When it comes to marijuana and its various products, there is an astonishingly high number of options on the cannabis market. Not only do users have their choice in the medium they want to use when it comes to getting high, but users also have their choice in what their cannabis contains.
Labels on marijuana flowers, gummies, edibles, and other products will list the various elements and compounds it contains. These labels will state whether or not there are compounds called THC or CBD in the product, and if there is, how much. All this information is designed to help users find the right product for them at the correct dosage.
But, what does all that information mean? Although users may be familiar with the name CBD, other products are making their way onto the market.
Below, we dive into what CBD is and what makes up its cousin and up-and-coming cannabis element, CBG.
What Is CBD?
CBD is one of the cannabinoids found in cannabis. Short for cannabidiol, CBD is popular because it is non-psychoactive. This means it gives people the calming effects of marijuana without the high feeling that some people find off-putting.
Popular CBD products include:
- Vape liquid
In addition to being available in forms that can be ingested, CBD products are also available in topical applications. CBD lotions, creams, and skin patches are infused with CBD. Users may apply these products directly to their skin for a variety of reasons, including:
- Muscle pain relief
- Sleep assistance
Although CBD is currently well-established among weed users, another cannabinoid is quickly becoming more prominent in the market. That cannabinoid is CBG or cannabigerol.
Because CBG is such a newcomer to the marijuana scene, not a whole lot is known about its properties quite yet. Like its cousin, CBG is also classified as non-psychoactive, giving users all the benefits CBG has to offer without the high effects that accompany traditional marijuana strains.
Studies right now are scarce on what exactly CBG can do for users and the effects it can have on the human body. However, it is known to have some of the same effects as CBD. It mainly offers calming effects to those who take it. Some studies also show that CBG may have some anti-inflammatory properties and may even play a part in blood pressure and pain regulation.
Unlike CBD products, which can be found throughout the cannabis market, it is a little bit harder for users to find CBG products readily available for purchase.
Experts in the field, however, anticipate the CBG market will continue to grow as scientists and growers devote more time to studying CBG and all it can do.
Differences Between CBD and CBG
CBD and CBG have one major similarity: their non-psychoactive nature. But there is also one large factor that sets them apart: their availability in the hemp plant.
Both CBD and CBG compounds can be found in the hemp plant, but CBG is only available in large amounts before the plant fully matures. That’s because CBG eventually breaks down into other cannabinoids, which is why it is often called “a mother cannabinoid.” When a plant is fully grown, the breakdown of CBG is complete, leaving the plant with less than 1 percent of the compound.
This breakdown of CBG leaves growers with two options when it comes to harvesting it:
- Extracting the CBG before the plant is fully mature, a tricky task that involves monitoring the plant’s growth carefully. Growers going with this method must have plants with the express purpose of harvesting CBG as opposed to plants they plan to let mature.
- Extracting CBG from fully grown plants, which would mean the growers would need to have a large number of mature plants to get a decent amount of CBG harvested. With mature plants containing so little CBG, that would require a significant number of weed plants.
The rarity and difficulty of extracting large amounts of CBG also make it more expensive to grow and produce. As a result, CBG products will likely cost more than CBD products.
What Does THC Mean?
In addition to CBD and CBG listings on packages, many cannabis users will also often see THC content (or lack thereof) listed on labels.
Short for tetrahydrocannabinol, THC is the chemical that gives marijuana users psychological effects. In short, this compound is responsible for giving cannabis users the high that is classically associated with smoking marijuana.
While THC and CBD only products are available on the market, there are many products that contain both compounds as well. CBD is often used to temper the psychological effects THC has on users. It is currently thought that CBG acts in a similar way, although studies on the subject are scarce.
Is CBD or CBG Better?
So, should you purchase CBD products or splurge and search for CBG products? Is one more effective than the other? The answer is complicated and depends on your needs.
CBD and CBG are two cannabinoids that work well together. And, there is likely already trace amounts of CBG in your cannabis flowers. However, as with choosing any type of marijuana product, it is best to do your research and choose the option that best meets your needs and helps you accomplish your goals, whether it be relaxation, sleep, or even pain relief.
The Forecast for CBG
Although CBG is currently the new cannabinoid on the block, interest in it is growing. It won’t be the last cannabinoid to capture the industry’s attention (fun fact: cannabis plants contain approximately 120 different cannabinoid compounds).
Interest in CBG and how it reacts in the human body is driving scientists and harvesters alike to learn more about this compound. However, it may be a bit scarce and difficult for users to find right now. That may change as we continue to learn more about CBG and improve ways to harvest it.