Does CBG have THC?

Two cannabis tincture oil bottles with hemp in background

Since the minor cannabinoids’ popularity has exploded recently, you’ve become curious about CBG and its therapeutic potential. Who wouldn’t be interested?

Anyone’s ears would perk up when they hear about a natural remedy with mild side effects and an array of applications that almost anyone could benefit from.

There’s truth behind what you’ve heard about CBG helping to counteract inflammation, pain, anxiety, depression, sleep issues, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), glaucoma, bacterial infections, neurodegeneration, and cancers.

But you know that CBG comes from cannabis, and you’ve also heard about THC.

This gives you pause because THC can get you high, and it technically is not legal in the United States.

Naturally, you wonder whether CBG can cause intoxication and whether it contains THC with psychoactive effects. Because as much as you want to try CBG for its therapeutic potential, you don’t want to wade into murky legal waters or worry about a supplement impairing your ability to function.

Stick around as we settle the facts surrounding CBG, THC, and the difference between the two.

What is CBG (Cannabigerol)?

Cannabigerol is one of over 120 compounds in cannabis plants called cannabinoids. Some cannabinoids have psychoactive effects like THC, and some don’t, such as CBD. But CBG is different from every other cannabinoid.

Over the life cycle of cannabis plants, CBG produces all the other cannabinoids, including THC and CBD. By the end of the process, there is almost no CBG left in the plant, especially in high-THC strains.

Since there’s a mere 1% or less of CBG in high-THC plants, it’s usually not practical to obtain the less abundant cannabinoid CBG from the same plants producers use to yield THC.

On the other hand, low-THC, CBD-dominant strains retain much more CBG.

What are the other differences?

Compared to intoxicating cannabinoids like THC and CBN, the most significant differences are that CBG is a much less abundant cannabinoid and does not come with any psychoactive effects. Therefore, it does not make the user intoxicated or high, making it more useful as a treatment or supplement.

CBG and the more common cannabinoid CBD have many similarities, including analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and calming effects. But a major distinction between the two is how they interface with the endocannabinoid system, the human body’s mode of processing cannabinoids.

The endocannabinoid system helps manage homeostasis in the body by relying on cannabinoid receptors. The nervous system and brain use CB1 receptors, while the immune system uses CB2 cannabinoid receptors. Unlike CBD, CBG has a particular affinity for both CB2 and CB1 receptors. 

CBG also uniquely interacts with the neurotransmitters GABA and dopamine, which could be one of the secrets behind the recent uptick in CBG’s popularity compared to other cannabinoids.

Is there THC in CBG?

No, there is no THC in the cannabinoid CBG. They are two different compounds with different molecular structures and effects on the mind and body. Most notably, THC creates a high, but CBG does not.

Different cannabinoids coexist in the same plants and can either be separated or combined to make cannabinoid products. But although all the other cannabinoids originate from CBG, the compound cannabigerol does not have any other cannabinoids in it and vice versa.

In short, isolate or pure CBG products can have between 0% and 0.0003% THC, which is not enough to be intoxicating, illegal, or show up on drug tests.

But other kinds of CBG products may have more THC, so anyone interested in CBG should familiarize themselves with the differences between the various types.

  • Isolate CBG: This is the purest way to take CBG because producers isolate the cannabigerol as much as possible from the plant’s other compounds.
  • Broad-spectrum CBG: Broad-spectrum CBG products use multiple compounds from cannabis plants but isolate each one before manufacturing them back together. That way, producers can make broad-spectrum CBG products with or without THC.
  • Full-spectrum CBG: Full-spectrum CBG products go through the least processing for better efficacy. This preserves all the naturally-occurring compounds from the plant but could also include more substantial levels of THC.
  • CBG flower: CBG flower comes from plants producers breed to contain the maximum levels of CBG and minimum levels of THC.

Isolate CBG may be the safest bet for those avoiding THC. It’s also crucial to find a trustworthy and transparent CBG producer that makes THC levels clear and uses third-party lab testing.

Is CBG Legal?

Yes, CBG is legal to produce, buy, and use, thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill. That’s because CBG products and the cannabinoid itself do not contain THC or any psychoactive properties, which is still illegal in quantities higher than 0.3%. So the only CBG that’s illegal is CBG which originates from plants with more than 0.3% THC.

Before the Farm Bill, the federal government banned all cannabis plants, even industrial hemp plants with mostly CBD and little THC. Now, cannabis plants with less than 0.3% THC are legal. However, even benign CBD is under increasing regulation by the FDA, whereas no laws or rules exist for CBG.

Will you get high with CBG?

No, cannabigerol can’t get you high since it does not have psychoactive properties. It affects the brain in a much different way than THC does.

THC produces a euphoric and significantly intoxicating high. Many people find that THC makes them sleepy, faint, or anxious and slows their cognition, impairing motor skills, memory, and perception of time and space.

In comparison, CBG provides pain relief, improved sleep and mood, relaxation energy, and focus without any of the unwanted effects of a typical marijuana high.

That’s not to say that CBG is entirely free of possible unwanted effects, especially for those who take it in excess. 44% of patients who use CBG-predominant cannabis claim they don’t notice adverse effects. Nonetheless, users should moderate their CBG intake to prevent the following mild side effects:

  • Dry mouth
  • Increased appetite
  • Grogginess or fatigue
  • Dizziness, increased heart rate, or low blood pressure
  • Nausea or diarrhea

Those taking or considering CBG should also inform themselves about how it can interact with medications and talk to their doctor about that.

