Cannabidiol (CBD) is making giant strides as a wonderful recovery aid and for a while now, it has been in the news for the many benefits it can provide.
Although it comes from the cannabis plant, using a CBD product will not give you a euphoric feeling, as it does NOT contain enough THC (some products are 0% THC); the main psychoactive compound in marijuana that gives the high sensation. CBD has proven efficacy for a lot of conditions but today, our focus will be on CBD's impact on your immune system.
First, let's dive into how CBD works.
How does CBD work?
There are over eighty different chemical cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis. These cannabinoids all produce certain effects in the body by attaching themselves to certain receptors.
Our bodies also produce cannabinoids of our own, as well as producing two receptors for cannabinoids called CB1 and CB2. These receptors are located in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is one of our body's best neurotransmitters and also the system responsible for balancing.
CB1 is mostly present in the brain but also can be found throughout the body. These receptors in the brain deal with coordination, movement, pain, emotions, mood, thinking, appetite, and memories, and more.
CB2 receptors are often found in your immune system and primarily impact pain and inflammation.
It was once thought that CBD attached directly to the CB2 receptors, but it is believed now that CBD doesn't attach to either receptor directly. Instead, CBD directs the body to use more of its own cannabinoids and impact these receptors indirectly.
How does CBD affect your immune system?
CBD has been found to work as an immunosuppressant and an immunomodulation.
Immunosuppressants are agents that can suppress or prevent the immune response. They can treat autoimmune diseases such as psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Crohn's disease. Some treatments for cancer act as immunosuppressant.
On the other hand, immunomodulators are agents used to help regulate or normalize the immune system.
Specific cells in your immune system secrete cytokines. The function of these proteins is to communicate with molecules that regulate the body's immunity, white blood cell production, and inflammation.
CBD can also suppress chemokine production.
A chemokine is a group of cytokines that act as a chemoattractant, a chemical agent that induces an organism or a cell to migrate toward it. Chemokines can lead immune cells to an infected area so that white blood cells can attack and destroy microbes that are invading the infected area.
Their anti-inflammatory property also comes to play to counter inflammation which is present in the development of autoimmune conditions.
CBD already plays a diverse role in protecting the immune system but further research is required to discover its full impact and strength.
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