Cannabinoids are a group of active chemical compounds found in the hemp plant.
Hemp plant contains more than 400 chemical compounds (Cannabinoids) that helps in creating the different characteristics of the plant. More than 100 of them are Cannabinoids and these are the most important chemical entities found in the flowers of marijuana and hemp plant.
Cannabinoids are the chemicals that provide the plant its recreational and medical properties. These are the chemical compounds that leave different effects on our body after consumption. Cannabinoids like CBD and THC interrelate with different receptors of our body to produce different effects like sedating, relaxing and uplifting.
But why are the cannabinoids able to interrelate with our body?
Let’s take a deeper dive to understand these fascinating chemical compounds.
Cannabinoids in the Cannabis/Hemp/Marijuana plant:
The hemp and marijuana plant are suspected to produce 113 different cannabinoids. Each of them have different effects on a human’s body. Among all of them, CBD and THC are most studied and most prevalent cannabinoids.
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound and mostly used to counteract the highness. CBD also offers a lot of health benefits like anti-inflammatory and Neuroprotective properties. While THC is known for its psychoactive properties, and THC is the reason you feel high after consuming marijuana.
As CBD and THC are the most well-known cannabinoids, there are many other cannabinoids that offers different health benefits. Some of the most helpful cannabinoids are:
- CBGA (Cannabigerolic acid)
- THCA (Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinolic acid)
- CBDA (Cannabidiolic acid)
- CBCA (Cannabichromenenic acid)
- CBGVA (Cannabigerovarinic acid)
- THCVA (Tetrahydrocanabivarinic acid)
- CBDVA (Cannabidivarinic acid)
- CBCVA (Cannabichromevarinic acid)
These cannabinoids are produced and stored within the trichomes (crystals) of the plant. These trichomes give marijuana flowers their shiny and sparkly appearance.
How do Cannabinoids work?
In order to understand cannabinoids, you must have some knowledge about the Endocannabinoids, Exocanabinoids and Endocannabinoid system.
There are two major types of cannabinoids:
- Those found naturally in the human’s body. (Endogenous cannabinoids)
- Those found naturally in the marijuana and hemp plant. (Exogenous Cannabinoids)
Exocannabinoids are cannabinoids that are naturally found in the marijuana and hemp plants. Exogenous Cannabinoids are also named as phytocannabinoids because they found in plants.
Endocannabinoids are cannabinoids that are produced naturally by a human’s brain and body. Where Endo is a short form of endogenous which means produced and originated within the body.
These cannabinoids are different from those produced by marijuana and hemp plant, but they have a lot of similar effects and properties. The function of these cannabinoids are wide-ranging, while the primary function of them is to promote homeostasis.
The Endocannabinoid system is a system in a human’s body which consists of cannabinoids and cannabinoid receptors.
The cannabinoid receptors were first discovered in 1988 in rats while after a few years in 1993, cannabinoid receptors were found as an essential part of the central nervous system. After a very short time, it is discovered that the endocannabinoid system is not found only in animals but also found in multiple living species including mankind.
The Endocannabinoid system helps a human’s brain to control various psychological and physical processes such as blood pressure, stress, hunger, glucose metabolism, and mood. If these receptors do not work properly, then it can cause various severe medical conditions like mental disorder, memory loss, reduce appetite, cause stress and anxiety, and many more health problems.
Medical benefits of Cannabinoids:
Cannabinoids are the chemical entities found in the hemp plant and offers different effects on a human’s body. As we know, human’s body has cannabinoid receptors which helps the compounds to produce several effects.
But researchers and scientists still have very much to learn about these cannabinoids and the benefits of using non-psychotic cannabinoid like CBD.
However, primary studies and experiments have suspected that these chemical entities may be helpful for:
- Inhibiting tumor growth in some cases of cancer.
- Reducing weight and simulating the appetite.
- Relieving inflammation and chronic pain.
- Reducing cancer pain.
- Reducing vomiting and nausea.
- Improving the sleep time.
- Minimizing the anxiety.
- Fighting against viral infections and viruses.
- Lessening the psychotic symptoms of schizophrenia.
- Preventing metastasis in breast cancer
- Reducing tumor size in other types of cancer.
Many patients and medical professionals have reported that cannabinoids are very helpful in reducing the symptoms of cancer without inducing any harmful side effects.