Can You Use CBG for Fitness? CBG for Exercise Recovery

by PP Health Admin / Aug 21, 2021

Let's face it, we all have a desire to be as healthy as we can be, as this is not only vital for our physical wellbeing, but our mental health as well. There are many healthy life choices that you can make, such as eating a balanced diet, drinking enough water, and spending time with friends and family, to name just a few. Taking up a fitness routine is also a great way to enhance your healthy lifestyle. This change needn't be anything major; it could be simply taking a half-hour walk each day. If you're feeling more ambitious, you may enjoy weightlifting or bodybuilding. Taking the time out to allow your body to recover is vital, and this is the focus of our article – CBG for recovery! So, make sure that you keep reading to uncover how the CBG cannabinoid could help level up your exercise recovery routine.

What is CBG?

Let's begin by tackling the frequently asked question, 'what is CBG'? Cannabigerol, more commonly referred to as CBG, is one of the cannabinoids that resides in the cannabis plant. Interestingly, CBG is often classed as the 'mother' of all of the other cannabinoids. This is because the other cannabinoids in hemp plants can be created from cannabigerolic acid (CBGA), an acidic form of CBG. It's highly likely that you have heard of the extremely popular CBD cannabinoid. Much like CBD, CBG is a non-psychotropic cannabinoid which means that it won't alter the user's mental state if consumed. This distinction is in direct contrast to the tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) cannabinoid. However, for products to be legally sold in most countries (including the UK), there can only be trace amounts of THC (0.2% or less). CBG is extracted directly from the hemp plant and then diluted with a natural carrier oil.

How CBG Works

To understand the possible impact of CBG, it helps to know how CBD might potentially work in the human body. Put simply, our bodies naturally contain two different types of cannabinoid receptors. These are CB1 and CB2 receptors. The latter are found in the immune system cells and across other body areas, while CB1 receptors are present in the brain and central nervous system. Unlike CBD, CBG may directly bind to both of these receptors and potentially influence the neurotransmitter anandamide. This neurotransmitter plays a fundamental role in many functions, such as sleep, appetite, and managing pain.

How Do You Take CBG?

A bottle of CBG oil decorated with hemp leaves against a yellow background

High-quality and pure CBG oil products are actually pretty rare and hard to come by - making it all the more meaningful when you find the right one. This scarcity can make the process of searching for a premium CBG oil seem like a lot of effort. However, the truth is it doesn't have to be, particularly if you consider switching to full-spectrum CBD oil. This way, you will be able to explore the potential benefits of the CBG cannabinoid and the other cannabinoids in the plant. This is in addition to the terpenes, flavonoids, antioxidants, and vitamins that naturally occur in hemp. Take us here at PP Health, for example. We specialise in full-spectrum hemp, and we're proud of it! After all, this is the most holistic way to appreciate the botanical resources that nature has to offer. When hemp remains in its balanced and natural form, the phytochemicals may stand the best chance of impressing you.

We offer three full-spectrum oils: Classic CBD Oil, Gold Mild CBD Oil, and Superb Boost CBD. Putting the focus onto our Gold Mild CBD Oil, you will notice that it contains the cannabinoids CBG, CBD, CBDA, CBC, CBN, and CBV, in addition to flavonoids, terpenes, and phenols that naturally occur in the plant. Our oil is also rich in essential fatty acids such as omega-6 and omega-3, and the vitamins E and B. This makes it a fantastic supplement for these essential fatty acids and vitamins alone! Our plants are organically grown in Switzerland in greenhouses. This approach was a carefully considered decision, as the space can be manipulated into the optimal environment to grow and cultivate the plants. What's more, this prevents any chemicals or pesticides from blowing over into the plants from nearby farms. Of course, the products will be lab tested and certified to ensure that they are safe and that there are no unwanted ingredients present.

The CO2 extraction process is essential to preserving all of the natural compounds in the hemp plant. This is because no solvents or heats are used during the extraction. In fact, CO2 is altered to allow it to perform like a liquid. This liquid can then be used to make the extraction from the plant. This process means that the compounds don't have heat applied to them, meaning that the heat-sensitive enzymes and vitamins remain in their full, natural form. We recommend beginning with a low oil dose, especially if you're new to cannabinoid products. This way, you can gradually increase the dose should you feel the need to.

