What is the Endocannabinoid System?
Our endocannabinoid system guide will give you insight into how our products benefit you. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a biological network within our bodies. It is fascinating because it regulates and controls almost every aspect of our existence, but was not known about until the 1990’s.
It was discovered by scientists who were researching the nature of THC. The ECS is currently the subject of international medical research for new therapeutic drug development.
Some of our body’s functions governed by the ECS include:
This system is in place within every human, regardless of whether they use cannabis or hemp. The ECS’s function is to preserve a state called homeostasis: the preservation of stable internal health regardless of external influences.
Why should I know about the Endocannabinoid System?
The ECS is of interest to any cannabis user, from CBD gummy-takers to THC-vapers. All of our customers are using cannabinoids to effect changes in their endocannabinoid systems. With basic knowledge of the ECS, one can have a better idea of what product to use to achieve their desired result. Knowing how a product works and affects your body also allows you to be more informed.
The Endocannabinoid System: A Guide to how it Works.
The ECS can be categorized into two basic components: the receptors, and the signals. There are differing types of both receptors and signals. The receptors exist in cellular tissue throughout our bodies, and initiate physiological changes when stimulated by signals. These signals can either be produced by the body itself, or introduced externally.
What is an Endocannabinoid Receptor?
Our ECS receptors can be found in cell membranes throughout the body, including our brains, organs, skin, and immune tissue. There are two known receptor types:
- CB1: Exists primarily in the brain and central nervous system. It occurs in greater quantities than other receptor types in the brain. CB1 controls the flow and activity of other neurotransmitters, affecting factors like hunger and mood.
- CB2: Exists primarily in immune tissue. Regulates immune system responses.
Sometimes CB1 and CB2 receptors occur alongside one another within the same tissue, each affecting a different aspect of that tissue’s homeostasis. Some researchers also speculate that there may be a third unknown receptor.
What is an Endocannabinoid Signal?
ECS signals are the chemical element that signals our receptors into acting. There are two types:
- Endocannabinoids: When these signals are produced by our own bodies, they are known as endocannabinoids. The prefix, endo, refers to something that is within, or contained.
- Phytocannabinoids: These are signals introduced by external plant sources, like any of our products. The prefix, phyto, means “plant.”
This covers the basics of the endocannabinoid system for our beginner’s guide. This is a subject of near-endless complexity, and we hope to go into further detail in future blog posts.