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New Study Finds Long-Term Cannabis Use May Increase the Risk of Heart Disease

By Hunter Dublin | February 24, 2023

A new study has found that daily cannabis users are 34% more likely to be diagnosed with coronary artery disease than those who have never used the drug. However, people who use weed just once a month or less do not appear to have an increased risk of developing Coronary Artery Disease. The results held true even after taking into account other potential causes of coronary heart disease such as age, sex, and major cardiovascular risk factors. The findings suggest a direct causal link between marijuana use and an elevated risk of developing CAD.

The study pulled data on people participating in the All of Us Research Program. Administered by the National Institutes of Health, the program is designed to gather health information over time from 1 million or more people in the United States. This study included over 57,958 participants. When enrolling in the study, participants completed a survey on their cannabis use.

The research team used that information to place those who responded into five categories: Daily users (4,736 people), weekly users (2,720), monthly users (2,075), those who used once or twice in three months (8,749) and those who never used (39,678 people). The researchers then compared those categories with participants’ medical records a few years later. The results showed that daily cannabis users had a significantly higher risk of developing coronary artery disease compared to those who never used the drug. The study did not find an increased risk for those who used cannabis less frequently than once a month.

Coronary artery disease is a serious condition that can lead to heart attacks and other life-threatening complications. According to the American Heart Association, CAD is the most common type of heart disease, affecting over 18 million Americans. While smoking tobacco has been shown to increase the risk of developing CAD, the relationship between cannabis use and the condition has not been well studied until recently.

The findings of the study suggest that daily cannabis use may be a risk factor for CAD. However, the study did not differentiate between different types of cannabis use, such as smoking versus edibles. Future research will be needed to explore whether there is a difference in risk based on the method of consumption. Additionally, the study did not account for the potency of the cannabis being used.

The findings of the study provide important information about the potential risks of cannabis use on heart health. While the study does not provide definitive evidence that cannabis use directly causes CAD, it does suggest a link between the two. The study highlights the need for further research on the long-term effects of cannabis use on health. As more states legalize cannabis for medical and recreational purposes, it will be important for health professionals to understand the potential risks and benefits of cannabis use and to educate patients accordingly. In the meantime, individuals who use cannabis should be aware of the potential risks and consult with their healthcare providers if they have any concerns.


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