By this point, you are likely quite familiar with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). Last week, we discussed CBG and this week, we are discussing another lesser known cannabinoid- cannabinol, aka CBN.
Cannabinol (CBN) was the first cannabinoid after THC to be discovered, and is molecularly similar despite differing effects. Cannabis trichomes do not produce CBN as they do other cannabinoids and terpenes—the cannabinoid is derived from THC that degrades when cannabis flower has been exposed to air or light.
CBN is known for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotectant effects. Let’s take a closer look at some of the specific use cases and how CBN may help able to help you.
A study conducted in 2008 looked at the impact CBN has on Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). MRSA is a bacterium that causes infections in different parts of the body and is tougher to treat than most strains of staph because it’s resistant to some commonly used antibiotics. Researchers found CBN to be a potent antibacterial agent against these resistant strains. This could provide doctors additional treatment options for MRSA!
Therapeutic options for ALS remain limited, but researchers are hopeful that CBN may be a powerful neuroprotectant. Emerging evidence from a clinical study in 2005 suggested that CBN might have some therapeutic benefit in ALS. Interestingly enough, the study also looked at the impact THC had and decided that the mind altering effects compromised its clinical effectiveness. CBN, on the other hand, slowed down the progression of the disease in rodents. Human trials have yet to happen.
While THC is a well-known appetite stimulant, many avoid the cannabinoid for its psychoactive effects. During a 2012 rodent study, CBN was shown to increase the appetite of rats tested. These findings could have a positive impact on those undergoing chemo or other appetite suppressing treatments.
While more studies need to be conducted, one clinical study in 2016 indicated that CBN may be able to reduce the inflammation often associated with rheumatoid arthritis .
You may have noticed that insomnia was not mentioned in the list above. That’s because while many companies tout CBN as a miracle sleep aid, there is virtually no scientific research to suggest that CBN alone is sedative.
So, if there is no scientific research that proves CBN is sedative, why does everyone think that it is? There are two prevailing theories.
One reason why people may have made the connection between CBN and sleep is because CBN is more prominent in old cannabis flower. After being exposed to air for long periods of time, tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) turns into CBN. Anecdotal evidence suggests that aged cannabis tends to make people sleepy, but it may not be the CBN making them sleepy. Older cannabis that is high in CBN is also high in sedating terpenes. These terpenes, rather than the CBN, could account for the sedative effects and be the reason people think it’s the CBN making them sleepy.
The second reason is the synergistic relationship between CBN and other cannabinoids, like CBD or THC. One study conducted in 1975 evaluated the impact CBN and THC had on sleep. The results of this study suggest that it is the combination of THC and CBN that is sedating, not CBN on its own.
While CBN may impact sleep when combined with other cannabinoids or terpenes, there is currently no evidence to suggest that is sedating by itself.
If you would like to experience the synergistic effects of CBN and CBD, we suggest trying our new Original Sleep Drops!
3:1 750mg CBD : 250mg CBN
A harmonious blend of 3:1 CBD:CBN meant to relax the body and mind, Original Sleep Drops are the perfect way to peacefully drift into slumber. Fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer!
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If you have any questions about CBN and if it may be right for you, please email us at [email protected] As more companies begin to offer CBN products, we will continue to stock our virtual shelves with more options for you!