The Endocannabinoid System
In the past several years legalization of medical and non-medical marijuana and cultivation of hemp for CBD (cannabinoids) has skyrocketed. Last year the sales for legal hemp was one billion dollars. Thanks to the updated farm bill passed by congress in December of 2018, starting in January 2019, hemp can now be grown in all 50 states and it is estimated that by 2020 it will be a 20-billion-dollar industry. Raphael Mechoulam, is an Israeli chemist, who is fondly called the Father of Medical Cannabis. He was the first scientist who isolated the first two endogenous (made in the body) cannabinoids over 50 years ago. He then discovered that we had Endocannabinoid receptor sites where like a lock and key, cannabinoids attach to cells throughout the body to produce physiological responses necessary for keeping cells alive and healthy.
Over the past 50 years our understanding of the endocannabinoid system has increased dramatically. We now know that there are different types of CBD receptors located in different areas throughout the body. Simply put, the endocannabinoid system (E.C.S.) is a vast network of receptor sites, that is closely connected to many conditions of suffering. This is nicely summarized in the following two pictures.
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