Can CBD help with anxiety

How does CBD oil work?

How Does CBD Work?

Your body is home to a complex biological system known as the endocannabinoid system. This system was discovered in the early 1990s so it’s a relatively new area of knowledge. It comprises a variety of receptors that trigger physiological reactions, thereby inducing the various effects of cannabinoids.

The two main receptors in the endocannabinoid system are CB1 and CB2. Where THC directly affects these receptors, CBD has a subtler, more indirect approach. Instead of attaching to these receptors, CBD affects how these receptors signal the body and its chemicals. Furthermore, CBD increases the production of the body’s own cannabinoids by blocking the enzymes that can break them down.

Along with its indirect effects on endocannabinoid receptors, CBD also influences other common receptors in the brain and body. This includes the opioid receptors, which play a role in regulating the sensation of pain, and serotonin receptors, which plays an active role in regulating mood.

First off, you should know the basics of what CBD is. We cover this in our “What is CBD?” article, but as a refresher, you should know what a cannabinoid is…

 

What is a Cannabinoid?

Simply put, cannabinoids are naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis plant. There are dozens of compounds including Cannabidiol (CBD), THC, and a host of other cannabinoids. Together they are responsible for the benefits and drawbacks to medical marijuana and industrial hemp-based products.

Technically, CBD and its sister cannabinoid compounds are classified as phytocannabinoids, which means that they’re derived from plants. But there are also several other types of cannabinoids you should know about too.

For example, the cannabinoids produced within the body’s endocannabinoid system are known as endocannabinoids (such as arachidonoylethanolamine, virodhamine, and many others). There are also cannabinoids manufactured via chemical reactions in laboratories, known as synthetic cannabinoids.

As you’ll see later, each type of cannabinoid interacts with the body in different ways. So now that you understand what a cannabinoid is, how does CBD work with your body?

 

Our Cannabinoid Receptors and the Endocannabinoid System

Here’s the second half of the equation. You see, your body actually has areas that are made specifically for cannabinoids — they are called cannabinoid receptor sites.

These sites make up the endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for numerous physiological and mental processes that occur naturally within the body.

As we just stated, the endocannabinoid system includes a number of specialized cell receptors in the brain and in various other organs throughout the body.

These receptors fall into two types: CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are found mainly in the brain (but also in the liver, kidneys, and lungs), while CB2 receptors are found mainly in the immune system.

Here’s the fun part — cannabinoid substances actually bind with these receptors to coordinate various functions across the body.

 

What Kinds of Effects Can Cannabinoids Have on the Body?

There are several types of cannabinoids. Even within phytocannabinoids, there are wide ranges of compounds and effects that we are still learning about.

Some of these cannabinoids interact strongly with one or both CB receptors, causing various effects, from regulating mood and helping us concentrate, to causing euphoric effects and feeling “high” (like THC). Other cannabinoids, like CBD, have fewer direct effects on the endocannabinoid system (keep this in mind as you read the next section).

To recap: Cannabinoids represent a diverse class of chemical compounds that can be very different from each other. Their only common feature is that they all act on the body’s cannabinoid receptors, either directly or indirectly.

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