The other benefit to consuming your CBG through a full-spectrum CBD product is something known as the 'entourage effect'. This theory was first proposed in 1999, and it refers to how the compounds from hemp may possibly work in conjunction with one another. This purported synergy can not be achieved if the compounds are isolated or removed. One review, published in 2011, examined numerous studies into the cannabinoids in the hemp plant. The review suggested that when the terpenes and cannabinoids work together in synergy, it could possibly help to impact some symptoms of anxiety, inflammation, and pain.

CBG and Exercise Recovery: The Current Research

What does the current scientific literature say about CBG and exercise recovery? It's important to note here that no specific studies have been conducted on cannabigerol and exercise recovery. Additionally, CBG research remains in its infancy, despite garnering more attention during recent years. Regardless, there are particular areas of CBG research that may bring something helpful to the conversation during those all-important exercise recovery times.

CBG and Pain Symptoms

CBD may hold potential in the management of pain symptoms, particularly signs of chronic pain, but what about CBG? One study published in 2017 suggested that CBG may possibly show promise as an antioxidant agent. Furthermore, CBG may offer some more impactful possibilities for pain symptoms when compared to the THC cannabinoid. This is intriguing because, as we know, the isolated THC cannabinoid can cause intoxication when consumed in excessive quantities.

Pain is common following exercise, particularly if you have begun a new exercise routine or increased the intensity levels of your current routine. This post-workout discomfort has a name; it's known as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). It can cause pain and stiffness in your muscles and prevent you from continuing with your routine. These sensations can be incredibly frustrating and even a little debilitating. However, in addition to the usual recommendations, like rest and icing the problem areas, why not consider using the all-natural CBG to potentially influence your pain symptoms?

CBG and Signs of Inflammation

Leading on from the above, there’s also evidence that CBG may potentially impact some signs of inflammation in the body. For example, one rodent study published in 2013 examined the effects of the cannabinoid on symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The study suggested that CBG was able to impact the mice in the sample by affecting nitric oxide production in macrophages and reducing ROS formation in intestinal epithelial cells. Both of these factors can worsen digestive discomforts, and therefore this CBG study is interesting. The study indicates that CBG could perhaps be considered for clinical experimentation in human studies for IBD one day in the future. Reducing symptoms of inflammation is a vital part of the recovery process from exercise, and CBG may possibly impact your post-workout comfort levels. However, more human trials need to be performed before we can make any conclusions.

CBG and Appetite

Ensuring that you provide your body with all of the correct nutrients (in sufficient quantities) is a core part of the recovery process from exercise. After all, you need to refuel the energy that you have lost, in addition to helping your muscles grow. Appetite loss can occur for a range of reasons, such as illness, anxiety and stress (these are just the tip of the iceberg). The good news is that CBG may be able to impact some hunger-related symptoms. One rodent study that was published in 2016 examined the effects of the CBG cannabinoid on the appetite of rats. The study indicated that CBG was a relatively safe and well-tolerated substance for the rodents in the sample. The researchers also suggested that CBG consumption may have helped to increase the appetite of the rats. Allegedly, it more than doubled their regular food intake and also increased the size of their meals. Of course, human trials and studies are necessary in order to discover the possible ways that CBD may influence appetite in humans.

Can CBG Offer Some Possible Antibacterial Properties?

Bacterial infections can inhibit both your exercise routine and recovery process. Bacterial infections most commonly occur through the transmission of harmful bacteria. This can happen through contact with other people, eating or drinking contaminated products, or from the broader environment. If you work out in a gym, there will be many different types of bacteria that can potentially be transferred from people onto the equipment. It's always a good idea to wipe down the equipment before and after you use it.

Interestingly, one study published in 2008 suggested that CBG may potentially help to inhibit some types of bacterial growth. This possibility may be particularly relevant when it comes to methicillin-resistant strains of bacteria. Similarly, another study published in 2020 contemplated the potential ‘antibacterial’ properties of CBG.

CBG and Bone Growth

Strong bones are important for your general health and wellbeing. This is even more vital for active people and athletes. People who are athletic regularly put a great deal of pressure on their bones and muscles during training. Therefore, it's a good idea for them to ensure that their skeletal system is as strong as possible. If the bones weaken or are not strong enough to cope with the intensity that you're putting your body through, this can lead to stress fractures. One review published in 2009 examined the scientific literature on the effects of cannabinoids on the body's skeletal system. Following the examination of both rodent and human studies, the researchers suggested that cannabinoids may potentially impact some signs of bone weakness. 

