All about CBN - Primary cannabinoids explained

Published Mar 6, 2019 11:07 a.m. ET

Cannabinoids make up a massive chunk of a cannabis plants chemical makeup with the most prominent ones being cannabinol (CBN), cannabidiol (CBD), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). These are often referred to as the primary or active cannabinoids that are produced by marijuana in large amounts. All of which act differently than one another and have entirely separate effects of the user. With different effects within different CBD products as well.

1. THC
THC is the primary active cannabinoid and is the only one that produces an intense psychedelic high when consumed. THC is not naturally produced by marijuana plants and instead is the activated version of THCA.

2. CBD
CBD is a precursor to THC and is also equipped with anti-inflammatory effects when ingested. CBD is a product of CBDA that has been converted through heat and aging.

3. CBN
CBN is what THC slowly turns into as it goes through the aging process. Some of it happens immediately after the plant is dried, while the majority will happen in long term storage. CBN can have similar effects on a user as THC and CBD only on a much smaller scale. This cannabinoid can help to relax, stifle appetite, and soothe sore achy and inflamed joints.

CBN vs CBD

CBN is interesting researchers everywhere as it continues to show an ability to perform almost the same way that THC does with fewer adverse feelings or side effects. CBD has been the big hit in the medical industry as of late, but that appears to be close to changing as scientist and doctors further study the benefits of this particular alternative cannabinoid. CBD is beneficial for anti-inflammatory properties, but we now know that CBN is not only just as effective at bringing down swelling as CBD, but it also acts as an anti-fungal, and an antibacterial. At the same time, it does that, CBD is nearly 5x more effective at reducing chronic pain, spasms, and neurological disorders. These benefits are all amazing on their own, and the future of this cannabinoid is looking bright, but that’s not all. CBD can also help to curb many of the adverse sensations and effects of consuming marijuana like the munchies and sleepiness.

How to get more CBN in your weed

After reading all of this, you are likely wondering how you can use this cannabinoid to your advantage. Unfortunately, you probably won’t (at least yet) be able to find marijuana that is high in CBN just anywhere. Since it isn’t formed until the curing stage and it’s a very understood component of the plant, there are very few ways for the average person even to be able to test for it. Instead, you can learn how to create the most possible with any kind of herb you might have access to. You know that dried up crumbly weed that you had stored away forever? The one that was so dry it turned to powder as you tried to hustle yourself together enough for a bowl? That cannabis was likely full of CBN. As weed is stored it ages over time. Most growers and consumers will do things to slow this process down as much as possible like storing their bud in an airtight container away from sunlight in a cool dark place. That is because exposure to any of the wrong conditions will speed up the process which degrades the THC.

If you want cannabis with the most CBN possible, you will want to do the opposite while still maintaining a clean and mold free bud flower. The ideal age is unknown, but testes amounts showed that between 6-8 months in storage is an excellent amount of time for a fair amount of CBD production. Too long and you could tarnish the taste of the herb, but not enough keeps those CBN levels low. It’s a balancing act that takes time and patience but is more than worth it to the right individuals.

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