The gut is responsible for digestive and abdominal processes and the effective function of the body. That is because over 70%-80% of the immune cells are present in the gut, along with a vast majority of the body’s serotonin hormone!
If the gut isn’t healthy, the working of your immune system, nerve messengers, hormones, etc., all get compromised. The most readily noticeable consequence of an unhealthy gut is indigestion and improper absorption of food.
It leads to toxin buildup, which causes all kinds of harmful health conditions, from digestive disorders, pain, and fatigue to chronic illnesses and inflammation. Hence, it can be safely said that gut health is the foundation of overall health, wellbeing, and quality of life.
A healthy gut is achieved when there is a balance between the good and the bad bacteria in the digestive system. Though dietary habits, mental conditions, and medications affect the gut, the most crucial role in regulating gut health is played by the ECS.
Decoding the Connection
The brain and the spinal cord consist of the central nervous system (CNS). The gut has a brain of its own, called the enteric nervous system (ENS). The ENS is also referred to as the body’s second brain because it uses the same nerve cells (neurons), nerve messengers (neurotransmitters), and receptors.
It regulates critical gastrointestinal functions, from digestion and absorption to muscle contractions and bowel motility.
The ENS and the CNS communicate through numerous nerve pathways, thus forming the ‘gut-brain connection.’ Among these nerves is the vagus nerve, the longest cranial nerve that extends from the brain straight to the gut and transmits messages between them.
The ECS or the Endocannabinoid system is spread all across the body. It consists of endocannabinoids (naturally produced cannabinoids by the body) and cannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2).
The CB1 receptors are highly concentrated in the CNS, and the CB2 receptors are predominantly present in the body’s immune cells, i.e., the gut. The ECS in the brain communicates with the ECS in the gut through the gut-brain connection to regulate the physiological and psychological processes.
An imbalance in the gut bacteria sends signals to the brain, affecting the body’s physical and mental health. Similarly, mental conditions like excess stress severely affect gut health.
How ECS Affects Gut Health
By acting upon the gut-brain connection, the ECS plays a crucial role in regulating gut functions such as:
Inflammation happens when the immune system gets hyperactive and produces pro-inflammatory cytokine and chemokine cells. When the CB2 receptors in the immune cells are activated, they control the gut’s immune response, decrease the excess cytokine production, and hence reduce inflammation.
It helps alleviate and prevent gastrointestinal disorders such as IBDs (inflammatory bowel diseases), IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), etc.
The hypothalamus is a part of the brain that produces hunger sensations and regulates appetite. Through its receptors in this region, the ECS gets a direct influence over the body’s appetite signaling, digestion, absorption, and hence a healthy weight.
It further controls the gut’s energy metabolism to promote better function.
Intestinal Barrier Strength
The intestinal barrier is a semipermeable structure made of mucous. It is responsible for taking up vital nutrients and restricting harmful bacteria and pathogens. If the permeability of this barrier increases (leaky gut), harmful bacteria and molecules enter the gut.
That leads to conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, IBDs, obesity, indigestion, stress, depression, etc. When the ECS is stimulated, it helps maintain the integrity of the gut barrier. Doing so prevents such abdominal disorders and improves gut health. It also decreases the risk of colon cancer and inhibits the formation and spread of colon cancer cells.
The ECS communicates with the ENS to regulate food movement in the gut. That allows for better digestion and effective absorption of the nutrients. By balancing intestinal motility, the ECS helps alleviate digestive disorders like diarrhea, constipation, abdominal pain, etc.
As mentioned before, a majority of the body’s serotonin hormone lies in the gut. This hormone stabilizes the mood and maintains a healthy psychological function. When stress happens, the serotonin levels decrease, hence causing damage to the gut.
It increases the production of cortisol, the body’s main stress hormone. An activated ECS inhibits cortisol production and reduces the body’s stress response. That further reduces stress-related anxiety and depression, thus encouraging a healthy gut.
Activating the ECS
The ECS gets activated when it senses damage or any other stress response. But in some cases, the body is unable to produce its natural endocannabinoids in the required amounts for the ECS to function properly.
This endocannabinoid deficiency may happen due to side effects of certain medications, illnesses, or even genetic factors. That severely compromises the body’s health, especially in the gut.
To aid the ECS’ function and provide the body with the required cannabinoid supply, medical experts prescribe Vijaya and its derived cannabis-based medicine. This potent herb contains plant-based cannabinoids THC and CBD. When consumed, they go into the system and bind with the ECS’ cannabinoid receptors.
Cannabis-based medicine thus activates the CB1 receptors in the CNS as well as the CB2 receptors in the gut and its immune cells. Through this action, the herb enhances the ECS function and regulates the functions of the brain and the gut.
That is why Vijaya is an effective medication for alleviating gut disorders, improving gut health, and enhancing the overall life quality. To know more about how you can leverage cannabis-based medicine to achieve a healthy gut and an effective ECS, contact Hempstreet and get the best medical consultation for yourself.