​CBG vs. CBD: What Are the Differences?

​CBG vs. CBD: What Are the Differences?

Apr 26th 2022

Most people are aware of oils, lotions, and gummies containing cannabinoids like CBD. However, more people are learning about CBG and its potential benefits. Some CBD products contain CBG since the two can strengthen each other's qualities.

The unique cannabinoids may appear similar but have multiple differences. The distinction between CBG vs. CBD can help you find a product that works best for you.

What Is CBG?

CBG is short for cannabigerol, and the chemical is one of many cannabinoids in cannabis. A cannabinoid is a synthetic or natural compound that interacts with a person's endocannabinoid system (ECS) to create the desired effect. Over 100 of them exist in a hemp plant, and they can create various reactions.

CBG is the most prevalent in young cannabis plants. The highest concentration occurs about six weeks into the flowering period. At first, the compound begins in its acidic form, CBGA.

When you heat the plant, CBGA then breaks down into CBG. Additionally, CBG serves as a precursor to the main cannabinoids. CBGA turns into the compounds CBD, CBC, and THC. Some people refer to CBG as the "mother of all cannabinoids."

CBG then interacts with the ESC to possibly influence appetite, energy, and stress response. People may take CBG products to improve focus and memory. However, the compound needs more research to see how beneficial it is.

What Is CBD?

One of the most prominent cannabinoids is CBD. CBD stands for cannabidiol, and it is considered a phytocannabinoid. A phytocannabinoid is a plant-derived cannabinoid that trichomes produce.

CBD interacts indirectly with the ECS. It can raise the production of anandamide, which is an ECS neurotransmitter that regulates the nervous system. Nevertheless, experts do not fully know the complexity of the relationship between the CBD and ECS.

Researchers believe other compounds used with CBD create an entourage effect. Essentially, multiple cannabinoids work together to enhance CBD's effects. People often use THC to create the result, but compounds like CBG enhance this effect as well.

CBD is psychoactive but not intoxicating. You do not have to worry about experiencing a high. Still, many states banned CBD products for years. The 2018 Farm Bill made hemp products legal. However, they need to have less than .3% THC.

CBG vs CBD: How They Are Different?

Molecular Structure

The difference between CBG and CBD starts with their chemical makeup. Their structures contain hydrogen, oxygen, and carbon, but CBG has more hydrogen atoms than CBD. The formations of each structure also are slightly different. Not everyone has a microscope, so chemical makeup might not help people understand the difference between the compounds.

Plant Function

Another distinctive quality has to do with how each cannabinoid functions in the plant. CBD acts as a natural sunscreen when combined with terpene production. Not only can it protect cannabis from harmful UV light, but it improves the plant's overall defense. CBD reduces the amount of moisture the plant loses as well.

CBG may protect cannabis plants in different ways. Similar to other compounds, it is believed to help repel insects and pathogens.

Concentration Level

There naturally is far less CBG in cannabis compared to CBD. Around 1% is present, so people consider the compound a minor one. You typically can find 20% to 25% of CBD in cannabis. However, selective breeding has allowed for high amounts of CBG extract. Still, the chemical has less research than CBD due to the low concentration.

Interactions With the Endocannabinoid System

From what experts have learned, the ECS system processes CBG quickly to create potential effects. A few studies suggest that CBG can help give therapeutic feelings and improve sleep. Yet, it possibly counters other compounds' anti-nausea effects.

CBD does not attach to the CB1 receptors directly, but binding may occur if enough THC is around. The compound could slow down the rate endocannabinoids break down and make effects last longer. Some experts believe CBD's interactions with the ECS prevent nausea and lower pain. However, more studies are needed to confirm these findings on the potential benefits of CBD.


When it comes to appetite, CBG and CBD may have different reactions. A study on rats tried to find the connection between CBG and food intake. The results showed that the number of consumed meals increased by double the original amount.

Can You Get High With CBG?

CBG is non-intoxicating like CBD. Therefore, you will not experience a high from using CBG products. The reason is that CBG does not directly attach itself to the CB1 receptors in the brain.

Even though you will not get high, CBG products can still have psychoactive effects. They can alter a person's mood and behavior by influencing the central nervous system. Being psychoactive is not the same as being high.

A high is when someone has changes in their cognitive abilities and can experience withdrawals. Like CBD, CBG does not give you those side effects.

How to Find Quality CBG Products

When searching for CBG products, you need to see if there is a Certificate of Analysis (COA). Reputable companies list a COA to show that their goods do not have more than .3% THC. Additionally, the results inform you of the presence of heavy metals and pesticides.

COAs should come from an accredited third-party lab. A few manufacturers get their lab results in-house, making the certificate less reliable. Another red flag involves medical claims. A brand might state that the product can treat chronic pain, epilepsy, or metabolic disorders. According to the FDA, it is strictly forbidden to make these types of claims.

Also, beware of low-quality products. One of the cheapest sources of CBG is in the stalks of cannabis plants. You should buy oils and other goods that come from the leaves or trichomes.

Full-Spectrum CBD

Some high-quality full-spectrum CBD goods contain a bit of CBG. Of course, full-spectrum CBD consists of THC, CBN, and most other cannabinoids. They are a great option if you are curious about trying CBG for the first time.

You may also get to enjoy pronounced benefits from the entourage effect. You can buy CBG by itself, but the price will likely be higher. Not to mention, you have fewer options to choose from. Be sure to check with a doctor if you are on any medications.

You can try out a full-spectrum CBD body lotion as well. ARVOR's 2,000 mg CBD body lotion contains amino acids and antioxidants. Our all-natural product uses high-end superfruits to make your skin glow. Customers can trust they are getting quality lotion with every purchase. Be sure to contact us if you have any questions about CBD or CBD topicals.