Jayson from Phoenix asks, "I've heard some really amazing things about what Hemp CBD can do for me... but how exactly does it work with our body?"
Such a great question, Jayson! In this rapidly growing market, Hemp CBD has been infused into just about everything, from pizza to lip gloss. So let's find out how this ancient ingredient can benefit our bodies.
The Quick Version:
Our bodies naturally produce Cannabinoids that fit into a network of internal receptors creating what is known as the Endocannabinoid System (or ECS). This system manages our most vital functions, ensuring stability, connectivity and healing, affecting everything from sleep, pain, inflammation, mood, digestion and more. For example, if a person is overheated, then the ECS plays a vital role in instructing sweat glands to begin producing sweat. Similarly, it tells the stomach to “growl” to indicate hunger when the body is low on energy. These Cannabinoids may need support or a little boost sometimes, which is where Hemp CBD comes in– it is uniquely capable of supporting this extraordinary system! Pretty amazing, right?!
The Full Version:
Discovered in the late 1990s, scientists are only just beginning to truly understand something called the "Endocannabinoid System", or ECS for short. It plays an extraordinary and unique role in maintaining homeostasis, or balance, in the body, affecting everything from sleep, mood, digestion, inflammation, pain and more.
What is the ECS?
The ECS is the largest biological system of receptors in the body, found in the brain, immune cells, organs, glands and connective tissues. When something brings a cell out of balance (whether it’s from temperature changes, stress, inflammation, etc.), the ECS is often called upon to step in and restore balance. As a result, our bodies are constantly producing endocannabinoids to respond to these triggers and restore internal balance.
What is the ECS made up of?
The ECS is made of (1) Endocannabinoids (“endo” means “originating within the body”) that activate cannabinoid receptors, (2) Cannabinoid receptors that react to the effects of the cannabinoids and (3) Enzymes that help the body monitor and recycle endocannabinoids once they’re used and no longer needed.
What are the two main receptors within the ECS and what is their role?
- CB1 Receptors: primarily found in the central and peripheral nervous system and brain; regulate appetite and memory, and reduce pain
- CB2 Receptors: primarily associated with the immune system and found throughout the body (including the gut, spleen, liver, heart, kidneys, bones, blood vessels, lymph cells, endocrine glands and reproductive organs); manage inflammation, immune health and more
Where does CBD come in?
Phytocannabionids (“phyto” means “plant”) are naturally occurring cannabinoids found in the hemp and marijuana plants. There are more than 100 phytocannabinoids found in the hemp plant, of which CBD is one, and are almost identical in structure to the endocannabinoids produced by the body. Unlike its psychoactive cousin, THC, CBD does not directly bind to or fit into the CB1 and CB2 receptors. Instead, scientists believe CBD may play a vital role in (1) supporting and enhancing the body’s natural levels of endocannabinoids, (2) stimulating the receptors without binding to them, causing changes in the cells that contain them and (3) binding to other receptors responsible for regulating body temperature, pain and inflammation.
Here is a quick diagram showing where these little receptors are located throughout our bodies:
Curious to learn more? We're always updating our blog with the latest research and scientific studies regarding Hemp CBD's impact on our health and wellbeing, so be sure to stop by from time to time to learn more!