One in three adults in the U.S. has hypertension, or high blood pressure, which can lead to cardiovascular conditions like stroke, heart attack and heart failure. Many factors increase the risk of high blood pressure, including stress, poor diet, alcohol, tobacco use and a sedentary lifestyle.
Fortunately, cannabis shows promise in alleviating the symptoms of high blood pressure. Learn more about the short- and long-term effects of cannabis and high blood pressure.
Effects of Cannabis on High Blood Pressure
Shortly after cannabis consumption, some users experience a mild dose-dependent increase in blood pressure and heart rate, followed by a decrease in blood pressure. This typically occurs within 10 minutes of consumption.
Over time, repeated use has been associated with a lower heart rate and lower blood pressure. Though limited, the effects of cannabis on high blood pressure have been documented in several research studies as well.
Posture while consuming cannabis may also impact blood pressure. If you’re sitting or lying down while consuming, there’s a temporary increase in blood pressure. Once you stand, your blood pressure will decrease. This change can be significant enough to cause lightheadedness in some individuals.
In contrast, when you consume while standing up, your blood pressure will decrease without an initial increase. Though this effect hasn’t been researched extensively, there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence backing it up.
This information shows that cannabis does have an impact on blood pressure in the short term, which begs the question of how much cannabis can influence blood pressure with continued use.
Cannabis and Hypertension
The body’s endocannabinoid system, which releases naturally occurring chemicals that behave similarly to the cannabinoids in cannabis, play a role in regulating the many physiological functions in the body. This includes normal cardiovascular functions, such as heart rate and blood pressure.
Anandamide, a naturally occurring type of THC, has been shown to relax blood vessels. This may allow blood to flow more easily, lowering blood pressure as a result. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse & Alcoholism also published a report concluding that endocannabinoids’ action of suppressing cardiac contractility may offer a therapeutic strategy in treating high blood pressure.
The role of the endocannabinoid system in regulating the cardiovascular system has many researchers studying the treatment of hypertension by manipulating endocannabinoids. Though the studies are still in the early stages and cannabinoids haven’t been officially approved, current research and anecdotal evidence has shown a positive effect of cannabis on long-term blood pressure levels.
Visit Euphoria Wellness
As we continue to research the cannabinoid receptor system’s role in cardiovascular function, we’ll soon develop a better understanding of the therapeutic role of cannabis in treating hypertension and other cardiovascular conditions.
If you want to learn more about cannabis and high blood pressure, visit Euphoria Wellness. Our experienced staff members will be happy to discuss your options and help you learn more about the therapeutic use of cannabis for hypertension. Call or stop by our facility today with your Maryland medical card and take a look at our menu!