What’s the deal with CBN?
CBN is short for “cannabinol”, and is a cannabinoid that hasn’t been researched nearly as rigorously as CBD, THC, or even some terpenes. Cannabinoids are chemicals found within cannabis, that when released have various benefits within the body’s endocannabinoid system. By recent count, cannabis has more than 100 different cannabinoids. CBN was actually the first cannabinoid to be identified by scientists. As with all-things-emerging in cannabis, researchers are conducting and mining studies to reveal more concrete claims about the benefits of CBN.
CBN is a non-intoxicating compound (it’s non-psychoactive and won’t get you high). CBN is created when THC ages. In particular, it’s created when THC-A oxidizes. That is with heat or exposure to oxygen, the cannabinoid THC converts to CBN. For that reason, it’s usually present in high amounts in older cannabis. While this might be a turn-off for some, others seek out older cannabis just to enjoy the effects of CBN.
It can be used effectively as a sleep aid or sedative. This cannabinoid has also been shown to help regulate the immune system and works to relieve the pain and inflammation caused by several conditions, including arthritis and Crohn’s disease. The leading benefits of CBN are:
CBN may be a powerful neuroprotectant, meaning it helps to preserve neuronal structure function. Our nervous system relies on this. In one rodent study, researchers used CBN as a treatment for ALS and found that it was able to delay the onset of the condition. While human studies need to be done, this suggests that CBN may provide a powerful tool in the fight against ALS and other neurodegenerative conditions.
Research shows that CBN has analgesic or pain-reliever capabilities in the body. CBN influences the activity of neurons that are sensitive to capsaicin. Capsaicin is naturally occuring in chili peppers – it’s the compound that gives it the spicy kick. Capsaicin is also an ingredient that is added to many topical pain relievers. Because CBN interacts with the neurons that are sensitive to capsaicin in our bodies, it also affects how we feel and experience pain.
This is one area where CBN is very different from CBD. While CBD has appetite suppressing effects, CBN stimulates the appetite. This makes CBN a therapeutic option to help increase appetite for those who struggle to maintain an appetite because of another illness, like cancer of its treatment.
These are just a few of the benefits of CBN, there are many more to be revealed with research and studies. There are also several products on the market that have isolated CBN that can be consumed orally, smoked or applied topically. Go in to your nearest dispensary to ask the trained professionals there which is the best option for you.