Cannabinol (CBN) is a lesser-known cannabinoid that is quickly gaining popularity among medical cannabis and CBD users alike. Cannabinol might sound similar to regular cannabidiol. However, the two compounds are very different. Here, we’ll, look at the differences, and discuss it in depth.
What is CBN?
Most people are aware of the two most common cannabinoids found in hemp and cannabis. Cannabidiol (CBD) is the most widely used therapeutically. Then we have tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the cannabinoid best-known for promoting cannabis-induced psychoactive highs.
As a lesser cannabinoid, CBN is formed when THC itself ages. This being the case, THC can be artificially heated and exposed to oxygen and UV light to create cannabinol. Alternatively, it can be sourced by allowing hemp and cannabis plants to dry and age naturally. Cannabinol is also mildly psychoactive, and can be found on an illegal substance list along with THC, depending on the region of the world you live in.
Because hemp itself contains only small amounts of THC, CBN is more abundant in psychoactive cannabis. However, cannabinol can still be extracted from hemp. Like CBD, cannabinol is, therefore, legal for therapeutic use.
What is CBN Used For?
When used therapeutically, cannabinol promotes many of the same benefits of cannabidiol. However, cannabinol also has unique properties that make it more suitable for treating certain chronic ailments.
- Cannabidiol often helps promote wakefulness in users. However, studies show that cannabinol can enhance sleep and rest quality. This makes it more suitable than CBD for treating conditions like insomnia.
- Studies show that cannabinol may have potent antibacterial properties that can help treat antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections like MRSA.
- Like THC, CBN is an appetite stimulant. However, CBN can be used to increase appetite without users experiencing nausea or a psychoactive high like when using tetrahydrocannabinol.
Other Potential Benefits
Some studies show that cannabinol may have comparable efficacy as a sedative to pharmaceutical drugs like diazepam. However, cannabinol also has a wide variety of other therapeutic qualities.
CBN and Neurodegenerative Conditions. In studies on rodents, CBN has been found to help delay the onset of symptoms associated with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and other neurodegenerative conditions.
Glaucoma. Like with cannabigerol (CBG), research shows that cannabinol may be able to help reduce intraocular pressure in glaucoma patients. However, research into this and its efficacy for helping treat glaucoma is ongoing.
CBN as an Anti-Inflammatory. Like CBD and CBG, cannabinol is widely used therapeutically as an anti-inflammatory agent. Rodent studies also show that it may be particularly effective for treating pain and inflammation resulting from rheumatoid arthritis.
Research also shows that CBN may be able to help promote bone growth and be used as a potent anti-anticonvulsant.
How Can I Buy and Use CBN Oil?
Because it is possible to isolate CBN from hemp, it and other cannabinol therapeutics are both legal and widely available online. However, the price of cannabinol is often higher than the price of CBD. This is due to the higher cost and complexity of CBN production.
Due to the usually higher cost of production, CBN is most commonly sought after by those looking to benefit from the sedative properties of cannabinol. This being the case, if you are looking to use hemp or medical cannabis to relieve pain or inflammation, sourcing regular or full-spectrum CBD may be a better, more affordable option.
Dialogues in Clinical Neurosciences: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3202504/
Federation of American Sciences for Experimental Biology: https://faseb.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1096/fj.201600646r