Zanthoxylum bungeanum … also known as Chinese prickly ash sounds kind of medieval as a treatment, doesn’t it? Actually, it’s a plant native to China and the extract of its bark and berries have been used in traditional Chinese healing for thousands of years.
So, what’s the big deal about this plant? When Chinese prickly ash teams up with our endocannabinoid system, it acts like Rocky Balboa fighting back against any intestinal distress that gets in the way of your health.
Why You Want Your ECS Working Flawlessly
Have you heard of the endocannabinoid system [ECS] before this article? It’s the most comprehensive way to keep every function in your body from your brain to your gut to your joints working as smoothly and seamlessly as possible.
And the story of its discovery is pretty incredible. Researchers were looking at the cannabis plant and specifically at THC which is the psychoactive property in marijuana. What they found was a lock and key sort of system in our bodies that seemed to be responsible for regulating nearly every function. They called it the endocannabinoid system.
The ECS sends messages to various cells in your body and those cells house receptors called cannabinoid receptor 1 [CB1] and cannabinoid receptor 2 [CB2]. CB1 is linked directly to your brain, spine and central nervous system and CB2 covers everything else in your peripheral nervous system.
The principal way your ECS works has to do with your homeostasis. It’s the thing that keeps everything in balance and balance is exactly what you need for optimum health.
ECS and Your Intestinal Tract
You know what it’s like to deal with intestinal issues. It’s uncomfortable whether that’s gas, bloating or worse. You have no doubt read and heard about how your gut is home to about 70% of your immune system and that probiotics plus healthy food choices help keep things running smoothly.
The CB2 receptors are responsible for regulating your gut and, therefore, your immune system. And while everyone produces cannabinoids naturally, sometimes plant-based cannabinoids – like the ones found in prickly ash – can help keep your ECS at peak performance.
One critical function of the CB2 receptors in your intestinal tract is releasing something called cytokines.
Cytokines and Why They Matter
Cytokines are signaling molecules that talk to various parts of your body like your immune system. They also help with needed responses when you have an infection, bruising or inflammation.
When your CB2 receptors – and, to some extent, CB1 receptors get in on the act – receive signals from your gut that an invader needs to be dealt with, your cytokines are released and sent to the area that needs the most help.
Emerald Health’s Phytocann™ Complex contains concentrated prickly ash extract will help support your natural production of cannabinoids and will aid in maintain homeostasis.*
A Note of Caution: Some studies that indicate there may be an issue with prickly ash and prescription blood clotting medication. If you’re taking medicines to slow blood clotting, talk with your healthcare professional before adding a supplement with Chinese prickly ash.