CBD vs. CBN: Effects, Similarities, and Differences

Surprisingly, there are 113 different chemical compounds found in marijuana leaves. These compounds include THC, CBD, CBN, CBG, CBC, THCv, and of course many more. Many of our customers have asked us to explore one of these chemical compounds, called CBN. So today, we are going to explore CBN by comparing it to the more popular THC and CBD compounds to learn more. 

What is CBN in Weed?

If you have heard about CBD (cannabidiol) and it’s several benefits, perhaps you have also heard about another cannabinoid called CBN or cannabinol. What does CBN do? While there are limited studies done on the CBN cannabinoid, what we do know is that it is a non-intoxicating compound best known for the high amounts of cannabinoid it creates in aging THC. Some cannabis users prefer aged THC because they favor CBN’s effects.

Does CBD Degrade to CBN?    

We now know that when THC ages, it creates the chemical compound CBN. But what about CBD – does that also convert to CBN? Studies have shown it is possible. CBD can convert to CBN with human interference of adding iodine through oxidation processing. As you can see in the graphic below, CBD and CBN have similar benefits.


Let us compare CBN to other well known chemical compounds such as THC and CBD, so you can see if matured cannabis is right for you

THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is known for producing psychoactive, “high”, and euphoric effects when consumed. THC is known to help treat ADD/ADHD, cancer symptoms, glaucoma, PTSD, reverse tobacco effects, and so much more. It also helps reduce aches and pains, anxiety and depression, inflammation, muscle spasms, as well as nausea. 

CBD (Cannabidiol) cannot produce any psychoactive effects as associated with THC. When CBD is present with THC it decreases it’s cerebral effects. CBD can help reduce symptoms of inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, and PCOS. It can also help with alcoholism, anxiety, bone growth, blood sugar levels, depression, insomnia, migraines, and a large variety of other symptoms.

CBN (Cannabinol) is notable for having effects somewhere in between THC and CBN. Like CBD, CBN is a pain reliever for headaches similar to acetaminophen or NSAIDs only in very strong doses. It can also help with insomnia, convulsions, and is an appetite stimulant. Like THC, CBN is somewhat psychoactive however it is more heavily sedative and calming than hallucinogenic. See the graphic below for more details about THC, CBD, and CBN.

Is CBN Stronger Than CBD?

As we discovered, CBN and CBD are two entirely different chemical compounds. Although they are both pain relievers and aid in some shared conditions, CBD helps with significantly more conditions than CBN. This may be due to the fact that there is more research done on CBD due to the omission of THC. 

CBN does have some elements that are stronger than CBD. For example, many customers ask us, “Which is better for sleep CBD or CBN?”. CBN is likely going to provide you with a deeper sleep than CBN as it is more known for a heavy sedation. This may be due to it’s roots sprouting from having an aged THC compound. 

Can CBN Fail a Drug Test?

Since CBN is derived from aged THC, it is possible that you may receive a false positive on a drug test. 

Is CBN Illegal?

CBN remains illegal under federal law due to it’s psychoactive effects.

The moral of the story – don’t toss out your aging cannabis. CBN has alot of benefits and for some smokers are the prefered chemical to smoke. Next time you notice your plants have started to age, remember the new life they have created just for you.


Interested in learning more about CBD? Check out our other articles:

What are the Benefits & Effects of Smoking CBD?

CBD For Pets – Everything You Need To Know

Using CBD To Achieve Balance and Wellness

CBD Dosage: How Much CBD Is The Right Amount?

If you are in LA and would like to purchase marijuana flower, CBD, edibles, or vapes and concentrates for delivery, register with Kushfly here. Check out our DEALS! And ask us how you can get FREE delivery!

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