Diving into the world of cannabinoids, there’s more than meets the eye.
Where do we get cannabinoids from - and how do they affect our ECS?
As you may know, your body has a whole system for processing cannabinoids. But did you know that there are distinct types of cannabinoids? And some you produce all on your own? What are they, and do they interact with our bodies in the same ways as our own, internally produced, chemicals? Jump on the Magic School Bus as we explore the microscopic life of plants!
Your body produces its own internal cannabinoids (called endocannabinoids) which your Endocannabinoid System processes. Endocannabinoids are present in our whole body in cell membranes. Even if you’ve never tried cannabis in any form, your body still has endocannabinoids present! Crazy, right? Endocannabinoids create all kinds of cellular reactions in our bodies, including reducing anxiety, combating certain diseases, and managing various conditions.
Sources of Endocannabinoids
Your bod. That’s it! However, phytocannabinoids can enhance, and act like, our bodies own endocannabinoids.
Can you guess where phytocannabinoids come from? Hint: Phyto means plants! These cannabinoids are found naturally occurring in the living plant life all around us, and sometimes even on our dinner table.
When we are talking about cannabinoids, the first plant many of us name is cannabis. But you might be surprised to know that cannabis is NOT the only source of cannabinoids. In fact, some other plants contain phytocannabinoids, and many of these can also have medicinal effects and have been used as such for hundreds of years.
If you do consume cannabis or other plants that contain phytocannabinoids, these molecules bind with your ECS receptors and stimulate, support, and nourish your ECS as well. Many people aim to create similar response in their bodies as our own Endocannabinoids by consuming plants that stimulate the ECS.
Research has found that other plants contain CBD - the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis - and other phytocannabinoids. These cannabinoid-like compounds are called cannabimimetics. Cannabimimetics also work with our ECS and can affect our bodies and biological processes.
Sources of Phytocannabinoids:
Cannabis - Contains cannabidiol (CBD), cannabigerol (CBG), cannabinol (CBN), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
Flax Seeds - Similar compounds to CBD that act as antioxidants
Echinacea - Immune booster, and has been used by humans since the 18th century.
Cacao - Yes, the ever-favorite superfood, this one contains mood-boosting properties and helps memory, appetite and pain perception.
Maca - Gives your own endocannabinoids, as well as your mood, a boost!
Kava - Simulates THC (it binds to the same receptor in your ECS as the THC from cannabis), and acts as a sedative.
Rosemary - Contains BCP (beta-caryophyllene) which gives the plant it’s peppery flavor. It also helps with depression, anxiety, and ulcers.
Black Pepper - WIth a large amount of the same terpene that gives some marijuana strains that cracked black pepper smell, it also contains anti-inflammatory properties.
As you may have guessed from the name, synthetic cannabinoids are human-made. These can be then smoked, vaped, or sold as other drugs. Epidiolex, the first cannabis-derived drug that was approved by the FDA, is an example of a synthetic cannabinoid that uses CBD, not THC as the active drug. This drug is used to treat epilepsy.
However, there are also other lab-made synthetic cannabinoids that are being made into products for recreational use and are sometimes labeled as synthetic marijuana or “fake-weed”. While some may market them as safe, they are highly unpredictable and unregulated.
Sources of Synthetic Cannabinoids:
Drugs prescribed for specific conditions such as Epidiolex®
Other synthetics include those that can be smoked or vaped such as brands like K2, Spice, Joker, Black Mamba, Kush, and Kronic.
Get your daily dose of phytocannabinoids: available now in our shop!
Now that you know all about the types of cannabinoids and where they come from, why not stock up on naturally occurring, plant-based goodness?
Our Full-Spectrum Hemp Extract CBD Oil contains all-natural phytocannabinoids, as well as a hint of THC, but less than .3% by volume. Available in 1-ounce bottles in 250mg, 500mg or 1000mg strength. If you want to completely avoid THC, then you will love our Broad-Spectrum Hemp Extract CBD Oil which contains zero THC, but still delivers all the good stuff you want (cannabinoids and terpenes) that are naturally found in the hemp plant. It’s a perfect choice for those who can not have any THC in their system, whether for medical, personal, or legal reasons. Our Broad-Spectrum tincture also comes in 1-ounce bottles and is available in a 1000mg strength.
Lunchbox Alchemy also offers edible CBD Gummies! Lunchbox Alchemy CBD Gummies are infused with Full-Spectrum extract derived from Oregon-grown hemp and come in delicious flavors like pineapple, concord grape, green apple, cherry, and blue raspberry. Click here to find them in your area or buy now in our online store and have them shipped right to your door.