What are cannabinoids?
We hear a lot about the term cannabinoid now that legalization is on the rise but did you know that there are many different types of cannabinoids found in over 8 plants other than the cannabis plant?
A cannabinoid is a naturally occurring compound that is found in plants, especially the Cannabis Sativa plant. Of the 480 compounds found in cannabis, 66 of them are considered cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are lipid molecules that all act to some extent on cannabinoid receptors, which are a primary component of the endocannabinoid system.
There are three types of cannabinoids, summarized below:
- phytocannabinoids : Cannabinoids produced by plants.
- endocannabinoids : Cannabinoids produced in the human and animal body.
- Synthetic cannabinoids : cannabinoids produced in the laboratory.
The most commonly mentioned cannabinoids classic cannabinoids“) Include THC, CBD, THCV and CBC. The main difference between cannabinoids is the extent to which they are psychologically active. CBD makes up about 40% of the resin in cannabis, and THC is the only plant cannabinoid that produces a clear psychotropic effect on its own.
Then there are the cannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2. In recent years, several other non-cannabinoid plant constituents have been reported to bind to these CB receptors and functionally interact with them.
Health benefits of cannabinoids
The medical benefits of cannabinoids are promising. Research suggests that cannabinoids have the ability to:
- Reduce anxiety
- Reduce inflammation and relieve pain
- to control nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy
- Killing cancer cells and slowing tumor growth
- Relax tense muscles in people with multiple sclerosis
- Stimulate Appetite and Improve Weight Gain in People with Cancer and AIDS
- Helps to heal the brain
On the other hand, Canadian scientists have discovered thatthere are probably a lot more cannabinoids than previously thought.
6 Plants other than sativa cannabis that contain cannabinoid-like compounds
Black pepper (Piper nigrum)
Black pepper contains high levels of the terpene called beta-caryophyllene (BCP). This is what gives black pepper (and some varieties of cannabis) its peppery taste and aroma. BCP also functions as a cannabinoid and has a binding affinity with the CB2 receptor. Research suggests that the anti-inflammatory compounds in this terpene make it suitable for treating conditions like arthritis and osteoporosis.
Flax seeds (Linum usitatissimum)
Very recently, it was discovered that flax seeds produce cannabinoid-like compounds very similar to CBD, which appear to have very similar anti-inflammatory effects. The study that discovered it also showed that the industrial process of producing tissue from flaxseed does not affect the activity of CBD. These results suggest new medical applications for flax-based products, in particular for fabric as a dressing material with anti-inflammatory properties.
Cocoa (Theobroma cacao)
In addition to providing the body with a giant dose of magnesium, cocoa also contains several different chemicals like theobromine, phenylethylamine, tryptophan, and anandamide. Cocoa affects the endocannabinoid system by deactivating the enzyme called FAAH. This enzyme breaks down the endocannabinoid called anandamide. Research has qualified theanandamide natural version of THC for the body. This is why you feel relaxed and happy after eating delicious dark chocolate.
Black truffles (Tuber melanosporum)
Researchers have found that black truffles create the same anandamide (aka “happiness molecule”) as cannabis and cocoa. As mentioned above, anandamide is a naturally occurring endocannabinoid in the body that regulates mood and pain perception by binding to the CB1 receptor.
Hepatic or Marchantiophyta (Marchantiophyta)
A native New Zealand plant, liverwort, produces an unusual type of cannabinoid (called perrottetineinic acid) that is very closely related to THC. This cannabinoid is known to treat bronchitis and relieve gallbladder, liver, and bladder problems.
Never take fresh liverwort - always ingest by infusion or an extract of the herb. The dose should never exceed 3,8 grams of dried herb (about 4 teaspoons of a 3-6% infusion.
Chinese Labrador (Rhododendron anthopogonoides)
Labrador, which is growing significantly in North America, is one of the most antimicrobial plants on the planet. According to research, the essential oil extracted from Chinese rhododendron can kill anything from staphylococci to cancer cells.
A 2011 study found that “two new cannabinoid-like chroman and chromene derivatives called anthopogocyclolic acid and anthopogochromic acid and five related compounds known as synthetic analogues of cannabinoids: cannabichrome (type CBC), cannabicyclol (type CBL) and cannabicitran (CBT type) have been isolated with geranyl orsellinic acid in Chinese anthopogononoids ”.
The cannabis plant paved the way for the discovery of the endocannabinoid system in our body. Today, botanists and naturalists are discovering that cannabinoid-like molecules in plants are more prevalent than previously believed. All of the herbs listed above have valuable therapeutic properties. Many of them have been used as traditional remedies for centuries. We're only just beginning to understand why they've proven to be so useful.