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Stimulate the ECS for Healthy Gut!

As most of us know, the Endocannabinoid system is the reason cannabis does its magic in our systems. It consists of fat Endocannabinoids and their receptors, cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1), cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2), and the enzymes that regulate Endocannabinoid levels. There are multiple systems that the ECS engages with, but researchers are witnessing huge contributions within the gut. The ECS has a much greater impact on our daily lives than previously imagined.

When cannabinoids such as cannabis, and others reach the cannabinoid receptors, their functioning changes and a study by Acharya et al., 2016 found that Anandamide, which functions through the ECS receptors and actively contributes to the gut activity by promoting the presences of immunosuppressive macrophages. Through these findings it is apparent that there is major communication between the immune and nervous system.

Acharya et al. isolated cells in mice and found that cells of mice that were administered oral doses of Anadamide showed significant increase in the macrophages that help to maintain gut homeostasis.
Stimulating the Endocannabinoid system also showed increased T-cell activity in the pancreatic lymph node, which helps to drain the pancreas and gastrointestinal tract.

Absence of stimulation of this system, which cannabis provides showed less desirable micro flora gut activity, and greater incidences of inflammation and parasite activity in non-stimulated Endocannabinoid systems. This study’s implications are huge in reporting the Endocannabinoids working with the immune system, and regulating gut activity.

Personally, I have always found cannabis to be an instantaneous cure to stomachaches. There have been times that nothing else would do! It’s amazing they are actually finding out the physiological reason this occurs, and put simply stimulating the Endocannabinoid system produces Anandamide, which then increases macrophage activity that helps to keep pathogens from entering your system. The implications are huge, and work with both THC psychoactive cannabis and CBD non-psychoactive cannabis expanding who can receive this type of treatment. Perhaps one day there will be a Cannabis Tums or Pepto-Bismol on the shelf!

References:
Acharaya, N., Basu, S., Hagymasi, A.T., Penukonda, S., Shcheglova, T., Srivastava, P.K., 2016. Endocannabinoid system acts as a regulator of immune homeostasis in the gut. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, April, 2017. www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1612177114

Erin Warwick has experimented with medicinal plants for over 20 years and is currently studying for her Master’s Degree in Herbal Therapeutics at Maryland University of Integrative Health. On top of this, she is a fitness expert and Personal Trainer who received a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Illinois. When not immersed in plant matters, she can be found running heavy-duty obstacle coarse races or hanging out with her kids and pets. She thrives to help others obtain full body, mind and spirit health and wellness, and is particularly interested in unlocking the medicinal powers of cannabis and other amazing plants.

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