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What is CBN and Can It Help You Sleep?

February 21, 2019

What is CBN and Can It Help You Sleep?

You’ve probably heard about people using CBD to help with sleep, anxiety, and a whole host of ailments. Maybe you’re using it yourself. Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is getting very popular these days. People are using CBD for pain relief, as quit-smoking aid, to help relieve anxiety and to improve sleep.   

We have posted many blogs about the very promising research showing a broad range of possible therapeutic effects from treating epilepsy and addiction, to its potential cancer-fighting capabilities, to improving sleep.

Now, I’m going to talk about another compound derived from the cannabis plant that you might not be familiar with…yet. It’s currently a relative unknown, compared to CBD. But it may not stay that way for long. I’m talking about cannabinol, or CBN.

This cannabis-derived compound may have benefits for sleep, along with other benefits for health and treatment for illness and disease. Ready to go under the radar and learn a bit about a natural plant compound that could be an up and comer as a natural sleep therapy?

What is CBN?

Like CBD, CBN is what’s known as a cannabinoid. That’s a chemical compound found in the cannabis plant. By a recent count, cannabis has more than 100 different cannabinoids (that’s how many have been identified so far). CBN was actually the first cannabinoid to be identified by scientists. CBN occurs naturally in the cannabis plant as the plant ages. Chemically similar to CBD, CBN has several of the same effects in the body, including the potential for relieving pain, reducing inflammation, and improving sleep.

Potential sleep and health benefits of CBN

To date, the research into therapeutic benefits of CBN is VERY preliminary. But it’s starting to heat up, as interest in the health benefits of cannabinoids surges, and the popularity of CBD continues to grow. Let’s take a look at the areas of health and disease treatment and prevention where initial scientific research suggests CBN may make a difference.

CBN as a potential sedative. There are indications that CBN coule be powerful sedative. Research in mice has shown that CBN can prolong sleep time.  There is, at this point, a lack of scientific research into the sleep-inducing properties of CBN. I’m hopeful we’ll eventually see some additional scientific studies that explore the sleep-promoting capabilities of CBN.

CBN as a potential pain reliever. Research indicates that CBN has analgesic, or pain-relieving capabilities in the body. CBN appears to influence the activity of neurons that are sensitive to capsaicin. (Capsaicin, you might know, is found in chili peppers, and an ingredient added to many topical pain relievers.) These capsaicin-sensitive nerves are important to the body’s pain signaling and perception.

CBN as a potential antibiotic. Research shows CBN has the ability to fight harmful bacteria. A 2008 study found CBN one of several cannabinoids (including CBD) effective in treating MRSA, a bacterial infection that is resistant to antibiotics.

CBN as a possible anti-inflammatory. Like CBD, CBN appears to have anti-inflammatory capabilities. Scientists working to better understand how the human endocannabinoid system affects the immune system. Cannabinoids, including CBN, are being examined for their possible therapeutic role in treating inflammatory disease.

CBN as a possible appetite stimulant. This is one area in which CBN behaves very differently from CBD. While CBD has appetite suppressing effects, CBN appears to stimulate the appetite. This may make CBN a therapeutic option to help increase appetite in people who struggle to maintain an appetite because of another illness, such as cancer, or it’s treatment.

CBN as a possible cancer fighter. There’s also some promising preliminary evidence that CBN may have direct cancer-fighting capabilities. Cannabinoids including CBN are being studied for their ability to slow or stop the growth and spread of cancer cells. 

CBN as a possible anti-convulsant. One of the most promising therapeutic uses for CBD is in epilepsy treatment, because of this cannabinoid’s strong anti-convulsant capabilities. Though it appears to be less strong than in CBD and THC, CBN has also been shown scientifically to function as an anti-convulsant.

To sum it up, of all the cannabinoids, research shows that CBN appears to be the most sedative. Not only is it sedative, it takes very little to do the job. The consumption of 2.5mg to 5mg of CBN appears to have the same level of sedation as a mild pharmaceutical sedative, with a relaxed body sensation similar to 5mg to 10mg of a sleep aid. CBN appears to work well when combined with CBD.There’s a lot more research to be done to understand how CBN affects the body, and ways it might be a safe, effective therapy for sleep problems and other health conditions.

We will keep researching and post more information as it becomes available.  

Heartland CannAssist has just added products containing CBN to our store. It will be available for purchase the first week of March.

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