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How CBD Can Help with Heart Disease in Dogs

Many people don’t realize their dogs can get heart disease just like humans do or that there is such as a thing as a dog heart attack. This post will explain all you need to know about heart disease and congenital heart failure in dogs as well as CBD heart benefits that may make a life-saving difference for your pet.

What is Heart Disease in Dogs?

There are several conditions that fall under the category of heart disease. Coronary artery diseases that humans are more likely to get from their diet, is not a huge problem for dogs, though they can get it.

There are unfortunately plenty of other heart diseases for them to potentially get. All of these diseases are very serious, leading to diminished quality of life and the potential for heart attacks and strokes in dogs.

Most Common Types of Heart Disease in Dogs

Canine Valvular Heart Disease

Canine Valvular heart disease is a thickening and breakdown of the valves of the heart. There are valves that are between the chambers of the heart as well as leaving the ventricles. When these valves get thick and breakdown they can not close properly causing a back-flow of blood.

Heartworm

Heartworm disease comes from a dog being bitten by a mosquito carrying heartworm larvae. These nasty parasites (are there any parasites that aren’t nasty), multiply in the dog’s vascular system, impeding the workings of the heart and larger blood vessels.

They can grow fast and live a long time, eventually completely clogging the dog’s vascular system if not treated. Treated heartworm disease can still leave permanent damage if the disease progressed far enough.

Myocardial disease

Myocardial disease is caused from the heart muscle overworking which causes thickening of the wall of the heart. This leads to a smaller chamber inside the heart for blood.

Mitral Valve Disease

Mitral Valve Disease involves the development of a weak valve between the left atrium and the left ventricle, and it usually more common in small dogs.

Canine Cardiac Arrhythmias

Canine Cardiac Arrhythmias are irregular heartbeats that come about because of a problem with the electrical impulses controlling heartbeat.

Pericardial Disease

Canine Pericardial disease involves the buildup of fluid in the sac that surrounds the heart and restricts its normal beating.

Congenital Heart Defects

There are a host of congenital heart defects as well, meaning they are inherited and being at birth though the symptoms may not appear until later.

Congestive Heart Failure

Heart disease can lead to congestive heart failure, where the heart either becomes too thick and rigid to fill properly, too weak and unsubstantial to pump properly, or the valves become so dysfunctional that they cause severe lack of blood flow.

Symptoms of Heart Disease in Dogs

Most heart diseases in dogs will cause some of the same symptoms:
  • difficult breathing
  • shortness of breath
  • reduction or increase in appetite
  • weight loss or gain
  • swollen abdomen
  • unwillingness to exercise
  • dry coughing after exercise
  • dry coughing at night
  • fainting

Causes of Heart Disease in Dogs?

Sometimes dogs just inherited the tendency to get heart disease. If a breeder discovers one of their dogs has an inheritable heart disease, they are supposed to stop breeding them. But dogs not bred deliberately have no such protections and even those protections for bred dogs may not be foolproof.

Heartworms cause a specific kind of heart disease and the dog gets it from being bitten by a mosquito carrying heartworm larvae.

Obesity and/or a poor diet can cause heart disease in dogs, much like it does in humans. However, obesity in dogs causing heart disease is not very common.

Certain dog breeds are more likely to develop specific heart diseases. It is important to discuss risk factors for heart disease with your licensed veterinarian.

Dogs are also just more likely to develop a heart disease as they get older. It’s not guaranteed, but the risk naturally increases. You should be on the lookout for symptoms of heart disease at this point and proactive about protecting the dog’s heart.

Preventing Heart Disease in Dogs

Educate yourself on your dog’s breed and risk factors for heart disease. There may be particular recommendations for preventing the heart disease they are prone to.

Maintain recommended vet visits to catch heart disease early.

Do not fall prey to the fat dog is a cute dog temptation, no matter how tempting it is. Excess weight can hinder your dog’s quality of life and lead to heart disease.

Be mindful of diet. Dog foods can contain too much fat. Peas, lentils, legumes, and potatoes can be found in dog foods and they can cause Myocardial disease. Grain-free dog foods may also present problems.

