If you have put the research into this subject before, the chances are you have been met by two different narratives. One being that combing CBD and alcohol is a terrible idea, and the other being that it’s fine, and you won’t feel the difference at all.
With pretty much everything on the internet, when there are two such opposing narratives on a topic, the truth is to be found waddling around somewhere in the middle, and that is the case here too.
So, with no ulterior motive (on the internet? No way!) let’s take an unbiased look at the effects that CBD and alcohol could have on you.
Let’s start with the basis of many people’s opinion on CBD and alcohol, THC and alcohol.
We are all aware (from anecdotal evidence and research as opposed to personal experience, obviously) of the “crossfade”, the effect of combining THC and alcohol which can lead to blackouts in extreme cases, and a pretty nasty headache in the morning even in the best cases.
Many assume that CBD would have the same effects as THC, but to bust that particular myth, it’s important to differentiate between these two cannabinoids.
THC occurs mainly in marijuana plants, and is a psychoactive molecule, in simple terms, it gets you high. CBD, however, is more prevalent in industrial hemp plants and is not psychoactive, it does not get you high.
So one thing we can state for sure, is that the effects caused by THC and alcohol that are due to the former’s psychoactive nature are not repeated when you combine CBD and alcohol.
Do CBD and Alcohol Interact?
Now we’ve dealt with the extreme opinions on CBD and alcohol from one side, let’s bust the opposing myth, that CBD and alcohol have no effect on each other.
We know for a fact that CBD and alcohol do interact, in fact, there’s been research to suggest that since as far back as 1979.
The main outcome of this research was that CBD reduced blood alcohol levels compared to drinking alone, but (and this bit is proper important) did not lessen the level of impairment.
In the simplest terms, this means that although your blood alcohol level may be lower if you combine CBD and alcohol, the effects of the alcohol are the same, so don’t touch that steering wheel!
This is where things get interesting, because the assumption is usually that adding CBD to alcohol will either do nothing, or make the situation worse, but there is a third line of thought.
A 2013 study using rats to study the effects of CBD on binge drinking showed that CBD reduced neurodegeneration by over 50%.
A further study published in the Free Radical Biology and Medicine journal showed the possibility of CBD lessening the risk of liver disease through binge drinking.
Two things here, firstly, human studies are yet to have been carried out on this topic, and secondly, and more importantly, this doesn’t mean binge drinking is fine if you’re taking CBD, neurodegeneration and liver issues still occurred, and degeneration of the brain and liver disease are far from the only negative impact of binge drinking.
The above is all very good and exciting, obviously, but it is not only positive results that have been shown.
In an interview with Vice’s health site, Tonic, Dr James Gordiano, a professor of neurology and biochemistry (meaning he knows his stuff on the topic!) said that combining CBD and alcohol could increase the effects of both, leading to issues.
Adding that continuous use of the two could lead to an increased reliance on the combination, which is obviously not a good thing.
So, a conclusion is hard to draw here. Like with most aspects of CBD research, it appears that the effects of combining CBD and alcohol differ from person to person.
How your body reacts to CBD may be totally different to the next person’s, so don’t take any piece of research on anecdotal evidence as gospel.
If you want to combine CBD and alcohol, then make sure you start light. Do not overdose it, test your boundaries by starting with light doses of each, and if you feel any negative effects at all, stop.
Research will undoubtedly continue, and in time we will undoubtedly discover more about the effects of CBD and alcohol on humans.
As soon as we hear anything new, we’ll be sure to let you know!
Do you have something to say about combining CBD and alcohol? Why not post it in the comments below. Any questions don’t hesitate to message us, we’ll be happy to discuss them with you!
The products we sell do not have proven health benefits. While research is being carried out, these products are not, and should not, be considered to be medical products.
Any information we give in these articles is taken from scientific research, but should not be considered as a statement of fact. Links and information included in these articles do not reflect the opinion of Plant & Hemp. Any link to scientific studies is for information only, and not intended as a proof of any specific fact, or to validate any specific opinion.
We are simply bringing you the information needed to make an informed decision on what you want to use CBD for, and what you are comfortable using our products for.