What is CBN?

A close up of a high CBN cannabis plant

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Delta-9 Indica Sleep
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THC, CBD, CBG - there are a lot of cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant, but we have only managed to study a few of them in depth. This is because weed is still considered a highly dangerous drug, a label that has delayed for many years studies that could show us wonderful things about this herb. In recent years, however, numerous studies have been conducted in those states where marijuana is legal. Thanks to these, several cannabinoids with great potential have been discovered. Among these, we find CBN. So, what is CBN? If up to now you have been surprised by the properties of CBD and CBG, we are sure that once you know what this compound is you will want to have it on your shelf.

What is CBN in Weed?

With so many new cannabinoids being discovered, it is hard to tell them apart and identify the main differences between these compounds. However, thanks to all the research we have today, we can have a better understanding on how these cannabinoids are different and contribute to our health. CBN: what is it? Cannabinol is the compound into which THC breaks down after being exposed to heat and light for long periods of time. This cannabinoid is not so easy to extract from the cannabis plant, since THC and CBD are by far the most abundant compounds in weed. Even if you have let your high THC strain age for a long time, the CBN content in it will barely reach 1%. Surprisingly enough, CBN was the first phytocannabinoid to be isolated in history. In 1896, researchers studied this cannabinoid to see if it was responsible for the psychoactive effects of weed. As you may assume, they later found out that it was just an oxidation product of THC. This doesn’t mean, however, that you can just take your favorite THC strain and let it age for some years until it accumulates high levels of CBN. Although this cannabinoid is not as popular as the newly explored CBG or THCP, some brands are beginning to develop isolated CBN products. If studies on this interesting cannabinoid keep being performed, we can expect high CBN weed strains in the near future.

Is CBN Psychoactive?

Being an oxidation product of THC, one would assume it also contains the intoxicating effects of this cannabinoid. However, research has shown that it isn’t strong enough to produce psychoactive effects. For this reason, CBN is non-intoxicating. Moreover, a study concluded that CBN also binds to the CB1 just like THC and CBD, but with only around one-tenth the strength of these cannabinoids. Nevertheless, it is important to point out that CBN has been found to increase the euphoric effects of THC. This is why it is important for consumers to find CBN products that have little to none THC levels in their composition.

What is CBN good for?

Although current research on CBN is limited, the few studies that have been conducted show an impressive amount of potential benefits of Cannabinol. Known as the “sleepy cannabinoid”, CBN seems to have great properties to be used as a sleeping aid. Here are some benefits of CBN:
    Anti-insomnia: as we mentioned before, CBN is considered a potent sleep aid. In an analysis conducted by Steep Hill Labs, a dose of 5 mg of CBN is as effective as 10-mg of diazepam, a well-known pharmaceutical sedative. This claim is, however, disputed, since terpenes also age with cannabis, and the strong sedative effects of high CBN strains could be attributed to these compounds. Antibacterial: tested on strains of MRSA bacteria, which are resistant to traditional antibiotics, CBN proved to be a potent antibacterial agent. Appetite stimulation: a 2012 study found that CBN increased in both quantity and duration of feeding on rats. This could be a great alternative to THC as an appetite stimulant, aiding those who are sensible to the latter. Pain reliever: when combined with CBD, CBN releases peptides that activate an alternative nerve mechanism to the CB1 and CB2 receptors. This makes it a great painkiller. Anti-inflammatory: although it is not as powerful as CBD for treating inflammation, it has similar properties. In 2009, a study identified CBN as a potential treatment for inflammatory conditions such as allergic asthma and arthritis. Likewise, it can treat glaucoma by reducing intraocular pressure.

What is CBN oil?

Since CBN is not as studied as CBD, it might be hard to find it in an oil form. As you may know, CBD oils, tinctures, and isolates are very popular for their fast absorption and convenience for those who don’t like to smoke CBD flower. For this reason, we can expect a great amount of brands jumping on board the CBN oil train. As of now, you can purchase CBD oil that contains CBN in it. While it isn’t entirely CBN, you will definitely benefit from its properties combined with CBD. In case you are interested in this compound, you should try some broad spectrum CBD oil, which not only has Cannabidiol but also other cannabinoids like CBN and terpenes. This combination of compounds is what makes the Entourage Effect possible, allowing you to feel all the benefits of the hemp plant in your body.

What is CBN oil used for?

As mentioned before, CBN is often used as a sleeping aid. For this reason, you will often find CBN oil marketed to treat insomnia. In addition, CBN oil will also treat pain and inflammation, making you feel more relaxed and at ease. While there are no reported side effects of CBN, it is always important to avoid using this in pregnant people and children. Moreover, in case you want to use CBN oil, always refer to your healthcare provider.

CBN Dosage

The appropriate dose of CBN will vary depending on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. Because there is not enough scientific research on the use and dosage of CBN, it is always important to consult a pharmacist or other healthcare professional before using. If you are buying a CBN product from a reliable brand, it is more likely that you will find directions on the product label. Remember to always start small, since you don’t know how your body will react to the product.


While CBN and CBD might sound similar, they have several differences in how they interact with your body, effects, and composition. To begin with, CBD is abundant in both hemp and selectively bred marijuana strains, while CBN hardly gets to 1% of concentration in a cannabis flower. Moreover, CBD is often used to decrease the negative effects of THC, as well as its psychoactive effects. On the other hand, CBN has been found to potentiate the high sensation on the body and brain when combined with THC. However, both CBN and CBD have great medicinal effects such as pain relief, anti-inflammatory properties and even act as mood regulators. For this reason, finding a product that has high concentrations of both cannabinoids will enhance the overall performance in your body. While CBN is not on the list of scheduled controlled substances in the United States, this could change in case it gains more popularity. If such a thing happens, CBN could be considered an analog of CBD or THC, which are both Schedule I substances under federal law. (Hemp-derived CBD is legal in the U.S). For this reason, it is important to make sure that any CBN product you are purchasing comes from a reliable brand, and that you can have access to the Certificate of Analysis of such product.

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