How does the endocannabinoid system act in our body when it interacts with CBD and what benefits does it provide?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is considered the master regulatory system of the body. It helps maintain homeostasis, i.e. balance in our body, by communicating with other biological systems and helping other body systems stay healthy. When we experience internal or external stressors, they disrupt the body’s function, and the ECS is activated to bring the body back to normal.
The key factor for the ECS is cannabinoids, such as CBD, which promote balance and overall well-being by moderating communication between the cells in our body. There are two types of cannabinoids: endocannabinoids, which our body creates naturally, and phytocannabinoids, which are derived from cannabis and hemp. Phytocannabinoids such as CBD work naturally with the endocannabinoid system of our organs and other natural body systems to help regulate a variety of processes such as appetite, sleep, inflammation, skin health and immunity. Endocannabinoids and their receptors are found throughout the body: in the brain, gut, skin, connective tissues, glands and immune system cells.
“All mammals have an endocannabinoid system, which is the master regulatory system of the body, whether they consume cannabis or not,” explains Carlos Vera. “Cannabinoid receptors are basically present throughout the body… the brain, the gut, the nervous system. The sole function of the endocannabinoid system is to promote homeostasis or balance. Cannabinoids complement our own endocannabinoid production and allow the body to perform its function more efficiently.
What is the Endocannabinoid System?
The ECS is like the conductor of our body, making sure that all systems work together harmoniously. It is made up of three main components:
- Endocannabinoids: these are compounds that our own body produces naturally. Two of the best known endocannabinoids are anandamide and 2-arachidonoglycerol (2-AG). They act as chemical messengers, transmitting signals between cells to regulate a wide variety of functions.
- Cannabinoid receptors: these are found throughout the body, in organs, tissues, immune system cells and the brain. The two main types of receptors are CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are mainly found in the brain and central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are distributed throughout the body, especially in the cells of the immune system.
- Enzymes: these are responsible for breaking down the cannabinoids once they have fulfilled their function, helping to maintain homeostasis.
CBD and its Interaction with the ECS
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a phytocannabinoid compound found in cannabis and hemp. CBD plays a key role in the regulation of the ECS. It acts in several ways to promote balance and well-being in our body:
- Modulación de la actividad de los receptores: el CBD puede influir en la actividad de los receptores CB1 y CB2, ayudando a regular las funciones corporales controladas por el ECS.
- Enzyme inhibition: CBD can slow down the action of enzymes that break down endocannabinoids, allowing them to stay in the system longer and exert their beneficial effects.
The Benefits of CBD
The interaction of CBD with ECS can have a profound impact on our health and well-being:
- Pain relief: CBD can help reduce pain by interacting with receptors in the central and peripheral nervous system.
- Stress and anxiety reduction: By modulating the activity of the ECS, CBD can provide remarkable relief for those suffering from stress and anxiety.
- Improved sleep: the balance CBD promotes in the ECS can have a positive effect on sleep quality.
- Mental health support: CBD has been shown to have positive effects on disorders such as depression and some types of anxiety.
- Anti-inflammatory benefits: CBD can help reduce inflammation in the body, which can be beneficial in a variety of medical conditions.
In my humble opinion, the Endocannabinoid System is a biological masterpiece, and CBD is a promising molecule to keep it in “shape”. As we move forward in science and research, we are getting closer and closer to fully unlocking the secrets of this intricate relationship and making the most of its benefits.
Carlos Vera, Molecular Biologist and Founder of Bovē Health – bovehealth.com