CBG Oil: Everything You Need to Know About This Not-So-Minor Cannabinoid

WRITTEN by Edd

 | Last revised

CBG is the latest cannabinoid to appear in a wide range of cannabis-based products.

It is one of the minor cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.

While most of us are familiar with THC, CBD, and other well-known cannabinoids, CBG and its associated benefits are still relatively unknown to many people.

So what is CBG, and why are more people starting to take it? And could it be better than CBD?

What Is CBG Oil?

CBG, or cannabigerol, is one of the minor cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, similar to its cousins THC and CBD.

Although CBG has not been investigated as much as these more popular cannabinoids, preclinical research is showing promise for CBG as an anti-inflammatory agent, with some suggesting that its analgesic properties may be just as powerful as THC, if not more so.

CBG is sometimes referred to as the ‘mother of all cannabinoids’ or a precursor cannabinoid.

This is because its raw acidic form, called CBGA (cannabigerolic acid), creates several other important cannabinoids when it is exposed to heat and air through a process called decarboxylation; these include CBG, CBD, THC, and CBC.

Most cannabis plants contain small amounts of CBG, so breeders have developed specific CBG flower strains to create products that contain therapeutic doses.

CBD vs CBG: What Are the Differences?

Research indicates that CBD and CBG can offer a host of health benefits thanks to each cannabinoid’s potent neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory properties.

Interestingly, when these two cannabinoids are used together, their analgesic effects become even more potent thanks to a process known as the entourage effect; this is where cannabinoids work synergistically to create a more powerful therapeutic effect for users.

However, that’s where the similarities may end. There are several important distinctions between these two cannabinoids.

Molecular Structure

CBD and CBG have different molecular structures. This means their physical shapes differ and bind with human cannabinoid receptors differently from one another.

The way a cannabinoid binds to our receptors will impact the effect it has on our body, and additionally, the molecular structure determines the bioavailability of cannabinoids.

Cannabinoid Effects

There is evidence that CBG and CBD may also act as antagonists for one another.

A 2011 study found that CBD activates the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor, while CBG is known to block this receptor.

When CBD is consumed, it activates this receptor to produce anti-nausea effects. However, when CBG has also been administered, it binds to the same receptor as the CBD and acts as an antagonist, dulling the effects of the CBD.

However, another study from 2021 has concluded that when combined approprioately, both CBD and CBG exhibit powerful anti-inflammatory effects without any psychoactive side effects.

close up of cannabis leaves

CBG Health Benefits

CBG may have some unique health benefits that you cannot get from CBD. However, CBG is even less researched than CBD or THC.

As a result, its potential benefits and effects are not fully understood, and it could have effects that are not known yet.

Despite this limitation, various studies over the years have found signs that CBG might be able to help with several health conditions. These include:

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

A 2013 study on mice found that CBG could reduce inflammation associated with inflammatory bowel disease. [1]

Glaucoma

A study published in 2008 suggests that CBG might be able to reduce intraocular pressure. This may play a key role in how medical cannabis can treat glaucoma. [2]

Bladder Dysfunctions

A 2015 study looked at how five different cannabinoids influence bladder contractions, and its findings suggested that CBG might help to treat some bladder dysfunctions. [3]

Huntington’s Disease

CBG may have neuroprotective properties like CBD, according to a study on rodents with a neurodegenerative condition called Huntington’s disease. The study concluded that CBG might show promise in treating Huntington’s disease and possibly other neurodegenerative conditions. [4]

Bacterial Infections

A study back in 2008 found evidence that CBG can kill certain types of bacteria, particularly methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, more commonly known as MRSA.

This bacteria causes drug-resistant staph infections that are harder to treat and, as a result, more dangerous than regular staph infections. [5]

Cancer

A study into the effects of cannabinoids on colon cancer in rats found that CBG could slow down the growth of tumours and new cancer cells. [6]

Appetite Loss

Like THC, CBG has effects that stimulate the appetite, according to a study on rats conducted in 2016. Appetite stimulants can help people with health conditions or medical treatments that suppress the appetite or cause nausea, such as chemotherapy. [7]

Can You Buy CBG Oil In Australia?

You can’t find CBG oil for sale in Australia just yet.

Some manufacturers are beginning to undertake clinical studies and seek approval to sell CBG products in Australia.

Recently, Bod Australia announced positive results from its study on a CBG dominant medical cannabis product. The study aimed to identify the extract’s efficacy in treating a number of symptoms associated with fibromyalgia, inflammatory bowel disease, and anxiety.

They are expected to launch this product in mid-2022 under the name MediCabilis CBG 50. This product will be available with a medical prescription from a doctor, and may offer users a potent alternative to THC products to manage chronic pain symptoms.

These advances could pave the way for more CBG products to make their way to Australia.

What Types of CBG Are For Sale?

Although CBG products are relatively new and not as common as CBD or THC products, they are growing in popularity in more established markets.

As a result, CBG is being sold in overseas markets in many of the same forms that you can buy CBD. These include sublingual oils, edibles, tinctures, topicals, and concentrates like shatter.

While you have heard of many of these forms of CBG, you might be wondering ‘what is CBG shatter?’

CBG shatter is a cannabis concentrate that can be made from full spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolated CBG extracts, similar to CBD shatter.

Shatter is most commonly taken using a dabbing rig, which involves heating the resin and inhaling the vapour this produces.

Currently, these products are generally only available where CBD has been legalised for recreational use.

The best option in Australia is to speak with a cannabis clinician about accessing CBG dominant products.

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References

1. Francesca Borrelli et al., "Beneficial effect of the non-psychotropic plant cannabinoid cannabigerol on experimental inflammatory bowel disease".
National Library of Medicine.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23415610/.
2. I Tomida et al., "Cannabinoids and glaucoma ".
National Library of Medicine.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1772142/.
3. Ester Pagano et al., "Effect of Non-psychotropic Plant-derived Cannabinoids on Bladder Contractility: Focus on Cannabigerol ".
National Library of Medicine.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26197538/.
4. Viviana di Giacomo et al., "Antioxidant and Neuroprotective Effects Induced by Cannabidiol and Cannabigerol in Rat CTX-TNA2 Astrocytes and Isolated Cortexes".
National Library of Medicine.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7279038/.
5. John Karas et al., "The Antimicrobial Activity of Cannabinoids".
National Library of Medicine.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7400265/.
6. Tamara Lah et al., "Cannabigerol Is a Potential Therapeutic Agent in a Novel Combined Therapy for Glioblastoma ".
National Library of Medicine.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7914500/.
7. Daniel Brierley et al., "Cannabigerol is a novel, well-tolerated appetite stimulant in pre-satiated rats ".
National Library of Medicine.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5021742/.

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Disclaimer. While we strive to relay the most factual education available, this shouldn’t replace official medical or legal consultation and recommendation. This is for educational and entertainment purposes only. Happy days.

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