WHAT IS THE ENDOCANNABINOID SYSTEM?
When it comes to understanding CBD oil and its many effects, it is necessary to have a basic understanding of the human endocannabinoid system (ECS). Hemp and its active compounds (known as cannabinoids or, more specifically, phytocannabinoids) have a variety of effects on the body and mind. But what gives them this power, and how does it all work? It all comes down to the ECS, in a brief. In this post, we’ll look at the endocannabinoid system and what it’s capable of. But first, it’s crucial to understand the concept of homoeostasis.
What is the endocannabinoid system?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is assumed to exist in almost every living creature on the planet. It is a vital survival system that consists of a vast network of endocannabinoids (neurotransmitters) and their receptors. Endocannabinoid receptors are found on the surface of cells and “listen” to what’s going on in the body. They transmit information about numerous bodily processes and allow modifications to be made so that the body can maintain balance and homoeostasis. CB1 and CB2 receptors have been identified as the major endocannabinoid receptors in humans. Although both types of receptors are present throughout the body, CB1 receptors tend to be more abundant in the brain and central nervous system, whilst CB2 receptors appear to be more abundant in peripheral systems.
How was the endocannabinoid system discovered?
Everyone has heard of the respiratory and cardiovascular systems, but few have heard of the endocannabinoid system. Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, an Israeli cannabis researcher, isolated and determined the molecular structure of cannabinoids in 1964. His discovery virtually single-handedly cleared the door for current study on how the active compounds in hemp affect human physiological systems.
Drs. Allyn Howlett and William Devane found the first cannabinoid receptor in the brain of a rat in 1988. In the coming years, research should progress to the point where we can create a complete understanding of hemp’s phytocannabinoids and how each one interacts with internal physiologic pathways related to homoeostasis.
What exactly is the ECS’s role in the body?
As previously stated, the ECS is critical in maintaining homoeostasis, or whole-body balance. Of course, this can include a wide range of internal activities. In fact, it appears that the ECS has an impact on practically every internal body function. ECS receptors have been discovered in practically every cell and tissue type, meaning that phytocannabinoids, such as CBD, have nearly limitless potential in terms of altering processes associated to mind-body harmony. This also explains how people might utilise hemp-based extracts (like CBD oil) to obtain a variety of therapeutic advantages for stress, anxiety, sleep, and pain treatment.
How do cannabinoids interact with the ECS?
There are over 100 cannabinoids found naturally in hemp, and each one may interact uniquely with the ECS. THC and CBD, on the other hand, are the most well-known and investigated, having piqued the public’s curiosity. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the most well-known active component in cannabis. It can interact directly with the endocannabinoid system, primarily through CB1 receptors in the brain. As a result, THC can produce psychoactive, mind-altering effects in the form of the well-known cannabis “high.” Cannabidiol (CBD) is a little bit different. Rather then directly connecting to cannabinoid receptors in the CNS, it appears to have an indirect effect. For instance, it appears to stimulate the creation of endocannabinoids in the body, which may result in improved ECS functioning and a healthier body. CBD absorbs into the bloodstream and interacts with the ECS and other receptor-independent pathways when you take CBD oil or another CBD product. If the endocannabinoid system is having difficulty maintaining homoeostasis, CBD may provide a much-needed boost to assist restore balance and wellness.
Final thoughts on the endocannabinoid system
The endocannabinoid system is a vital mechanism in the human body, although much remains unknown about it. In the coming years, research will hopefully progress to the point where we have a more thorough understanding not only of CBD’s involvement with various ECS functions, but also of other hemp-derived phytocannabinoids. The ECS has an impact on a number of physiological processes such as stress, anxiety, sleep, pain, and others. More and more people are discovering natural ways to restore mind/body wellbeing by including premium hemp CBD products into their daily routine.
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