The Science Behind Getting High

Ever wonder why we get high? Same!

There are two major cannabinoids in marijuana that interact with our brains each with their own unique properties; THC (delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol).

THC is psychoactive and gives a feeling of euphoria, the “high” sensation, by increasing dopamine levels in the body. CBD is not psychoactive. CBD is chemical in marijuana that is known for its medical properties. It turns out our brains make a chemical similar to the cannabinoids produced in marijuana called endocannabinoids.

These endocannabinoids are responsible for regulating some of the body’s natural biological functions such as apatite, mood, reward, learning, memory, inflammation and pain just to name a few. This gives us insight towards why using marijuana can influence these particular sensations (need a different word here) more than others.

When these systems get stressed out, endocannabinoids flow through the brain and rush to restore balance. They help to dull unwanted sensations and enable to body to restore homeostasis. What’s important about this is that our brains have neuro receptors that can bond with the cannabinoids produced by marijuana.

In recent studies scientists have found that the two cannabinoids work in unison and alter the way each one interacts with the body as opposed to if they were taken alone. They can bolster the desired effects of one another more so than if they were used separately. THC when used alone can give the user a feeling of uneasiness or anxiety. When used in conjunction with CBD, the CBD protects the brain against these feelings and prolongs the therapeutic psychoactive effect by preventing the breakdown of THC in the liver. This symbiotic relationship works in reverse as well.

A recent study by California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco shows that when CBD is combined with THC and injected into brain and breast tumors, the tumors not only subside but can be completely eliminated within 30 days.

The ratio where the medical properties of CBD is most effective is still unknown, studies suggest that ratio is close to 1:1, while others have found its different for every individual.
In recent studies scientists have found that in order to reap the medical benefits of CBD, its psychoactive partner THC must also be present.

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