As you might tell from the foods already mentioned, human food should be withheld or greatly limited. You could speak to your vet about your dog’s diet in relation to their individual heart health.

Choose a heartworm prevention medication or natural prevention method to keep your dog from getting heartworms.

Outlook for a Dog with Heart Disease

We’ll start with the worst-case scenarios first.

Heart disease in dogs can lead to:
  • heart attacks
  • strokes
  • muscle wasting
  • severe weight loss
  • difficulty breathing
  • no desire or ability to play or exercise
  • trouble sleeping
  • vomiting
  • leg swelling
  • limited mobility from lack of energy or severe muscle wasting
  • nutritional deficiencies
  • poor quality of life
  • death

The positive side is that your dog can live a long and happy life with heart disease, if you catch it early and are proactive with their health.

Routine checkups and preventative measures are the safest way to protect your dog from heart disease and to catch it early.

Second to that, you want to get them to the vet at the earliest signs of a problem.

Some signs you should take your dog to the vet (aside from routine checkups):
  • if a dog has a cough that lasts longer than three days
  • any sign of shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • a change in behavior
  • a decrease in excitement about exercise and play
  • shortened play times
  • restlessness at night
  • a potbelly
  • decreased appetite

Diagnosing Heart Disease in Dogs

The diagnostic process may include:
  • listening to symptoms
  • visual inspection of dog’s behavior and appearance
  • listening to their heart
  • x-rays
  • echocardiogram
  • cardiac catheterization
  • blood tests
  • urine tests

Treatment Options for Heart Disease in Dogs

Diet is important for improving symptoms and outcome for a dog with heart disease and heart failure. You will need to discuss this with your licensed veterinarian because there is no one diet that helps with heart problems.

Different conditions and stages have different diet requirements. Your dog may need to reduce sodium intake, gain muscle, lose weight, correct nutrient deficiencies, add nutrients that strengthen the heart, and more.

Heartworm Treatments

Heartworm treatments consist of killing or removing the heartworms.

It is common for heartworm treatments to cause:
  • loss of appetite
  • lack of thirst
  • vomiting
  • fatigue
  • lethargy
  • incoordination
  • muscle tremors
  • dilated pupils

One treatment method is surgery to remove all heartworms from the dog’s heart and blood stream.

Some heartworm treatments contain arsenic and cause inflammation. No one wants to give a dog an arsenic-based medication, which is one reason why vets so strongly urge heartworm protection.

ACE-Inhibitors

When a dog’s heart disease has become congestive heart failure, veterinarians typically prescribe ACE-inhibitors, or angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors. These treat the symptoms and lengthen the life of the dog by relaxing the blood vessels.

ACE-inhibitors can cause serious side effects:

Long-term use of ACE-inhibitors and using ACE-inhibitors with other medications requires routine medical evaluation to ensure other health conditions do not occur, such as abnormally high levels of nitrogen in the blood or renal issues.

Dogs can be allergic to ACE-inhibitors. They also interact with a bunch of other medications and pregnant and lactating dogs can’t use them.

Diuretics

When fluid buildup is a factor, veterinarians sometimes prescribe diuretics to reduce the buildup.

Side effects of diuretics in high quantities include:
  • dehydration
  • excess thirst
  • decreased urination
  • restlessness
  • weakness
  • drowsiness
  • lethargy
  • low blood pressure
  • dizziness
  • stumbling
  • cramps

None of these are exactly bad drugs. They can be life-savers for your dog, if the side effects or other health concerns don’t make it impossible for them to take them.

Heartworm Prevention

Medicinal heartworm preventatives are controversial. Many people don’t like maintaining a constant or seasonal dose of a drug in their dog just to prevent a disease, particularly when the drug can have serious and life-threatening side effects.

Side effects of heartworm prevention medications include:

But heartworms can cause permanent damage to the dog’s vascular system and the treatments are at least as scary, if not often more so, than the preventatives.

