CBD Science: How Cannabinoids Work at the Cellular Level to Keep You Healthy
Although mitochondria allow energy to be accessed at a measured pace in relatively small quantities, the process of cellular respiration, whereby cells extract energy from nutrients, still can be damaging. High-energy electrons offload their energy in a multitude of complicated steps, until the lower-energy electron is finally released onto an oxygen molecule. Ideally, the oxygen molecule will interact with hydrogen and form water, which is very stable.
Oxidative stress is a natural byproduct of mitochondrial activity. The creation of oxidative stress is necessary for obtaining energy and sustaining cellular function. Inevitably this will take its toll on an organism. But oxidative damage can be repaired to a certain extent through an adaptive process known as autophagy, whereby faulty cell parts – misfolded or aggregated proteins, dysfunctional mitochondria, etc. – are removed and replaced by newer, better-working components. Cell survival is dependent on this ongoing regenerative mechanism.