Strains With CBG & CBN Are More Expensive, But Are They Worth It?
A mature cannabis plant has hundreds of different compounds, further divided into categories like terpenes, cannabinoids, or flavonoids. Every category has distinct properties and impacts on the human body. The two most common compounds in medical marijuana are cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Did you know there are hundreds of other cannabinoids found naturally in both a cannabis and hemp plant? When you go and visit a dispensary, you will be able to see other cannabinoids inside each strain. As well as the terpenes and content ratios (potency). And that content can also impact the price you pay for medical marijuana.
If you were wondering why there is such a price difference between strains, read on! Because the more you know about other cannabinoids, the more you’ll understand why some strains are more expensive. And decide whether the other cannabinoids can help with the symptoms you want to manage better.
What is Actually Inside Cannabis?
Besides CBD and THC, many other similar compounds are present in the plant that has been shown to help the human body. These include cannabigerol (CBG) and cannabinol (CBN); although they are less-known cannabinoids, they can still provide wellness benefits.
Strains with CBG and CBN are more expensive; are they worth it? That is a question a lot of patients ask when they visit a medical dispensary. And see all the different cannabinoids in certain strains, learning the difference between minor and major cannabinoids.
The short answer is yes; more cannabinoid content usually means the strain has more potential to help you with pain, inflammation, anxiety, depression, lost appetite, and other health conditions. But finding the right combinations of terpenes and cannabinoids can take some time, as you try different strains to measure their efficacy.
What is CBG?
Cannabigerol, or CBG, is a non-intoxicating cannabinoid similar to CBD but is found in smaller quantities in both Indica and cannabis Sativa strains. In most plant strains with CBG, only 1% cannabinoid is found compared to 25% to 30% of THC or 20% to 25% of CBD. This makes products originating from this cannabinoid rarer and more expensive. But due to its many health benefits, CBG is growing in demand.
Cannabis research tells us that THC and CBD start as CGBA, an acidic composition of CBG. For this reason, younger marijuana plants pack higher levels of the compound. In fully mature plants with higher levels of CBD and THC, there is a minimal quantity of CBG since the CBG already converts to THC and CBD as the plant develops.
The endocannabinoid system processes the cannabinoid. In the body, CBG acts like endocannabinoids, naturally occurring compounds produced by the body. And so they bind well to the body’s built-in cannabinoid receptors. It is also an appetite stimulant, which can be a good thing for some patients.
Can You Mix CBD With Cannabis?
There are times when you may not mind enjoying a stronger psychoactive effect from the cannabis you consume. And other times when you have a lot to do, and getting drowsy or tired just doesn’t work with your game plan.
Many people who want the medicinal benefit of cannabinoids and THC strains will combine high CBG hemp flower with their cannabis. The result for many patients is some relief of symptoms but without the feeling of impairment. And if you customize and combine your ratios, you may also find that you can economize on your medical cannabis.
Some studies suggest that CBG may have potential anti cancer benefits. The American Cancer Society reported that there are many new studies that support cannabidiol (CBD), THC, and minor cannabinoid treatments for patients living with cancer.
Popular CBG Flower Strains
Some cannabis strains have high CBG content that averages around 1%. But some hemp flower strains can average from 15% to over 30% CBG content. Here are some strains to look for at your local dispensary if you want to increase your CBG uptake for medicinal use.
This strain is often puzzling to people when they first try it. That is because The White is almost odorless and flavorless. Kind of like a blank whiteboard, which can be good if you dislike the smell or taste of cannabis in general. This strain averages 21% THC and 1% CBG.
The White can make you feel euphoric and then sleepy. Hide the cookies because chances are this strain will also give you the munchies. Some people have reported dry mouth after consuming it (so hydrate well).
If CBG is your goal, you may want to try Madras because it boasts an average of 15% CBG content. This strain is considered top shelf and grown indoors. And while CBG flower is usually mild in scent and flavor, Madras has strong citrus notes (orange) and berry (cranberry) flavors.
Because Madras has such a high CBG content, it may be appropriate for patients who need it for daytime use. Most people find it is not sedating, which can be a good thing depending on what you have planned for the day.
Attention Game of Thrones fans, does this name sound familiar? Of course, it was named after the famous character in the series. This strain comes from a cross between Jack The Ripper and Philly Sour Diesel strains. Technically, that makes John Snow a hybrid hemp strain with an Indica family history. The John Snow strain is a 1:4 ratio of CBD and THC.
This great strain is a cross between Jungle Cake and Strawberry Shortcake. Many online reviews suggest that Frosted Cake can make you feel relaxed (but also sleepy). And true to an Indica strain, it may also make you forage for a snack or two.
Frosted Cake averages 13% THC, 9% CBD (cannabidiol), and 1% CBG. But it is a cannabis (not hemp) flower with myrcene as the dominant terpene. It can be an ideal strain for patients, with one downfall; it both smells (and tastes) like skunk.
