Potential Use of CBD for High Blood Pressure

Potential Use of CBD for High Blood Pressure



The most recent estimate by the American Heart Association suggests that 34% of adults and 11% of children are hypersensitive (suffer from high blood pressure). High blood pressure is the leading cause of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality worldwide.


A recent study conducted in 9 healthy males showed that just one single dose of CBD resulted in a reduction of blood pressure both at rest and when the subjects were exposed to cold stress. They are very encouraging results in the area of cardiovascular research, especially given the burden of hypertension and associated co-morbidities.


CBD is known to have anti-inflammatory, antiemetic, anxiolytic, antioxidant, and antipsychotic properties. Nevertheless, due to the scarcity of available preclinical and clinical studies, little is known about the potential anti-hypertensive effects. Looking at the regulatory mechanisms of blood pressure, we can realize that the already existing properties of CBD are likely to benefit patients with high blood pressure.


The regulatory components of blood pressure are located in the brain and the walls of the blood vessels. A particular center of the brain called paraventricular nucleus (PVN) is involved in increasing blood pressure due to various stimuli. When not controlled correctly, results in increases in blood pressure, such as hypertension.


Studies in rats have discovered that a cell type called microglia are activated in the PVN in hypertension, and also produce different molecules that contribute to inflammation. CBD has been shown to prevent the activation of microglia and to reduce inflammation. A decrease of microglia activation by CBD would not only result in neuroprotection, but also a reduction of blood pressure by normalized control of the PVN.


CBD could also help manage another area of regulation for blood pressure: the lining of the blood vessels. The lining is referred to as the endothelium. The innermost layer of cells, that are in direct contact with the blood, have the ability to constrict or enlarge the blood vessels. Thus, increasing or decreasing blood pressure.


The ability of the endothelium to function properly is impaired in patients with hypertension. The blood vessels become stiffer, the loss of regulatory substances occurs, an increase in pro-inflammatory molecules and oxidative stress ensues. CBD, with its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, is expected to improve endothelial function and restore control of blood pressure.


The medical use of CBD is a new area of investigation that will likely hold new and exciting discoveries in the area of inflammation and oxidative stress which underlie many diseases. The findings on the effects of CBD in animals and their blood pressure readings are very promising. It highlights the underlying medical potential of CBD as a choice for treatment for those with hypertension.

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