Cannabinoids are still a relatively new area of study for scientists and medical professionals, and there’s still so much more we can know about them. But we already know they are a promising area for our health and wellbeing. Here are 10 facts you may not know about cannabinoids.
1. There are over 100 cannabinoids that are known to science currently, but not all of them are psychoactive like THC. Non-psychoactive compounds exist in cannabis and hemp, and these include the compounds found in CBD products such as CBD isolate.
2. There are three main types of cannabinoids – phytocannabinoids, endocannabinoids and synthetic cannabinoids. Phytocannabinoids are only found in cannabis and hemp plants, and they include THC and CBD, among others. Endocannabinoids are naturally present in every living thing on the planet, including humans. Finally, synthetic cannabinoids are chemical compounds produced in a lab and are used in medications and recreational substances.
3. The endocannabinoid system plays an important role in a wide range of bodily processes. However, it doesn’t operate in the way the nervous system typically works. Instead, it works in reverse – when a neuron is activated, the body produces its own cannabinoids on-demand. It’s the only system in the body that works in this way.
4. The endocannabinoid system was discovered in 1988 at the St Louis University School of Medicine, where it was discovered that all mammals’ brains have a receptor site designed to interact with cannabinoids.
5. CBD impacts everyone differently – while it rarely has any side effects, it can affect people in different ways and dosages will therefore impact people more or less intensely.
6. Cannabinoids have been shown to impact serotonin levels in the body, which is the main neurotransmitter which regulates things like anxiety, sleep, mood and appetite. People who have difficulty producing serotonin are more likely to develop anxiety and depression.
7. Cannabinoids have anti-inflammatory effects, which means that they can help to reduce swelling and relieve pain. Sunburn is actually inflammation on the surface of the skin, so studies suggest that cannabinoids could help to relieve the pain and discomfort caused by this.
8. When people think of cannabinoids, they often think of THC first. But while it might be the best-known, it’s not actually the most abundant in the hemp plant. That role goes to cannabidiol which is known as CBD.
9. Cannabinoids don’t always appear in the same concentrations in a plant, and that’s why certain strains can be harder to cultivate. CBG is one such cannabinoid which occurs in very small amounts, making it time-consuming to source.
10. Some cannabinoids can help with sleep, including CBD, CBN and THC, all of which show promise in studies in regulating our sleep-wake cycles.
There’s plenty we can learn from the power of cannabinoids, and while CBD is having a moment, there are many more cannabinoids found in the plant that may be beneficial for our physical and mental health.