The Endocannabinoid System

The Endocannabinoid System

Our budtender Kiki is starting a new audio series where she’ll talk about cannabis and explain the science, culture, and history behind it. The first segment of her series covers the endocannabinoid system.

For this episode the topic is: The Endocannabinoid System

If we break it down, the prefix “endo,” means “made in the body.”

The endocannabinoid system helps regulate appetite, mood, memory, pain and more.

Your endocannabinoid system, or ECS, was discovered by a professor of medical chemistry at Hebrew University by the name of Dr. Raphael Mechoulam.

Our body naturally produces endocannabinoids: The two main endocannabinoids created by the body are anandamide, or AEA, and arachidonylglycerol, or 2-AG. And these endocannabinoids make up just 1 of the 3 parts that make up the ECS.

The endocannabinoid receptors CB1 & CB2 are the next major pieces of the system.

The 3rd function of this system deals with endocannabinoid-moderating enzymes.

Endocannabinoids are lipids that interact with the nervous system to make specific changes happen in the body. Endocannabinoids attach onto individual endocannabinoid receptors to spark that change in the nervous system. All mammals produce endocannabinoids that bind to endocannabinoid receptors.

Now, CB1 resides in the brain and CB2’s in the immune system. Some benefits that come with activating the CB1 receptor include: relieving depression, lowering intestinal inflammation, lowering anxiety and more.

Cannabinoids and the ECS are what helps keep your entire body in homeostasis, or balance. The ECS is the largest neurotransmitter in the body & endocannabinoid receptors are found in the most vital organs and glands.

When your ECS is out of balance research has shown that there is a direct correlation between an ECS deficiency and medical conditions like fibromyalgia, IBS, migraines, mood imbalances, chronic pain, and muscle spasms.

Cannabis is a major key to our endocannabinoid system! Medicating with the right doses, cannabinoids and terpene synergies can really help the body achieve homeostasis! The more you know!

Well, look out for more segments about cannabis brought to you by Kiki at Silver State Relief. If you see her let her know what you’d like her to talk about next. Happy medicating!

Keep out of reach of children. For use of 21 years and older.

Game Day Medicated Queso

Here at Silver State Relief we love celebrations. We look forward to getting together with friends and family to enjoy the company, eat good food and consume cannabis together, which is why we thought we would do something special for Super Bowl LII that combines all of these things. We have put together an adaptable recipe for an infused dip to liven up your football celebration that couldn’t be easier: no messy cannabis extractions, lengthy processes or filtering out plant matter in this recipe. In about half an hour you can be ready to rock this Super Bowl Sunday with a quick and tasty infused dip.

What’s the secret?

The syringes we carry from Organa Brands.

Decarbed Syringes

The reason for our excitement for these syringes? They are so versatile! If you want to smoke, you can drizzle some on a bowl of flower; you can lay a bead on the flower of a joint as you roll it; it can be smeared on a rolling paper or blunt; and you can also dab/vaporize the concentrate directly in a pen or with a dab rig. The other fantastic thing about these syringes is they can be added right to foods and drinks! (it is recommended that you eat something along with it or before it though-basically don’t have an empty stomach-for a bunch of reasons) With the obvious exception of edibles or stuff like RSO, cannabis needs to be altered before you can eat it and feel the effects. The psychoactive and therapeutic compounds in cannabis require a specific chemical transformation in order to be absorbed by the body through digestion.

A process known as Decarboxylation changes the state of the raw cannabinoid acids in the plant (THC-a and CBD-a) into something that our bodies can absorb through digestion. The beauty of these syringes it that they are already decarbed, so you don’t have to do anything to them to get the effects from eating or adding them to food, so when our friend Margaux from Organa Brands (the rep for these syringes) brought up the idea of a medicated cheese dip for the Super Bowl, we knew we had to figure out something to share for everyone to enjoy. So we did some poking around to find a sauce that would give the most consistent and tasty results, as well as being not overly complicated and we settled on the recipe below. If you want to read up on why we chose this recipe check out the original page here, they do some serious work and testing figuring out how to make a consistent sauce.

