Cannabis is celebrated for a multitude of reasons now, preferably its benefits as a therapeutic agent. Everyone is quite familiar with its role as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anticonvulsant, and so on. It turns out; even scientists are now intrigued to decode its potential in managing several diseases/disorders.
One such arena that piqued the interest of researchers is its part in immunity. Nobody is quite sure about its role in influencing the immune system. And with the pandemic disrupting the lives of millions worldwide, there is hype regarding its responsibility in boosting immunity.
But how does it help? Scroll down and have a look at some data shared by a plethora of studies.
Understanding Endocannabinoids And Their Influence on Immune System
Until a few years ago, no one had any idea about one of the most prominent systems in the human body, i.e., the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Fortunately, to understand the functionality of cannabis inside a human system, researchers had this breakthrough.
According to the experts, whenever there is a demand or the body loses its harmony, this system produces endocannabinoids to modulate the activities. This is why it’s also referred to as a homeostatic regulator. Again, this system contains different types of receptors, such as CB1 and CB2, which help to regulate a plethora of physiological processes.
According to various studies, it was revealed that endocannabinoids act upon various immune cells through CB2 receptors.
But how does cannabis come into the picture?
Ideally, in times of diseases or biological disharmony, the ECS is unable to produce a significant amount of endocannabinoids. Therefore, to fill the gap, cannabis replenishes the body with phytocannabinoids (the molecules that mimic the functionalities of the endocannabinoids). Irrespective of the method you choose, such as smoking or vaping through new glass pipes, vape pens, or ingesting through tinctures, edibles, or via topicals, cannabis will impact your immune system depending on its requirements.
Now the question of concern is, “How does it do it?
Well, as per various research articles, cannabis uses a unique biphasic activity to bring the system back to its balance. For instance, if a person is suffering from an autoimmune disorder, cannabis provides relief in three ways:
- By immune modulation.
- Acting as an anti-inflammatory agent.
- Assisting in digestive system functionalities.
Scientists believe that CB2 receptors that regulate immune system complex pathways inhibit the production of cytokines after interacting with cannabis.
But there is a point of contention here!
It does that when taken in low doses only. Anything above the threshold can result in completely opposite effects.
Remember, whenever cannabis is discussed, you must never forget that you’re talking about more than 400 molecules. How they will react in a particular situation is still unknown! And with the world under the attack of the novel coronavirus, researchers are channeling their interest in investigating its role in managing COVID systems as well. In other words, the research is still going on to decode the role of cannabis in modulating immune responses.
Until then, it would be a good idea to talk to a medical marijuana doctor to use cannabis to manage your medical conditions in the best possible way.