Indica or Sativa For High Blood Pressure?
Hypertension is a dangerous medical condition that can lead to numerous medical issues and complications. Controlling high blood pressure can be a challenge. Finding the right mix of lifestyle changes and medications is no picnic in the park.
Some research suggests that cannabis may help lower blood pressure and enhance relaxation, promoting a more balanced lifestyle. Is cannabis right for you? Which strains help lower blood pressure in adults?
What Is High Blood Pressure?
Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a condition where the force of the blood pushing against the walls of the blood vessels is consistently high. Blood pressure is measured using two numbers: systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure. Systolic blood pressure measures the pressure in your arteries when the heart beats. Diastolic pressure measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart rests or the time in between heartbeats. Normal blood pressure is typically in the 120/80 mmHg range.
Physicians diagnose an individual with high blood pressure when their blood pressure is consistently 130/80 mmHg or higher. Hypertension is a problem because consistently high blood pressure damages tissue and artery walls. High blood pressure also makes the heart work harder and less efficiently. Hypertension can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney disease, vision loss, and other significant medical complications.
Does Cannabis Lower Blood Pressure?
Some studies indicate that cannabis lowers blood pressure in older adults. Results suggest that cannabis use may help lower blood pressure in both genders. However, it lowered blood pressure to a greater degree in females.
Interactions Between Cannabis and Blood Pressure
How does cannabis help manage blood pressure in older adults? Cannabis contains hundreds of unique chemical compounds, some of which science knows little about or how they interact with the human body. Typically, the active compounds in cannabis, primarily THC, bind with specific endocannabinoid system receptors in the brain, creating a euphoric high.
Many of the compounds found in cannabis are vasodilators. Vasodilators are compounds that cause blood vessels to expand. When blood vessels expand, blood pressure drops. This mechanism may contribute to the blood pressure-lowering effects of cannabis. Some cannabis strains are also known for their calming effects. Decreasing stress and anxiety can also play a vital role in helping individuals lower blood pressure.
What Is Better for High Blood Pressure, Indica or Sativa?
Cannabis plants come in two varieties: indica and sativa. Choosing which strain is better for high blood pressure means understanding the differences between the two plants. Indica plants natively grow in the harsh, dry climate of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the Hindu Kush Mountain range. Indica is a fast-growing and hardy cannabis variety with buds that produce higher concentrations of the compound CBD. Indica plants are prized for their deeply calming effects.
Africa, Southeast Asia, and Central America are the home to native sativa plants. Taller and slower to mature overall, sativa plants have higher concentrations of THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana that gives you a “high” feeling. Sativa plants help increase energy levels and heighten mental focus and clarity.
Indica plants or indica-dominant hybrid strains are a popular choice for those looking to lower their blood pressure with cannabis. Indica plants have naturally higher concentrations of CBD, a compound thought to affect heart health positively. Indica and indica-dominant strains also promote relaxation, better sleep, and a sense of calm, which may help reduce stress and lower blood pressure.
Best Strains for Reducing High Blood Pressure
Many people looking to reap the heart-healthy benefits of cannabis turn to indica and indica-dominant strains to help them lower blood pressure. Some of the best strains for reducing high blood pressure include:
- Northwest Pineapple – Northwest Pineapple is an indica-dominant hybrid strain known for boosting mood. True to its name, Northwest Pineapple is fruity and sweet with hints of citrus.
- Cherry Pie – Another indicia-forward strain, the versatile Cherry Pie, boosts mood while promoting relaxation. It is an excellent choice for those with depression, chronic pain, and high blood pressure. Cherry pie delivers a little bit of sweet and a little bit of sour berry flavor.
- Ice Cream Cake – Indica-forward Ice Cream Cake is known for its sedative-like effects, delivering a deep, dreamy calm. This hybrid strain is smooth and creamy with unique vanilla undertones.
- Northern Lights – Northern Lights is an indica-dominant hybrid that provides an uplifting, euphoric effect while easing the mind and body into relaxation mode. It is a fantastic choice for high blood pressure, stress, depression, and pain. This hybrid is both sweet and spicy, with a complex flavor profile.
Does It Matter How I Consume Marijuana?
How you choose to consume marijuana makes a difference. Smoking and vaping offer an almost immediate “high.” The active compounds in cannabis get absorbed into the bloodstream from the lungs and make their way to the brain quickly, so you get the therapeutic effect of marijuana right away.
Edibles work differently. When you consume a cannabis edible, the active compounds in the marijuana must go through the digestive tract before entering the bloodstream and, eventually, the brain. It can take 60 to 90 minutes to feel the effects of cannabis when you eat an edible. However, the effects tend to be longer-lasting than when you smoke or vape weed. Additionally, the liver metabolizes THC differently, converting the chemical compound into a different chemical form, strengthening it, and delivering a more intense reaction.
Is Cannabis Right for Your Blood Pressure?
Scientific studies indicate that cannabis may help lower a person’s blood pressure. However, cannabis use can initially increase a person’s blood pressure in the short term. Before you add cannabis to your blood pressure regulation routine, talk to your physician. You must ensure cannabis is a safe option for you and that it won’t negatively interact with any other medications you may be taking. New studies show that chronic cannabis use can increase the risk of heart failure, heart attack, and stroke in some people.
The Fast Slice Team Is Here to Help You Find a Strain That Is Right for You
Fast Slice is DC’s premium cannabis retailer and delivery service. We offer the finest selection of cannabis products, and our knowledgeable staff is always here to help you find the cannabis strain that is right for you.
At Fast Slice, we want to help you navigate the road to better heart health. Take your cannabis experience to the next level with help from the Fast Slice team.