Cannabinoids 101: The Complete Guide To Understanding Cannabinoids

There’s been much discussion about CBD oil, and whether you take it or not, one thing is clear: it’s extremely popular in the wellness industry. So much so that it’s on track to become a billion-dollar industry in a few years. 

Even with its popularity, there’s still quite a bit that’s still being uncovered. One of these aspects is cannabinoids. 

CBD is a type of cannabinoid, but what does that mean? And how does it play a role in our bodies? 

Understanding cannabinoids is key to seeing how CBD oil works. Keep reading to find out more about this guide to cannabinoids!

What Are Cannabinoids? 

Cannabinoids are chemicals that are found within the cannabis plant. Your body makes something called endocannabinoids naturally. Cannabinoids play a part in keeping parts of the body, like sleep and mood, regulated. 

Though you may be familiar with CBD, there are actually over 80-100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. They all work together in what’s known as an entourage effect and produce great results.

CBD is one of the major cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, and so is THC, the cannabinoid that’s responsible for the psychosomatic effects. 

How Do Cannabinoids Work?

To understand why cannabinoids are important, we have to learn how they work. Here’s all you need to know about cannabinoids

Humans have a system called the endocannabinoid system or the ECS. While there’s still much to discover about the ECS, there are a few important things to note. 

The ESC is responsible for creating balance in the body, working with areas such as moods, sleep, memory, and appetite. An unbalanced endocannabinoid system often leads to diseases or other health problems, like depression or weight gain. 

Cannabinoids work with the ECS using receptors from the brain, immune system, and central nervous system. Once the cannabinoids interact with the receptors, they’re able to improve cell function. Two of the receptors known as C1 and C2 bind with the cannabinoids. 

THC interacts with C1 which is found in the brain, and C2 binds with CBD affecting all other parts of the body like the immune system. 

What Are Phytocannabinoids?

Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids that are found in plants. Amazingly, they act similar to cannabinoids found and produced by the body (called endocannabinoids) and work with the same receptors. In short, you’re ECS cannot tell the difference between cannabinoids and phytocannabinoids.

Phytocannabinoids are found in both hemp and marijuana.

Types of Cannabinoids (That We Know)

There are many cannabinoids that we know of and each responds differently within the body. 

Here are several that are found in the cannabis plant and the therapeutic properties they have. 

1. CBD

CBD stands for cannabidiol, one of the most abundant cannabinoids found in cannabis plants. It has helped many people find relief from troubles like depression, anxiety, and chronic pain due to its ability to reduce inflammation. 

CBD is derived from hemp and will not get you high compared to THC. 

2. THC

THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol, and this is the cannabinoid that’s derived from marijuana and responsible for the feeling of ‘getting high.’ However, due to medical marijuana, there are several medical effects associated with THC. 

There are varieties of strains of THC and each of them contributes differently to the body. Some people, when they slowly introduce THC into their lives, may experience relief from pain, inflammation, better sleep, and more. 

3. CBG

While CBD and THC are the major known cannabinoids, there are lesser-known cannabinoids that provide health benefits as well. 

CBG stands for cannabigerol and is similar to CBD in that it’s non-psychoactive. It’s also been the subject of study for helping treat ailments like glaucoma, inflammatory bowel disease, Huntington disease, and even some cancers. 

CBD and THC both begin as CBG and through a process using enzymes, it’s converted to CBD and THC. 

4. CBC

CBD stands for cannabichromene. It’s not as well-researched as the above cannabinoids, but there are discoveries and theories. 

CBC is more likely to bind with C2 receptors, which affect other parts of the body, as well as work better with other cannabinoids rather than on its own. 

CBC’s benefits mirror much of CBD’s in that it potentially may work to reduce pain and inflammation, halt certain types of cancers, promote a healthy brain, control acne, and help fight depression. 

5. CBN

CBN is short for cannabinol, and also very similar to CBD. It doesn’t get you high, but you’ll likely find CBN in older cannabis plants, since as the plant ages, CBD converts to CBN. 

CBN can help you sleep, increase your appetite, may be anti-bacterial, relieves pain and inflammation, and could increase bone strength. While the results seem promising, especially in the area of sleep management, CBN is not as abundant as CBD or THC. 

Unlike several of the cannabinoids mentioned above, one of the reasons that CBN is so helpful with sleeping is that it’s a moderate sedative, however, it doesn’t leave you feeling foggy.

Tips for Taking CBD Oil

Are you interested in taking CBD oil and ingesting cannabinoids to help with some medical ailments? Here are a few takeaways.

There are several ways to take CBD oil. It comes in a tincture, capsules, and even edibles. Find the most convenient option for you. 

Avoid picking up the first CBD product you find. Because of its popularity, people are selling fake CBD oil. Research to the best of your ability to find CBD that’s of high-quality. 

Start slowly and pay attention to your dosage. Begin with a small amount and gradually increase your intake from there. If you experience any unpleasant side effects, stop taking it immediately.

Cannabinoids Make the Difference

Knowing all about cannabinoids gives you a greater knowledge of how they work and why. With so many amazing medical benefits, hopefully using cannabinoids will become a highly-recommended treatment.

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