June 24, 2021

CBD & Metabolic Syndrome: What You Need To Know

 The word’s out. CBD is offering much needed relief to many people with various health issues. Can it offer anything to combat metabolic syndrome?

Good news is, CBD has several qualities that may help alleviate some of the symptoms and risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome.

What Is Metabolic Syndrome?

Affecting about 34% of the total adult US population, metabolic syndrome is a group of conditions that increases the likelihood of conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.(1)

Three or more of these risk factors are needed to diagnose metabolic syndrome:(2)

  • High blood pressure
  • High blood sugar
  • Low levels of HDL (good cholesterol) and high levels of LDL (bad cholesterol) in the blood
  • High levels of triglycerides in the blood
  • Excess body fat around the waist

With metabolic syndrome, the body struggles to maintain blood sugar levels and starts accumulating a lot of fat. This can lead to serious chronic health issues.

Your doctor may prescribe you medications to manage your symptoms, and will most likely suggest some lifestyle changes as well.(3) Doctors typically advise healthy-living habits like eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, getting enough exercise, losing weight, and reducing stress levels.

Risk Factors For Metabolic Syndrome

There are a few factors that increase the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. These include:

  • Obesity. Carrying excess weight, especially around the middle part of your body, ups your odds of metabolic disorders.
  • History of diabetes. Both a personal history and a family history can increase risk. Thanks DNA!
  • Insulin resistance. This makes it difficult for your body to use sugar.
  • Risk increases as you get older.
  • Lack of exercise. A sedentary lifestyle increases your risk. Go move your bod!

All these things can also raise the chances of metabolic syndrome — or related issues — becoming an ongoing health concern.

A Brief CBD Primer

CBD (aka cannabidiol) is the second-most common compound found in the cannabis plant. It’s become a popular supplement for those looking for relief from pain, anxiety symptoms, and a whole host of other benefits.

It can be found in many different product forms, from CBD topical creams to CBD tinctures. And the more scientists dive into this little compound, the more promising it looks as a potential treatment for a range of wellness needs.

How Can CBD Help With Metabolic Syndrome?

Can CBD help with metabolic syndrome? It may support your overall wellness by combatting some of the risk factors that lead to metabolic syndrome. Here’s what we know so far.

CBD has been linked to:

  • Decreased weight(4)
  • Reduced blood pressure(5)
  • Lower stress levels(6)
  • Protecting the liver from fatty liver disease(7)

Let’s dive deeper into some of the research.

Promoting Weight Loss

CBD may aid weight loss due to the way it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The current school of thought is that CBD activates many of the ECS’s receptors, which have anti-obesity effects.(8)

Researchers have also found that CBD might help turn “bad” white fat into “good” brown fat.(9) People who have a healthy weight tend to have more brown fat than overweight people. This brown fat is known to help your body burn calories. In addition, some animal studies have also shown that CBD can lead to reduced appetite.

Heart & Mental Health

Recent research is finding that CBD may help provide several benefits to the cardiovascular system.

Studies on CBD oil suggest that it can facilitate reducing high blood pressure.(10) Additionally, high stress has been linked to high blood pressure. CBD is also known to moderate stress and anxiety levels. Combined, CBD may support your heart health and emotional health.

Protecting The Liver

The liver plays an important part in metabolism. In metabolic syndrome, the liver overproduces triglycerides and glucose, leading to excess fat in the liver.

Several studies have shown that CBD may support liver health. More specifically, a few animal studies suggest that cannabinoids may help protect the liver from damage caused by fatty liver disease.(11)

How To Use CBD For Metabolic Syndrome

You’re ready to give CBD a try, but you don’t know where to start. Here are some important considerations to optimize your CBD experience.

Use A High Quality Product

There’s no single set of regulations that all CBD companies abide by. That means you as the consumer need to do a little digging to find trustworthy retailers. But have no fear, here are a few ways to catch a top-quality product out of a sea of potential offerings.

