Study: CBD may lower blood pressure in hypertensive patients

By Olivia Brown

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Study: CBD may lower blood pressure in hypertensive patients

Related tags Cbd Hypertension Blood pressure cannabidiol Nutrition

After five-weeks of CBD administration to hypertensive patients, reductions in blood pressure were paired with significant drops in the catestatin peptides involved in hypertension pathophysiology, a randomised controlled trial observes.

Furthermore, a negative correlation was established between the extent of arterial pressure reduction and initial serum catestatin levels, suggesting baseline catestatin levels may predict the response to CBD. A strong correlation was also observed between the extent of change in catestatin serum levels and arterial pressure reduction.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time that the association between catestatin and the hemodynamic effects of CBD supplementation has been explored,” ​the researchers from Split, Croatia, observe.

They add, “Overall, the results of the present study imply that the antihypertensive effects of CBD may be explained by its interaction with the sympatho-chromaffin system, although further research is warranted.”

CBD controversy

It has been well established that arterial hypertension constitutes a significant risk factor​ for cardiovascular disease and associated comorbidities. Yet, despite a vast amount of research in the area, the pathophysiology​ is still yet to be established, due to its multi-factorial nature and associated complexities. 

Recent research​ has established possible links between primary hypertension and the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). In addition, with the success of implementing well-known dietary and lifestyle interventions to reduce blood pressure, there has been an increased interest in the use of cannabidiol (CBD) following recent studies​.

Whilst previously reported effects of CBD on blood pressure (BP) have been controversial, some studies​ have noted its ability to influence blood vessel tone, vascular inflammation, and blood pressure.

Following the HYPER-H21-4 study​ previously conducted by the researchers, which aimed to establish the efficacy of CBD in reducing blood pressure, it was observed that higher levels of the neuroendocrine peptide catestatin were present in untreated hypertensive patients. Thus, they sought to further establish this effect whilst investigating the mechanism of action behind this phenomenon in the present study.


The study observed the effect of CBD on catestatin; a peptide involved in the inhibition of the sympathetic nervous system, and thus, in the pathophysiology of hypertension. The researchers recruited 54 patients suffering from grade I hypertension, administering DehydraTECH 2.0 CBD over a period of five weeks.

Subjects were randomly assigned to one of two sequences: a placebo/CBD A/B intervention, or CBD/placebo B/A intervention. The B/A group received 225-300mg of CBD three times a day for the first half of the study, followed by 375-450mg for the remaining half. The placebo was administered following a two-week washout for a further five-week period. The A/B intervention followed the same treatment in reverse.

After obtaining subsequent blood sample and pressure readings, it was observed that serum catestatin concentration was significantly reduced compared to baseline (13.50 vs 9.65 ng/ml) following the five-week period of CBD administration, when compared to the placebo treatment.

Additionally, it was observed that these serum levels of catestatin showed a significant negative correlation with extent of reduction in arterial pressure. A further significant correlation was noted in the extent of change in catestatin levels and this arterial pressure reduction.

Future applications

The study supports previous evidence highlighting the anti-hypertensive properties of CBD, whilst suggesting that this effect is explained through modulation of the sympatho-chromaffin system.

The researchers stress: “Importantly, the hemodynamic effects of CBD are not a result of its agonistic effect on CB1 and CB2, as CBD has low affinity for these receptors.

“Catestatin, a potent physiological inhibitor of catecholamine spillover, may be a missing link that could explain the above-noted interaction at least to some extent. Specifically, we demonstrated that serum catestatin levels reduce after five weeks of CBD supplementation, but not after placebo. We hypothesize that such reduction reflects the reduced need for sympathoinhibition.

“The extent of blood pressure reduction seems to be heralded by baseline catestatin concentration, implying that baseline values of catestatin may predict the antihypertensive response to CBD”, ​they explain.

Future studies are required utilising a more representative sample, whilst including patients with different more severe forms of hypertension to understand CBD’s effectiveness further.


Source: Science Direct

“CBD supplementation reduces arterial blood pressure via modulation of the sympatho-chromaffin system: A substudy from the HYPER-H21-4 trial”

Marko Kumric, Goran Dujic, Josip Vrdoljak, Karla Svagusa, Tina Ticinovic Kurir, Daniela Supe-Domic, Zeljko Dujic, Josko Bozic.

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