What is the endocannabinoid system & what does CBD and THC have to do with it – Online Dispensary Canada?

You may have already heard of the terms CBD and THC before, but do you know what they actually are? What do CBD and THC stand for? Where do they come from? What makes them so special? And most importantly, why is everyone talking about it?

I mean, anyone who consumes cannabis that is. Or who is at least the tiniest bit curious. 

According to Online Dispensary Canada, CBD and THC are both cannabinoids found in cannabis. There are about 100 other cannabinoids found in cannabis too, so CBD and THC are just one of many.  What is a cannabinoid you may ask yourself? They are compounds found in the cannabis, marijuana, or weed plant. They are the active constituents in cannabis.

There are around 300 non-cannabinoid chemicals found in cannabis too, such as terpenes and flavonoids, which are also found in other fruits, plants and vegetables. 

Terpenes and flavonoids are essentially the aroma and flavour of a certain plant. Cannabis has many similarities to other plants, but ultimately it is unique how it reacts with our endocannabinoid system.

Now, what is an endocannabinoid system? Well, plants, animals, and humans have chemical compounds in our system. The endocannabinoid system is referred to for humans and animals and the phytocannabinoid system is for plants.

Insects do not have a cannabinoid system, that is why bees are able to make cannabis or weed honey without being constantly stoned. 

The endocannabinoid system exists and is active, even if you are not a cannabis user yourself. It is involved in our sleeping patterns, mood, appetite, memory, and reproduction or fertility. Endocannabinoids are molecules made by your body, similar to cannabinoids, but produced by the human or animal body. Phytocannabinoids are plant-derived cannabinoids.

Endocannabinoids produce anandamine (EAE) and 2-arachidonoylglyerol (2-AG). These keep internal functions running smoothly, such as sleeping and eating. Your body produces these endocannabinoids as needed, which can make it difficult to determine what the typical levels needed for your system to run regularly are.  

The endocannabinoid system includes 3 main components, the endocannabinoids, receptors and enzymes. 

The endocannabinoids bind to receptors, CB1 and CB2, which are found in the nervous system. CB1 is found in the central nervous system and CB2 is found in the peripheral nervous system, especially immune cells. The endocannabinoids can bind to any of these receptors.

According to Online Dispensary Canada, there is evidence to suggest that CB1 receptors target spinal nerves and CB2 receptors target immune cells.

Enzymes break down the endocannabinoids once they have carried out their functions. In case you wanted to know the names of the enzymes, it’s fatty acid amide hydrolase, which breaks down the endocannabinoid, AEA, and monoacylglycerol acid lipase breaks down 2-AG. Isn’t that cool?

It is difficult to simplify such a complicated subject, such as the endocannabinoid system. Experts have not exactly figured it all out yet, as studying cannabis was prohibited for quite some time during the war on drugs.

What Online Dispensary Canada does know is that the endocannabinoid system is linked to these processes:

  1. Appetite
  2. Digestion
  3. Chronic Pain
  4. Inflammation 
  5. Immune Responses
  6. Mood
  7. Memory
  8. Learning
  9. Motor Control
  10. Sleep Patterns
  11. Cardiovascular system function
  12. Muscle formation
  13. Bones
  14. Liver Function
  15. Stress
  16. Reproductive Health
  17. Skin and Nerve Function

These functions all contribute to the stability of your internal environment. For example, if you were to become sick, your endocannabinoid system would kick in order to regulate your body back to normalcy.

Now that you understand what a cannabinoid is and examples of cannabinoids in the world, the endocannabinoid system and how that all works, let’s dive into what CBD and THC are.

CBD and THC are cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, says Online Dispensary Canada. CBD stands for cannabidiol and THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. There is also something called delta-THC, but we will save that discussion for another time. 

CBD can be extracted from hemp or cannabis. THC is mainly extracted from cannabis as hemp does not contain a high amount of THC to yield.

The main difference between the two, which I am sure you may have already been aware of, is that CBD doesn’t contain the same psychoactive properties as the cannabinoid THC. 

Why doesn’t THC get you high? THC doesn’t have the same chemical arrangement as CBD and the body receives them as different compounds.

Now that you know a bit more about the endocannabinoid system and the effects when CBD and THC are introduced, you can make an informed decision on what cannabinoid is best for you. Find the best THC and CBD products at Online Dispensary Canada.

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Article Resources

  1. Cannabis Industry gets crafty – Weylchem
  2. Endocannabinoids System – Wikipedia 
  3. What are CBD and THC? – Webmd
  4. CBD vs THC – Healthline  
  5. What is the difference between CBD and THC? – Firstcrop
  6. What is the difference between CBD and THC? – Forbes