You’ve heard about CBD, or cannabidiol, but do you know how it works in the body?

The human body naturally produces cannabinoids. 

Endogenous Cannabinoids are neurotransmitters produced within our bodies that bind to cannabinoid receptors in the brain and immune system, among other places. Current known examples include anandamide, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), n-arachidonoyl dopamine (NADA), and virodhamine (OAE).

Endocannabinoids perform differently than neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine.

Dopamine, for example, is synthesized in advance, stored in the vesicle, and in response to stimuli, is released from the presynaptic cell, where it crosses the synapse, lands on the postsynaptic cell, and causes activation.

CBD and Cannabinoid Receptors

Currently, medical experts agree there are two types of cannabinoid receptors; cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2). These neurons act as psuedo lock, and cannabinoids are the key. These receptors perform very different functions in the human body.

Cannabinoid Receptor Type 1 (CB1)

CB1 receptors exist in high numbers in the brain (especially the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala), central nervous system (CNS), intestines, connective tissues, gonads, and various other glands.

 

Cannabinoid Receptor Type 2 (CB2)

CB2 receptors occur most commonly in the spleen, tonsils, thymus, and immune cells such as mast cells, monocytes, macrophages, B and T cells, and microglia; only a small number exist in the brain.

Changes in CB2 receptor function is synonymous with virtually every type of human disease; be it cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, neurodegenerative, psychiatric, and autoimmune. It even plays a role in liver and kidney function, bone and skin health, cancer, and even pain-related illnesses.  

 

CBD’s Indirect Effects on the Endocannabinoid System

While THC has a strong binding affinity for both CB1 and CB2 receptors, cannabidiol (CBD) has no particular binding affinity. Instead, many of the therapeutic benefits of CBD are created through indirect actions.

These actions include activating TRPV1 Receptors. These receptors are involved in regulating pain, body temperature, and inflammation.

CBD also works to inhibit Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase (FAAH). This inhibition creates higher levels of endocannabinoids like anandamide. Anandamide, or the bliss molecule, plays a role in the neural generation of pleasure and motivation so it’s appropriate that its name is derived from “ananda,” a Sanskrit word meaning bliss. It also performs other important functions like regulating feeding behaviors and assisting with embryo implantation during the early stages of pregnancy.

Information sourced from cbdoilreview.org

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