CBD And The Runner’s High
There is no question that noticeable mood changes exist after extended endurance exercise. In fact, researchers have shown a positive change in mood among clinically depressed subjects following extended periods of exercise. The real issue is what causes it. The endorphin role has been debunked. The latest research shows that the real cause of “runner’s high” is the endocannabinoid system.
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The endocannabinoid system is a series of transmitters and receptors spread throughout your central nervous system. It plays an important role in reward, learning, appetite and mood control. Where endorphins act on the body’s natural opioid receptors, endocannabinoids act on the body’s natural cannabis receptors, specifically THC, the psychoactive component in marijuana. Endocannabinoids are small molecules that can easily travel to the brain. Most importantly, prolonged exercise increases the levels of circulating endocannabinoids.
Endocannabinoid release depends on the intensity of exercise. High intensity and very low intensity activities such as walking, don’t increase this release, but moderate intensity exercise for extended periods actually produces the greatest amount of endocannabinoid release. Although you may not have heard of endocannabinoids, you’re most likely familiar with CBD and the diversity of its effects.