Until the late 1980s, no one even knew what the Endocannabinoid system was. Raphael Mechoulam was the first to study and find many things we now know about cannabis. He discovered the endocannabinoid system with a pig brain, while studying THC. He found that mammals and humans have an entire system in our body, and the function is to balance our body. We have two different receptors working within our body, CB1 and CB2 on this ECS. (To Date 6/2021)
CB1 and CB2
These receptors are found throughout the entire body: brain, lungs, digestive system, organs, tissue, glands and immune cells. CB1 cells are the most studied. These are throughout the brain and spinal system, then scattered through your body in different systems and organs. CB2 receptors are mostly in the immune system, and fights inflammation through out your body.
Cannabinoids like THC and CBD attach to these receptors. The goal is to bring your body to balance – Homeostasis. CBD can not attach to CB1 receptor without the presence of THC. Our bodies produce their own Endocannabinoids.
Anandamide and 2-AG are endocannabinoids, which means they are within our body. Both of these cannabinoids were discovered in the 90s by Raphael Mechoulam. Anandamide also known as the bliss or joy molecule. It is a mood enhancer that works on your ECS similar how THC works on your ECS. Anandamide can be broken down easily and doesn’t last in your body for very long.
A little later in the 90’s Raphael Mechoulam found another endocannabinoid in our body. 2-AG (2-ArachidonoylGlycerol) is highly present in our central nervous system.
According to the dictionary, enzymes are “substances produced by a living organism which acts as a catalyst to bring about a specific biochemical reaction.” We have one for each of our endocannabinoids; FAAH breaks down the bliss molecule, anandamide and MAGL breaks down 2-ag after they are used.
We need a lot more research on our Endocannabinoid system and all of its functions. However, we are progressing at a decent speed in other countries. Eventually, America will be able to freely study cannabis as a whole and learn more about what it does on our ECS.
A group of Italian researchers discovered two new cannabinoids in cannabis earlier this month. It is unknown how many cannabinoids are actually in cannabis. Research is slow going in the US because of federal laws restricting cannabis. CBDP and THCP are the newly discovered cannabinoids.
THCP is found to be much more potent than THC. What is the difference between them? According to Leafly, the molecule structure is made up of links, and THC has five links and THCP has eight links. This is the first of the cannabinoids discovered that has more than five links in it’s structure. The links bind with CB receptors in our body. Research shows that THCP is 33 times more active on CB1 receptor and up to 10 times more active on CB2 receptor.
CBDP, similar to THCP, has a longer molecule structure with seven links. CBD only has five links. This cannabinoid is also assumed to be more potent than CBD. As research continues on these cannabinoids, science will reveal how they will effect our body.
The entire world assumed the psychotropic effects of cannabis came from THC, however, now it could be THCP or even another cannabinoid that hasn’t been found. The therapeutic benefits for these newly discovered cannabinoids aren’t recorded, and it might be a while before we know exactly how they effect us. We really are only breaking the surface with cannabis. This time next year we could see our entire view on cannabinoids change again.
Your endocannabinoid system (ECS) is throughout your entire body interacting with organs, other systems, and your brain. This system is new to our medical field and isn’t being taught in medical school, as of today. The more we discover about our bodies and this system the more we will learn about cannabis and it’s components. As it stands right now, research on cannabis is slow moving. However, it is MOVING! We have progress in our government and progress in our states. We know that phytocannabinoids from cannabis feed our ECS system. Do other things interact with it too? YES!
Essential Fatty Acids
Essential fatty acids in foods will interact with our ECS. Hemp seed oil is high in Omega 3 and 6. Eggs that are pasture fed and omega riched. Of course, fish would also be a food that would be good for our ECS. Walnuts are also a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Essential fatty acids are known for anti-inflammatory properties.
Dark chocolate can also interact with your ECS. So yes, grab that dark chocolate bar when you are in a not so good mood just may make it a little better and balanced. We know the entire point is homeostasis and maintaining balance throughout your body.
Herbs and Tea
According to leafly, herbs and tea can also interact with your ECS. Echinacea, Camelia sinensis (tea), and Turmeric all stimulate your ECS receptors throughout your body. Herbs and tea not just effect your ECS but other systems including your immune system.
Organic Food and Avoiding Plastics
Organically grown food and not using plastic can also feed your ECS. Pesticides can disrupt your ECS and cause major damage to your body. In addition, Phthalates an acid used to make plastics. It can disrupt not only your ECS but your hormonal system. Defintinaly avoid heating your food in plastic. *Side note* Where is the cannabis packaging?
Alcohol has a negative effect on the ECS. As we already know, alcohol impairs out everything when highly intoxicated. When using alcohol be advised to use in moderation to avoid being heavily impaired.
Have you ever gone to a state park and screamed? My mother and I used to go for a drive to a park and find a cliff and stand there and scream. This released many things in my body, including stress, frustration, and got my blood circulating. Meditation, yoga, and massage have similar effects, we get a since of relaxation when we do these activities. Breathing exercises and exercising in general can also help your ECS.
If you are experiencing an imbalance in your ECS your body will tell you. Feed your ECS with these things and see if your mood changes or if you feel more balanced in your body. Take time to take care of yourself. So grab you a dark chocolate bar, your favorite cannabis topical and tincture, kick back and relax, your ECS deserves it!
