The endocannabinoid system is a crucial physiologic system necessary for establishing and maintaining human health. Endocannabinoids and their receptors cover the entire body. Phytocannabinoids or Cannabinoids are chemical compounds found in cannabis (marijuana), and other plants. Cannabinoids stimulate the body’s cannabinoid receptors, and affect the mind and body in a number of different ways. They are among the active ingredients that contribute to many of the medicinal properties of cannabis.
THC is generally the most abundant and widely known cannabinoid. THC creates the main psychoactive effect of cannabis. Some research has shown it to possess analgesic and antioxidant properties, and may serve as a neuroprotectant.
CBD, a non-psychoactive compound, is the cannabinoid credited with the potential for alleviating symptoms of, or treating many medical conditions. Amongst other possible benefits, CBD may help reduce anxiety, decrease or inhibit the growth of cancer cells, provide relief from juvenile epilepsy, lower the incidence of diabetes, treat the psychotic symptoms of schizophrenia, serve as a neuroprotectant and possess antimicrobial properties.
CBN is an oxidized degradation product of THC. It often results from improper curing or storage. Mildly psychoactive in its own right, CBN is thought to potentiate the effects of ∆9-THC.
THCV is mildly psychoactive, but may potentiate the effects of THC. It is thought to be a natural appetite suppressant, an anti-inflammatory, and is currently being studied for its potential to treat obesity and diabetes.
Cannabinoid acids like THCA and CBDA are most abundant in raw cannabis. Curing and heating cannabis results in decarboxylation, where the non-psychoactive cannabinoid THCA converts to psychoactive ∆9- THC. It is believed to have anti-emetic, anti-inflammatory properties, anti-proliferative (inhibiting cancer/tumor cell-growth), and serve as a neuroprotectant.