If you decide medicinal heartworm preventatives are not right for your dog, discuss holistic alternatives with your vet, or seek a holistic vet. Unless your dog has virtually no chance of encountering a mosquito, some prevention is necessary.

How CBD Can Help with Heart Disease in Dogs

CBD oil is one of the most popular and natural ways to manage heart disease in dogs. It may also be used as a way to possibly ease the side effects of the traditional medications so that your dog can continue to use it.

CBD oil can help dogs with heart disease by:
  • decreasing inflammation
  • managing pain
  • calming anxiety
  • reducing the frequency and severity of seizures
  • potentially protecting the heart itself from arrhythmias and infarctions
  • protecting the brain from and repairing brain damage
  • reducing nausea
  • improving appetite
  • helping them sleep
  • replacing nutrients

Risks Associated with CBD Oil

CBD oil poses few concerns. There is no known instance of a CBD oil overdose. if you give a dog too much CBD oil, they may experience side effects such as sedation, loss of appetite, or diarrhea.

CBD oil does alter how the dog’s liver absorbs medications, so their vet should know that they are being given CBD oil so they can dose any other medications accordingly.

The science is new regarding CBD oil, so no one is as familiar with the effectiveness or the risks as they are with traditional medications.

It makes a safe and alternative treatment for heart disease should the dog not respond to traditional medications, not being able to take traditional medications, or need relief from the side effects of traditional medications in order to continue taking them.

It is wise to keep your dog’s vet abreast of your use of CBD oil to ensure it is doing for your dog what you’re purchasing it for.

Using CBD Oil

The first step is to find a CBD oil product for pets.

CBD oil comes in several forms for pets to suit your needs and their tastes:
  • oil tinctures
  • extract concentrates
  • capsules
  • treats

Treats are the most fun and therefore the easiest to get in a dog. If your dog hates taking medicine, these may be the way to go. They come in both crunchy and chewy forms to suit each individual doggy’s taste buds.

Oil tinctures are also pretty easy as they are often flavored and come in a convenient liquid form that can be administered by drops or sprays. Your dog may take this fine directly by mouth or you may apply it to their food.

Some tinctures are not flavored. If your dog doesn’t like them, you can always add it to a food that can mask the distinctive hemp taste. Tinctures offer the greatest control for varying doses, particularly ones with droppers.

Extract concentrates are like oil tinctures except that they are just CBD oil and come out in thick little beads. You can measure the number of drops to get the dose you want. These also can be given directly by mouth or applied to food.

Capsules eliminate any taste concerns and are easy to give to dogs who are tolerant of the powder in the pills.

Dosing CBD Oil

Some CBD oil products, like capsules and treats will have a certain dose per capsule or treat stated on the product packaging. You can increase the dosage as needed by giving another capsule or treat.

Other CBD oil products tell you how much cannabidiol is in one measurement of the product, a drop, spray, or bead. You then measure out how many of these to give to reach the dose desired.

Research the suggested dose of CBD for the dog’s ailment, whether it is the heart condition itself, to sleep, to improve digestion, etc. Then start with the lowest recommended dose and work up in increments to whatever achieves results for your dog.

It’s important to increase gradually, otherwise you won’t be able to accurately judge the effectiveness of the dose. Cannabidiol begins working immediately, but the full effects may not appear for a few weeks.

It would be needless to increase the dose before this time, unless the dog’s ailment is so dire or they are in so much pain that they can’t wait.

You can gradually increase their dose in as short a time as two days or use CBD oil with another treatment until the full effects can be seen.

Do be aware that very small, large, young, old, or sick dogs require different dosages. Consult a vet or our cbd dosing guide for specific dosing for the individual dog.

Purchasing CBD Oil

Before purchasing CBD oil, you’ll need to know some things to look for.

Full-spectrum vs CBD isolate

When it comes to full spectrum vs CBD isolate, it’s important to note their differences and what might work best for your needs. Full-spectrum CBD oil contains other cannabinoids, terpenes, and nutrients found in the hemp plant while CBD isolate is just cannabidiol. Most people actually prefer full-spectrum, attracted to the additional benefits, but some people say CBD isolate works best for their needs.