Keep an eye out for these when CBD shopping:

  • Make sure the retailer does third-party lab testing.
  • Look for hemp origin. Organic, domestically grown hemp has high standards of production.
  • Seek high bioavailability for maximum absorption.
  • Check out the seller’s reputation in the industry and in customer reviews.
  • Read product labels to ensure there’s nothing fishy in the ingredients list.

If it’s going in your body, you want to make sure the company values transparency, top standards of production, and high quality ingredients.

Consistent Use

Metabolic syndrome is a chronic condition, so there are no quick fixes here. If you’re going to use CBD to fight metabolic syndrome, you’ll need to be persistent and address the underlying health issues on a continual basis. Yah, adulting can be a huge pain in the butt!

CBD isn’t usually a one and done deal — it can take time for your body to experience the unique results CBD will have on you. And most studies have focused on the impact of CBD on a regular dose schedule. If you want to increase the potential for lasting effects — a routine of consistent CBD use is the way to go.

Type Of CBD Product

Gummies or softgels? Topicals or tinctures? With the CBD business booming, you have a lot of choices when it comes to picking your ideal CBD product.

When using CBD for metabolic syndrome, consider CBD oil or CBD softgels over something sweet — like a CBD gummy. While gummies come in a lot of fun flavors, they do have added sugar — and you may not want that extra sugar each day.

Talk To Your Doctor First

Your personal physician is your number one resource for treatment recommendations. While CBD is tolerated well by most, you still want to talk to your doctor before starting a CBD supplement, especially if you take medications.

While there’s a lot of promising research on CBD’s potential as a wellness product, CBD is still a supplement — not a formal therapy for metabolic disorders. There are no CBD products out on the market that can claim to cure or treat metabolic syndrome.

CBD & A Metabolically-Healthy Lifestyle

When coping with metabolic syndrome, one of the best things you can do is to maintain a lifestyle that promotes physical and mental well-being. This could include taking sensible actions like:

  • Adhering to a nutritious eating plan
  • Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight
  • Moving your body every day
  • Reducing your stress levels

You might want to tack “Adding CBD to your self-care regimen” to that list as well. CBD may be that little nudge of support on the path to wellness. Science-backed research indicates that CBD could potentially help address metabolic syndrome by:

  • Promoting weight loss
  • Reducing blood pressure
  • Protecting the liver
  • Reducing stress

Using CBD in conjunction with sticking to a healthy diet and getting regular exercise may give you that extra boost in your overall health and wellness plan.



  1. Hirode, G., & Wong, R. J. (2020). Trends in the Prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome in the United States, 2011-2016. JAMA. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7312413/
  2. Metabolic Syndrome. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/metabolic-syndrome
  3. (2021). Metabolic syndrome. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/metabolic-syndrome/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20351921
  4. Ignatowska-Jankowska, B., et al. (2011). Cannabidiol decreases body weight gain in rats: involvement of CB2 receptors. Neuroscience letters. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21172406/
  5. Jadoon, K. A., et al. (2017). A single dose of cannabidiol reduces blood pressure in healthy volunteers in a randomized crossover study. JCI insight. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5470879/
  6. Blessing, E. M., et al. (2015). Cannabidiol as a Potential Treatment for Anxiety Disorders. Neurotherapeutics: The Journal of the American Society for Experimental NeuroTherapeutics. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604171/
  7. Alswat K. A. (2013). The role of endocannabinoids system in fatty liver disease and therapeutic potentials. Saudi Journal of Gastroenterology: Official Journal of the Saudi Gastroenterology Association. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3745655/
  8. Rossi, F., et al. (2018). Role of Cannabinoids in Obesity. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6163475/
  9. Parray, H. A., & Yun, J. W. (2016). Cannabidiol promotes browning in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27067870/
  10. Jadoon, K. A., et al. (2017). A single dose of cannabidiol reduces blood pressure in healthy volunteers in a randomized crossover study. JCI Insight. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28614793/
  11. Purohit, V., et al. (2010). Role of cannabinoids in the development of fatty liver (steatosis). The AAPS Journal. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2844512/

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