Cardiovascular disease, which includes heart disease and stroke, is the number one cause of death world wide, causing about 610,000 Americans to die each year. While exercise, a heart-healthy diet, and adequate sleep can go a long way toward prevention, research has found that CBD can also support the cardiovascular system and improve heart health.
CBD contains cannabinoids that interact with our body’s endocannabinoid system, which helps our body maintain homeostasis or balance. While cannabinoids don’t connect to the cardiovascular system directly, their interaction with the cannabinoid system can have a positive effect on cardiovascular health.
High blood pressure (hyptertension) causes slow damage to the arteries which can eventually lead to heart disease or stroke. Approximately one-third of those with untreated hypertension will die of stroke, while as many as half will die of heart disease. It can also cause serious damage to the brain and kidneys. Over 75 million Americans, almost one-third of the U.S. population, suffer from high blood pressure, and only about half have the condition under control.
CBD acts as a vasodilator, widening arteries to increase blood flow, allowing blood to provide nutrients and oxygen to vital tissues and organs. A 2017 study published in JCI Insight examined the effects of CBD on healthy individuals. When researchers administered either CBD or a placebo to nine healthy males, they found that those who took the 600 mg dose of CBD lowered their resting systolic blood pressure by an average of 6 mmHg. Systolic blood pressure measures the amount of pressure in your veins when your heart is beating, and should stay below 120 mmHg.
Irregular heartbeat, or arrythmia, can be harmless, but can also be a sign of heart damage such as atrial fibrillation, which causes more than 750,000 hospitalizations per year and can increase the risk of blood clots and other heart issues. A study in the British Journal of Pharmacology showed that the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of CBD had a positive effect on animal test subjects, indicating its potential to offer protection against ventricular arrhythmias.
Myocarditis, or inflammation of the heart muscle, can cause fatigue, chest pain, and difficulty breathing, and severe cases can lead to blood clots and even heart attack or stroke.
CBD has powerful anti-inflammatory properties, and studies have suggested that these properties could provide effective treatment for vascular damage caused by glucose and inflammation. It has also been shown to reduce the number of cells that are destroyed by inflammation, which could help the heart maintain vascular health and strength.
You can learn more about CBD by visiting our education page.
Learn more about the anti-inflammatory effects of CBD here.