Every human and almost every single animal has an Endocannabinoid System (ECS): a network of receptors and neurotransmitters that help control some of your most vital life functions related to memory, appetite, mood, pain sensation, and immune system.
The function of the ECS is to maintain balance or homeostasis of the body. Why haven’t you learned about this system? Why hasn’t your doctor discussed this system with you?
Sadly most health professionals do not learn about this important body system as part of their education and training due to the status of cannabis as a Schedule I drug. As a Schedule I drug under the federal Controlled Substances Act of 1970, cannabis is considered to have “no accepted medical use.”
For more on the history and timeline of cannabis research tune into Episode #1 and #2 of The Kush Nurse Podcast where I dive deep into the challenging history of cannabis as medicine.
In 1992, scientists searching for answers on why cannabis produced psychological effects on humans discovered that humans produce their own “endo” cannabinoids and the ECS was identified.
Technically, the ECS is simply being supplemented when a person consumes cannabinoids, terpenes, or other chemicals from an herb like a cannabis plant that happen to bind with the receptors within this system.
Many medical professionals and researchers have identified a shortage of endocannabinoids as a condition called endocannabinoid deficiency. Dr. Ethan Russo is one of the leading experts and researchers in cannabis medicine. The core concept of Dr. Russo’s theory is that some illnesses are related to defects in the endocannabinoid system. In other words, a better understanding of the endocannabinoid system might lead to significant breakthroughs in understanding diseases that affect millions of people, like migraines, irritable bowel syndrome, and post traumatic stress disorder.