The choice of which one to start with is up to you, but if your dog has a digestive symptom, they may gain additional benefits from the nutrients in full-spectrum CBD oil.

Third-party Testing

Some CBD oil manufacturers are, tragically, not what they claim. The ones who are reputable prove this by providing third-party lab test results showing what is in their products and what is not. This way you know you’re buying what you think you’re buying.

Where From?

You should check the website for the CBD oil product to see where the manufacturer says they acquired their CBD oil or hemp. Some grow it themselves while others get the CBD oil from someone else. Both are okay as long as they say it was grown in a country with safe growing regulations.

Extraction

Some extraction methods are better than others, like the CO2 extraction method. Choose it. It’s the safest and purest.

Ingredients

Select a CBD oil product that contains as few ingredients as possible and only ones that are necessary and safe. You should very easily be able to find natural and organic CBD oil products as well.

Innovations from Innovet

Innovet creates scientifically-backed CBD oil products for dogs and cats to treat and provide relief for hard-to-treat ailments like heart disease in dogs. We understand that hard-to-treat means there are many niches to fill and many unique pet cases to address, so if your dog can’t be helped with the CBD oil products that are already on the market, let us know so we can see if we can help your dog.

Sources:

Sara Redding Ochoa, DVM was raised in north Louisiana. She graduated from LA Tech in 2011 with a degree in animal science. She then moved to Grenada West Indies for veterinary school. She completed her clinical year at Louisiana State University and graduated in 2015 from St. George’s University. Since veterinary school she has been working at a small animal and exotic veterinary clinic in east Texas, where she has experience treating all species that walk in the hospital. In her free time, she likes to travel with her husband Greg, bake yummy desserts and spend time with her 4-legged fur kids, a dog Ruby, a cat Oliver James “OJ”, a rabbit BamBam and a tortoise MonkeyMan.

Thanks for stopping by!
P.S. We Love You!

Sincerely,
The Innovet Team

Please do not ask for emergency or specific medical questions about your pets in the comments. Innovet Pet Products is unable to provide you with specific medical advice or counseling. A detailed physical exam, patient history, and an established veterinarian are required to provide specific medical advice. If you are worried that your pet requires emergency attention or if you have specific medical questions related to your pet’s current or chronic health conditions, please contact or visit your local/preferred veterinarian, an animal-specific poison control hotline, or your local emergency veterinary care center.

Please share your experiences and stories, your opinions and feedback about this blog, or what you’ve learned that you’d like to share with others.

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CBD and Congestive Heart Failure: Can It Help?

In the United States, around 655,000 people die each year from heart failure.

That’s a lot of people.

As with most things, prevention is better than a cure. CBD isn’t the cure for congestive heart failure, but studies suggest it may help prevent it.

So, how can CBD help, and what’s the best type of CBD for preventing congestive heart failure (CHF)?

Can CBD Prevent Congestive Heart Failure?

Congestive heart failure happens after many years of blocked arteries, high blood pressure, or damaged chambers. This can be caused by a number of different health issues, the main of which are listed above.

CBD can help prevent congestive heart failure by treating a number of the conditions raised earlier. If these conditions can be controlled, the risk of heart failure can be decreased.

It’s not 100% clear if CBD will help prevent heart failure completely. However, several benefits may help in conjunction with lifestyle changes, and in some cases, other medications.

It’s important to note that CBD may interact with prescription and over-the-counter medications, so you should always consult your doctor before using CBD to treat a condition that could lead to congestive heart failure.

If you’re suffering from obesity, diabetes, heart disease, or high blood pressure, CBD may help reduce symptoms and even aid in getting better. This could be a huge factor in reducing the chances of heart failure.

What is Congestive Heart Failure?

Congestive heart failure, also known simply as heart failure, occurs when the heart cannot pump enough blood around the body.

