CBN – The Emerging Sleep Solution
Cannabinol (CBN) may have similar beneficial effects as other cannabinoids, but make no mistake, it is unique. In fact, it even begins in an unusual way – but more on that in a minute.
Early research has revealed possible benefits so exciting that experts are clamoring for further investigation. What makes CBN such a hot new topic is its powerful sedative properties and potential use as a treatment for sleep disorders.
Cannabis researchers at Steep Hill have concluded that “Of all the cannabinoids, CBN appears to be the most sedative. Not only is it sedative, it takes very little to do the job.”
What all this means is:
CBN could become the answer to finally getting a good night’s sleep.
CBN Could Help Millions Get Better Sleep
Billions of dollars are spent annually on pharmaceuticals, by people hoping to find a good, restful night’s sleep. According to the Institute of Medicine, sleep disorders affect an estimated 70 million Americans.
And more than 8 million of them rely on prescription pills as a treatment – but in doing so risk addiction and long-term health damage.
You may already be aware of the beneficial effects THC and CBD have on sleeping, but now there’s another natural solution, CBN. With it, many more people may find a new alternative to conventional treatments.
Cannabis plants or products with high levels of CBN are showing promise in treating insomnia and reducing anxiety.
As with most cannabinoids, research is suggesting that CBN may be even more effective as a sleep aid when used in combination with THC and CBD – thanks to the entourage effect.
So, just how effective is CBN?
Twice as Effective as Commercially Available Sedatives
According to Steep Hill Labs, just 5mg of CBN is as effective as 10mg of the mild pharmaceutical sedative, diazepam.
CBN gives a relaxed body sensation, so if you suffer from tossing and turning all night, it might be a great option for you.
Thanks to the entourage effect, the synergy between CBN and CBD, as well as CBN and D9-THC, has been shown to be effective in aiding sleep for up to 6 hours.
And here’s good news…
A little CBN goes a long way. You don’t need much to benefit from the sedative effects – which is good news because most cannabis plants contain less than 1% CBN.
But how does CBN actually work?
Like all cannabinoids, CBN works by interacting with the endocannabinoid system (ECS). It shares a chemical composition similar to THC and is thought to bind with CB2 receptors. It may also interact with CB1 receptors – more research is needed.
In addition, CBN initiates a physiological response when it interacts with TRPV2 receptors. These receptors are found throughout the brain, spine, and gut, regulate several biological systems in the body.
While it is not yet fully understood how CBN works with the endocannabinoid system to influence sleep, we do know that ECS has a strong influence over many parts of the brain and body that are required for a good night’s sleep.
And it may sound too good to be true, but…
CBN May be Effective at Treating a Wide Range of Other Conditions Too
The natural interaction of CBN with these receptors means it could potentially treat a wide range of other conditions as well – from pain and inflammation to high blood pressure and seizures.
Studies are showing that CBN is effective as a treatment for —
Early research is showing that CBN has pain-relieving capabilities because it influences the body’s pain signaling and perception nerves. This is similar to the benefit THC provides but without the intoxicating effects.
According to a 2008 study CBN is one of several cannabinoids with the ability to fight harmful bacteria like the kind responsible for an antibiotic-resistant strain of Staphylococcus (MRSA).
CBN, like other cannabinoids, has anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown in lab research to successfully reduce inflammation. Scientists are working to determine how best use CBN to treat inflammatory diseases.
Further Ready: How Can CBD Help My Inflammation?
As an appetite stimulant, CBN behaves very differently than other cannabinoids like CBD. For instance, CBD has appetite suppressing effects while CBN appears to have the opposite effect, stimulating the appetite. This discovery may lead to CBN becoming a useful therapeutic option for people who struggle to maintain an appetite due to illness.
Complimenting its pain relief capabilities, CBN can lower body temperature. In combination with anti-inflammatory properties, this is encouraging research into how the cannabinoid may be used to relieve the symptoms of burn patients.
Like many of the cannabinoids present in cannabis and hemp CBN is showing itself to be a potentially powerful cancer treatment. Promising research has already found it’s able to shrink tumors in one form of lung cancer.
A 2008 study discovered CBN along with other cannabinoids has been shown to kill the antibiotic-resistant strain of Staphylococcus that is highly infectious and potentially dangerous.
CBD has become one of the most promising treatments for people suffering from epileptic seizures. And research dating back to the 1970s shows that CBN also has anti-convulsive effects, just to a lesser degree than CBD. Combined, they may prove to be even more effect together than alone.
Bone Healing and Bone Growth
Early research is indicating that CBN, along with other cannabinoids, can stimulate bone production. Studies have shown, by activating stem cells, they can promote the growth of new bone. This holds exciting potential for their use in healing bone fractures and reversing bone loss. More research is needed, but there could be great potential for treating degenerative bone diseases like osteoporosis.
What does this mean?
CBN is Showing Potential to Treat a Wide Treat Diseases
CBN is showing strong neuroprotective properties in early research. This is not unlike other cannabinoids and is driving further research in hopes that new treatments for common diseases will emerge.
CBN like other cannabinoids is useful for treating the symptoms of Glaucoma, a leading cause of blindness. It offers relief by easing pressure around the eyes.
Causing the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain, Huntington’s Disease has no known cure and few effective drug treatments. Cannabinoids like CBN have shown promise in offering neuroprotective effects against the disease, but scientists are currently are unsure how or why.
