“The ultimate adaptogenic herb” is an apt description of cannabis. We’ve evolved this amazing endocannabinoid system (ECS) with receptors in our brain, immune system and throughout our body. Intricate and complex, the primary function of our ECS is to provide us with balance and homeostasis-both physical and emotional. The cannabis plant produces phytocannabinoids with the same chemical structure as our endocannabinoids. They have the ability to bind to these receptors and, together with terpenes, create an entourage effect. In other words, we are wired for this plant! By helping us adapt to both internal and external forces, cannabis can do what no other plant or medicine can.
We cannot separate our physical and emotional self. Let s consider how cannabis can connect the emotional to the physical.
When we feel stressed, our brain sends signals to our adrenal glands, our flight or fight organs, that try to help us adapt to stress. Unfortunately, in these stressful times, our adrenals are having a difficult time handling so many stressors and, as a result, become fatigued, losing their ability to provide us with homeostasis. In addition to many other functions, our adrenals also play a vital role in hormone production and balance. When attacked by stress our neuroendocrine system may become dysfunctional therefore creating many challenges to our physical and emotional wellbeing.
THC and CBD are both known to have positive effects on reducing stress. THC helps us live in the now and not focus on yesterday and tomorrow. CBD is an excellent anti-anxiety drug and mitigates some of the untoward effects of THC. THC and CBD are the Yin-Yang of the plants complementing one another. With the appropriate use of cannabis, we can decrease stressors and, therefore, both shed and prevent chronic disease.
Medicating with cannabis prior to exercise can have multiple benefits. When used correctly, cannabinoids can open our airways, therefore allowing greater flow of oxygen to our tissues. Many people report that their workout routine is more productive and enjoyable. Many people report that they are be able to incorporate meditation into their workout routine. Starting your day by micro-dosing with a short acting form of cannabis can assist you in reducing stress as well as encouraging positive behavior.
Content Source: Mary’s Medicinals Cannabis Primer on Cannabis and Nutrition, issue #4, author Joseph Cohen, D.O.