“With the ‘pro-homeostatic action of the ECS’ we mean that this system of chemical signals gets temporarily activated following deviations from cellular homeostasis. When such deviations are non-physiological, the temporarily activated ECS attempts, in a space- and time-selective manner, to restore the previous physiological situation (homeostasis).” In other words, the ECS helps bring things back to the biologically optimum zone.

Dr. Vincenzo Di Marzo

Research Director, Institute of Biomolecular Chemistry in Italy

CBDs Helps Your Body Maintain & Gain Balance

HOMEOSTASIS IS THE CONCEPT THAT MOST BIOLOGICAL SYSTEMS ARE ACTIVELY REGULATED TO MAINTAIN CONDITIONS WITHIN A NARROW RANGE.

Our body doesn’t want its temperature to be too hot or too cold, blood sugar levels too high or too low, and so on. Conditions need to be just right for our cells to maintain optimum performance, and the body has mechanisms to keep those conditions in their optimum zones.

Endocannabinoid System (ECS)

The body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) is one of those vital molecular systems that helps maintain homeostasis—it helps cells stay in their optimum zone with the help of Cannabinoids or CBD’s. The three key components of the ECS are Cannabinoid (CBD) receptors found on the surface of cells, Endocannabinoids, small molecules that activate cannabinoid receptors and Metabolic enzymes that break down endocannabinoids after they are used.

CANNABINOID RECEPTORS SIT ON THE SURFACE OF CELLS AND “LISTEN” TO CONDITIONS OUTSIDE THE CELL.

They transmit information about changing conditions to the inside of the cell, kick-starting the appropriate cellular response.  There are two major cannabinoid receptors: CB1 and CB2. These aren’t the only cannabinoid receptors, but they were the first ones discovered and remain the best-studied.

CB1: Receptors in the Brain

CB1 receptors are one of the most abundant receptor types in the brain. These are the receptors that interact with THC to get people high.

CB2: Receptors in the Nervous System

CB2 receptors are more abundant outside of the nervous system, in places like the immune system. However, both receptors can be found throughout the body.

Endocannabinoids are molecules that, like the plant cannabinoid THC, bind to and activate cannabinoid receptors. However, unlike THC, endocannabinoids are produced naturally by cells in the human body (“endo” means “within,” as in within the body).

There are two major endocannabinoids: anandamide and 2-AG.

These endocannabinoids are made from fat-like molecules within cell membranes, and are synthesized on-demand. This means that they get made and used exactly when they’re needed, rather than packaged and stored for later use like many other biological molecules.

The third piece of the endocannabinoid triad:

The third piece of the endocannabinoid triad includes the metabolic enzymes that quickly destroy endocannabinoids once they are used. The two big enzymes are FAAH, which breaks down anandamide, and MAGL, which breaks down 2-AG. These enzymes ensure that endocannabinoids get used when they’re needed, but not for longer than necessary. This distinguishes endocannabinoids from many other molecular signals in the body, such as hormones or classical neurotransmitters, which can persist for many seconds or minutes, or get packaged and stored for later use.

The three key components of the ECS can be found within almost every major system of the body. When something brings a cell out of its optimum zone, these three pillars of the ECS are often called upon to bring things back, thus maintaining homeostasis. Because of its role in helping bring things back to their physiological optimum zone, the ECS is often engaged only when and where it’s needed.