Treating Cardiovascular Disease with CBD | cannabisMD

Medical Cannabis and CBD for Treating Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease and Medical cannabis

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Death and taxes are unavoidable. A good CPA can help you with the latter, and nearly everyone will make at least a few vain attempts to forestall the former. Exercise, diet and smiling a lot are all supposed to help, pundits say. Gym memberships are up – gym visits, on the other hand, maybe not too much. The fact is, nearly everybody recognizes that maintaining your health is crucial to avoiding heart diseases.

Remember the character that Jack Nicholson played in the movie, “The Bucket List?” In the scene where he has undergone his first day of chemotherapy, he is hugging a hospital toilet bowl and proclaims “right now, somewhere, some lucky ‘son-of-a-gun’ is having a heart attack!”

Cardiovascular Disease – Public Enemy Number One

Nobody who has ever had a heart attack would agree with him, but one thing IS certain: somebody somewhere right now IS experiencing some kind of life-threatening cardiovascular event. Heart disease still ranks as public enemy number one, according to, Medical News Today. The publication notes that,

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the U.S. and also the leading cause of death worldwide. More than half of the deaths that occur as a result of heart disease are men.

The statistics are sobering. In a given year in the United States, here are the stark facts:

  • Deaths: 614,348
  • Rate: 192.7 (per 100,000)
  • Age-adjusted rate: 167.0 (per 100,000)
  • Percentage of total deaths: 23.4 percent

The article explains that the term “heart disease” is an umbrella description that includes several conditions, many of which are related to plaque build-up in arterial walls. It points out that as the plaque builds up, the arteries pathways narrow, which makes it more difficult for blood to flow and creates a risk for heart attack or stroke.

Interested in why you need to know more about cardiovascular disease? Read how it is that cardiovascular disease became so prevalent.

Taking Preventative Measures

To prevent from becoming one of the 614,348 shown above, the article offers some advice. It says that lowering blood pressure and cholesterol can significantly lower heart disease risk. There are several lifestyle and dietary modifications that can dramatically reduce the risk of heart disease.

Start by:

  • Following instructions to ensure safe use of medications and any OTC drugs
  • Eating a diet that is low in salt, refined sugars, total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol and high in fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Exercising regularly (at least 150 minutes a week)
  • Avoiding excessive intake of alcohol
  • Quit smoking
  • Taking steps to reduce stress levels, or get help with stress management

But, of course, eventually the “fence built at the top of the hill” will give way to the “ambulance at the bottom.” Prevention is not permanent, especially when it comes to heart disease. That’s when the pharmacy comes to the rescue with statin drugs, blood pressure medication and other prescriptions to reduce the effect of blocked arteries and other circulatory mishaps.

The American Heart Association explains that inflammation and cardiovascular disease are linked. Their article in an online journal states that

Although it is not proven that inflammation causes cardiovascular disease, inflammation is common for stroke patients and is thought to be a sign of atherogenic response. It’s important to know what inflammation is and what it can do to your heart.

There Are Variations in Severity, and Types of Heart Disease

Unfortunately, heart diseases come in different types and varieties ranging from; coronary artery disease, silent ischemia, arrhythmia and angina to name a few.

Dr. Deepak Bhat:

The body perceives this plaque as abnormal and foreign — it does not belong in a healthy blood vessel, In response, the body tries to wall off the plaque from the flowing blood. However, under the wrong set of circumstances, that plaque may rupture, and its walled-off contents can come into contact with blood and trigger a blood clot formation. This combination of plaque and blood clots causes the majority of heart attacks and certain types of stroke, if the blood clot obstructs blood flow to the heart or brain.

Major pharmaceutical firms around the world have been looking for anti-inflammatory drugs to help prevent heart attacks, such as canakinumab, and have already conducted some clinical trials, but that canakinumab had its downside – a possible higher risk for fatal infections. In further studies it is becoming clear from the findings that reducing inflammation may be the next step in preventing heart disease before it can kill or maim.

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum who is the director of the women’s heart health at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, stated that,

It’s been shown that 50 percent of heart attacks occur in those people who do not have high cholesterol. In many trials, inflammation has been implicated as being the driving force. This study is the window to the next generation of prevention, which is focusing on inflammation.

How Can CBD Oil Treat Cardiovascular Disease?

So, what options are available today before another billion-dollar Big Pharma research project is announced and distributed via news releases to the national press? One may surprise you: cannabidiol or also known as CBD oil.

