This excerpt is adapted from The essential guide to CBD by the editors of Reader’s Digest and Project CBD.
When it works properly, the endocannabinoid system (ECS) keeps our appetite, satiety and weight finely balanced. CB1 the cannabinoid receptors in our brain are responsible for signaling that it’s time to eat when we need to eat, whet our appetite, and sharpen our sense of smell so that food is very rewarding. CB2 activation of the cannabinoid receptor, in turn, works to reduce food intake and prevent the accumulation of body fat.
In the old days, when only fresh meat, fruits and vegetables could be eaten, it was easier to preserve their naturalness. ECS in balance. But our diet is as out of fashion in the modern world as our diet CB1 the receptors are blocked in overdrive mode, which reinforces an aberrant food-reward-food loop of all the sugary, high-fat foods we consume. One to study in mice found that when rodents received a diet high in fat and sugar for 60 days, their mice CB1 the receptors became hyperactive, which prevented the secretion of amino acids intended to reduce appetite when the system is functioning properly. On the other hand, ours CB2 the receptors, which are activated with plant-based foods such as leafy and bitter vegetables, olive oil, and various spices, are basically malnourished in a typical Western diet that contains many carbohydrates and processed foods.
Omega-3 fatty acid deficiencies they also distort the functioning of our cannabinoid receptors. These healthy fatty acids keep ours ECS humming softly. But when you are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids (as many Americans are), your ECS the function deteriorates.
The health of the intestinal microbiome (the billions of bacteria that live in the gut) is also essential and not just because it helps in effective and efficient digestion. Your gut has a “brain” of its own that communicates with the brain between the ears. Medical scientists recognize the importance of the gut-brain axis, which influences inflammation, digestion, and even moods, emotions, and overall well-being. He ECS regulate your intestine-brain axis, facilitating communication between the microbiome and the brain. If your diet is damaging your microbiome and causing intestinal dysbiosis, it will also distort you ECS and the way your brain works.
Physical activity (as we used to do to hunt, grow, and pick up our food) is also essential to maintaining a good endocannabinoid tone. Exercise activates the release of your natural endocannabinoids, helping to maintain lower stress levels and a healthy weight. But it’s all too easy to spend these days almost all the time sitting in front of our desks, in the car or on the couch.
The cumulative result of poor living habits: ECS dysfunction and metabolic syndrome, heart disease and other degenerative conditions associated with our Western diet and highly processed sedentary lifestyle.
A fragment of The essential guide to CBD by the editors of Reader’s Digest & Project CBD.
Copyright, project CBD. Cannot reprint without permission.