THC interacts with the bodyâ€™s endocannabinoid system (ECS). Studies suggest this system plays a role in regulating stress recovery, protecting our nervous system, activating our immune system response and regulating our homeostatic balance (our overall state of optimal health, function and stability). Put simply, your ECS is made up of two things:
1) Cannabinoid receptors, present in nearly every region of your central nervous system and brain, as well as many other areas of the body, including your immune system; and
2) Cannabinoids that you naturally produce (called endocannabinoids).Your natural endocannabinoids fit into your ECS receptors like a key in a lock and help carry messages from cell to cell. THC works the same way, temporarily replacing your own endocannabinoids, but with different effects. These may include:
- the release of dopamine, resulting in feelings of relaxation;
- a physical response, such as reduced inflammation or an increase in hunger; and
- effects on various regions of the brain, including the hippocampus (memory), the frontal cortex (thinking and decision-making) and the cerebellum (physical movement and coordination).