Introduction to the Endocannabinoid System

I’m a researcher. Just over two years ago, I was introduced to the subject of medical cannabis. My quest was to understand how cannabis works in our bodies to provide medicinal benefits. It’s been a little over two years since I started my research, and I’ve learned quite a bit. 

The more I’ve read, the more overwhelmed I’ve become at how extraordinarily complex the human body is. Our bodies are the product of millions of years of evolution, and it shows. Our bodies are like tremendous orchestras, with more instruments in our bodies (cells) than there are stars in the sky. And not only are there brass and string and percussion instruments – akin to our circulatory and digestive and immune systems – but within each system there are scores of sub-systems. Within the wind instruments are numerous flutes and oboes and clarinets and saxophones and bassoons. 

The average human body contains about 33 trillion cells of about 200 different types, 100,000 miles of blood vessels, and 640 skeletal muscles. Every day, the average adult takes over 20,000 breaths, experiences 100,000 heartbeats, processes about 200 quarts (50 gallons) of blood through the kidneys, and filters out about 2 quarts of waste and water. 

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