Endocannabinoid System in New York
Cannabis and cannabinoids have a genuine influence on the way the mind and body work.
What Is the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system is a central regulatory system that features endocannabinoid receptors throughout the body including important organs such as the brain, connective tissues, glands, and immune cells. It covers a wide range of biological processes, using these receptors throughout the brain and body to bind with cannabinoids.
While over 80 different cannabinoids (including THC) are found in cannabis, the body also produces its own cannabinoids. Cannabinoids, such as the endogenous 2-AG and anandamide, are found at various intersections of the body’s systems. This allows coordination and communication to be present between different cell types.
The endocannabinoid system has two researched cannabinoid receptors responsible for physiological processes: CB1 and CB2. CB1 is mainly expressed in the central nervous system (the brain), as well as the liver, lungs, and kidneys. CB2 is most evident in the immune system and hematopoietic cells. These are the receptors that play a role in antinociception, the relief of pain.
Cannabinoid systems are not only found in the central nervous system and immune systems, scientists have also found them throughout the inner-workings of the body including the peripheral nervous system, reproductive system, cardiovascular system, and gastrointestinal and urinary tracts.
What Does It Do?
The endocannabinoid system located in humans, other vertebrates, and even some invertebrates is considered to be a trait from natural selection that has evolved in living organisms for 500 million years. At every level of biological life, its primary goal is to promote homeostasis.
Homeostasis is the balance of the internal environment despite what is occurring in the fluctuations of the external environment. This maintenance is necessary to health and survival. In addition to internal and cellular homeostasis, the endocannabinoid system mediates learning, neurogenesis, and neuronal plasticity, which influence open-mindedness and the ability to move beyond limitations.
Homeostasis and the other key goals of the system adjust the way people live. Disease is the result of a lack of balance, therefore, a lack of homeostasis. The endocannabinoid system works as a vital target for medical applications to combat diseases.
Research has shown that a primary example of the endocannabinoid system working to achieve homeostasis is when receptors in the cells of tumors are inhibited. This action leads to the minimized and even reversed growth of tumor cells found in cancerous diseases. All that takes place is an introduction of cannabinoids to the receptors.
Because THC is an active cannabinoid, there is scientific support that medical marijuana works to defend the biological systems of the body. All cannabinoids also have antioxidant properties that promote health and prevent diseases. Research suggests that these defensive, therapeutic, and antioxidant qualities may be used as a beneficial treatment for a variety of diseases and conditions, such as the following:
Research has proven that small doses of cannabinoids from marijuana will signal the body to make more of its own endocannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors. More receptors create a natural way of increasing sensitivity and activities involving more homeostasis benefits.
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