Certain conditions and diseases can leave the heart too weak or stiff to pump blood effectively. This will eventually lead to a heart attack.

The Symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure

There are a number of early warning signs for heart failure. Below are some of the more common symptoms leading up to CHF:

  • Extreme fatigue & weakness
  • Rapid or irregular heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty exercising
  • Persistent cough with bloody phlegm
  • Abnormal weight gain from fluid retention
  • Reduced appetite & nausea when eating
  • Brain fog and difficulty concentrating
  • Edema (swelling in the legs, ankles, and feet)
  • Chest pains

It’s important to note that these symptoms do match up with other conditions and are considered normal in some circumstances.

Don’t overthink if you’re experiencing one or two of these symptoms mildly, but make sure to check with your doctor if you’re concerned about your heart health. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

What Causes Congestive Heart Failure?

There are several conditions that can eventually lead to heart failure.

Some of these conditions are incurable but the risk of heart failure can be decreased. Some other conditions that can potentially lead to heart failure are curable and can be defeated with a few simple lifestyle changes.

Below are some of the more common conditions that are associated with heart failure.

1. Heart Disease

Heart disease is a broad term that categorizes a number of preventable and unpreventable heart conditions.

Some types, such as congenital heart defect, are genetic defects of the heart that are present for life. This can include abnormal heart valves, septal defects (holes in the heart’s chambers), and atresia (a missing heart valve).

Coronary artery disease is the most common type of heart disease. The arteries that supply blood to the heart can become clogged with plaque, causing them to narrow and reduce the efficiency of the heart.

In some people, coronary artery disease is preventable and curable with some lifestyle changes. For others, it’s something that must be treated for life.

Arrhythmia is when a person has an irregular heartbeat. When the electrical impulses that coordinate the muscle’s pumping function don’t work properly, the heartbeat can become irregular or pump too fast or slow.

Dilated cardiomyopathy is where the heart’s chambers become dilated. With dilated chambers, the heart becomes weaker and struggles to pump blood properly. This type of heart disease usually comes prior to heart attacks and arrhythmia.

If left untreated, heart disease can lead to heart attack and heart failure.

2. High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is where your blood pressure is higher than normal.

High blood pressure strains the heart and other organs. When you have hypertension, your heart works overtime to pump blood around your body.

The higher your blood pressure, the more risk you face for other conditions and health issues. Left untreated, high blood pressure can lead to heart disease, stroke, or a heart attack.

3. Diabetes

Put simply, diabetes affects how your body processes food into energy. It’s a chronic health condition that can be treated and controlled but has no cure.

When you eat a meal, most of the food is broken down into glucose (sugar) that is then released into the bloodstream. When blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas releases insulin to help the body use the glucose as energy.

Diabetes sufferers either don’t produce enough insulin (if any at all) or can’t utilize the insulin in the same way as a normally functioning body.

When the body has a lack of insulin or the insulin present isn’t functioning as it should, glucose can build up in the bloodstream. Over time, the excess glucose, if left untreated, can cause serious health issues including eventual heart failure.

4. Obesity

Over 40% of the U.S population is considered obese. It comes primarily from over-eating. Obesity is mostly preventable and if you’re suffering from obesity, with the right lifestyle changes, you can combat it.

You’re considered obese when your BMI is over 30.

Subcutaneous fat is visible fat. It forms under the skin all over the body with the most common areas affected consist of the hips, buttocks, and abdominal region.

Visceral body fat (also known as hidden fat) is much more dangerous. It’s stored deep inside the belly and around the organs. It’s this fat that causes the most health implications.

Obesity puts a strain on all of your organs and the excess fat around your heart can lead to serious health issues.

Obesity can lead to heart disease, and eventually, heart attack and heart failure.

What are the Benefits of CBD for Congestive Heart Failure?

So, what are the potential benefits of CBD for congestive heart failure?

As mentioned, CBD alone isn’t going to prevent heart failure, but it can be used to treat some conditions that could lead to it.

1. CBD May Regulate Blood Sugar Levels

There is evidence that suggests some cannabinoids, including CBD, can help regulate blood sugar levels and help resolve diabetic complications [1].

