and cardiac disease.
CBG can help protect the nervous system
CBG comes with potent antioxidant effects. It can help prevent damage to the nervous system. Tests done on laboratory animals have found that CBG helps with Huntington’s disease, a condition that involves degeneration of the nervous system.
CBG has antibiotic effects
Many cannabinoids, CBG included, are able to act on bacterial infections. At a time when regular antibiotics are being rendered ineffective against drug-resistant bacteria, CBG may be an alternative.
CBG can help improve the appetite
A study done in 2016 (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27503475) found that laboratory rats treated with CBG showed signs of stimulated appetite. They ate far more often than rats that weren’t treated. In the future, CBG may turn out to be an important line of treatment to use with eating disorders such as anorexia.
CBG’s antioxidant properties may help fight cancer
CBG has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities. Studies done on mice show that CBG is able to slow down the proliferation of cancer cells. CBG has been found to help as a preventive and a cure for cancer in lab animals. There is ongoing research into applications for CBG in various kinds of cancer.
The future of CBG is promising
While CBG is only now beginning to emerge from the shadow of CBD, it appears to have powerful effects on critical processes in the body. With more research in the future, CBG could offer viable treatments for many diseases and disorders.