What follows is our modified recipe:

Medicated Game Day Queso

  • 8 ounces medium sharp cheddar cheese (or a mix of cheddar and pepper Jack—see note*), grated
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk**
  • 1 tablespoon Heavy Cream***
  • 1 OV CO2 Syringe (500 mg)
  • 2 teaspoons Franks Red Hot or other hot sauce
  1. In a pan over to medium-low heat combine one cup of the evaporated milk and the heavy cream.  While that comes to temperature (don’t let it boil, but it you will see it steaming when its warm) put shredded cheese in an large bowl and sprinkle cornstarch over cheese and toss to combine.
  2. Add cheese/cornstarch mix to medium saucepan. Stir over heat for 2 minutes then add the hot sauce. Cook over low heat, stirring often with whisk until melted, bubbly, and thickened (about 15-20 minutes). Mixture will look thin and grainy at first but will thicken and come together after heating. Thin to desired consistency with additional evaporated milk.
  3. Let cool for a bit, but then while its still warm throw the sauce in a blender (or use an immersion blender in the bowl), add the syringe and blend until completely smooth.
  4. Serve immediately with fries, tortilla chips, burgers, or hot dogs.

*While the original recipe called for extra sharp cheese, we tried it and thought it was a bit too tangy in the end, so we recommend using medium-sharp. For a spicier version, substitute half the cheddar cheese with Pepper Jack and add peppers. To reheat the sauce, microwave it on high heat, stopping and stirring every 30 seconds until it’s fully melted, but be careful not to overheat as it may be detrimental to the terpenes and cannabinoids. You can make many additions (sautéed onions and bell peppers, jalapeños, shredded chicken, etc.) and you can throw them in when you add the hot sauce, just be careful when adding water based liquid (like salsa) or fats, which might throw off the ratios and make it lumpy, greasy, or thin; but the corn starch should help this sauce be stable under most circumstances.

**be careful here that you don’t accidentally get condensed milk, which is sweetened, and will make your cheese sauce sweet

***We added a tablespoon of heavy cream to add some fat to help with bio-availability and absorption

We would also like to point out that it is critical to pay close attention to the concentrate as you are adding the syringe. Complete homogenization is key to ensuring even dosing, so make sure the concentrate is well-blended, with no lumps or globs. If you get sloppy here, you could over-medicate yourself or a guest.

We would also like to point out that it is important that paying close attention to the step when you are adding the syringe to ensure complete homogenization, which is key to ensure even dosing. You don’t want to get sloppy here because you might get a big glob of concentrate in one bite and over medicate you or a guest.

A Warning

As always with cannabis infused food you want to take it low and slow. Due to the fact that decarbed THC has to be processed further by enzymes in the liver, transforming the active delta-9 THC into what is known as 11-Hydroxy-THC (a form many times stronger and longer lasting that smoked/vaped cannabis), there can be a distinct delay of up to two hours or more just to start feeling the effects, so proceed slowly. Also, the effects of eaten cannabis will last much longer than smoking. It is always best to have non-medicated snacks on hand, since you are likely have a stimulated appetite from consuming cannabis and you don’t want yourself or others to over medicate trying to satisfy your hunger with food that is medicated, make sure you don’t end up in the downward spiral of eating medicated food because you are hungry from medicated food.

Terpene Consumption

An added benefit of this particular process is that keeping the temperature relatively low helps to retain more of the terpene content than most higher heat methods. If you have any questions about how terpenes can effect your cannabis consumption check out this Leafly Article on Terpenes. Terpenes are volatile compounds, and they rapidly vaporize in higher heat conditions.

Please enjoy with care this Super Bowl, and as always: Please be responsible, this is only for use by adults 21 years or older so keep out of reach of children.

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