What Is CBN and How Is It Made?

What is CBN concept cannabis compound

Whether you have heard of CBN or not, it is gaining popularity in our current alternative health and wellness culture. Similar to other better-known cannabinoids like CBD, it has been linked to potential benefits for your physical and mental wellness. 

Thanks to the recent legalization of hemp-derived CBD on a federal level, CBN has also appeared in various products like tinctures, oils, topicals, and more. 

So, what is CBN, and how is it made? How does CBN affect the body, and what health benefits are associated with its consumption or use? Let’s find out!

What Is CBN?

More commonly known as CBN, Cannabinol results from degraded tetrahydrocannabinol acid (THCa), one of many naturally occurring cannabinoids found in the hemp and cannabis plant. 

Typically, CBN exists at higher levels in oxidized or aged hemp. Dissimilar to other cannabinoids, CBN is not fashioned by CBG. Instead, it is produced by the plant’s natural aging process. 

When overexposed to ultraviolet light or air, the THCa is a hemp or cannabis plant that transforms into cannabinolic acid (CBNA). Then, the CBNA converts into CBN with additional exposure to heat and light.

Low-quality cannabis was traditionally a good source for CBN. However, the aging process of a plant can be manipulated to get a higher concentration of CBN when desired.

These days, CBN is typically extracted in the form of an isolate so it can boost the effects of other products, like CBD. Generally, you will find CBN has been added to tinctures, oils, other edibles, and topicals in concordance with a full or broad spectrum of cannabinoids.  

Is CBN the Same as CBD?

Both CBN and CBD are derived from the same plants, hemp, and cannabis. However, the processing of a particular plant determines the level at which CBN is produced. Unlike CBD, which develops as the plant grows, the quantity of CBN found in plants depends upon several factors. 

CBN is affected by the plant’s age, heat, and light exposure. 

CBD and CBN are often combined in a broad or full-spectrum product because they have complementary effects on one another. They both are only mildly psychoactive, and most people do not experience any signs of an intoxicated or “high” sensation. They also have similar health benefits like reducing anxiety and encouraging relaxation. 

What Does CBN Do to the Body?

How does CBN interact with the human body? Studies and research on how CBN affects the body are pretty limited because it has only recently become legal to study.

Nonetheless, we continue to learn more about CBN and other cannabinoids. We know that both CBD and CBN have a highly mild psychoactive effect. 

Scientific speculation and preliminary findings show that CBN interacts with the body’s nervous system. 

Your body’s nervous system contains two kinds of endocannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2. These two receptors create the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The first receptor, CB1, is observed in the body’s central nervous system. The second, CB2, exists in the peripheral nervous system, particularly in immune cells. 

Endocannabinoids bind to CB1 and CB2 receptors and trigger responses from your ECS. Different cannabinoids target different receptors. Depending on the specific receptor that is targeted, a particular cannabinoid will produce other effects in your body. 

CBN has a higher affinity for binding to CB2 receptors than CB1 receptors. As a result, there is reason to believe CBN can help relieve inflammation in your body’s immune system.

What Are the Potential Health Benefits Associated with CBN?

Early evidence points toward CBN helping alleviate multiple negative symptoms and promoting better health and wellness. 

CBN may stimulate more restful sleep, relieve anxiety symptoms, reduce inflammation, and work as a painkiller. 

study from 1995 suggests that CBN can prolong sleep times in mice. 

Another study from 2002 shows that CBN can positively influence the body’s pain perception system. 

Other circumstantial evidence indicates that CBN can also help relieve stress and anxiety, but we still have a considerable amount to learn about its potential uses.

Similar to other cannabinoids like CBD, it is believed that CBN reaches its full potential when it is used in combination with other cannabinoids. Hence, the prevalence of full-spectrum and broad-spectrum products available on the market. 

How Is CBN Isolate Made?

THC can be converted into CBN naturally using heat or ultraviolet light. When making CBN isolate, a different process is used to ensure consistency and quality in a large-scale lab setting. 

To extract CBN from hemp or cannabis, starting with a plant with a high concentration of CBN, the precursor to CBN is best. Elevating CBNa levels is achieved through age and exposure to UV light. Some strains of cannabis are also known for possessing higher levels of CBN. Once the material is ready, the extraction process is executed similarly to when CBD isolate is made.

The most common extraction methods involve using CO2 or ethanol as a solvent. A hemp or cannabis plant is soaked in the chosen solvent. Saturating the plant separates the cannabinoids and terpenes from the actual biomass of the plant. The solution produced is then added to an evaporator where heat and a vacuum extract a crude form of CBN. Lastly, the crude extract is typically distilled further to create a pure CBN isolate. 

Look for companies that utilize a CO2 extraction method, like Saving Grace, for the highest quality products. CO2 is efficient on a large scale and doesn’t leave behind other toxins and harsh chemicals. 

Takeaway: CBN and You

If you have ever used a full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD product, there is a pretty good chance it also contained CBN. A combination of various cannabinoids, CBD and CBN, included, results in a better response from your body and, for most, a more potent effect. CBN is commonly found in whole or broad-spectrum CBD oils, topicals, tinctures, edibles, etc. 

Give one a try —Saving Grace Sleep Formula is a great option— and see if CBN can help you reduce stress and anxiety, help you sleep, or relieve pain. 

If you have any lingering questions, reach out to one of our helpful Saving Grace representatives. They can answer your queries and help you find the perfect full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD product for your individual needs. 


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Andrew Mattison

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