CBG, the minor cannabinoid that is often overlooked


CBD.  CBD.  CBD!  We are hearing so much about CBD these days.  It’s become trendy, it’s become fashionable and is quickly becoming a common household name.  And for good reason.  CBD has so many properties and can be supportive and beneficial for a whole array of conditions.  When it is present with THC, in the form of cannabis marijuana, it’s is profoundly healing.  CBD is a major cannabinoid. It is present in varying amounts in both the cannabis hemp plant and the cannabis marijuana plant.  (If you don’t know the difference between the two:  Hemp cannabis is legal in all  50 states and is not considered medicinal cannabis.  It contains very low levels of THC, which are not enough to have any real psychoactive properties.  Marijuana cannabis is only legal in a few states, and most often needs a medical cannabis card to legally obtain.  Marijuana cannabis contains both THC and CBD in varying degrees depending on the stain.). There is more to it than that, but that’s the simplified version.

So what is CBG?  

CBG stands for cannabinoid called cannabigerol and is considered a minor cannabinoid when talking about it’s presence in cannabis. However, it’s presence in other plants, specifically Helichrysum, is quite abundant.  It works, as CBD does, by nourishing and supporting the body’s own endocannabinoid system.  Basically, it helps it function better.

CBG is sort of the parent of THC and CBD.  At a point in the growing process, CBG virtually disappears and what is left is THC and CBD – with CBG only being present in very small amounts.  And studies are emerging that are showing some of the amazing benefits of CBG, thus there are growers that are working towards cultivating plants that are higher in CBG.  Unfortunately the revelation that CBG has benefits, brings with it laboratory genetic manipulation, with scientists attempting to extract CBG or genetically modify plants so that they retain higher levels of CBG.  As an herbalist who truly believes that whole plant medicine is the best medicine, genetic manipulation and isolation of the known active compound are sort of a nightmare scenario.  A plant grows a way for a reason. It knows how to grow.  It’s not making mistakes.  When one aspect of the plant is determined to be THE THING that is responsible for certain healing benefits, is extracted and isolated…..well….we are excluding a lot of other things that work synergistically with that extracted thing……thus the extracted thing may not work quite as well, or in the same manner that it would when used as a whole plant. Bigger and more is not always better,and this absolutely is the case with cannabis.


Some possible benefits of CBG:

  • It is a vasodilator, therefore may be helpful it treating glaucoma.
  • It has anti-inflammatory effects.
  • It helps to protect and nourishing nerve cells.
  • It blocks cancer growth cell receptors
  • It has shown antibacterial effects, especially against Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)

And there are many other benefits of CBG that science hasn’t yet put under the microscope.

Customers that have used Sage Moon Apothecary’s Cannabinoid Elixir have reported it being helpful for:

  • Anxiety and Stress
  • ADD and ADHD
  • Hyperactivity
  • Sleep
  • Fatigue and exhaustion (yes it can both. help you sleep AND help you wake up.  That’s the beauty of that adaptogenic quality. It gives you what you need).


BUT if CBG disappears when CBD and THC emerge, how do you get it?

You are not going to find high levels of CBG in cannabis oils or extracts.   As I mentioned earlier, it pretty much disappears and is present only in very small amounts after CBD and THC become present.  In a sense, CBG gives birth to CBD and THC with the ultraviolet light serving as the activator.

There are plants that are high in CBG and guess what?  They are NOT cannabis.  What this means is that they are totally legal, can be easily obtained, and because they are not well known, have not become part of the trend, therefore are less expensive.

One of the best plants with high levels of CBG present is Helichrysum. It is a member of the sunflower family and is often used in higher end skincare products due to it’s healing benefits for the skin.  Helichrysum contains both CBG and cannabigerol acid-like compounds.  Helichrysum grows in Africa, where is has been traditionally smoked – probably due to it’s effects on the body’s endocannabinoid system.

Other plants that contain cannabinoid or cannabinoid precursors (which help the body’s endocannabionoid system function better) are:  Maca, Echinacea, Cacao, Liverwort, Rosemary, and Kava.

Sage Moon Apothecary makes an excellent Cannabinoid Elixir that is cannabis free.  It is rich with CBG in the form of Helichrysum and contains other herbs that help to nourish and support the body’s endocannabionid system including:  echinacea, rose, cacao, and hawthorn berries.  You can read more about it below and purchase here.

Sage Moon Apothecary’s Cannabinoid Elixir is a cannabis-free tincture from herbs that are known to possess cannabinoids, cannabinoid precursors, or cannabinoid-like compounds. There is currently much research going on regarding plants other than cannabis and hemp that contain these much valued and important compounds. And there is a ton of research on the benefits to health that cannabinoid therapy holds. This holds promise to be an important tincture to bring into many people’s lives.

Helichrysum, also referred to as Everlasting or Immortal Flower, is one of very few plants, other than cannabis and hemp, that contain cannabinoids, specifically CBG, as well as cannabigerol acid-like compounds. (CBG occurs early on in the cannabis growth cycle and is  a precursor to the cannabinoids THC and CBD.)
Helichrysum is derived from the Greek word “helios, which means “sun” and “chrysos”, which means gold. It is one of the herbs that we frequently use in our skincare salves which is an amazing flower for healthy, well nourished skin that also has mood lifting qualities. It is also anti microbial and helps protect the body against microbial infections, especially when used on skin wounds. It also may reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, and help improve blemished skin.  Additionally, it may help with pain relief when taken as a tincture or when used in a salve and applied externally.

Cacao contains a variety of compounds that interact directly with the endocannabinoid system. It is similar in it’s effects as non psychoactive CBD.

Echinacea has been found to contain cannibimmetic N-Alkyamides which are well known for being the biological compound which most closely resemebles THC activity, as it directly stimulates cannabinoid receptors. Echinacea is also an excellent immune system supporting herb. It is anti viral, anti bacterial, and anti microbial.  

Hawthorn is an adaptogenic herb who’s primary effect is on the heart. It can help support heart health and may help to support and reverse issues such as congestive heart failure, blood pressure issues, etc.


I hope this helps to brings some light to the rapidly emerging world of CBG,CBD,THC…..and all of the other very beneficial cannabinoids that you will surely be hearing more about as science continues to study and reveal more.

AND…..you can always do what herbalists have done for eons……..go to what you are drawn to, sit with it, see what emerges, and how it makes you feel.

You can purchase Cannabinoid Elixir (Cannabis Free) for just $15 for a one ounce bottle at Sage Moon Apothecary as well as many other lovely herbal products for health and well being.




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