What is the Endocannabinoid System?
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is involved in the regulation of many physiological functions in the body. These include mood, fertility, pain, appetite, memory and sleep.
You have to understand a cannabinoid first.
A cannabinoid is a chemical compound that binds to a cannabinoid receptor in the body. They are hydro phobic/lipid soluble so don’t mix well with water.
The cannabinoid receptor is a protein molecule that receives messages from the cell wall of the cannabinoid. There are two main receptors in the body CB1 and CB2.
CB1 receptors are mainly in the nervous system and also organs such as liver, lungs and kidneys.
CB2 receptors are associated with tissues of the immune system.
When a cannabinoid binds to a receptor site it acts as an agonist. This means it stimulates the receptor site to produce a biological tissue response.
Naturally occurring cannabinoids in our body are called endocannabinoids. Cannabinoids such as CBD from the Cannabis Sativa plant are known as Phyto cannabinoids.
The Endocannabinoid system is the collective name for the cannabinoid receptor sites in our body, receptor proteins and endocannabinoids.