Heart health is one of the areas being explored to determine the therapeutic health benefits of cannabidiol (CBD). Nearly 655,000 Americans die from heart disease every year, accounting for one in every four deaths. CBD cannot cure heart disease or congestive heart failure, but it is being studied for ways it may help reduce symptoms or prevent heart disease.
Overview of Heart Failure
Heart disease is an umbrella term that refers to several types of heart conditions. Heart disease may involve the heart valves, arteries, and heart rate, leading to heart failure. Heart failure is a serious health condition in which the heart isn’t pumping the way it should be. The body depends on the heart’s pumping action to deliver oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to all of its cells.
CBD and Heart Health
CBD has anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative properties that may help reduce risk factors that can lead to heart disease. It may also be helpful in reducing the risk of related conditions, such as stroke.
Research suggests that even a single dose of CBD can lower blood pressure. High blood pressure has been linked to congestive heart failure. This is because high blood pressure makes it more difficult for blood to travel easily throughout the body, causing the heart to work harder.
CBD oil has anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce cholesterol levels to improve heart health. Cholesterol is a type of lipid (fat) found in the blood. CBD has properties that help relax arterial walls, which research suggests may help reduce blood pressure and excess cholesterol. In animal studies, CBD has been shown to increase HDL levels—aka “good” cholesterol—and lower LDL levels after four weeks of CBD supplementation.
CBD is perhaps best known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Research suggests that inflammation may be at the root of many chronic illnesses. One study found that CBD has a direct effect on the arteries, helping reduce inflammation and improving blood flow. This suggests that CBD reduces inflammation in arteries and blood vessels, easing the strain on the heart, potentially preventing heart failure.
Obesity is one of the leading causes of congestive heart failure, which is one reason why it is important to maintain a healthy weight for optimal heart health. One study found that CBD promotes the browning of white fat cells, which aids in converting the fat into burnable calories. This is beneficial because brown fat cells contain more mitochondria than white fat cells, which helps burn calories. White fat cells contain droplets of fat that accumulate around the body and can lead to obesity.
Are There Any Side Effects?
CBD has few side effects, and the World Health Organization states that it is generally well-tolerated and has a good safety profile. While relatively safe, there are a few things to consider before you try CBD. If you are currently taking any other medications, speak with your doctor before trying CBD. Some research suggests that CBD may interfere with the way the liver processes certain medications.
If safety is a concern for you
Tracking your dosing of CBD when you also track other things like your sleep, other medications and symptom management is the safest way to start taking CBD or moving from one product to the next.
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