Endocannabinoid System and Functions

Whether you’re knowledgeable or just learning of CBD, perhaps you’ve heard of something called the Endocannabinoid System.   Endo-canna-WHAT? The Endo-canna-bi-noid System, or ECS. The ECS controls all the other systems in your body to include the Circulatory System, Digestive System, Endocrine System, Immune System, Nervous System, and even Skeletal System.

Cannabis is a fascinating plant, but it isn’t only because of all its amazing organic properties. It’s also because it is “fuel” for our bodies. Our bodies naturally produce cannabinoids that are endogenous. Humans, or mammals, were meant to consume cannabis.

The Endocannabinoid System is made of receptors throughout the body that regulates physiological responses such as moods, hunger, sleep, movement, and more. While the ECS performs different tasks, it’s overall role is to balance our systems, or achieve homeostasis. When our bodies behave in homeostasis it allows us to have more restful sleep, it regulates our metabolism, keeps our hormone levels balanced, and assists in better digestion.

Endocannabinoid system cannabinoid receptors

The ECS is made up of two most common receptors, the CB1 and CB2 Receptors. The CB1 receptor is a G protein-coupled receptor that is activated by endogenous cannabinoids. There are two Endogenous cannabinoids the body physically generates: Anandamide, AEA and 2-arachidonoylglycerol, or 2-AG.

AEA triggers the CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the central nervous system; and CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the periphery, which involve immune system functions. 2-AG activates the CB1 receptor and the primary binder to the CB2 receptor.

The CB1 receptor is found in our heart, brain, muscles, and GI tract. One of the most crucial functions the CB1 receptor delivers is inhibiting the release of too many neurotransmitters. It can slow things down by decreasing the excitatory transmitters.

Because the CB1 is activated in the brain, it affects movement, coordination, and can reduce drug seeking behavior in addicts. Activation of the CB1 receptor has also shown to reduce pain and inflammation.

The CB2 receptor is also a G-protein coupled receptor and 2-AG is the principle activator. CB2 receptors are found in the gastrointestinal system, skin, lungs, spleen, and pancreas. There are CB2 receptors that have been found in the brain but not as prevalent as CB1.

Both CB1 and CB2 receptors are activated by endogenous cannabinoids, therefore, sending signals throughout our body that control our functions. In order for the body to reach and maintain homeostasis, our endocannabinoids need fed by cannabis. Mammals were meant to consume cannabis and have the means to heal ourselves.

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