Super Glue CBG
As a hemp flower, this strain contains a whopping 22% CBG! Super Glue CBG has that dank, musky scent with a hint of pine. It is very earthy but not unpleasant. You may even detect some notes of hop flavor or scent.
This hemp strain has very low THC content (0.06%), but it has a rare and impressive average of 22% total cannabinoid content. It could be suitable for daytime use or combined with another strain to help reduce the psychoactive effects of conventional cannabis.
How Can Cannabigerol Provide Wellness Benefits?
Today more than ever before, patients who suffer from debilitating symptoms are looking for relief. And alternatives to prescription opioid or NSAID medications.
Like CBD, CBG is known for regulating pain without inducing feelings of intoxication. Studies show that CBG can also prove to be a therapeutic element, especially with the following health conditions:
Inflammatory bowel disease. Experimental research conducted on animals in 2013 reported the benefits of CBG on IBD.
Glaucoma. In a clinical trial with cats, researchers noticed a decrease in eye pressure and an increase in the outflow of aqueous humor, which helps provide nutrition to the eye.
Huntington’s disease. A study observed that CBG could help protect the brain’s nerve cells from damage by acting as a neuroprotectant.
If you are a patient using medical marijuana, cannabigerol can help improve the function of a neurotransmitter called anandamide. This transmitter is responsible for regulating appetite, stimulating motivation, and alleviating pain. It can also help you sleep better because it has potential sedative benefits.
What is CBN?
Cannabinol, or CBN, is a type of cannabinoid present in the cannabis Sativa plant, but it can also be produced synthetically. The compound is formed when THC breaks down due to air, light, and heat exposure. For this reason, high levels of CBN can be found in older and drier cannabis plants.
CBN and CBD interact with the same receptors in the body, but they produce different effects. Since CBN is not as readily available as CBD or THC, a limited number of studies are being done on its uses, benefits, and side effects.
The CBN cannabinoid has been slowly popularizing for its potential health benefits, especially related to pain management and sleep. And also because of recent clinical studies that point to the cannabinoid’s potential cancer fighting properties.
What Does Consuming CBN Feel Like?
Unlike CBD, high-cannabinoid strains with CBN content can induce psychoactive effects. And make you feel calm, sedated, and the opposite of energetic. Here are some other potential benefits of CBN-rich strains:
Potent Sedative. CBN is one of the strongest sedative cannabinoids in marijuana, precisely when combined with myrcene terpene and THC. Due to its sedative quality, the compound can be used as an aid for those who struggle with insomnia. Not only can it help with inducing sleep faster, but it also prolongs sleep time.
Pain management. CBN interacts with neurons in our body that are linked with pain perception and signaling. The same neurons are impacted by capsaicin, a compound found in pain relievers and topicals.
Anti-inflammatory. Similar to CBD, CBN also seemingly has anti-inflammatory qualities. For this reason, it could alleviate symptoms of certain inflammatory conditions like Crohn’s Disease and rheumatoid arthritis.
If you are visiting a dispensary and you are looking for nighttime use
Cannabis Strains With High CBN Content
If you are interested in choosing cannabis strains with the therapeutic effects of CBN, there are many to choose from. But they can be a little hard to find, depending on the strains available in your local area. Here are a few strains that have higher-than-average CBN minor cannabinoids.
Originating in Indiana in the 1970s, the Bubble Gum strain is a hybrid strain created from Indiana Bubblegum and a mystery Indica strain. It has an interesting story because Bubble Gum was actually taken overseas to clone in Amsterdam.
As the name suggests, the flavor is similar to pink bubble gum and is very sweet. Bubble Gum averages 15% to 19% THC with CBN content of 0.38%. Common psychoactive effects of this strain feel similar to a quality Indica, with the same intoxicating effects.
Bubble Gum cannabis may relieve anxiety and depression with mood-elevating properties. Bubble Gum is one strain that is frequently a contender for the High Times Cannabis Cup.
Originating from Durban, South Africa, Durban Poison has been a popular strain since the 1970s. This cannabis strain is 100% Sativa, which means it can induce significant psychoactive effects. Patients choose Durban Poison because it can make them feel very energetic, happy, and uplifted. It is packed full of cannabis Sativa phenotypes that may have medicinal value.
In addition to having an average of .63% CBN content, Durban Poison contains THCV. When used medicinally, the THCV can help suppress appetite (reduce munchies). Cannabis with THCV may have potential neurological health benefits too.
Durban Poison can provide anti-anxiety benefits and may assist with insulin resistance and glucose control for people with diabetes. Some studies have also suggested that THCV could promote bone cell growth and help patients with osteoporosis.
