We all enter the world with a certain degree of immunity, both innate and passive. This is the general protection that through evolution has ensured the survival of our species. As we live our lives, a more novel adaptive immunity develops from our exposure to natural disease, bacteria, viruses, pathogens and even vaccinations in the world around us.
A special group of organs, cells and chemicals comprise the immune system. Collectively they work in military fashion, identifying potential targets, mounting defenses and sending in soldier cells to destroy invaders. The immune system operates in a high level of biological intelligence, even capable of keeping record of its victories so that when common foes dare return, it will recognize and destroy the microbe more quickly than before, ruining the chance of the invaders ability to multiply and rain havoc on the human body.
The immune system is highly sophisticated, truly of marvel of design and our existence dependent on it. While the direct components of the immune system are identified as white blood cells, antibodies, spleen, thymus, the complement system, the lymphatic system and bone marrow; you may be surprised to learn that the immune system cannot and does not act in solidarity. The cells within the immune system carry receptors that speak to a very specific authority, one that is charged with modulation, homeostatic regulation and a wide scope of physiological processes. This system is the endocannabinoid system or ECS. It is a master regulator and its receptors, endocannabinoid (cannabinoid) receptors, are the most abundant receptor type in the human body, which gives it access and authority over nearly every cell and its behavior. The ECS oversees the activities of every system, carefully balancing one in support of another.
The immune system relies heavily on a secondary system, the digestive system, and you would be correct in assuming that both are reliant on the ECS as the communicative link in coordinating the supportive behaviors of each. Further, the digestive system cannot be the immune systems ally nor an effective receiver of the ECS’s important chemical instructions without the help of some very tiny, yet very important organisms.
Thanks to advanced technologies, science has discovered that the human health equation is made up of less than 10% DNA. The remaining 90% plus cells that we rely on are foreign microorganisms living within the body and on the skin. Most of these microorganisms are health supportive and essential and thrive in a balanced environment. The organisms in this crucial microbial community keep a protective balance in many ways: They break down fiber within the large intestines with their digestive enzymes; they provide protection from invasive pathogenic organisms coming from contaminated food or water; they prevent the overgrowth of harmful bacteria in the colon by competing with them for nutrients and attachments sites which results in an immune boost and production of antimicrobial proteins; they manipulate the PH in the colon to limit the growth of harmful bacteria. Beyond stimulating immune advantages, these microbes directly impact glucose and cholesterol levels in the blood.
It is also of great interest that while we have established the links between the brain and the gut, only recently has research began to link chronic stress directly to increased inflammation, disease flares and poor health related quality of life. The Nationwide Children’s Hospital published research that confirmed a connection between exposure to stress, colonic inflammation, and the various levels and variety of gut bacterial and metabolites in mice. This study in part reviewed metabolites, which can communicate with the immune system and the intestines. It revealed that stress altered the microbiome, which lead to increased inflammation. It was strongly concluded that changes in the microbiome are connected to poor GI health during stress.
As we continue to research and get a fuller understanding of our microbiome, we can better respect its functions and importance. In most cases, microbes are allies to our overall health and survival. It is when we introduce antibiotics, medications and disinfectants into the microbiome that the balance shifts away from health. Overuse of antibiotics has brought on a public health crisis as microbes have adapted to a changing ecology. Every species fights for survival and pathogenic microorganisms are not exceptions. Antibiotic resistance is the direct result of bacteria morphing and strengthening in response to antibiotic treatments designed to kill them. Antibiotic resistance is not restricted to one type of bacteria or one type of antibiotic medicine. Nearly all types of bacteria are resilient and have grown immune to the power of many antibiotics that traditionally destroyed them. Medicines that were once failsafe remedies have now been rendered useless. The problem has gotten so serious that the Center for Disease Control states that there over 23 million deaths a year in the US directly attributed to opportunistic infections that are not treatable due to the overuse of antibiotic medications.
Fortunately, there is current research studying hundreds of different viral and bacterial infections and diseases that have demonstrated CBD’s unequivocal ability to inhibit the growth of both viruses and bacteria in laboratory settings and in humans with progressive disease.
In addition, countless published references by leading medical researchers have documented the effectiveness of CBD and terpenes in combating viral, bacterial and fungal infections.
With the inability of current medications to meet the antiviral and antimicrobial challenges facing today’s medical community, full spectrum hemp oil holds promise to reduce symptoms associated with the flu and colds, and to fight common bacterial infections as well as more serious microbial disease threats. While the body utilizes its own endocannabinoids to moderate the immune response to illness, the introduction of full spectrum hemp oil boosts the power of the response, by stimulating the ECS to ease pain and inflammation and empowering the system with a potent tool to fight against the infection’s cause.
Using full spectrum hemp oil supports your natural defenses by giving your endocannabinoid system a huge boost. Specifically, the cannabinoids and terpenes in full spectrum hemp oil have been found to be very helpful in reducing body pain, sinus pressure, headaches and upset stomachs allowing people to better rest and heal. When it comes to reasons why people choose to try CBD, reducing pain is first, second is reducing stress and anxiety. Chronic stress and anxiety are not only precursors to many diseases and disorders, they are also side effects.
Common doses of 20-30 mgs. of CBD in a broad or full spectrum hemp oil taken daily should work to help stimulate a healthy immune system. An increased dose of 40-60mgs. is indicated for use by immune comprised individuals.