So Good they have their Own Receptors.
If you ever want to find evidence of the connectivity of plants and humans, do a quick study of cannabinoids. The antecedents to the modern cannabis plant can be traced back about 34,000,000 years and human cultivation and use has been documented as far back as 12,000 years. The interaction of the human body to the constituents of the cannabis plant are so broad, pronounced and varied that it is hard to overemphasize the impact that cannabis has and is having on our culture. Humans have evolved with an internal set of receptors that respond to Cannabinoids in a complex and magnificent fashion. It will be decades of continuous discovery and study before we uncover the full beauty of this interaction. We are just beginning to understand our symbiotic relationship with this plant.
Cannabinoids are naturally occurring compounds found in the cannabis sativa plant species. Of over 480 different compounds present in the plant, around 144 are termed cannabinoids. The two most well known among these compounds are the delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC), which is the most well known psychoactive/euphoric ingredient in cannabis and Cannabidiol (CBD) which is commonly associated with the healing characteristics of the plant.
There are very strict requirements about what can be said about the effects, efficacy and treatment potential of cannabis and cannabinoids due to unfortunate federal restriction on scientific research. So here it will have to suffice to say that all evidence we discuss is anecdotal. Various combinations of cannabinoids supported by terpenes, flavonoids and other compounds have demonstrated effects on mood, libido, sleep, chronic tremors and convulsions, anxiety, pain and the body’s immune responses. CBD has been credited with balancing and creating homeostasis in numerous bodily functions and cannabis has been used in spiritual and religious ceremonies because of its reported ability to support mystical experiences. In short, Cannabinoids appear to have a powerful and broad ability to influence the human body, mind and spirit in very beneficial ways.
Just so you can nod knowingly when someone throws these initials around, here are the cannabinoid subclasses.
These are thought to be non psychologically active.
- Cannabigerols (CBG)
- Cannabichromenes (CBC)
- Cannabidiol (CBD)
These are thought to be psychologically active in varying degrees:
- Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
- Cannabinol (CBN)
- Cannabinodiol (CBDL)
Other cannabinoids including cannabicyclol (CBL), cannabielsoin (CBE) and cannabitriol (CBT)
Cannabis and humans have an ancient compatibility as if the plants and the people evolved synergistically. Cannabinoids create their effects by interacting with specific neurotransmitters, which we call “endocannabinoid receptors”, located in our peripheral and central nervous system. In fact, the very thing that makes a cannabinoid a cannabinoid is its ability to interact directly or indirectly with these cannabinoid receptors. The network of these receptors in our bodies is called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS), Any animal with a backbone has an ECS. This is why CBD can help your dog survive fireworks on the 4th of July.
The two main types of cannabinoid receptors in the body are called CB1 and CB2 receptors. When CB1 and CB2 receptors are activated, it can improve how our body’s different systems and organs function which, in turn, affects how we feel both physically and mentally. The CB1 receptors are found mainly in the brain, central nervous system and the sexual organs. The CB2 receptors are far more plentiful but largely exist in the peripheral system including the intestines, the immune and other regulatory systems. We continue to learn more about these receptors through on-going research into cannabis and the Endocannabinoid System.
The human body naturally creates a THC-type molecule called Anandamide, but Anandamide only exists in the human body for very short periods of time (it degrades very quickly). Delta-9 THC creates the euphoric feelings associated with being “high” by binding more readily to the CB1 receptor. This creates a feeling much like our natural happy state but lasts longer than the anandamide molecule. CBD and other cannabinoids operate in a similar way but they connect with different receptors. For example, CBD has a light affinity to the CB2 receptors (among other mechanisms) and in that way CBD may help to relieve pain, inflammation and stress. Interestingly, the efficacy of CBD is very likely increased with the presence of even a small amount of THC and other terpenes due to what is known as the Entourage Effect.
Although we frequently see a strong market separation between “THC Products” and “CBD Products”, at Resonate, we believe that this is a false differentiator and all of our current products have both THC and CBD integrated in each formulation. We see the potential of cannabinoids in providing a range of effects that are supported by the presence of a complex combination of cannabinoids and terpenes. In our formulations, we manage these cannabinoid variables, along with select terpenes, flavonoids and adaptogens to create the experiences we deliver in the Koan product family. In this way, we make it possible for us to enjoy the powerful benefits of the ancient and natural synergy between plants and people.