CBD has seemingly come out of nowhere to become the buzz word for the health and wellness industry, athletes and politicians alike.
There are a lot of articles making broad statements as to how CBD can be used to treat and manage an array of illnesses and diseases such as cancer. Whilst some have an air of truth, a lot of it is in fact marketing, but research is uncovering new biological responses to cannabis on a daily basis.
The Endocannabinoid System
The endocannabinoid system is the driving force behind how our body interacts with cannabis, without this system cannabis would have no impact on us, but what is the endocannabinoid system?
The ECS is made up of three key components, cannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids and enzymes that are responsible for the synthesis and degradation of the endocannabinoids. It is these three components that work together to create the ECS. The most prevalent cannabinoid receptors are the CB1 receptors which are located in and around our central nervous system, with CB2 receptors being on top of the cells in areas such as our immune system.
It is these receptors that bind with certain compounds found within cannabis and create an array of interactions and health benefits that we are only beginning to understand. The endocannabinoid system is a very complex one, but it is one that works alongside our systems such as the endocrine, respiratory and central nervous system. Scientists are constantly expanding on their knowledge and understanding of the ECS, therefore more interactions and potential benefits of taking CBD are coming to light regularly.
Homeostasis is balance or equilibrium and it is something that our body is continually searching for. A good example of this is our immune system, our body needs to maintain it in a state of balance or it may become over active and start attacking perfectly healthy cells, or it may become under active and lose its ability to properly protect our bodies from foreign cells which could cause disease.
Why Can CBD Help?
When we are referring to CBD in this post, we are referring to a full spectrum product, this is one that hasn’t been distilled to only provide one key component, as the evidence is suggestive of the fact that all 421 compounds work together (the entourage effect) to provide the best results.
When it comes to using CBD to manage chronic pain, or for our immune systems, research has shown that CBD products can help promote homeostasis, this is due to its ability to both works upstream and downstream. CBD doesn’t stop certain actions being undertaken in our systems in favour of promoting another action.
So, if you have an over active immune system, CBD won’t block the actions being taken, rather it will help to restore its balance through the signalling pathways it is thought to create. CBD, when it works with our endocannabinoid system promotes balance and equilibrium. This isn’t to suggest that you should take CBD in favour of treatment that you have been given by a medical professional, but it is one condition that CBD may be able to help manage.
The ECS system is a very complex and intricate one, the manner in which CBD interacts with it is only starting to be understood, with new research and knowledge being garnered on a daily basis.
Early evidence is suggestive of the fact that full spectrum CBD products can help to promote homeostasis within such systems such as our immune systems, however it should not be taken in favour of any treatment assigned by medical professionals.