If you’ve ever felt stressed, burnout, or experienced persistent discomfort, you may have turned to CBD for much needed relief. Deeper research into the science of CBD will bring up a whole new side of biology you may not have known existed – with words like cannabinoids and homeostasis. Though it may seem overwhelming at first, we’re here to simplify the mechanics behind your natural endocannabinoid system and its relationship to CBD. In this blog, we’ll talk about the signs of decreased endocannabinoid tone and how you can rebalance your body to start feeling like yourself again. Let’s dive in and get back to feeling balanced!
How does it work?
An Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is something we’re all born with. Think of it as a regulatory system that monitors and maintains many of your other biological systems. While you don’t see it, your ECS is always hard at work, keeping your body in check. From managing your sleep and mood to supporting your immune function and more, the ECS communicates using endocannabinoids, like CBD, to help you feel your best.
The ECS is made up of receptors, endocannabinoids, and enzymes. Our bodies naturally produce endocannabinoids which bind and signal with specific cannabinoid receptors such as CB1 and CB2. Associated enzymes are responsible for constructing these cannabinoids when needed and breaking them down when we’re at a balance. While this system is designed to handle short bursts of stress, today’s constant stressors can really take a toll on your overall well-being.
What’s Endocannabinoid Tone?
A healthy and functional ECS allows our bodies to feel and perform at their best. However, when our ECS is unbalanced or strained, many other systems can start to reflect this stress. The overall state of our ECS is defined as our ‘Endocannabinoid Tone’ and is medically determined by the function and number of your endocannabinoid receptors, endocannabinoids, and associated enzymes. A low endocannabinoid tone occurs when there is an inadequate number of these components present within our system.
To no surprise, everyone’s endocannabinoid tone varies from person to person. Like other nutrients such as iron or vitamin D, there are several factors including one’s biology, habits, diet, etc. that can predispose us to be endocannabinoid deficient. Though genetic factors can be harder to remedy, mindful routines and positive lifestyle changes can be made to bring your systems back to homeostasis. Here are a few habits that were found to effectively raise endocannabinoid tone.
Insufficient sleep: A lack of sleep will greatly lower our endocannabinoid tone, as it disrupts our circadian rhythm and our body’s homeostasis.
Poor diet: A healthy diet will positively impact the production of receptors, endocannabinoids and enzymes. Foods high in fatty acids such as eggs, fish and walnuts are suggested. P.S. Chocolates are also a delicious way to sneak in some anandamides!
Lack of movement: As humans, we are meant to move – it’s in our genes! Exercising naturally elevates endocannabinoid tone. A great example is the famous runner’s high. Read more here
How Does CBD Come Into Play?
Now we know that endocannabinoids and the ECS work together to sustain a balanced body. But did you know that plant-derived phytocannabinoids like CBD can optimize and strengthen your ECS too? With CBD being so similar to our own endocannabinoids, studies have shown that CBD helps to block the enzymes that break down your endocannabinoids, allowing more to be present in your body for longer. Having this prolonged presence of endocannabinoids can help give your systems the opportunity to be reset and re-balance, providing you better sleep, stabilized mood, and more.
Before You Go…
The ECS plays a pivotal role in maintaining a healthy and harmonious body. Thus, ensuring the ECS’s performance should be a non-negotiable priority. By strengthening the communication and mobility of receptors, endocannabinoids and enzymes within the ECS, CBD can potentially help restore endocannabinoid tone levels to an equilibrium. While this is still an area of on-going research, its potential natural benefits continue to be a subject of promising exploration and intrigue. As always, you may want to consult a healthcare professional before using CBD for safe and effective outcomes.