CBD and Immunity
Every day our bodies are continuously exposed to many different viruses, bacteria, parasites and other infectious pathogens. The immune system plays an essential role in protecting us from these pathogens, thus preventing disease. The immune system is comprised of specialized cells, proteins, tissues and organs that work together to destroy these foreign invaders. White blood cells are known to be key players in how the immune system keeps us healthy.
The relationship between CBD and the immune system is not fully understood, but scientist know that it involves the Endocannabinoid system. The Endocannabinoid system is comprised of specific neurotransmitters, receptors (CB1 ad CB2) and receptor enzymes that play a crucial role in establishing homeostasis, or inner balance, within the body.
Research has identified the presence of CB1 and CB2 receptors on white blood cells. Although much is still unclear, it is thought that CBD and other cannabinoids act on these receptors to cause immune modulating effects. Once thought to only offer immunosuppressant benefits associated with inflammation and pain, CBD has been shown to also promote immunity in conditions like HIV. There is evidence that CBD may also play an important role in initiating apoptosis, or cell death, in cancer cells.
To summarize, CBD has many different effects on the immune system. Studies have shown CBD to have an adaptive effect in regulating and correcting the immune system’s response to achieve balance. This adaptive, immunomodulating effect, may prove to be important in not only treating inflammation and pain, but also autoimmune disorders, cancer and HIV.