When you think of hemp-derived cannabinoids that can help you sleep, you probably think of CBD or CBN.
But there’s a third option: Cannabigerol, or CBG.
Though CBG won’t directly cause you to fall asleep, it can promote restful sleep in other ways. In this article, we’re going to explore how CBG can help you sleep, and how it stacks up to CBD and CBN.
- CBG won’t directly cause you to fall asleep, but it has the potential to promote restful sleep by addressing anxiety and inflammation.
- A 2022 survey of CBG users found that 70% of people preferred CBG to traditional medicines for insomnia.
- Neither CBD nor CBG is necessarily better than the other for sleep. Rather, CBG tends to relax the body while CBD tends to relax the mind.
What is CBG?
Cannabigerol (CBG) is one of more than 100+ cannabinoids that naturally occur in the hemp plant. Preliminary scientific research that’s investigated CBG suggests that it has the potential to help with inflammation (including inflammatory bowel disease), anxiety, and neurogenerative disorders.
However, not much research has looked at using CBG for sleep.
Can CBG Promote Restful Sleep? What Science Says
The short answer is yes, but we have no direct scientific evidence that CBG is helpful for sleep (or isn’t).
But we have anecdotal evidence to go off of, and we can make inferences from other CBG-focused research.
CBG May Help with Anxiety
In several studies, CBG has demonstrated anti-anxiety effects. Because of this, it may be able to help with sleep.
One research review, from 2003, found a strong correlation between anxiety disorders and sleep disturbances, such as insomnia. If CBG can help address anxiety disorders, it may by extension be able to help you achieve better sleep.
Survey Finds that CBG Helps Users Sleep Better
Another piece of promising evidence comes in a survey of CBG users that was done in late 2022.
This survey included responses from 127 U.S.-based participants who had used CBG in the past 6 months. Of the respondents, 30.7% were using CBG for insomnia or sleep disturbances.
Something particularly interesting is that 73% of respondents reported that CBG-predominant products worked better than conventional medicines for insomnia.
Based on the anxiety-sleep link and the survey, it seems CBG has the potential to help promote more restful sleep.
However, we are still waiting for research to be done that conclusively shows whether CBG is an effective sleep aid, and if so, to what degree it can help.
How CBG Works in the Body
CBG works by interacting with your endocannabinoid system (ECS).
The ECS is a transmitter system in your body that helps regulate sleep, emotional processing, learning, memory, and many other vital functions.
There are two main receptor types in the ECS: CB1 and CB2. CBG interacts with both types of receptors, to an extent.
For certain conditions, there is science showing how CBG interacts with the ECS to produce a certain benefit (e.g. to render anti-inflammatory effects).
However, the lack of scientific research means we don’t actually know what CBG does in the ECS to help you sleep — we’ve just observed that it can be beneficial.
This is one potential explanation of how CBG can indirectly improve sleep quality.
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How Does CBG Compare to CBD for Sleep?
In terms of scientific evidence, CBD is the more “trustworthy” sleep cannabinoid.
Preliminary research suggests CBD has the potential to help with insomnia and other sleep disorders, while CBG hasn’t been researched for sleep.
However, CBG can also be helpful, depending on why you struggle to sleep.
CBG’s benefits are generally more body-focused. Though research shows it can help with anxiety, CBG is mainly known in the hemp and cannabis communities as an anti-inflammatory. So if inflammation is something that keeps you from sleeping, CBG may be the better option.
CBD, on the other hand, renders stronger mental relaxation effects than CBG does — it will not get you high, though. If getting into a headspace that conducive of sleep is your issue, CBD may be worth choosing over CBG.
CBD and CBG Together for Sleep
Though CBD and CBG are powerful on their own, combining them renders even better effects.
Taking CBD and CBG together means that you get the mind-focused benefits of CBD with the body-focused benefits of CBG — full-body effects.
In fact, some people find that this combination is better for sleep than using either cannabinoid by itself — you’ll have to try it for yourself and see.
