CBD is short for cannabidiol, which comes from the cannabis plant. Unlike its relative THC (tetrahydrocannabidiol), CBD does not cause a psychoactive high. It does, however, interact with the same endocannabinoid system. The endocannabinoid system (or ESC) is made of cannabinoid receptors and messengers and plays a role in pain reception, emotional well-being, appetite, and more. CBD sends calming and relaxing messages through the ESC to your brain. Because of that, people use CBD to calm anxiety, sleep better, or relieve pain. Some studies have also found links between CBD and high blood pressure.
Here are ways that CBD can lower blood pressure and help your cardiovascular health.
Improves Blood Flow
Because of its relaxing properties, scientists have studied the effects of CBD on blood pressure. In 2013, an article in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology explored the idea. Their research shows that CBD causes the blood vessels to relax and open, which naturally lowers blood pressure. This process is called vasorelaxation.
CBD also reduces the buildup of white blood cells and platelets in the blood. Cleaning up your blood vessels is a great way to improve blood flow and lower blood pressure.
Protects Against Diabetes Damage
And for those with diabetes, CBD can protect the blood vessels. Those with diabetes have high amounts of glucose in their blood, which can starve tissues of oxygen and cause damage (known as ischemia-reperfusion). The 2013 study shows that CBD is an anti-inflammatory and can protect against damage by increasing blood flow and reducing the size of the damaged area (also called an infarction).
One reason CBD works to lower blood pressure is because it can reduce stress and anxiety. Stress and blood pressure often go hand in hand, so reducing one can reduce the other. One placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover study shows that CBD reduces resting blood pressure and lowers blood pressure in response to stress.
If your high blood pressure is stress-induced, this may be a good option for you.
It May Not Be For Everyone
Other studies do not agree that CBD is helpful. One research review notes that some studies link recent CBD use with higher blood pressure and irregular heartbeats. Another study also showed increased blood pressure and recent CBD use. These reports seem to advise against CBD use in children, young adults, and people who already have cardiovascular problems or heart disease.
The Bottom Line
CBD can be a way to prevent heart disease by reducing stress, clearing platelet buildup, and protecting against damage caused by diabetes. It improves blood flow and lowers blood pressure. If you take CBD for blood pressure, it may be useful to learn how to take your blood pressure at home so you can measure your blood pressure after CBD use. Talk with your doctor before using it if you are on blood pressure medication or have any other medical condition.
CBD is gaining popularity on the market, so we think it is important for you to know how it can help you. Lowering blood pressure is one possible benefit. Learn about other ways to lower blood pressure, such as through l-arginine, by visiting l-arginine.com.