Frequently Asked Questions with Dr. Swathi - FAQ #6: What Is The Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) plays an important role in promoting the homeostasis, or balance, in the body, as it is linked with many organ systems and neurotransmitter systems. The ECS itself includes cannabinoid receptors, with the two most extensively studied being cannabinoid receptor type 1, CB1, and cannabinoid receptor type 2, CB2. CB1 receptors are predominantly located in the central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are associated with immune modulation. When your body seems to be out of balance, the ECS synthesizes cannabinoids on demand, called endocannabinoids, that interact with and bind to CB1 and CB2. The two most well-known endocannabinoids are anandamide and 2- arachidonoylglycerol, called 2-AG for short. When you exercise and your body starts to sweat, which is the ECS working with other systems in your body to help regulate your body temperature; the anandamide release is often misunderstood as the release of endorphins (stay tuned for an upcoming article about this concept with more details!).