How CBG Benefits The Human Body

We already covered how CBG has a unique relationship with the body’s endocannabinoid system and the CB1 and CB2 receptors. This explains why CBG is thought to help regulate many processes throughout the body so effectively.

People use CBG to help with a wide range of conditions, including chronic pain and migraines, inflammatory bowel disease/IBS, anxiety, depression, sleep disturbances, and insomnia. In addition, scientists are still studying how CBG may help combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria, glaucoma, cancer cells, and neurodegeneration.

Eases Pain and Migraines

Due to its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, CBG shows promise as an effective pain reliever. This is encouraging for those who suffer from chronic pain and migraines.

Illustrating this, 73.9% of patients who used high-CBG cannabis for chronic pain thought it worked better than regular medicine. Of those who took a nano-processed CBD/CBG combination for pain, 56.7% saw their condition improve, with 51.2% being able to decrease or stop using pain medication.

Relieves Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

In an animal study, researchers have looked at CBG’s ability to treat inflammatory bowel disease by measuring changes in colon inflammation. Since CBG seemed to help relieve IBD, the study forms a solid basis for exploring future clinical experiments on CBG as an IBD treatment.

Some people already use CBG to self-treat IBS, and one survey showed that 62% of them experience improvements when they take nano-processed CBD/CBG.

Helps Fight Cancer Cells

Research has shown that CBG can inhibit the growth of certain cancer cells such as breast cancer, colon cancer, and oral epitheloid carcinoma.

Additionally, CBG has been able to fight glioblastoma, a very aggressive cancer originating in the brain. CBG can destroy glioblastoma stem cells, which are extremely treatment-resistant and fuel the cancer’s development.


When scientists have observed the neuroprotective qualities of CBG, it has had powerful implications for the treatment of autoimmune and neurodegenerative diseases.

Specifically, a cannabigerol quinone (VCE-003) acts as a potent anti-inflammatory agent and helps activate PPARγ transcription. This means it could someday be a treatment for MS and other neuroinflammatory diseases.

VCE-003.2 is another cannabigerol quinone derivative with neuroprotective abilities. VCE-003.2 can limit neuronal damage from inflammation in models of Parkinson’s disease.

Since CBG can improve motor deficits in mice, additional models demonstrate CBG’s potential as a treatment for the neurodegenerative disease called Huntington’s.

Reduces Anxiety and Depression

78.3% of those who use CBG for their anxiety and 8% of those who use it for depression feel that it’s superior to traditional medical treatments. Also, 63.2% of those who tried nano-processed CBD/CBG reported feeling calmer, while 58.6% felt less anxious.

This is likely due to CBG’s impacts on GABA and dopamine, both of which play a role in stress and feelings of calm vs. anxiousness.

Enhances Cognition

Another effect CBG has on the brain relates to astrocytes and pericytes. Pericytes might control cerebral blood flow, which is instrumental in cognitive performance. Astrocytes could play a similar role in the brain’s functioning, plasticity, information processing, and syapse formation.

So there is a possible scientific basis for patients’ purported focus and thinking improvements when taking CBG.

Helps with Sleep Problems and Fatigue

Astrocytes are also belived to influence people’s internal clock, including the instinct to go to sleep and wake up at certain times. This relationship could be part of why CBG apparently improves people’s sleep and energy.

Additionally, CBG’s interaction with GABA and dopamine could help explain why many users find they sleep better and feel more rested.

73% of patients taking CBG say it outshines traditional treatments for insomnia or disturbed sleep.

For patients who took nano-processed CBD/CBG, 44.1% slept better, and 70% felt they had more energy. Meanwhile, 83.3% of those taking it for chronic fatigue noticed improvements.

Counteracts Glaucoma

In animal studies, CBG has also performed well at helping control the intraocular tension, or eye fluid pressure, present in glaucoma.

CBG could be a viable glaucoma treatment, not just because it influences intraocular tension but also because it doesn’t appear to cause side effects like intoxication, eye redness, or discharge like CBN.

Kills Bacteria

CBG also has strong antibacterial qualities. For instance, it works against the bacteria that fuel tooth decay, and lab tests have shown that CBG is strong enough to combat drug-resistant MRSA infections.

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Are there any therapeutic effects of CBG you want to learn more about?

Now you know that cannabinoids such as CBG, THC, CBD, etc., are all different compounds with varying molecular structures and therapeutic effects on the mind and body. Though the pure cannabinoid CBG doesn’t have any THC, some CBG products can have low levels of THC.

It’s wise to be sure about what type of CBG products you use and the precise amount of THC. But to comply with federal law, all cannabinoid products must have under 0.3% THC, which is below the threshold of causing psychoactive effects. So CBG can’t get you high.

Furthermore, for most people, the health and wellness advantages of CBG seem to easily outweigh the slight side effects that can occur.

From anxiety, depression, fatigue, sleep disturbance, and pain relief to potentially fighting serious diseases, including cancer, CBG could someday turn out to be an incredibly versatile and effective natural treatment.

In the years to come, it will be interesting to see what science discovers about this uncommon cannabinoid and how much it will help people treat and manage their conditions.

If reading about the therapeutic effects of CBG has made you think about trying it for yourself, here’s where to compare and buy CBG high-quality products. They’re backed by lab testing, FDA-approved facilities, and a satisfaction guarantee.