Although the cannabinoid THC seems to regulate blood sugar more effectively than CBD, full-spectrum oil may have the same desired effect.

Lowering blood sugar levels will help reduce the damage caused by diabetes. This could be what prevents congestive heart failure in a diabetic patient.

2. CBD Helps to Fight Obesity

CBD can aid in weight loss.

Some studies suggest that supplementing a weight loss routine with CBD can help shed excess pounds [2]. CBD promotes the browning of white fats, which makes it easier to convert the fat into burnable calories.

Obesity is one of the leading causes of congestive heart failure. If you’re obese, losing weight is essential in enhancing your health and reducing the risk of many health complications — including congestive heart failure.

3. CBD Decreases Inflammation

CBD is renowned for its anti-inflammatory benefits. This desirable trait could help prevent heart failure in the long term.

Diabetes and heart disease can cause damage to the walls of the blood vessels. This damage can cause inflammation. One study found that glucose-triggered inflammation can be relieved by CBD [3].

Inflamed blood vessels make it harder for the heart to pump blood around the body. Reducing this inflammation will help ease the strain on the heart, ultimately preventing further damage and potential heart failure.

4. CBD Lowers Blood Pressure

CBD lowers blood pressure.

Studies suggest that even low doses of CBD can significantly lower blood pressure [4].

High blood pressure (hypertension) has been directly linked to congestive heart failure. Reducing blood pressure and keeping it down consistently will help prevent congestive heart failure in the long term.

How to Use CBD For Congestive Heart Failure?

Using CBD to lose weight, control blood sugar levels, lower blood pressure, or decrease inflammation may help prevent congestive heart failure.

How you use CBD for congestive heart failure will affect the results you get. Choosing the right CBD product is vital to reaping the rewards that this cannabinoid sows.

It’s important to note that you shouldn’t use CBD alone to treat certain health conditions. A combination of lifestyle changes and other medications may be needed to get on top of some conditions.

1. Full-Spectrum, Broad-Spectrum, or Isolate?

You may have heard the terms isolate, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum, but what’s the difference? And which is best for congestive heart failure?

CBD Isolate

CBD isolate is a pure extract of the cannabinoid CBD (cannabidiol). Oils, edibles, and topicals that are made using isolate contain only CBD with no other cannabinoids or terpenes present.

CBD isolates are great if you want to avoid THC or any other cannabinoids entirely. They’re perfect for people that react badly to other cannabinoids and they have no chance of showing up on a drug test.

The only downside is you won’t get the full entourage effect as you would with a full-spectrum product. Research suggests that CBD is more effective when consumed as part of a full cannabinoid profile [5].

Broad-Spectrum

Broad-spectrum products contain CBD as well as a wide range of other cannabinoids.

Broad-spectrum oils, edibles, and topicals contain a cannabinoid profile similar to what’s in the raw hemp flower. The only cannabinoid that broad-spectrum products don’t contain is the psychoactive cannabinoid THC.

Broad-spectrum CBD is perfect for people that want to reap the benefits of the entourage effect without consuming THC. Broad-spectrum products have no chance of showing up on drug tests.

Full-Spectrum

Full-spectrum CBD products contain a full cannabinoid profile. They have an identical profile to the raw hemp flower including THC in percentages lower than 0.3%.

This type of CBD is the most valuable to use for multiple health conditions and holds the most potential for preventing congestive heart failure. This is because it provides the full entourage effect.

Full-spectrum oils and edibles have THC levels that are too low to provide a “high”, but depending on how much you’re consuming, they may show up on drug tests.

2. CBD Consumption Method

There are many ways to consume CBD. Some are better than others for treating conditions that are associated with congestive heart failure. It’s important to know which products are best.

You will find all of these CBD products in isolate, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum options.

CBD Oil

CBD oil provides you with the most flexibility in terms of dosage. It’s also one of the best ways to consume CBD for heart failure because it’s highly bioavailable and has few additives that will trigger any undesirable effects.

