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All About: Your Endocannabinoid System

Did you know your body has a master control system?

Say “hello” to your ECS.
It has been described by researchers as perhaps the most important physiological system involved in establishing and maintaining human health – a “master control system” that regulates the activity of every organ and tissue in the human body. Yet, most of us have never heard of it.

We’re talking about the Endocannabinoid System, also known as the Endogenous Cannabinoid System or “ECS” – named after the Cannabis plant that led to its discovery in 1992.

“In each bodily tissue, the ECS performs a different task, but the goal is always the same: homeostasis: the maintenance of a stable and healthy internal environment necessary for survival despite fluctuations in the external environment,” says natural health educator Angela Arena, founder of Kind Lab and an expert in the application of therapeutic plant-derived extracts.

Arena says we can think of the ECS as our body’s “root level” operating system—a kind of central processing unit that regulates and alters the functioning of many other important systems and keeps them in balance.

“The ECS produces chemical messengers called endocannabinoids that communicate with receptor sites throughout the body to control such things as appetite, immune response, metabolic health, inflammation and pain levels, blood pressure, bronchial dilation, and over-stimulated nerves. Those are all huge factors influencing how we function on a daily basis, “says Arena.
Arena says researchers are now linking the ECS to an increasing number of functions in various organ systems. 
“Studies indicate that modulating the health and function of the ECS holds promise for treating a wide range of pathological conditions from mood and anxiety disorders to hypertension, to movement disorders such as Parkinson’s, to obesity to metabolic syndrome and more,” says Arena.

Arena says due to poor diet, stress, lack of exercise, drug abuse, environmental toxins or genetic factors, an individual can develop an endocannabinoid deficit – triggering a variety of unwanted physical manifestations. She says that such deficits are correctable by supplementing the diet with plant-derived “cannabinoids”, such as “CBD” extracted from hemp. 
“Replenishing your internally-produced endocannabinoids with hemp-derived phytocannabinoids may reboot your ECS and help return homeostasis to the body,” says Arena.  Once you reset your body’s master control system, it then may be able to reset your organs, glands, and tissues to improved functionality.

Originally published in Leaf Magazine.

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