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Is CBD Oil a Blood Thinner?

For the past decade or so, CBD oil has been making headlines for its use in treating heart disease to hypertension. Truth be told, it has indeed been shown to be safe, free from side effects, and generally well-tolerated. However, there seems to be ongoing controversy about whether CBD oil can be combined with anticoagulants and blood thinning medications. Does CBD oil thin your blood? And how safe an option is CBD oil when you are taking blood thinners?  Here is everything you need to know.

CBD and Blood Clotting – The interaction & effects

According to a Harvard Medicine School article, CBD can raise the levels of coumadin (a blood thinner aka as heparin or warfarin) in the blood. Nevertheless, studies have shown that this increase of coumadin is done by the very same mechanisms that grapefruit does. That aside, though, the exact interaction between CBD oil and blood clotting is not well understood yet. Nonetheless, some critical factors are believed to come into play, with the impact of CBD oil on blood flow being among the first ones.


How CBD oil works?

CBD oil dilates blood vessels. In doing so, it helps the circulatory system by enabling the blood to flow quicker in the blood vessels, which, in turn, minimizes the risk of forming blood clots. A 2017 study has evidenced that subjects taking just a single dose of CBD (in both stressful situations and at rest) had a significant reduction in their blood pressure.

Another study on the anticoagulant effects of cannabis has shown that the cannabinoids cannabinol and THC in full-spectrum or broad CBD oil can prevent the formation of blood clots or thrombosis by extending the time it takes for blood clots to form (two times longer to form clots compared to subjects that don’t use CBD).

It should be noted that broad spectrum CBD products do not contain THC but do carry all the other terpenes and cannabinoids of the hemp plant, which makes them ideal for individuals after the anticoagulant effects of CBD but rather not have THC in their product. Full spectrum CBD oil contains 0.3% (or less) THC, which is again in line with the federal laws. Do research your country’s (or state’s) regulations on CBD, THC, and cannabis if you’re unsure whether you’d like a broad- or full-spectrum CBD oil product.


Effects of CBD oil on blood thinners

CBD oil can interact with some pharmaceuticals negatively given its quality to slow down the cytochrome P-450 enzyme system (a body system responsible for processing toxins). The liver enzymes that make up this particular system help the body process specific medications more easily by breaking them (the medicines) down into smaller parts. CBD inhibits the P-450 enzyme system, which means that these medications remain in the body for longer than desired. This increases the risk of experiencing the side effects tied to these drugs. It’s worth pointing out, though, that combining certain prescribed blood thinners such as Heparin, Dabigatran, and Edoxaban, with CBD oil come with significantly fewer risks (even no known interaction at all). This is because the P-450 enzyme system does not process all pharmaceuticals.

How to take CBD Oil and Blood Thinners Safely

Several factors, such as your general tolerance, weight, and health can influence your likelihood to experience some side effects or interactions. Given the many variables that need to be considered, it’s strongly recommended to speak to your doctor before taking CBD oil, especially if you’re taking blood thinning medication. Your healthcare practitioner will need to take into account the processing time of CBD oil and make adjustments to your medication so they can safely add it to your medication regimen, with minimal system disruption. In doing so, you may be asked to start with a lower-than-recommended CBD oil dose (to help build a CBD oil tolerance) and gradually increase over time if required. 

Can you take CBD oil with antibiotics?

If you live in a state where cannabis has been decriminalized or legalized, you may have noticed that tons of CBD products are being sold all around you. Cannabidiol (CBD oil) is legal in states with medical marijuana and is extracted from the flowers or buds of marijuana and hemp plants. CBD is not the same thing as the chemical of marijuana THC — THC produces the high many people get from marijuana, whereas CBD is cited for helping with pain, relaxing, sleep, and even skincare. Amazingly, CBD is also being used to prevent seizures and treat epilepsy. The U.S Food and Drug Administration approved CBD medication to treat two rare forms of childhood epilepsy.

So the question is, can cbd oil help with pain? Given all these great health benefits, you may be considering buying some products with CBD in them, such as creams and oils. Maybe you want to ingest it to sleep better at night. or you have a chronic illness that causes you a lot of pain. One important thing to be aware of before ingesting anything is to make sure it does not conflict with any other medications you may be taking. So you may be wondering — can you take CBD oil with antibiotics?

Taking CBD oil and antibiotics

Our bodies have a system called the Cytochrome P-450 System which metabolizes toxins in the body. Antibiotics have an effect on this system, and CBD has also been found to inhibit this system. This can have a negative effect because when CBD inhibits the system, it alters the way the system metabolizes other drugs — such as antibiotics. In rare cases, this can lead to overdosing on the antibiotic because your body is not processing the drug properly.

Keep in mind, however, that this does not happen very often, and most people who take CBD on other medications do not feel any side effects. But it is still a possibility to consider because of the way CBD and antibiotics can interact in your body, which is why it’s so important to consult your doctor before you mix anything with antibiotics or CBD. Additionally, not every antibiotic is the same, which means each one can react differently with CBD.

There can be adverse effects of taking both CBD and antibiotics regularly, so it’s something you should absolutely ask your medical professional before doing so, just as you would with any other medication you may be taking. They will know what is safe for you based on what medications you’re consuming.

Other ways to use CBD

There are other ways to use CBD beyond ingesting it, so if you’re fearful of complications, you can always purchase products that will not get absorbed into your bloodstream. Lotions, creams, and salves that are not transdermal and intended to enter the bloodstream might be your best bet.

Another rule of thumb is to look for the grapefruit warning on medications. There are many medications that can have adverse reactions with citrus fruits, particularly grapefruit or grapefruit juice, and this can cause a reaction or an overdose. Generally, if a medication warns against grapefruit, then you should avoid taking CBD on it as well.

If you are taking CBD on antibiotics, be wary of side effects such as nausea, dizziness, fatigue, and changes in appetite or weight. As stated earlier, do nothing without asking your doctor first.

Read about how CBD can help reduce anxiety.