VIDEO + FREE-EBOOK | Find out how CBD impacts the body and if it can be beneficial for you!
CBD contained in CBD oil is an abbreviation of cannabidiol, one of the many parts of the hemp or cannabis plant (cannabis sativa). Cannabidiol is, to be precise, a cannabinoid, a particular chemical compound found in the hemp plant. 120 cannabinoids have been discovered in the cannabis plant that have not been found in any other plant. The best known and most researched cannabinoid is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a psychoactive substance that makes you ‘high’.
Cannabidiol is the main non-psychoactive substance of the cannabis plant. Like all cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, it occurs as an acid in the plant. Scientists have long suspected a healing effect of CBD and other non-psychoactive cannabinoids, and more and more research is being conducted into it nowadays. Many studies already confirm a healing effect of CBD and it is believed that its potential is enormous.
What is CBD oil?
After the extraction of CBD from the cannabis plant, an oily substance remains that contains different cannabinoids in different proportions. This depends on the extraction method, the type of hemp plant and where it comes from. If one takes the whole plant (flowers, leaves and stem) or just the buds (flowers), whether all the components of the plant material are taken. CBD oil is therefore an oil that mainly contains the active ingredient cannabidiol. CBD oil is available in different concentrations for different applications and in different carrier oils.
VIDEO – How CBD Oil Impacts the Body
In this episode of Dr. Oz (1.24M subscribers!), his guest Dr. Sanjay Gupta explains how the medical community is using CBD oil.
Dr. Oz is host of the Daytime Emmy Award-winning The Dr. Oz Show. He is also Vice-Chair and Professor of Surgery at Columbia University and directs the Cardiovascular Institute & Complementary Medicine Program at NY Presbyterian. After the video, we continue with a more detailed explenation on the effect and impact of CBD on our body.
So what is the effect of CBD in our body?
In order to better understand our body’s own endocannabinoid system, it is useful to know more about receptors in our body. Our body consists of millions of cells and each cell is surrounded by a cell wall or membrane. These cell walls contain receptors. Receptors are a type of protein that a specific molecule can bind to and influence. When a substance binds to the receptor on the cell wall, the cell will be stimulated and then triggered into a certain action.
The discovery of the CB1 and CB2 receptors
In 1988 it was discovered that THC binds to the CB1 receptor that occurs in the brain. CB1 in this case stands for Cannabinoid Binding receptor type 1. This receptor occurs in the central nervous system, i.e. the brain and our spinal cord. CB1 receptors are most commonly found in the part of the brain responsible for pain perception, appetite, memory, emotions, sleep, controlling coordination, movement and regulating body temperature. About 5 years later, in 1993, the CB2-receptor was discovered. This stands, of course, for Cannabinoid Binding receptor type 2. These receptors are found in the immune system and in the arms and legs. These receptors influence the functioning of the immune system and can play a role in pain and tissue damage.
Science found a new receptor in 2019 – The CB3 receptor
Now, however, scientists think they’ve pinpointed a new cannabinoid receptor, one that could crack open a new smorgasbord of healing possibilities.
The molecule in question goes by the name GPR55, but may soon be known as CB3. The molecule itself was first discovered in 1999 in various parts of the brain—the hippocampus, cerebellum, thalamus, etc. But newer research has discovered that it also hides out in more remote parts of the body, such as the spleen, gastrointestinal tract and adrenal glands.
The potential here is gigantic. It could explain why CBD oil is has such a diverse range of health benefits, many of which are proven through trials but poorly understood from a scientific perspective. If researchers could unlock the mechanism by which medical cannabis operates, it could lead us toward developing new and more effective therapies for all kinds of diseases.
But not just that. Discovering a new layer of the endocannabinoid system has enormous potential to teach us about the way that our bodies function—and fight disease.
Where are the receptors located mainly in the body?
Discovery of cannabinoids
After scientists discovered the different receptors, they were faced with a major issue. Why is a human body equipped with receptors that bind to foreign substances? Research has shown that the human body produces substances that are almost identical to cannabinoids. This is where the term endocannabinoids comes from. Endo means ‘body’s own’. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) therefore stands for our body’s own cannabinoid system.
Agonists – Antagonists
Most cells in a human body have many different receptors on their surface. A receptor has a very specific structure and only substances that fit exactly in this structure can attach themselves to it. This principle can be compared to a key that only fits in one lock. Receptors can be influenced by a certain substance in different ways. These substances are also called ‘Agonists’ and ‘Antagonists’.
An agonist binds to a receptor and activates it. A certain reaction will occur in the cell. THC, for example, binds to the CB1 receptors, causing a certain effect (feeling high). CBD cannot bind to the CB1 receptors. This could immediately explain the non-psychoactive effect of CBD.
Antagonists do not bind to a receptor, unlike an agonist. What they do is to prevent a particular receptor from being activated. Antagonists are also called ‘blockers’.
As described above, CBD can trigger CB1 and CB2 receptors. By blocking the CB1-receptor, the ‘high’ effect of THC is inhibited. This is not only this way CBD can affect the human body. There are many more different factors that can be influenced by CBD.