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What Is CBG And How Does It Differ From CBD?

A chemical compound that also comes from hemp is gaining attention as possibly a better and more potent alternative

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Cannabidiol or CBD products have hit shelves in droves since Congress made hemp legal with the 2018 Farm Bill. Derived from the hemp plant, advocates herald CBD as a potentially strong treatment for issues such as inflammation and pain management.

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But what if there was a cannabinoid that did the job even better?

RELATED: Is CBD An Aphrodisiac?

That’s the claim, by some, for cannabigerol or CBG. According to New, CBG has been called “a better anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety treatment than CBD or marijuana,” partly because it’s less likely to make the user groggy or paranoid.

What, exactly, is CBG?

CBG comes from the hemp plant. That means, much like CBD, it is a non-psychoactive chemical. Which is simply another way of saying, it doesn’t get you high. As long as the content of THC ⁠—the chemical ingredient that does produce a psychoactive high⁠— is less than the federal limit of 0.3 percent, then it’s perfectly legal.

That’s the reason you can find CBD products on store shelves from coast-to-coast, including mainstream chains such as CVS and Walgreens. CBG products may soon join CBD on shelves in 2020.

What are the potential uses of CBG?

CBG is present in small amounts in hemp plants, making it more difficult to extract and study than CBD. However, there has been preliminary research that shows CBG has a lot of potential to treat many different conditions, including:

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). A study with mice found that CBG reduced bowel inflammation, prompting researchers to call for CBG “clinical experimentation in IBD patients.”

Huntington’s disease. A study, again with mice, found that CBG was neuroprotective when treating mice with Huntington’s disease, a neurodegenerative disorder.

Antibacterial and anti-cancer. Different studies have shown that CBG has potential as an antibacterial agent and may inhibit cancerous cell growth - although both studies were also done with mice.

While the study findings are interesting, none have been conducted with humans. They show promise but are far from offering definitive proof of CBG’s medical potential.

Where can you try CBG?

While studies are ongoing, there are already products on the market that include CBG, including oils and tablets.

Dr. Terry Johnston told Pop Sugar that CBG cannot get you high, but could impact your mood and help alleviate anxiety and even depression. Johnston also said that CBG is more potent than CBD, which means it’s a smart move to check with a physician before taking the product.

Related: CBD for Seniors: How to Navigate Your Way

Right now, CBG has more potential than proven effectiveness. But some companies are already focusing on making CBG-infused products. With more research, CBG could emerge as the more potent (and more expensive) cannabinoid cousin of CBD.

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