What About CBN?
CBN (cannabinol) is another cannabinoid commonly used for sleep, so it’s worth discussing here.
Research in mice has shown that CBN can prolong sleeping time, and many people find that it has sedative-like effects (though there’s no research to support this).
CBN can help you relax at night, however, it doesn’t have the same comprehensive benefits as CBD or CBG — so if you’re dealing with secondary issues that make sleeping difficult, it probably isn’t the best choice.
How to Use CBG for Sleep: Dosage, Best Products, and Timing
Before you dive right into using CBG for sleep, here’s what you need to know.
Starting out, we recommend taking a low-strength CBG dosage for sleep.
The formula is:
(0.1) x (your body weight in pounds) = your CBG dosage in mg
For example, if you weigh 150 lbs., you’d start by taking 15mg of CBG each night. As you go, you can slowly add to this dosage, if needed, until you feel your desired effects.
There are a few ways to take CBG before bed. None is really superior to the others, but there are some differences between them in onset time:
- Tinctures — CBG tinctures consist of hemp extract and carrier oil, and are taken sublingually. The effects of tinctures can be felt within 10-15 minutes.
- Edibles — CBG edibles taste great, so they’re the perfect option if you don’t like the earthy/bitter flavor of tinctures. Since edibles are digested, you’ll feel the effects in 45 minutes to an hour.
- Softgels — Softgel capsules consist of CBG oil inside a digestible gel capsule. The effect onset of capsules is similar to that of edibles: 45 minutes to an hour.
- CBG-Dominant Hemp Flower — If you prefer to smoke hemp flower, there are many CBG-dominant strains out there, like Jack Frost, John Snow, or Sour G. Effects from smoking hemp flower can be felt within 10-15 minutes.
When you take your CBG depends on which product you use. You want to make sure that it kicks in before you want to fall asleep.
So if you’re using a tincture or smoking hemp flower, you just need to use your product 10-15 minutes before you want to sleep.
But if you’re using an edible or softgel, be sure to take your dose at least 45 minutes to an hour before bed.
Side Effects of CBG
Though CBG has many benefits, it also has a few potential side effects to be aware of:
- Dry mouth (if you’re using a CBG tincture)
- Dry eyes
- Increased appetite
To reduce the severity of potential side effects, be sure to start out with a small dosage (our formula above can help with this), and then slowly work your way up.
Conclusion: A Promising Sleep Cannabinoid
Scientists haven’t studied the differences between CBG and CBD in terms of which is better for sleep — research mostly focuses on what conditions these cannabinoids have the potential to help with.
Most of what we know about CBG and other cannabinoids, then, is based on experience (ours, our customers’, and so on).
Because of this, we can’t say for sure whether CBG will work better than CBD or CBN for sleep — we just know the benefits it has, and that it can help in some way.
Ultimately, finding the best cannabinoid for your situation is a matter of trying things out. Just be sure to play it safe: do your research and start with small doses!
CBG for Sleep: Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some questions we’re frequently asked by our customers about using CBG for sleep.
Does CBG help with sleep?
Yes. Anecdotal evidence suggests that CBG is effective at promoting better sleep, and CBG’s potential benefits for inflammation and anxiety may mean that it can indirectly help you sleep better by addressing secondary problems.
How much CBG do I need to sleep?
We recommend using the following formula to calculate your initial dosage of CBG for sleep:
(0.1) x (your body weight in lbs.) = your starting dosage.
This will ensure that your dosage accounts for weight — depending on how much you weigh, you might require more or less CBG to see the same results.
How does CBG affect sleep?
CBG can help reduce some of the barriers to good sleep, but based on what we know now, it won’t directly induce drowsiness as THC does.
Does CBG or CBN help you sleep?
CBG and CBN are both beneficial for sleep, just in different ways. Whereas science has shown that CBN has the potential to increase sleep onset and sleep time, CBG has the potential to help with sleep by addressing problems that keep you from sleeping well, such as anxiety and inflammation.