Cannabinoids can help bring your endcocannabinoid system to homeostasis. Personally, I have never been very good at science, so reading these studies on cannabinoids are sometimes over my head. Do you feel this way sometimes? I’m not a doctor nor am I a scientist, I’m mainly doing research and networking with educators on my own. Just a refresher, our endocannabinoid system(ECS) is located inside our bodies. The active compounds, known as phytocannaionds, that are found in cannabis interact with our receptors in our brain and body. CBD and THC are the top cannabinoids produced in cannabis. You can check out a previous blog about cannabinoids, which will break down 8 of over 100 in cannabis. Check out this two and half minute video I found very informative.
I want to note I am not pro-synthetic anything. I believe it needs to stay in it’s natural form. In my opinion, synthesizing cannabinoids would be a money grab by pharmaceutical companies. In other words, you cannot patent a plant.
As prohibition changes, education and research become a major priority. We were lead to believe this plant was bad and it could lead us further into addiction, politics and money of course. Did you know cigarettes are addicting? Alcohol? The opioids our MEDICAL doctors are prescribing? The finding of the endocannabinoid system is so recent, they aren’t even teaching it in medical school. This with time will change, of course. As we progress into the new cannabis future, education will trump stigma and change minds on how we can medicate with this plant again, rather than look down upon it.
Terminology in the cannabis industry is a completely another language. Everything is so new, and just beginning, things change every second in this space. I’m going to be updating this as we go along in this industry. You can refer to this list when you are educating yourself on cannabis.
Broad Spectrum – products that contain few cannabinoids and terpenes. These products typically do not contain any THC, or it is not detected on lab results.
Cannabis– a species of a flowering plant. AKA: Hemp, industrial hemp, marijuana, Mary Jane, pot, weed
Cannabinoid– active compounds found in cannabis. Cannabinoids can work with the endocannabinoid system in our bodies.
Cannabidoil (CBD) – A major active phytocannabinoid found in cannabis. This phytocannabinoid doesn’t leave you feeling “high”.
Dab/dabbing – A method of ingesting cannabis concentrate, by placing concentrate on a preheated surface which turns the cannabis to vapor to be inhaled.
Edible – Food or candy that is infused with cannabis.
Endocannabinoid System– A biological system within our bodies that can communicate between the brain and body to tell you how you feel, move, and react. Cannabinoid receptors are all throughout your body; in the brain, connective tissues, organs, glands, and immune cells. The goal with our Endocannabinoid system is always the same, Homeostasis.
Entourage Effect – when all parts of the plants work together – terpenes, cannabinoids, trichomes, and natural oils.
Ethanol extraction – A method to extract plant materials such has cannabinoids, terpenes, and natural oils in the plant for products. Ethanol extraction can be done warm or cold. This can be more dangerous than other extractions. The reason it is more dangerous is because you are heating a chemical solvent. Proper equipment and knowledge for this type of extraction.
Full Spectrum – Products that contain all cannabinoids, terpenes, and naturally occurring oils.
Hemp Seed Oil – made from hemp seeds. This oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and found in cooking oils, lotions, and soaps. Hemp oil doesn’t contain any active phytocannabinoids.
Hemp Extract oil – is extracted from the flowers of the plant. This oil has active phytocannabinoids like CBD, THC, CBN, and CBG just to name a few. Research has just begun on what exactly phytocannabinoids can do for our body.
Homeostasis – balance or maintaining a internal stability. An example of homeostasis is our body temperature always stays at 98.6.
Hybrid – A plant that is bred to have certain characteristics.
Indica – A strain of cannabis that grows shorter in structure and has broader leaves. This strain of cannabis is usually found in the marijuana family. It is known for it’s sedative effects.
Isolate – Products that contain only one cannabinoid. For example CBD Isolate.
Lipid – a substance that is insoluble in water and soluble in alcohol, ether, and chloroform. Another word for fat.
Lipophilic– Able to dissolve, be dissolved in, or absorb lipids (cancer.gov)
Marijuana – Strain of cannabis with higher than .3% THC levels.
Phyto-Cannabinoid – Active compounds found in cannabis plants ie: CBD, THC, CBN, CBA
Sativa – a strain of cannabis that grows tall with narrow leaves and long stems. This strain is mainly found in the hemp family of cannabis. Sativa’s tend to have an uplifting effects.
Seed to sale – Company that plants, grows, extracts, manufactures, and sells.
Strain – A particular variety of the cannabis plant that has
Superficial CO2 Extraction – A method to extract plant materials such has cannabinoids, terpenes, and natural oils in the plant with a solvent. Known to be a cleaner and safer method of extract.
Synthetic Cannabis – Manmade chemicals that are designed to resemble cannabis also known as Spice, K2.
Terpene – The fragrance or odor of a flower.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (or delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) (THC) – a major active phytocannabinoid found in cannabis. This phytocannabinoid leaves you feeling “high”, and it will intoxicate the brain.
Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA): an active phytocannabinoid that becomes THC after it is heated THC.
Tincture – a method to ingest cannabis. This method is usually mixed with a carrier oil. You place the tincture under your tongue for as long as you can stand it, then swallow.
Topical – a method to apply cannabis. Topicals are usually in lotion or oil form and you apply to your body. Topicals typically do not reach your blood stream, they just break through the first few layers of your skin.
Trichome – hair-like growth on a plants epidermal cell. The crystals on the cannabis flower that cover the leaves and buds.
Vaping – to inhale vapor from an electric battery.
We will update this as needed. Reach out if you have any questions, comments, or concerns. Emeraldcannabliss@gmail.com.