In addition to this, one study published in 2009 indicated that there might be a potential connection between bone density and CB2 receptors in mice. It also raised the suggestion that CB2 receptors might help to maintain the health of bone metabolism. The natural activities triggered by these receptors could therefore impact some signs of bone decay related to age. Finally, research from 2015 indicated that cannabinoid receptors might possibly help to strengthen the tissues that connect fractured and broken bones, as well as help to actually trigger the formation of bones. Therefore, you may wish to supplement CBG into your recovery routine in a bid to potentially influence some of the natural processes that affect bone health.

The Future of CBG Research

It's exciting to think about the future of CBG research, as new and interesting findings could occur at any moment, particularly those related to health and exercise. It's important to remember that research is currently still in its early days when it comes to the CBG cannabinoid; therefore, more research is required to determine dosages for specific symptoms and preferences.

Other Tips for Successful Exercise Recovery

Here are five of our top tips to try alongside supplementing CBG into your recovery routine. After all, it’s not going to do all of the heavy-lifting for you!

1. Re-hydrate

Hydrating after any form of exercise is a good idea, and it's especially important if you have been breaking a sweat. You need to replenish the fluid levels that you have lost during exercise. This will not only help you to build your strength and flexibility levels, but it may also help to prevent sore muscles the next day. Water is the best option, but you can also drink sports drinks (with electrolytes), milk, or even a cup of tea if this is preferable.

It’s best to avoid alcohol, high sugar, or caffeinated drinks as these can dehydrate you.

2. Cool Down and Stretch

It's great to get into the habit of cooling down and stretching following your workout. This is especially important to do if you have engaged in intense weightlifting or cardio, as it will allow your heart rate to return to normal. This can also allow you to recover from the short-term symptoms that exercise can trigger - such as the dizziness that can occur when your blood pools in your lower extremities. This ritual could be a yoga style routine, a low impact cardio cool down, or simply doing what feels good for your body. Taking the initiative in these ways will help lessen feelings of stress and prevent injuries and soreness.

3. Consider Active Rest Days

A happy couple in summer clothes hiking through the forest

Rest days are important, as it's not necessary to exercise every single day. However, you may want to consider active recovery. This means that you will engage in light forms of exercise, such as a beginners yoga session or a Pilates routine. You could even head outside for a brief walk or swim. This can help to influence your circulation and prevent a build-up of lactic acid, which may cause your muscles to hurt and seize up. If you can, it's also a good idea to vary your workouts. This not only keeps you from getting bored or complacent, but also allows you to engage more of your muscle groups.

4. Eat Regularly

Making sure that you eat regular meals will help with your exercise recovery and building muscle. Skipping meals can lead to muscle loss and unhealthy weight loss (or even overeating later in the day due to hunger pangs). Consider eating foods from all food groups (allergy and personal preferences permitting), with a particular focus on protein,  fruits and vegetables. Eating a snack soon after working out can also be a good idea, as the calories will help replenish your energy levels. This habit can kick-start the recovery process for your body. Some basic ideas include tuna, eggs, a banana, smoothies, and oatmeal.

5. Try a Cooling Shower or Bath

Finally, consider a cool shower following your workout. Of course, it should go without saying that you should wash after a workout (it’s just basic hygiene!). However, cold showers have some potential recovery benefits. The cool temperatures can help to appease some signs of inflammation and tension in the muscles. If you’re feeling a little braver, then you could take things one step further and attempt an ice bath.

Final Thoughts

And that concludes our guide to experimenting with CBG for exercise recovery! The CBG cannabinoid might just hold untapped potential when it comes to helping you to recover properly. These possibilities become even more relevant in the case of full-spectrum CBD oil, as this formulation may be an opportunity for hemp compounds to work together in natural synergy. It is recommended that you begin with a low dose of the oil no matter what you choose, whether full-spectrum CBD oil or CBG in its isolated form. This way, you can discover what dose might suit your exercise recovery routine. And remember to make good use of our other exercise recovery tips to help level up your self-care game!