Cannabinoids and Cardiovascular Disease


Cardiovascular Disease has now surpassed smoking as the number one cause of death in the United States. Nearly half of US adults are affected by some sort of cardiovascular illness. 

What is Cardiovascular Disease?

Cardiovascular Disease or “heart disease” refers to a group of health conditions that involve blocked or obstructed blood vessels. Any hindrance to the heart’s ability to filter “carbon dioxide filled blood” from the lungs and pump “oxygen rich blood” throughout the body can result in severe chest pain (angina), heart attacks or strokes. 

The most common cause of Cardiovascular Disease is Atherosclerosis, the hardening or clogging of arteries due to the build-up of cholesterol and fatty deposits (plaques) along the inner walls of the arteries. Atherosclerosis can be genetic, but lifestyle factors also play a large role. A diet high in fat and cholesterol as well as smoking and sedentary lifestyle are well known causes of Atherosclerosis. 

Cardiovascular Disease and Cannabis

Rapid initiation of CBD treatment post MI has shown to reduces myocardial dysfunction, cardiac fibrosis, oxidative-nitrative stress, inflammation and cell death (Rajesh, et al., 2010). In addition, administering CBD shortly after a myocardial infarction can reduce infarct size and myocardial inflammation, thus showing potential as a treatment for myocardial ischemia. The modulating effects on the immune system from CBD also decreases the risk of thrombus formation and plaque formation in the arterial system. (Durst, et al., 2010). The use of CBD capsules has also shown to cause a significant decrease in body weight gain and reduce triglycerides and free lipid levels in the bloodstream (Ignatowska-Jankowska, Jankowski & Swiergiel, 2011) and (Silvestri, et al., 2015).  

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