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A Simple Guide to the Endocannabinoid System

Whenever you read about cannabis or CBD, there’s a good chance that something will come up about the endocannabinoid system. People often don’t really understand how it works, so they use it as a kind of medical buzzword. It’s not usually covered in high school biology class, so it isn’t as familiar as the cardiovascular or nervous systems. 

How does it work? And how does cannabis get involved? For the curious, there’s no need to head to medical school. This short, easy-to-understand guide explains the mysteries of the endocannabinoid system and how CBD interacts with it to create positive effects in the body.*

What is the Endocannabinoid System?

The endocannabinoid system is a network of chemicals and receptors that manages various processes in the body, from the immune system to appetite to stress response. It helps us maintain homeostasis, the state of balance and stability that enables us to function properly and feel a sense of general well-being. 

The system has three parts: endocannabinoids, receptors, and enzymes. An endocannabinoid is a kind of neurotransmitter made by your body. These chemicals relay instructions and information to and from the central nervous system and the receptors. 

The two known endocannabinoid system receptors, CB1 and CB2, are found all over the body. Most CB1 receptors are found in the brain and spinal cord, linking it with memory, mood, and pain regulation.* CB2 receptors are more at home in the peripheral nervous and immune systems. Finally, the enzymes break down the endocannabinoids once they’ve done their job.

Our bodies produce endocannabinoids to stimulate these receptors. These signals tell them what to do. Cannabinoids, found in the cannabis plant, can also stimulate some of these receptors. The herb has played a big role in our growing understanding of this system. Much of what we know at present comes from research into the effects of cannabinoids.

The Therapeutic Benefits Of CBD

So, how does CBD affect the endocannabinoid system? Because plant cannabinoids like CBD are similar to endocannabinoids, they can use the same pathways in the body. This is why they work well together. Scientists are still trying to understand how this happens, but more research is being done all the time. 


CBD binds to the receptors differently from THC, which is why it does not produce the “high” sensation. It usually works with the CB1 receptors, which explains its gentle calming effects and why it can be used as a stress reliever.* The complex range of interactions explains why there is so much interest in its therapeutic potential. Research spans everything from anxiety and sleep to epilepsy and more.*

Harness the Power of Cannabis with JACANA

The endocannabinoid system affects pain, anxiety, sleep,* and so many other things that profoundly affect our quality of life. It is constantly working to help our bodies and minds navigate our ever-changing world. Give your body some extra support with your favorite JACANA cannabis products.

Made with the finest CBD sourced from our own cannabis farm in Jamaica, our products bring a sense of peace, health,* and calm to any moment. Browse our selection and treat yourself – and your endocannabinoid system – to something soothing and special from JACANA.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.

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