The human immune system is a formidable guardian, tirelessly defending the body against invaders. It comprises a sophisticated network of processes and structures, from the physical barriers that shield us from external threats to the intricate cellular responses that mount defenses against pathogens.

But what can we do to help our immune system out? Believe it or not, many people are turning to CBD for immune system enhancements. Let’s figure out why!

The Three Layers of the Human Immune System

The human immune system is a complex defense mechanism comprised of several processes and biological structures. These are responsible for detecting, indexing, and fighting anything that attacks the body. The immune system distinguishes between the organism’s tissues and microorganisms (self-cells) from external pathogens, such as viruses, parasitic worms, bacteria, and toxins (non-self-cells).

The immune system works hard 24 hours a day. It provides a three-layered defense that progressively goes from generic to highly specific.

Physical or natural barriers

These include the skin, hair, mucous membranes (e.g., inside the nose), tears, and earwax. These all prevent dust, bacteria, viruses, etc., from entering the body by trapping them or flushing them out. These barriers are constantly at work without us even noticing. The stomach’s acid fluids are also part of this first layer of defense, as they destroy any ingested enemy microorganisms; then, the urine washes them out through the urinary tract. Coughing and sneezing to eject pathogens from the respiratory tract are also first-layer defense mechanisms.

Innate immune system

If a pathogen breaches the first level of physical defense, the innate immune system is activated to provide an immediate response, usually inflammation. This stops, kills, and then clears any pathogens. This is a nonspecific response — the innate immune system’s strategy of “one strategy fits all” — which means that the body simply recognizes an intruder without identifying it and activating a specific counter-attack. As this kind of defense does not memorize any attacks, it does not participate in creating antigens.

Adaptive immune system

This is the human body’s most potent weapon in its fight against disease activated if the previous layers fail. It has immunological memory, where a specific antigen remembers each pathogen that has attacked the body. It identifies the specific pathogen and activates a “tailored” response using white blood cells (or leukocytes). Leukocytes include lymphocytes (B and T cells) — specialized cells that destroy antigens and help the body remember previous attacks — and phagocytes, which absorb the pathogens.

CBD and the Immune System

Today, it is generally accepted that cannabinoids interact with the human immune system.

This is mainly due to the human endocannabinoid system  (ECS), which mediates the endocannabinoids (anandamide and 2-AG) in close contact with the immune system.

The ECS’s CB2 receptors are primarily present in the immune system cells — CB1 receptors are also found in the immune system cells, though to a lesser degree. This is unlikely to be a coincidence — after all, as our knowledge of the human body at a molecular level increases, we discover that our cells are organized for specific reasons.

The ECS is responsible for homeostasis — the body’s natural balance. Specifically, the ECS is the body’s homeostasis messenger, circulating messages from one cell to another when the internal balance is disrupted and needs to be repaired. This helps explain why there are so many CB2 (and also some CB1) receptors in the immune system, which receive stimuli from all other body systems and then send stimuli back to engage cells to fight.

Since we also know that the phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids found in plants), CBD, and THC are also mediated by the ECS, it makes sense that CBD and THC could be used to impact the human immune system.

Here are some of the key ways CBD interacts with the immune system:

Modulating Immune Response

CBD has been shown to have immunomodulatory effects, meaning it can help regulate the immune system’s response. It can potentially suppress excessive immune reactions, such as inflammation, which is beneficial in conditions where inflammation is harmful, like autoimmune diseases.

Reducing Inflammation

CBD has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help alleviate inflammation throughout the body. By reducing inflammation, CBD may indirectly support the immune system by preventing chronic inflammation from weakening immune function.

Regulating Cytokine Production

CBD may influence cytokine production, signaling molecules involved in immune responses. By modulating cytokine production, CBD could help balance immune responses and prevent excessive inflammation.

Supporting Immune Homeostasis

CBD may support immune homeostasis, the balance of immune function, by promoting optimal functioning of immune cells. This balance is crucial for overall health and the body’s ability to defend against pathogens while avoiding autoimmune reactions.

Enhancing Antioxidant Defense

CBD possesses antioxidant properties, which can help protect cells from oxidative stress caused by free radicals. By reducing oxidative stress, CBD may support overall immune function and contribute to maintaining a healthy immune system.

Interacting with the Endocannabinoid System (ECS)

CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system, which regulates various physiological processes, including immune function. By modulating the ECS, CBD may indirectly influence immune responses and contribute to immune system balance.

What OnlyPure Products Will Help My Immune System Thrive?

OnlyPure™ is your source for the finest CBD oil produced and manufactured in the United States. Our CBD products are created to fit your lifestyle, health needs, and personal preferences. All our CBD oil is full-spectrum hemp distillate, which contains dozens of phytocannabinoids, including CBG, CBDA, CBC, CBD, and less than .3% THC.

If you are looking for OnlyPure products designed to target specific needs, our Signature Formulas are a great place to start. We have formulas designed to enhance energy, reduce PMS symptoms, promote sleep, and improve joint health. We’ve also recently added a new product for immunity: Immunity Defense Gummies. You can find all of these products and other items in our online store.