THE ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM

  • Everyone has an Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
  • The ECS is a regulatory system for the body's other important systems
  • The body produces its own cannabinoids that are quickly broken down by naturally occurring enzymes
  • Introducing external cannabinoids can help keep the ECS balanced

A big word like "Endocannabinoid" can be confusing or intimidating. However once you understand what it is and how it is helps you, a whole new world of possibility opens up. You will start to understand why and how cannabinoids are able help with things like anxiety, pain, sleeplessness, stress and other issues that may plague you.

First of all, lets cover a basic fact. Everyone has an Endocannabinoid System (or ECS). This is not something new that happens in your body when you start to use external sources (or exogenous) cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD) or tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). It is hardwired into your body and can be thought of as the body's primary regulatory system. 

To fully explain the ECS we need to cover two different sides of it. First of all, there are naturally occurring (or endogenous) cannabinoids being produced by your body for the sake of balancing physiological functions. The most abundant to be found are Anandamide and 2-AG. They are synthesized by the body when needed and then quickly broken down by enzymes. The next question to answer is, what do they actually do before they break down?

That is what brings us to the second side of the ECS. There are two types of receptors within your ECS and they have been dubbed CB1 & CB2. CB1 receptors are primarily found in the brain, but they do have a presence in the spinal cord and some organs. High amounts are found in the cerebellum and hippocampus, which helps to explain some of their pharmacodynamic functions. CB2 receptors are found in high density in immune cells and the peripheral nervous system. This is why they are believed to play an important role in the maintenance of inflammation and immune function support. 

In short, the ECS is essentially a network of both CB1 & CB2 receptors and the cannabinoids that communicate with nearly all parts of the body and mind.

So what role does CBD play? It actually plays a fairly indirect role while being immensely effective in the long run. CBD does not directly bind with CB1 or CB2 receptors. This is purely the job of the ECS and the endogenous cannabinoids that it produces. The role that CBD plays is in signaling receptors which triggers the ECS to start synthesizing endogenous cannabinoids. On top of that, CBD inhibits the enzymes that break down your naturally occurring cannabinoids, giving them more time to do their job. 

Hopefully this helped to give you a better understanding of the Endocannabinoid System! If you ever have any questions, you can can always contact us through this page or shoot us a message on Facebook or using the chat icon on this website. 

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