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CBN Oil: What is It and What Does It Do?

Sure you’ve heard about CBD, but have you caught wind ofCBN? Not quite as prolific as the CBD superstar, cannabinol or CBN has gained serious traction on the hemp market for its sleep-centric benefits that improve the way you experience those nighttime hours.

Adding to its appeal, CBN concentrations in hemp flowers sit at under 1%. This makes the commodity a relative rarity versus widespread CBD products. So it was really only a matter of time before CBN became the next biggest cannabinoid on the scene.

What is CBN?

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The hemp plant contains hundreds of organic compounds that come together under the umbrella of the cannabinoid family. These compounds occur exclusively in the Cannabis sativa L. plant and give it the unique effects and benefits that people use it for.

Cannabinol or CBN is just one of the many. And while cannabidiol or CBD makes up close to 20% of hemp’s cannabinoid chemistry, CBN constitutes less than 1% of the whole plant’s content.

Nevertheless, researchers claim that cannabinol provides users a sundry of benefits that focus on calm and relaxation. Furthermore, studies suggest that any effects that hemp might have on sleep may be the result of CBN’s unique interactions with the central nervous system.

Where Does CBN Come From?

You don’t just buy hemp flowers with CBN already in it. The same goes for every other cannabinoid. What most people don’t know is that cannabinoids first exist as cannabinoid acids. When these acids are exposed to heat, they’re decarboxylated and then they turn into cannabinoids.

Before becoming CBN, the compound exists as cannabinol acid or CBNA. Interestingly CBNA comes from THCA -- the same precursor for the controversial and notorious THC.

When exposed to heat, THCA becomes THC. But when subjected to UV exposure, the same THCA converts to CBNA. This is what then turns into CBN when decarboxylated through heat.

Based on findings, CBN might work at a slightly weaker level than CBD. Although it interacts with the same CB1 and CB2 receptors, the compound uses different pathways that produce distinct effects that more profoundly impact sleep and relaxation.

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Possible Benefits of CBN

We’re not here to spread unverified information. So just for the record, these potential benefits have yet to be fully confirmed by research. However, studies suggest that CBN may have a strong link to these hemp-associated effects.

According to some published literature, CBN might even be the cannabinoid most involved in hemp’s sleep-related benefits.

  • Sleep support (improved duration and quality)
  • Stress relief
  • Body relaxation
  • Discomfort relief
  • Appetite regulation

There are many other alleged benefits of CBN relating to human health and various medical conditions. But since the results of these studies remain inconclusive, it’s best to operate on the CBN benefits with slightly more evidence.

Moreover, based on user accounts, CBN works wonders to improve sleep quality and duration. Helping users fall asleep more readily and effortlessly, CBN might work as a sleep support substance for people who struggle to doze off at night.

On top of that, CBN also relaxes the body and mind, clearing away stress and discomfort. In effect, the organic compound induces a calm, collected disposition that’s ideal for winding down at the end of a long, tiring day.

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The Side Effects of CBN

For the record, cannabinoids are organic, naturally occurring compounds. They’re not synthesized in labs, and they’re not man-made. So side effects hardly ever occur, except in cases of irresponsible or ill-informed use.

That said, it’s important that users understand their therapeutic threshold. Essentially, this pertains to the amount of a specific substance you need to take in order to experience its effects.

Exceeding your therapeutic threshold could result in potentially uncomfortable side effects that may persist until the substance is flushed out of your body.

So, CBN might produce some side effects but only if you take more than your system can handle. And while there are no detailed studies that explore these effects, anecdotal evidence names the following as the most common side effects after taking too much CBN:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Drowsiness
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Although you might feel the need to do something to get rid of the unwanted effects, the best way to overcome them would be to simply ride them out. Users state that CBN’s effects will reach their peak around 30 minutes after the dose. They’ll then start to subside up to 180 minutes after intake.

With all of that in mind, make sure to carefully measure out your doses before you begin your use. Start with a trial dose and work your way up to your therapeutic threshold to avoid any side effects.

Because it shares a precursor with THC, some people think that CBN might be illegal. But that couldn’t be any farther from the truth. Despite the shared precursor, CBN is not THC. CBN products contain the product in their final, activated form. So you don’t really have to worry about its THCA origins.

According to the law, as long as the CBN comes from hemp, it’s legal. But then again, the FDA claims that hemp derivatives aren’t approved for human consumption just yet. So if there’s anything that’s truly illegal, it would be vendors peddling their hemp-derived products as food and drink.

Don’t worry though -- that doesn’t really affect you as a buyer. If anything, the FDA doesn’t care what you do with your CBN products in the privacy of your home.

But just for the sake of the collective benefit of the hemp industry, it’s always best to patronize and support vendors that avoid marketing their products as food and supplements.

Is CBN Oil Expensive?

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Remember, CBN is rare. Existing in concentrations of under 1% in hemp plant samples, manufacturers would need lots of hemps to produce a single vial of CBN product. So it follows that the prices for these products might not fit the average budget.

To put it into context, a 30mL bottle of 1800mg CBN oil can easily cost upwards of $100. Prices fluctuate depending on the brand you’re buying from and the quality of the products they sell. 

As you move upwards the potency ladder, prices also increase. So if you find that 1800mg CBN isn’t strong enough, you could probably access 3000mg formulations for double the price.

Over to You

CBD will probably enjoy its popularity and fame for the rest of its existence. But even if no other cannabinoid will topple CBD off of its throne, names like CBN give it a run for its money. Coveted for its effects on sleep, CBN finds a relevant purpose in today’s sleep-deprived world.

So if you were hoping to improve your nighttime experience, a vial of CBN might just be what you’re looking for.


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