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I've been reading lately about the brain producing cannabinoids. I was introduced to this idea by the Wim Hof Method which has been shown to increase the amount of cannabinoids (that is, compounds simulator to those found in cannabis) produced by the body.

Could anyone enlighten me on why the body naturally produces cannabinoids in the endocannibinoid system other than the shallow explanation that they have any anti inflammatory effect?

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    $\begingroup$ It's just a matter of terminology. The neurotransmitters, of course, already existed on mammals, such as Anandamite, and they had their own receptors (no matter the name we give them). Since it was discovered that cannabinoids act on these receptors as well, the whole system, including receptors and neurotransmitters, was named after the plant (Cannabis). The very same thing happened with endorphins (from endogenous morphine), which were named after Morphine. $\endgroup$
    – user24284
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 1:00
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    $\begingroup$ Therefore, I believe your question boils down to just this: "There is a neurotransmitter X and a receptor Y in our brain. Why X was named endocannabinoid and Y was named cannabinoid receptor?" $\endgroup$
    – user24284
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 1:03
  • $\begingroup$ The intention of my question was "what purpose do cannabinoids server in the body?" Why does the body produce them? $\endgroup$
    – Charlie
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 1:15
  • $\begingroup$ So the answer is: they are neurotransmitters. Please read the link I shared. $\endgroup$
    – user24284
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 1:15
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    $\begingroup$ It's interesting to me that cannabinoids, opioids, etc are naturally occurring substances in the body; it's a change of perspective for me. I've always believed those substances to be foreign substances in the body as opposed to something that's always meant to be there. $\endgroup$
    – Charlie
    Commented Jun 3, 2017 at 1:26

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