What is the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) has been called one of the single most important scientific discoveries of modern time. So why is it so significant? It does so much more than allow our bodies to interact with THC and feel the mind-altering effects of cannabis. As one of the 12 major systems in our body, it is highly involved in maintaining the homeostasis, or balance within the body’s systems as well as physiological functions such as modulating pain and inflammation.
Why Is Homeostasis Important?
Homeostasis refers to the body’s process of maintaining balanced conditions for the cells in our bodies to live and function. This is critical for the proper functioning of our bodies as a whole to keep conditions stable enough for all of our cells to thrive and do their jobs. To better understand the importance of homeostasis, think of it as needing our body systems to stay in the Goldilocks zone. For example, our blood sugar shouldn’t be too low or too high, but just right. The same thing applies to many other conditions within our body such as temperature, blood pressure, and more. The endocannabinoid system does just that!
How Do CBD and the Endocannabinoid System Work Together?
Plant cannabinoids are able to affect the body medicinally because of our endocannabinoid system and the interactions that happen there. Like some other neurotransmitters, cannabinoids such as CBD, interact with many different receptor types. This means that while the CBD is activating certain cannabinoid receptors, it may be interacting with other receptors as well.
CBD has the ability to affect the overall levels of endocannabinoids in the body. This is referred to as endocannabinoid tone. CBD can increase the levels of anandamide by preventing the FAAH enzyme from breaking it down. Inhibiting the FAAH enzyme in this way has been shown to improve anxiety disorders.
When the body does not produce enough endocannabinoids or is unable to regulate them properly, it becomes more susceptible to health issues that can manifest as anxiety, inflammatory diseases, or skin disorders. However, research has shown that CBD can directly activate serotonin receptors that may decrease anxiety.
Every mammal has an endocannabinoid system. This system is affected by internal and external factors, as it relates to inflammation, injuries, and balancing homeostasis. It also protects against cancers, diseases, and nerve damage. The ECS also balances and protects our Central Nervous System and Immune System responses. In return, when this system is activated properly it initiates pain control and calms inflammation. The ECS is critical to the life cycle of skin, fighting against skin cancers, eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, and internal/external inflammation.
Psychologically, the ECS allows us to experience new perspectives. Evidence suggests that the ECS helps with subtle yet therapeutic shifts in the brain in the way we perceive the world. This allows us to relate to our internal bodily landscape, the way we think and feel about ourselves, and the way we interact with the people around us.
CBD is a non-psychoactive part of the hemp plant. CB2 receptors communicate with our bodies when CBD is inhaled, ingested, or applied topically. This allows the CBD to work through healing pathways in our body.
Note: Not suitable if you are pregnant or nursing
Source: Color Up
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Challenges are part of life. We have all experienced them.
Right now some of us are facing the biggest challenges of our life.
Being home many of us have much more time in relationship. Often this brings to the surface the challenges we’ve been “too busy” to deal with...
Sometimes those challenges are with ourselves! We live alone and have to deal with ourselves. Some of us are faced with our self in relationship and also with those we live with! Whatever the case, it can feel overwhelming at times yet we have “nowhere to go”... except inward :)
These challenges/obstacles show us what we have learn and where we have to grow.
So, what if we use this time to hone skills?
What if we decide to use the challenges as a gift?
To nurture the inner garden.
To be willing to see truth.
To deepen relationships.
To experience the freedom that comes from resisting nothing?
When we are willing to embrace the obstacles as an opportunities to awaken... we slowly start to live the life of our dreams.
In this weeks podcast Stephanie talks about all of it. Tune in! Share. Discuss. Let’s go!!
As we continue to navigate life during this covid pandemic, stress levels are very high for many.
With no “end” yet in sight, some of us are experiencing such high levels of stress and anxiety we are unable to function. We may feel the nervous system responding in fight, flight, or freeze. In some cases we are having panic attacks. If you have never had a panic attack, they can be very scary, feeling like a heart attack.
In this weeks Mind the Gap podcast episode Stephanie discusses the value of having a presence practice to help manage anxiety. She shares exactly what “to do” and how to navigate this time with as much ease as possible.
Please Listen and Share. Wishing you peace and positivity.
> LISTEN HERE.
What is it? How can it help us? Why bother committing to it?
In this Mind the Gap Podcast Episode Stephanie discusses the 3 myths of meditation and why having a consistent practice is transformational and life changing.
She also gives an example of how to use meditation as a tool to turn negative / destructive thoughts into positive / empowering ones.
Let's Go! Listen Here.
Summer Self Care by Stephanie
“What you do for yourself-any gesture of kindness, any gesture of gentleness, any gesture of honesty and clear seeing toward yourself-will affect how you experience your world.” -Pema Chodron
Nourish Body, Mind & Spirit
Summer is the perfect time to slow down and notice where you need to be "fed", aka, practice self care. Nobody can do this for us. And if we don't do this for ourselves, we risk becoming resentful, contracted, and unhappy! We must feed ourselves in order to feed others.
As I spoke about last week, we are in charge of our own happiness and this includes on going self care. Give yourself permission to do what makes you feel good. You're worth it.
Top 5 Picks to Nourish Body, Mind & Spirit:
Massage - From therapeutic and deep tissue massage to relaxing massage, it's one of the oldest healing modalities. Massage can relax muscles, soothe aches and pains, release energy blockages, rejuvenate body, mind and spirit.
Yoga - Yoga promotes inner and outer health & well-being. In addition to improving physical health: flexibility, strength, balance, pain management, yoga is a powerful tool in personal transformation. Yoga has been shown to decrease stress, helping with anxiety and PTSD, while improving our mood and outlook on life.
Meditation- We get 2 choices: medicate or meditate. From managing stress, anxiety, and PTSD to cultivating a deeper sense of inner peace and well-being, meditation can help.
Energy Healing - Chakra Balancing is an energetic healing technique that works holistically on the body, mind and spirit from the inside out. Major systems of the body are restored with life-force energy to promote body's natural ability to heal. Chakras will be cleared and re-balanced so you feel lighter and empowered.
Reading List - Self-enrichment is one of the keys to growth.
Our top 5:
-Untethered Soul by Michael Singer -- We are all trying to be okay. Guess what? You already are!
-Reclaiming Joy by Stephanie Filardi -- 4 Steps, when applied, to live happy, healthy, free.
-A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle -- Awakening to your life's purpose and then some!
-A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson -- Love is a potent force and the key to peace...in relationships, work, life...
-Women, Food & God by Geneen Roth -- How we eat teaches us volumes about our life. Time to stop the battle with food and deeply listen.