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24 Sep 2021

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How Does Cannabis Work with the Endocannabinoid System?
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How Does Cannabis Work with the Endocannabinoid System?

The endocannabinoid system. It’s a term that often comes up whenever someone attempts to describe cannabis’ relationship with the body on a molecular level. While it may have an intimidating name and sound difficult to understand, the endocannabinoid system isn’t that scary once you become familiar with it. That’s why in this post, we teamed up with a Toluca Lake cannabis dispensary to demystify the endocannabinoid system and help cannabis users understand it.

Toluca Lake Cannabis Dispensary Explains How Cannabis and the Endocannabinoid System Work

Below, we talked to the experts to learn the science behind cannabis to understand the endocannabinoid system, and how they interact. We also included information on the entourage effect, a phenomenon that plays a large role in the endocannabinoid system’s processes.

What is the Endocannabinoid System

Before we learn how marijuana can affect the endocannabinoid system, we need to know exactly what it is.

The endocannabinoid system, or ECS, is a subsection of your central nervous system. Three main components make up the ECS. They include:

  • Endocannabinoids: your body creates several endocannabinoids that act as triggers to cause various outcomes. For example, anandamide, an endocannabinoid, appears to be responsible for the sensation of a “runner’s high.”
  • Receptors: receptors act as the “triggers” that endocannabinoids pull. Two types of receptors exist in the endocannabinoid system: CB1 and CB2.
  • Enzymes: last but not least, enzymes come at the end of the ECS process. After an endocannabinoid triggers a receptor, enzymes break them down into their base proteins so the body can call upon them again later.

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Essentially, the ECS acts as a signal pathway that helps your body maintain homeostasis. Homeostasis consists of all the unconscious subroutines that keep your body running. For example, heartbeat, temperature, and inflammation response all exist under the umbrella of homeostasis.

Usually, the ECS keeps these things regulated fairly well by itself. It controls inflammation in response to infections and injuries, helps regulate your sleep cycle, and more, all without ever having to pay attention to it!

Until, that is, someone decides to mix things up.

How Does Cannabis Affect the Endocannabinoid System?

Consuming cannabis can cause some interesting changes in your ECS. In simplest terms, cannabis exerts force on the ECS by impersonating endocannabinoids. Once a cannabinoid like THC or CBD reaches your bloodstream, it binds with receptors in your ECS. This “hacks” the ECS into triggering an effect, like reducing inflammation or soothing anxiety.

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The Entourage Effect

One last important facet of the ECS is a phenomenon called the entourage effect. According to research, the entourage effect arises when multiple cannabinoids try to exert forces on the ECS at once. The theory postulates that multiple cannabinoids can enhance one another’s abilities, resulting in more powerful effects or new ones entirely. The entourage effect is a fairly recent discovery in comparison to cannabinoids and the ECS itself.

Harness Your Endocannabinoid System with Help From This Toluca Lake Cannabis Dispensary

Think you understand the intricacies surrounding the ECS and want to take control of it for yourself? This Toluca Lake cannabis dispensary has everything you need to harness the power of your endocannabinoid system.

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