CBD (Cannabidiol) is a chemical compound known as a cannabinoid and comes from the family of cannabis plants. They are within the hemp plant and the cannabis plant itself. Within either plant, CBD makes up the most of it, however, hemp has very little traces of THC. This is why some CBD products made from the cannabis plant are illegal in some states. It may have trace elements of THC which can have mind altering effects.

Although the trace elements may not have any actual influence in a CBD product, because it is there, it must still be considered as a possibility. This valid from of caution is why some CBD products are illegal throughout the United States. For the states where it is legal either in hemp form or cannabis form, people are using it as a treatment for cardiovascular issues including cardiovascular disease.

Some studies into CBD oils are finding that they are beneficial not only because of their main CBD property but also because of the essential oils and fats that are included within them. One of the many essential oils included is Omega-3, which is a polyunsaturated fatty acid. This is useful for our bodies and has been widely advertised as key beneficial ingredient to cod liver oil supplements. The Omege-3 in both cod liver oil and cbd oil is good at preventing heart disease as well as managing it. It is also beneficial for blood pressure too as a result. While this i great for those suffering from cardio related issues and heart issues it also brings hope to diabetics who worry about their blood pressure and insulin levels on a daily basis.

The human body itself has a receptor function called the “endocannabinoid” system that is a system of receptors and chemical compounds that interact in specific ways to keep the body operating in a perfect balance. Phytocannabinoids such as CBD and THC very similar from a chemical compound point of view when compared to endocannabinoids. Endocannabinoids are the naturally produced cannabinoids within the human body. This is one of the reasons why they (CBD & THC) work so well as an alternative medical treatment.

These cannabinoids can interact with our endocannabinoid system when it needs extra help when targeting the causes of various ailments such as arthritis, acne, asthma and bowel disease to name a few. These diseases are all inflammation based and CBD is very effective when dealing with inflammation based diseases. Therefore a new treatment could be created with further research to use CBD as a primary solution for these specific diseases. Fortunately for those suffering with these ailments, research is currently being carried out throughout the world.

However, CBD is not just for small ailments such as acne. Inflammation is one of the many causes of disease that medical cannabis can treat, but it should also be known that inflammation can cause very serious problems as a secondary symptom of other serious illnesses. For example it could be stated that CBD can be used to help patients after they have heart attacks.

After a heart attack, patients can suffer from an injury called reperfusion which is a form of inflammation based cell destruction that can occur when blood flow comes back to the hearts system. A study supports the importance of using CBD for the heart and other cardio based ailments as it has been found to provide beneficial properties when dealing with myocardial ischemia. Myocardial ischemia is when blood flow to your heart is reduced and as a result your heart gets less oxygen than it needs.

Why Aren’t the Benefits of CBD Oil More Widely Known?

While individual researchers can make a case for CBD oils’ ameliorative properties for heart health, the medical establishment hasn’t taken an official stance. The jury is still out. However, an informal poll taken from subscribers to the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine in response to a case study about a woman suffering from terminal cancer showed that 76 percent of those polled would favor the use of medicinal marijuana in her case, with 23 percent voting against it.

Some are skeptical because of the lack of official pharmaceutical validation of the claims; no billion-dollar studies are available to rely on. The article concludes that,

Arguments for and against medicinal marijuana are manifold. Under federal law, the drug is illegal.

However, given widespread state defiance, the cannabis horse long ago burst from the federal jurisdictional barn. Some people argue that as a drug of abuse, marijuana has no business being used for clinical purposes. Yet, several Schedule I drugs have close cousins with legitimate medical applications. Heroin and morphine are just two examples. For patients suffering from heart disease, cancer or epilepsy, CBD oil can offer hope. And, sometimes hope can be the best medicine of all.

Since its discovery in the 60s, CBD–or cannabidiol–has been known as a constituent of the cannabis plant, but until around the mid 1990s, its many therapeutic uses were virtually unknown. This is because in 1995, the endocannabinoid system was named and discovered. The endocannabinoid system is composed of endogenous chemical compounds and receptors that regulate everything from the body’s metabolism, brain function, immune function, to cell proliferation and more. In fact, scientists discovered the bliss molecule – an endogenous cannabinoid they named anandamide. CBD is a phytocannabinoid – meaning it is a cannabinoid that the brain and the body uses to help regulate the same functions as the body’s own endocannabinoids do. It is important to understand how this compound helps heal and prevent disease.

However, since not enough research has been done on this topic, it is extremely important to consult with your doctor about the use of medical cannabis to help combat heart problems. CBD is not for everyone and can have a different effect on each individual.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
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