Cannabinol (CBN) content in Lemon Kush averages around 0.49%. According to Wikileaf, Lemon Kush flower has averaged 15% to 26% in THC content. This strain is an equal 50/50 Indica and Sativa hybrid, with about 3% cannabidiol (CBD) content.
When you are looking at the Lemon Kush flower, you may think it is a 100% Indica strain. That’s because the buds are smaller and very dense. The strain has a high concentration of resin, so it is sticky. Lemon Kush also throws a pleasing citrus scent with a dank earthy, or musk undertone.
Some patients use Lemon Kush to help with symptoms of anxiety or depression. Because Lemon Kush is a hybrid strain, the psychoactive properties of Sativa can have a positive effect on the brain and nervous system. It may provide an energy and mood boost when consumed.
The Purple Cadillac cannabis strain can provide 0.31% CBN. If there is one comment about this strain, it is dubbed a “stay home” type of cannabis. It is a heavy Indica that can help relax the body and relieve pain as well as anxiety. This may help patients who have not achieved good symptom management for anxiety with a gaba reuptake inhibitor.
Purple Cadillac is commonly used for insomnia and pain symptoms. The flower has a pleasantly sweet and mild perfume-like scent with notes of lavender. Some patients have commented that Purple Cadillac can help induce appetite and may provide inflammation benefits.
Super Green Crack
They wouldn’t call this strain super for no reason. Super Green Crack cannabis is another favorite among patients who use medical cannabis. The CBN content averages 0.79% for this strain. But that is not the most abundant cannabinoid in this flower; there are multiple cannabinoids that may help.
Super Green Crack actually smells a lot like blue cheese with a dank skunk undertone. If low mood and energy are a problem, this might be a good strain to explore. Green Crack is can provide an energy boost, and it was developed from two popular Sativa strains (Super Silver Haze and Green Crack).
Are CBG and CBN Strains Worth the Cost?
Strains with high CBG flower can be more expensive. Similarly, CBN is also considered a minor cannabinoid that occurs in lower concentrations in the cannabis plant. For this reason, it is much more challenging to isolate CBN for research and medicinal purposes.
CBN can be found in oils, tinctures, tea bags, capsules, disposable vape pens, and CBN isolates. But the general consensus is that more primary and secondary cannabinoids, combined with beneficial terpenes, can provide more wellness benefits.
So if you are using medical cannabis to help with symptoms, look for strains with some CBG and CBN content. You may pay a little more for these strains at a dispensary, but if the medical cannabis works better, you may end up needing less to help manage your symptoms.
What is Broad Spectrum CBD?
Broad-spectrum CBD products comprise different cannabinoids and compounds from the cannabis plant, including terpenes, cannabinol, myrcene, cannabichromene, pinene, or limonene. Cannabidiol is one of the only non intoxicating cannabinoid content found in hemp and marijuana plants.
Contrary to CBD isolate, CBG, and CBN, broad-spectrum CBD products may have heightened effects since they contain extra compounds that work very well together. Plus, they do not induce feelings of intoxication. But may have potential neuroprotective benefits and potential analgesic benefits based on the type of strain, terpene, and THC content.
If you have found that the effects of medical cannabis are a little “too strong” for you, explore taking a CBD daily supplement. Cannabidiol is an abundant cannabinoid and may help reduce the intoxicating effects of medical marijuana. While still offering some potential relief for symptoms of pain, inflammation, or anxiety.
How to Choose the Right Products
Whether you buy products containing CBG, CBN, or CBD, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Ingredients. All cannabis products must contain premium-quality and safe ingredients, and their labels should disclose all ingredients.
Dosage. Products should clearly show the dosage of each cannabinoid and its potency.
Serving size. Products should come with manufacturers’ suggestions regarding the right serving size.
Certificate of analysis. The brand selling the products must show complete transparency and share the product’s certificate of analysis (COA) and third-party lab test results.
Reputation. It is best to stick with brands associated with reputable doctors and third-party laboratories. This eliminates the risk of consuming products with unknown ingredients and unethical practices.
When you visit your local medical dispensary, take time to share the symptoms that you would like to address. That will help the budtender make expert recommendations on the strains you should try first.
Get in Touch with DocMJ Today!
At DocMJ, our patients come first. We provide friendly physicians who are knowledgeable about medical cannabis. And compassionate to patients who want to explore medical marijuana as a treatment option.
Schedule an appointment today for quality patient care, and contact us if you have questions about getting your medical card. We are America’s largest medical cannabis healthcare service provider and are here to provide assistance, information, and resources to help our patients. Every step of the way.
I am a Chief Marketing Officer at DocMJ, a leading provider of medical cannabis health services to qualified patients. I have over 20 years of experience in healthcare marketing and communications, with a proven track record of delivering impactful and compliant campaigns that educate, inform, and empower patients to make better choices for their health and wellness.