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What is CBN and How is It Different From CBD?

Published On:
November 5, 2021

Read time:
4 Minutes

A cannabis leaf and CBD oil capsules

Are you confused when it comes to CBN vs CBD? Are you more informed about CBD than CBN? If your answer is yes to both of these questions, you’re not alone. These similar-sounding chemical compounds are found in the cannabis plant and offer a wide variety of health benefits and effects.

In this post, we will discuss the main difference between these two to finally clear the air surrounding your CBN vs CBD thoughts. 

Before reading along, visit your local True North Cannabis Co. dispensary or browse our online store to stock up on your favourite CBD products. 


CBN vs CBD: What’s the Difference?

CBD (cannabidiol) and CBN (cannabinol) are two out of more than 100 cannabinoid compounds found in the cannabis plant. While they sound extremely similar and offer a set of the same effects, the two offer different effects individually and when combined. 

To make it easier to understand and answer the CBN vs CBD query, here is a simple breakdown of its differences. 

First, let’s identify each cannabinoid. 

What is CBD?

CBD is the popular non-psychoactive cannabinoid, which means that it cannot make you feel buzzed like THC can. Many people turn to CBD to reduce symptoms of anxiety and chronic pain, among other ailments. 

Cannabis leaves, capsules, and tincture

Early studies about CBD state that it bears a good safety profile, which led to a boom in CBD product types. When it comes to the CBN vs CBD battle, CBD is clearly more popular market-wise. In fact, the CBD industry has become one of the fastest-growing industries in history. As proof, CBD is now sold in a wide range of forms including:

What is CBN?

CBN is a compound that comes from the oxidation and decomposition of THC, the more popular psychoactive cannabinoid. When THC is heated and exposed to oxygen, it becomes CBN. Manufacturers of CBN expose THC to heat and light, thus leaving this compound behind. Because of this, there is literally no way to produce a cannabis strain that is high in CBN.

Though it is considered mildly psychoactive and slightly offers more buzz than CBD, it does not offer the same kind of high as THC. 

It wouldn’t be a surprise if this is the first time that you’re hearing or reading about CBN. The studies about this particular cannabinoid have yet to progress. However, CBN is studied to potentially alleviate insomnia as it tends to provide an overall sense of calmness, relaxation, and tranquility. On the other hand, some users reported that CBN tends to cause alertness the morning after bedtime consumption.

CBN vs CBD: Their Effects and Possible Benefits

CBN vs CBD for Increased Appetite

One huge difference when talking about CBN vs CBD and its effects is their impact on a consumers’ appetites. CBD is considered a mild appetite suppressant, while CBN can increase the appetite. 

A woman about to eat a cannabis gummy

CBN vs CBD for Better Sleep

It has been reported that CBN acts as an effective sleep aid. In one study, the participants revealed that they experienced more sedative effects when given the combination of THC and CBN compared to THC alone.

On the other hand, most people who consume CBD report that it helps them sleep. There is actually some scientific evidence stating that CBD can potentially improve sleep quality, but more research is still needed to completely or fully understand its potential. In 2019, researchers revealed that 66.7% of participants reported better sleep quality after a full month of ingesting CBD (25 to 175mg) on a daily basis. 

CBN vs CBD for Effective Pain Relief and Anti-Inflammatory Properties

While both CBN and CBD are revered for their pain relief properties, research states that CBD may reduce chronic pain as it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system. 

A 2019 study in rats revealed that CBN was able to reduce myofascial pain and that a combination of CBD and CBN is even more effective when combined, rather than individually. This same study revealed that both cannabinoids could also be effective in pain relief from fibromyalgia and temporomandibular disorders. 

Now that you’ve gotten a clear understanding of CBN vs CBD, it is still important to consult a medical professional before trying out products as a treatment method for any of the possible benefits. 

Want to Learn More About CBN? Let True North Cannabis Co. Guide You!

True North Cannabis Co. is Ontario’s largest cannabis retailer, with 20 stores – and counting – all across the province. Our goal is to make quality cannabis products accessible and affordable to everyone, including those who wish to try strains and products that are high in CBD and CBN!

Visit any of our locations, or contact us to find out more about our offerings specific to each location. Talk to our helpful budtenders and ask them regarding CBN vs CBD, and they might just have the answer you are looking for. 

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