You can add drops directly under the tongue or supplement meals and drinks by adding a few drops into your meal routine.

CBD Edibles

CBD edibles come in many forms. You’ll find CBD-infused honey sticks, gummies, lollipops, and more.

Edibles are fantastic if you can’t stand the taste of raw CBD oil. However, they’re not ideal for treating some conditions related to congestive heart failure.

Because of the high sugar content, you should avoid CBD edibles if you have diabetes or are struggling with obesity.

CBD Capsules

Technically edible, capsules give you a tasteless way to consume CBD without the sugar found in chewable edibles.

Capsules provide you with an accurate dosage per capsule and medicating is as easy as swallowing a pill.

CBD capsules are a great option for congestive heart failure because they contain no sugar and are relatively bioavailable.

CBD Topicals

Topicals are CBD products such as gels, creams, and balms that can be applied directly to the skin.

Although they’re great if you’re suffering from a skin condition, they pose no real value for conditions that are related to heart failure.

CBD Vaporizers

CBD vape liquid is heated up and inhaled as a vapor. Using CBD in this way provides maximum bioavailability as it absorbs lung tissue quickly and efficiently.

Unfortunately, there’s little known about the negative effects of vaping CBD, so if you’re suffering from a severe health condition it isn’t the first consumption method you should look at.

3. CBD Dosage for Heart Failure

CBD works differently from person to person.

The right dosage for one person won’t be correct for another, so there is some level of self-experimentation needed to find out what’s right for you.

Generally speaking, a dose between 20 and 100-milligrams per day will be effective for most conditions but it could be significantly higher or lower depending on your body weight, metabolism, and age.

As with most supplements, you should start with a low dose and work your way up until you find out what’s effective for you.

If you’ve never used CBD before it’s especially important that you test the waters with a low potency product at a low dose to find out how your body reacts to the cannabinoid.

Once you’re sure there are no negative effects, you can increase the dosage slowly until you get the desired effects.

Make sure you consult your doctor before using CBD to supplement other medications for your condition.

Final Thoughts: Can CBD Help Prevent Congestive Heart Failure?

In short, yes CBD can help prevent congestive heart failure.

CBD can help with weight loss, diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Controlling these conditions may reduce the chances of heart failure.

If you’re looking at CBD as a treatment for congestive heart failure it’s important to first speak with your doctor. CBD may negatively impact other medications and treatments, so it’s of paramount importance you seek professional advice.

When looking for the best CBD product for your condition, we advise you to research the brand and check the independent lab reports. This way, you’ll be certain you’re receiving the best possible treatment.

References Used In This Article

  1. Horváth, B., Mukhopadhyay, P., Haskó, G., & Pacher, P. (2012). The endocannabinoid system and plant-derived cannabinoids in diabetes and diabetic complications. The American journal of pathology, 180(2), 432-442.
  2. Parray, H. A., & Yun, J. W. (2016). Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Molecular and cellular biochemistry, 416(1), 131-139.
  3. Rajesh, M., Mukhopadhyay, P., Bátkai, S., Hasko, G., Liaudet, L., Drel, V. R., … & Pacher, P. (2007). Cannabidiol attenuates high glucose-induced endothelial cell inflammatory response and barrier disruption. American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology, 293(1), H610-H619.
  4. Jadoon, K. A., Tan, G. D., & O’Sullivan, S. E. (2017). A single dose of cannabidiol reduces blood pressure in healthy volunteers in a randomized crossover study. JCI insight, 2(12).
  5. Russo, E. B. (2019). The case for the entourage effect and conventional breeding of clinical cannabis: no “strain,” no gain. Frontiers in plant science, 9, 1969.
Nina Julia

Nina created CFAH.org following the birth of her second child. She was a science and math teacher for 6 years prior to becoming a parent — teaching in schools in White Plains, New York and later in Paterson, New Jersey.

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CBD: What is it, and can it help the heart?

