How Does CBD Work?
You’ve most likely heard about CBD by now but how does it actually work? If you haven’t heard about CBD then keep reading, you’re in the right place…
Firstly, what is CBD?
CBD is the abbreviation of cannabidiol one of the 100+ cannabinoids or chemical compounds found in cannabis and hemp. When people hear cannabis the first thing they think is “it gets you high”, “Lazy stoners” or “To hell with the devils lettuce”, this is due to the THC (Tetrehydrocannabinol) cannabinoid, CBD’s more famous cousin which produces the psychoactive. Even at HIGH doses CBD will not get you high, it’s 100% safe to go about your day to day activities after using.
Unlike most of the 100+ cannabinoids we are currently aware of, CBD one of the highest naturally occurring in cannabis making extraction quite simple.
What are Cannabinoids?
If you’ve researched CBD then you have most likely heard of the terms; cannabinoids, endocannabinoids and phytocannabinoids, but what are they?
Cannabinoids are a diverse class of chemical compounds that can be found mainly in cannabis but also in other plants in smaller quantities.
Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids which are produced within the body, “Endo” meaning “internal” or “within”. 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) and anandamide (AEA) for those who were wondering what their names are.
Phytocannabinoids refer to any cannabinoids that are naturally occurring within the family of cannabis plants. “Phyto” meaning “of a plant”.
The Endocannabinoid System
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a network of cannabinoid receptors that affect pretty much every function in our body. Believe it or not the ECS was only discovered in the early 1990’s and we still have so much to learn. It’s still rarely discussed in the news but even more disappointingly the same applies to medical schools as well.
Researchers describe it as “The supercomputer that regulates homeostasis in all mammals.” That’s right animals have an ECS as well!
There are two main receptors in the ECS: CB1 and CB2. There are others but these two were discovered first and have been studied the most. CB1 receptors are the most abundant receptors in the brain. CB2 receptors are more abundant outside of the central nervous system and in other systems like; immune system, cardiovascular system, digestive system ect. However, these receptors can also be found all over the body.
The role of the ECS is to regulate a vast array of our bodily functions such as mood, hormone production, appetite, sleep and even stress, pain and immune system responses. The ECS is constantly monitoring and adjusting these functions in an effort to keep them in homeostasis. Did you know, when a disease or stress is present the ECS increases its activity?
Homeostasis/balance is what all biological systems are trying to achieve, there’s a narrow range where they will be able to perform at maximum capability. Did you know most ailments are caused by an imbalance? Diabetes, arthritis and sleep just to name a few.
You could say that CBD helps our body stay in the “Goldilocks Zone”.
However, a depleted ECS can be caused by a number of things such as stress, pollution, poor diet and even lack of exercise. As you can imagine it’s important to have a functioning ECS to stay healthy and this is why CBD appears to be so effective for so many health conditions.
This is just a small insight into the ECS if you’d like me to go more in-depth then just let me know in the comments below!
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Until next time,