This neurodegenerative disorder affects a specific area of the brain. Impairment of motor control occurs after the loss of 60-80% of the dopamine-producing neurons in this critical brain region. CBN and other cannabinoids may help manage symptoms like tremors.
Tics and Tourette Syndrome
Tics are involuntary, repetitive movements and vocalizations – and Tourette Syndrome is one type of Tic Disorder. With its neuroprotective properties, CBN and other cannabinoids can ease tics and involuntary movements.
Multiple Sclerosis-related Tremor
CBN is also showing promise treating MS-related tremors. The powerful neuroprotective properties of cannabinoids like CBN will continue to be researched with anticipation as their potential continues to unfold.
So, you might be wondering…
How Does CBN Compare to CBD?
It’s true that different cannabinoids have different dominant attributes. But it would be a mistake to believe that one cannabinoid is necessarily better than another.
Still, here’s how the two cannabinoids stack up in pharmacological strengths —
You can see there are quite a few similarities and not too many differences. Yet, with what we know of the entourage effect and the synergies between compounds, research continues to suggest that the most significant benefits of cannabis are achieved through whole plant consumption, rather individual isolates.
Oh, and here’s the unusual way CBN gets its start —
CBN is Created From the Breakdown of THC
Unlike other cannabinoids that form when their chemical parent is subjected to light or heat, CBN is created when THC breaks down. It is the chemical compound that is left.
If you’ve ever experienced extreme sleepiness after consuming old (stale) cannabis, you’ve experienced the effects of CBN.
When a cannabis plant is first harvested it must be cured. During this period, THC-A turns into THC. Everything from the strain to how the plant is grown and cured will affect the THC levels.
Over time, THC oxidizes, and in that degradation process, it is transformed into CBN. This accounts for the sedative effect stale cannabis typically has.
The chemical journey of CBN looks like this –
How that works is…
Oxidation of THC
CBN and THC are almost identical on a molecular level. Through persistent exposure to air, heat, and light, THC transforms – oxidizes. And when it does, CBN is what’s left.
If you’ve ever wondered why stale cannabis loses its potency, it’s because the THC has broken down and become a non-psychoactive compound (or slightly psychoactive compound, CBN).
In research conducted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the degradation process of THC was studied over a four-year period. The data revealed that THC degraded most quickly during the first two years of the experiment.
The research concluded that over a prolonged period of time THC will convert to CBN when exposed to air, light, and heat.
These transformation requirements mean that cannabis buds that have a higher cannabinol concentration probably haven’t been stored properly.
Before you’re tempted to think that CBN’s origins somehow make it less worthy of praise as some of the other, flashier cannabis compounds, consider this —
Here’s how CBN’s creation process is so very handy —
You can actually make it yourself. You don’t even have to do anything.
Far from a throw-away byproduct, CBN is a useful compound that obliges to make itself for you, if you simply leave it alone.
CBN is present at low levels in most cannabis strains. Cannabis left to sit will reach a peak CBN transformation in about two years.
And here’s some astonishing news….
Would you believe archaeologists in China uncovered a 2,700-year-old tomb belonging to a Caucasoid shaman that contained, among other accouterments, two pounds of perfectly preserved cannabis?
And of course, with that much aging, the THC had all turned to CBN, which was reported to be the most dominate cannabinoid present.
Presumably, this ancient culture used cannabis as a medicinal or spiritual tool. This remarkable discovery points to a long history of humanity’s interaction with this exceptional plant.
Where can I find CBN-Infused Products?
With the primary focus on other cannabinoids in recent years, CBN-infused products have not yet become widespread. But, with CBN’s obvious beneficial properties, new products are likely to emerge soon.
At the moment, it is possible to find a small selection of new products like oils, tinctures, topicals, and strips, but most products containing CBN will be infused with CBD or other cannabinoids.
Full Spectrum Oils Contain CBN
If you’d like to experience the benefits of CBN without waiting two years for the THC to break down in your cannabis, there may be another way.
While you wait for the market to grow and develop new products made exclusively with CBN isolates, you can experience the benefit of CBN through full spectrum CBD products.
Full spectrum oils contain not only cannabinoids but also terpenes and flavonoids – all of which are highly beneficial. They also contain protein, fiber and a host of essential vitamins, fatty acids, and minerals.
Full spectrum oils are available in a wide variety of preparations including tinctures, sprays, balms, salves, and capsules. The method of delivery greatly affects absorption levels (as does quality and potency).
Quality & Potency
Potent, high-quality cannabis is highly regarded and makes the best cannabinoid products. It’s important to consider sourcing, growing, and extraction practices, and seek out a brand with a high level of integrity and commitment to quality.
Look for products that are organic and free from harmful chemicals like the harsh solvents often used in lower-cost, lower-quality extraction methods.
To find the perfect full-spectrum CBD oil for your needs, check out our comprehensive reviews.
The Future of CBN
As the benefits of CBN become more widely understood, new applications and products will become available. Industrial hemp cultivators in the US are already producing CBN isolates to manufacture commercial-grade cannabinol products.
With far-reaching implications for therapeutic use, CBN may not be as popular or well-known as CBD yet – but its reputation is expected to grow as ongoing scientific investigation continues to unveil more potential benefits.
We’re excited to see where this new research will lead, and what beneficial new treatments will emerge.