Did you know that even if you’ve never smoked or consumed cannabis in your life, your body is still filled with cannabinoids?
This is because of the Endocannabinoid System.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is the system that allows the cannabinoids present in cannabis, known as phytocannabinoids, to take effect in your body. Since your organs and cells can’t talk to each other, systems like this help keep your whole body connected and communicating.
Think of it like a chemical Morse code.
It exists to deal with the natural cannabinoids that your body makes to help it stay stable and maintain balance. Essentially, cannabinoid receptors connect the body and mind, allowing for healing and regulation.
What Are CB1 & CB2 Receptors?
So far, scientists have discovered two variations of cannabinoid receptors: CB1, located throughout brain, and CB2, primarily in the immune system and the organs. They send out signals to the brain and different cells in the presence of cannabinoids.
The ECS helps your body regulate and control a whole host of functions and also activates in the presence of pain or injury.The ECS is one of your body’s most essential biological systems, it helps keep you healthy, happy, and stable. This is why the compounds found in cannabis are so effective in treating a variety of conditions.
Why Is the ECS Important?
Now that we have a basic understanding of the Endocannabinoid System, we can begin to take a deeper look at what it actually does to us. This will also give us great insight on exactly how cannabis is able to provide its noted benefits by working on this system. In addition to regulatory functions which we discussed in the last episode, the ECS is activated in response to heavy exercise, stress, pain and injury. Endocannabinoids calm down nerve and immune cells to reduce swelling and pain when released.
Cannabinoids work in tandem with the immune system to regulate muscle function as well. This is the reason why the cannabis plant is so effective in treating aches and pains all over your body and contributes to muscle recovery and retention. The cannabis plant has also been used as a muscle spasm and seizure treatment. This helps us see that cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant do all this by simply enhancing your pre-existing bodily mechanisms for greater healing, pain management and recovery.
CBD is most effective for things like swelling and inflammation, since it mostly binds to CB2 cells. THC acts in a similar matter on your brain’s CB1 receptors, making it powerful as an analgesic in addition to helping with stress, appetite, sleep, and anxiety. The ECS is present almost everywhere in your body, regulating everything from blood sugar to fertility in women. As more research is conducted, we learn more about how essential the ECS is to overall physical and mental healing and wellness every day.