What’s Hemp And What’s Pot

Did you know that our bodies make our own cannabinoids?

hemp or pot

hemp or pot

Part 1 of 6

Our bodies actually make their own cannabinoids—endocannabinoids anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonylglycerol (2-AG) —that nourish our system.1-3 Unfortunately, they can be depleted due to mental and physical stress and low omega-3 intake. In fact, that’s one of many reasons why a proper balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acid consumption is critical. More about that later.

Hemp oil and marijuana have different properties.

There is a lot of confusion regarding hemp oil and marijuana. While Cannabis sativa is the source plant for marijuana and supplemental hemp oil, they are not the same thing. The plant’s two most well known phytocannabinoids, THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD, have very different properties.

THC is the compound in marijuana that provides the “high” people experience from smoking the plant. It has medical value in specialized applications. On the other hand, CBD and other cannabinoids found in hemp oil don’t affect behavior in the same way as THC and are legal supplemental compounds. In fact, CBD from hemp oil has been shown to reduce the jitteriness that THC can create in people.

And with hemp oil, you don’t have to worry about THC effects because, by definition, hemp oil supplements can contain no more than 0.3% of the compound. And even though both medical marijuana and hemp oil come from Cannabis sativa, the plants themselves are quite different and selected and grown for different attributes. The most sought-after compounds in hemp oil supplements are found in the stalks, so the hemp plants (often called “industrial hemp”) are generally taller than those grown for medical marijuana.

Hemp oil phytocannabinoids, including CBD, work with your endocannabinoid system to alleviate pain, inhibit tumor growth and strengthen bones—among evolving other healthy effects. Cannabinoid receptors, frequently abbreviated as CB1 and CB2, are involved with perception of pain, neurological factors. The compounds from hemp may interact with these receptors, found on the surfaces of cells, and prevent the degradation of our own endocannabinoids.

Both CB1 and CB2 are expressed in the hippocampus, a part of the brain associated with memory and emotion and are a part of the limbic system. But each also has its own areas of expertise, too. Broadly speaking, CB1 is involved with neurological responses—seizure, fear, memory—while CB2 is more aligned with the immune system, peripheral structures of the body and digestion. In an extremely simplified way, you could think of the CB1 receptor as the “mind receptor” and CB2 as the “body receptor”.

To be continued

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