CBD is the latest health craze to sweep the high street, with claims it can help everything from chronic pain and inflammation to anxiety. But what is CBD, and can it really help the heart? Emily Ray finds out.

What is CBD, and is it legal in the UK?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a chemical that’s extracted from the leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant. Cannabis itself is an illegal class B drug, as is the compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) which it contains. But pure CBD isn’t illegal, as it doesn’t cause the intoxicating effects of cannabis.

What CBD products are available?

The choice of CBD products has exploded recently: you can buy oils, capsules, muscle gels, sprays and oral drops, as well as beer, tea, sweets, hummus and even CBD-infused clothing.

Many of these can be easily picked up from reputable high street stores, such as Holland & Barrett or Boots.

Prices can be high: a 500mg bottle of CBD oil oral drops could set you back as much as £45. Not that this has put people off: over the past two years, sales of CBD have almost doubled in the UK, putting regular users at an estimated quarter of a million.

What is CBD used for?

A 2018 report by the World Health Organization suggested that CBD may help treat symptoms relating to conditions such as cancer, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), anxiety, depression, insomnia and Alzheimer’s disease.

However, it also notes that this research is still in the early stages, and that more studies are needed before conclusions can be drawn on whether CBD is effective.

CBD’s popularity has been given a boost by the fact that two CBD-containing medicines have been approved for prescription use by the NHS in England: Epidyolex, which has been found to reduce the number of seizures in children with severe epilepsy, and Sativex, which contains a mixture of CBD and THC, and is licensed for treatment of muscle stiffness and spasms in people with MS.

Does CBD work?

Harry Sumnall, Professor in Substance Use at Liverpool John Moores University, says: “In terms of the products found in shops, there’s virtually no evidence to support the claims made for a lot of them. There’s a lot of marketing that says CBD is a ‘miracle of the modern age’; however, the marketing has actually overtaken the evidence of what it’s effective for.”

“In terms of the products found in shops, there’s virtually no evidence to support the claims made for a lot of them.”

Harry Sumnall, Professor in Substance Use at Liverpool John Moores University

Professor Sumnall argues that while it could be effective for some people, in some of these cases the results could be caused by the placebo effect (where the patient’s belief in a treatment makes them feel better). The placebo effect can be powerful, but Professor Sumnall warns that if people try CBD oil instead of speaking to their doctor, it could cause a problem.

The biggest difference between CBD used in clinical trials and in stores is the dose. Research has shown that some products contain very little CBD (or even none at all). Others contain THC or other illegal drugs, or even alcohol instead of CBD. By contrast, in clinical trials the CBD is purified, manufactured to a very high standard and given at a much higher dose. It is also taken regularly and under medical supervision.

Since 2016, any CBD product that is presented as having medicinal value must be licensed and regulated as a medicine, regardless of whether it is actually effective. Manufacturers must follow very specific and robust rules around production, packaging and the information provided.

But so far, Professor Sumnall points out, CBD products in shops are marketed as food supplements, not medicines, so none of them have gone through this process.

Can CBD help the heart?

Inflammation is part of the process that leads to many diseases, including coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke, and there is some evidence that CBD has anti-inflammatory properties. Other studies have suggested that CBD can have a protective effect on the heart: this has been proven in rats after a heart attack and in mice with some of the heart damage associated with diabetes. But because these studies are often based on findings in a lab or in animals, not in humans, we cannot yet be confident that CBD will benefit the human heart.

There is ongoing research into the use of purer forms of CBD for a variety of conditions, including heart and circulatory diseases and, in particular, diseases of the heart muscle, including myocarditis and some types of cardiomyopathy.

Some of this work is still in animals, and much more research is needed before we can definitively say that CBD can help in this area.

“It’s clear that CBD has potential,” says Professor Sumnall, “but we’re at a very early stage of that research.”

  • Always talk to your doctor if you’re thinking about taking a CBD product to supplement your existing treatment.

Meet the expert

Harry Sumnall is a Professor in Substance Use at the Public Health Institute, Liverpool John Moores University. He was a member of the UK Government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs between 2011 and 2019.