Does Marijuana Users Have High Hypertension Risk?
Hypertension is the most significant cause of premature death throughout the world. Even though it that can be prevented, many people don’t give it enough importance. Some say that cannabis use increases the risk of cardiac arrest in people who already suffer from high blood pressure, while others state that more studies are needed to prove such claims.
And, according to seasoned weed vets and observational studies, cannabis initially causes a slight rise in blood pressure and then lowers it.
An estimated 75 million people in the United States suffer from hypertension, or high blood pressure. With most states legalizing medical and/or recreational marijuana, many are wondering if cannabis can be used to lower blood pressure.
As your heart beats, it pumps blood through your arteries. Blood pressure is determined by measuring the force of the blood pressing against the artery walls. The force of blood in the arteries when your heart pumps is measured as systolic pressure. The force measured at the moment of rest between heartbeats is diastolic pressure.
For most healthy adults, normal blood pressure is less than 120 millimeters systolic and less than 80 millimeters diastolic.
High blood pressure means the heart has to work harder to pump blood which causes strain and weakening. It also causes the walls of the arteries to get damaged over time.
The only thing that we do know is that marijuana hypertension studies suggest occasional marijuana users will experience a mild to moderate increase in heart rate and blood pressure about 10-15 minutes after consumption. That effect is followed by a decrease in blood pressure.
But here’s the thing: users develop a tolerance to these initial effects over days or weeks. Repeated use has actually been linked to lower blood pressure and heart rate immediately after consumption.
Other research suggests that marijuana helps users maintain healthy blood pressure levels.
Another interesting bit of research suggests that posture during marijuana consumption can influence its effects on blood pressure.
Those who use marijuana while lying or sitting may experience a temporary increase in blood pressure. Upon standing, blood pressure will drop. If you stand up too quickly, the sudden drop can be dramatic and make you feel dizzy or lightheaded.
On the other hand, if you use marijuana while standing, you may experience a drop in blood pressure without the initial spike.
There’s a growing body of evidence that suggests anandamide, the body’s own natural version of THC, actually relaxes blood vessels. Relaxing blood vessels and allowing blood to flow more freely naturally helps lower blood pressure.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism published a report that concluded endocannabinoids can “suppress cardiac contractility in hypertension” and may help in the treatment of hypertension.
Researchers are still looking at ways to manipulate the endocannabinoid system to lower blood pressure. But we’re still lacking the human studies needed to say, with certainty, that marijuana can be used to treat hypertension.
So, if you like weed and have been diagnosed with hypertension, my advice would be to:
Consult your doctor
Avoid smoking and instead, use one of the healthier ways of consuming weed
Try exploring cannabis strains that are high in CBD
Take smaller doses and don’t overdo it (baby steps are the best)
If your blood pressure rises after using weed, quit smoking altogether.
You can live without smoking cannabis and your health and well-being should be your number-one priority at all times.
One of the most popular strains in the medical world, this thoroughbred indica is recommended for a variety of conditions.
Purple Wreck will give you full body relaxation while eliminating stress at the same time. This strain won’t make you sleepy as most indicas but it’s best used at night, as you close off your day.
Also a very popular medical strain, Blue Dream provides calming relaxation and tension relief.
Although this strain has a very high THC content, hypertension patients have reported good experiences with it. Northern Lights will help all your muscles relax.
Super Sour Diesel
Super Sour Diesel is a very potent strain, so take it easy with this one, as you would with any other strain rich in THC. Provided you get the dosage right, it will help you leave behind any stress, which is also one of the main causes of hypertension.
Formerly known as “Cush”, Green Crack got its new name from Snoop Dogg — after he tried this potent sativa, he joyously renamed it because of the energetic kick it brings.
Because of its sativa dominance, Green Crack is much better suited for daytime use, and with its moderate-to-high THC levels (between 15% and 20%) it is beneficial for a wide array of medical issues including chronic pain, arthritis, and depression. Even though the ominous name may suggest otherwise, do not fret, this is 100% quality cannabis flower.