Ever get high and wonder how and why does Cannabis work in our body? The discovery of a complex signaling system found in all mammals might be the answer cannabis users are looking for.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is a complex network of receptors, enzymes, and molecules that are present in the human body and other animals. This system plays a crucial role in regulating a wide range of physiological processes, including mood, appetite, pain, sleep, and immune system function.
The ECS consists of three main components: endocannabinoids, cannabinoid receptors, and enzymes. Endocannabinoids are naturally occurring compounds that are produced by the body, which interact with cannabinoid receptors to produce various effects. The two most well-known endocannabinoids are anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG).
Receptors are found throughout the body, with the two primary types being CB1 and CB2 receptors. CB1 receptors are primarily located in the brain and central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are primarily found in the immune system and peripheral tissues.
Enzymes are responsible for breaking down endocannabinoids once they have served their purpose, preventing them from accumulating in the body.
Cannabis contains compounds known as cannabinoids, such as THC and CBD, that interact with the ECS in a similar way to endocannabinoids. This is why cannabis can have effects on mood, appetite, pain, and other physiological processes.
Understanding the ECS is important for cannabis use because it helps us understand how cannabis affects the body and why it can have different effects on different people. By understanding the ECS, researchers can better understand how to use cannabis to treat various medical conditions, and how to minimize the potential negative effects of cannabis use. Additionally, consumers can use this knowledge to make informed decisions about which strains or products to use based on their individual needs and preferences.
To learn more about the pharmacology of cannabis check out our entourage effect post!