How Does CBD Affect the Immune System?
CBD is a wildly popular holistic wellness aid. Many people who use CBD as a part of their daily ritual experience noticeable benefits to how they feel emotionally and physically.
One of the many touted benefits of CBD is its ability to support the immune system, and a lot of people make bold claims about the role the cannabis plant plays in immunity.
CBD can positively influence your immune system, but its effects are holistic and subtle. You can use CBD to provide holistic support to many systems in your body due to the broad nature of its benefits.
Before using CBD for immunity, you must understand how it works and what benefits you can realistically expect.
What Is the Immune System?
Your immune system is a network of cells and messages transmitted throughout your body. Your body senses that something is awry and signals your body to produce and release immune cells to the affected area. These immune cells work to contain or destroy things like invaders and foreign bodies.
How Does the Immune System Work?
When your immune system is functioning properly, this call and response process will dispatch an adequate amount of strong, healthy immune cells to the areas of your body where they’re needed.
These immune cells work to destroy or significantly diminish cells that carry things like the common cold, allowing your body to gradually overcome their presence.
For your immune system to work properly, your body needs to be well equipped. Your body needs plenty of vitamins and minerals to manufacture immune cells. The better your general health is, the better your immune system will function.
A large proportion of the immune system is located in the GI tract, where there are large numbers of organized lymphoid tissue and scattered adaptive and innate effector cells. The gut microbiota, the collection of organisms, plays a vital role in helping the body have a balanced immune response.
What Is the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a large network of receptors throughout the body and brain. Medical researchers have identified at least two definitive cannabinoid receptors, known as CB1 receptors and CB2 receptors.
There may be as many as five types of cannabinoid receptors. Many cannabinoids can also interact with other receptors throughout the body, like vanilloid receptors.
How Does the Endocannabinoid System Work?
Although the endocannabinoid system was discovered many decades ago, most of the research into how the system works is very recent. Medical researchers are still learning about the extent and functionality of the endocannabinoid system and its implications for overall human health.
Researchers know that the body produces at least two of its own cannabinoids that interact with these receptors. They don’t know exactly how much of each cannabinoid the body needs to produce or precisely what these cannabinoids do when they get there.
The endocannabinoid system has been identified as a powerful support system for many other systems within the body. The effects of cannabinoids on receptors throughout these systems largely depend on the type of cannabinoid, the amount of use, the frequency of use, and how cannabinoids interact with your receptors.
Cannabinoids that bind to receptors produce effects that alter how your body sends or receives messages and relays information. Cannabinoids that interact with receptors without binding to them will provoke the receptors to produce their natural responses and execute their assigned functions.
Cannabinoids can modulate mood, with many people feeling calm or more relaxed after using particular cannabinoids. Some binding cannabinoids, like tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), will cause an altered state of relayed messages throughout the brain and body that people recognize as being “high.”
Cannabinoids can also influence the body. They play a role in alleviating physical tension, supporting skin health, supporting regular digestive health, and even supporting the functions of the body’s immune health. Some cannabinoids work better than others to produce wellness benefits.
How Does CBD Influence the Endocannabinoid System?
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid that doesn’t have a strong binding affinity. This means it doesn’t have a particular interest in attaching itself to your receptors and changing how your body works. It interacts with all the cannabinoid receptors throughout the body and other receptors susceptible to the influence of cannabinoids.
Since CBD doesn’t bind to your receptors, it can’t change their plans. It merely inspires them to perform the supportive functions your endocannabinoid system is designed to perform. Your endocannabinoid system is designed to work with cannabinoids, and CBD is like a natural fuel.
The stimulation provided by CBD strongly encourages the endocannabinoid system to do what it’s meant to do. These effects of CBD will vary within different systems of your body, and the effects are always situational.
Because you have countless cannabinoid receptors throughout your body, and CBD can work with almost all of them, there’s a laundry list of things that CBD is either clinically or anecdotally reported to influence.
The cannabinoid receptors in your brain may respond to CBD by producing a soothing effect. CBD won’t get you high, but it will likely encourage feelings of relaxation without impairing your state of mind. The cannabinoid receptors in your digestive system will promote your overall digestive health.
Meanwhile, the cannabinoid receptors on the surface of your skin will work to promote skin health when you apply CBD topically.
How Does the Endocannabinoid System Influence the Immune System?
The cannabinoid receptors in your immune system seem to work to promote the normal function of the immune system. Your immune cells can react with cannabinoids, modulating your immune system, according to NIH.
While researchers are still working to uncover all of the ways that cannabinoids influence your immune system, they know that suppressing the body’s natural production of endocannabinoids has a negative effect on the immune system.
Let’s be clear: CBD won’t cure a cold. It also won’t help your body make strong or healthy immune cells. Things like vitamin C and healthy proteins are responsible for that part of the process.
CBD isn’t a replacement for washing your hands regularly, avoiding contact with sick people, safe food handling, or proper nutrition.
Instead, CBD works to provide overall support to your endocannabinoid system, which will then offer support to your other systems. CBD is a gentle nudge that reminds and encourages your body to perform the way it’s supposed to.
This process adequately supports your immune system, but it won’t dramatically change your immune system. The goal is to ensure that your immune system is as healthy as it can be due to your lifestyle choices and common-sense practices. CBD can play a supportive role, but it can’t take on the entire project.
How Long Does It Take CBD To Work?
If you’re looking to experience the full extent of CBD’s benefits, you need to use CBD regularly. Some benefits and effects of using CBD will be apparent less than an hour after using CBD oil.
Using CBD every day for a minimum of 30 days will make these benefits noticeable. To maintain these benefits, keep using CBD on a daily basis.
Using CBD To Support Your Overall Wellness
If you want to incorporate CBD products into your daily ritual to support your overall wellness, Peels has what you need. Our CBD is made from oranges rather than hemp. This means Peels is always 100% THC free, making it a universally suitable solution for every adult focused on wellness.
Make our fresh-squeezed CBD a part of your daily ritual. Eat a balanced diet, always wash your hands, and remember to see your doctor for regular check-ups. Prioritize your health and wellness.
Immune System: Parts & Common Problems | Cleveland Clinic
The endocannabinoid system: an overview | Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Endocannabinoids and immune regulation | PMC
Effects of Cannabinoids on T-cell Function and Resistance to Infection | PMC