Learn what cannabinoid receptors are, why we have them, and why you should care
Consuming cannabis products can have a variety of effects, both mental and physical. But have you ever wondered what causes those changes? Did you know that we all have an internal system, filled with receptors, that regulates these reactions?
It’s important to understand how your endocannabinoid system (ECS) works as a whole to understand what cannabinoid receptors do. Then, we’ll take a look at why all of this matters.
Your endocannabinoid system
We all have an endocannabinoid system that is made up of internally created cannabinoids (endocannabinoids), cannabinoid receptors, and enzymes. Essentially, the endocannabinoids that are produced a bond with the receptors, and the enzymes break them down. Cannabinoids are also present in cannabis products, like cannabidiol (CBD), cannabigerol (CBG), and cannabinol (CBN) to name a few.
The ECS is a biochemical communication system that aims to balance out what’s happening within your body, ensuring that everything is working the way it should. Should something be off balance, the ECS will try to regulate the problem by sending messages to receptors that moderate a variety of bodily functions.
Despite the name – endocannabinoid system – this system doesn’t have anything to do with cannabis. However, cannabis does interact with your cannabinoid receptors, even though cannabis is obviously not why they exist within your body.
How cannabinoid receptors work
There are two main types of cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2. These are called G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), because they couple with G proteins and they mediate the different effects of cannabinoids and endocannabinoids, including psychoactive reactions.
These receptors play an important part in your ECS by receiving endocannabinoids and messages that your brain sends out. CB1 receptors are located within your brain, nervous system, lungs, heart, and digestive system, and THC from cannabis will bind primarily to CB1 receptors. That’s why THC can help with things like stomach problems or depression.
CB2 receptors, on the other hand, are located within your immune system, in the spleen, and in your gastrointestinal system. These receptors are activated to regulate things like hunger or inflammation.
Benefits CBD and cannabis products can provide
When you consume cannabinoids from cannabis products, these compounds seek out receptors in your body they can bond with. Once that happens, your ECS starts sending out messages throughout your body, governing how you feel, and regulating how other systems function within your body, like your nervous system or immune system.
We all have different balances and numbers of receptors throughout our bodies, which is why cannabis may affect some people differently than others.
But this is also why cannabis products can actually help people manage a variety of symptoms – those additional cannabinoids can balance the density of cannabinoids that are needed for proper regulation. So, when you ingest cannabis products like CBD, the cannabinoids in your ECS are really just being supplemented.
A study published in the FEBS Journal showed that controlling and balancing the activity of the ECS can provide many therapeutic benefits in many diseases and conditions that impact humans, including obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular and liver disease, skin issues, pain, psychiatric disorders, cancer, and many more.
Because the ECS has more receptors for CBD than any other receptor within the body, CBD is especially effective in obtaining a balanced ECS. This cannabis-derived compound was found to provide therapeutic benefits related to social anxiety disorder, insomnia, and epilepsy in the aforementioned study.
So why should you care?
If you’re not already fascinated by this complex system that is always working within your body, here’s more about why you should care.
The ECS and its moderating receptors monitor and regulate things like:
- reproductive systems
- appetite and digestive systems
- motor function
- how you feel pain or pleasure
Did you know that you had an internal system keeping tabs on these basics of your day-to-day ability to function?
If your ECS isn’t regulating properly, your body won’t be properly balanced, and problems related to these conditions will arise. Issues with appetite, mood, or sleep problems can occur if your ECS isn’t able to stabilize your body.
Hopefully, this information about how cannabinoid receptors work has helped you to better understand why consuming CBD and related compounds impact your body and your experiences.
Remember that cannabinoids aren’t cures for diseases, but they do help alleviate symptoms and side effects of many different conditions, including anxiety and depression, PTSD, epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, and more. Cannabis products have been known to help with recovery from these ailments, and researchers are still studying everything they can do.
If you’d like to learn about the latest cannabis industry updates, please visit our website. Earth Science Tech keeps up with the latest innovations in biotechnology and operates in the fields of nutraceutical, pharmaceutical, medical device, research, and development. Earth Science Tech offers quality high-grade full spectrum cannabinoid oil products. Other cannabinoids present in our products include cannabidiol acid (CBDa), cannabidivarin (CBDV), cannabinol (CBN), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabichromene (CBC), and cannabigerol acid (CBGa).