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Can You Mix CBD and Alcohol?

By MaryAnn Stanger ND  •  0 comments  •   5 minute read

CBD and Alcohol; should they be mixed?

When you read or hear the word “cannabis,” the first thing that comes to mind is the party drug marijuana. These days, cannabis has developed a new, revolutionary reputation.

Over time, cannabis plants have become more useful for health and wellness. Now, people use them to make CBD a popular health alternative.

CBD products have the potential to greatly impact health issues. This is especially true for industrial hemp-based CBD products, as they do not have psychoactive effects.

These days, it's hard not to find CBD-infused pills, oils, gummies, and even topicals in the local health stores. The CBD trend has even infiltrated the beverage industry with the promise of healthier options to relax and socialize.

And yet, the effects of mixing CBD with alcohol still make for heated arguments with regard to our safety. So, is it safe?

Alcohol is one of the most widely consumed substances all over the world. People should understand the potential impact of combining alcohol and CBD, as the exact effects are still uncertain. It is crucial to be aware of how this mixture can affect the benefits of CBD. The full extent of these effects is still unknown.


The Science Behind Mixing Alcohol and CBD?

Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD has become more accessible and legal in almost every U.S. state. However, not a lot of time has passed since then, and the research behind mixing CBD with alcohol remains scarce.

CBD laws and regulations

The Food and Drug Administration and other regulators recommend not combining CBD with alcohol. This is because it can lead to extreme fatigue and cause significant harm.

Most CBD products contain less than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the cannabinoid responsible for hemp’s psychoactive effects. People who are sensitive to this substance may become even more vulnerable when they consume alcohol, which affects their balance and judgment. This weakness can affect daily tasks like driving, doing water activities, or using heavy machinery.

In a small study, 10 healthy volunteers were given either 200mg of CBD with alcohol or just alcohol. The study showed that people who took CBD had less alcohol in their blood than those who only drank alcohol.

But if you think that this is the go-signal you’ve been waiting for, you might want to temper your expectations. In another small study, 15 healthy volunteers taking 320mg of CBD administered one hour after drinking alcohol did not reduce (nor increase) blood alcohol levels.

Science doesn't have all the answers yet. We need to do more studies to get definite results. Hopefully, in the near future, we will see more information on the subject.


Can CBD Protect Against Alcohol's Side Effects?

There have been rumors circulating that CBD can dampen the negative effects of alcohol on the body. However, researchers are not ready to back this claim up just yet.

Some of the most common side effects associated with alcohol are:

  1. Drowsiness
  2. Impaired judgment
  3. Slurred speech
  4. Lack of coordination
  5. Nausea
  6. Vomiting
  7. Headaches
  8. Hangovers
  9. Dehydration
  10. Memory lapses or blackouts
  11. Increased risk-taking behavior
  12. Mood swings
  13. Digestive issues
  14. Increased heart rate and blood pressure
  15. Long-term health consequences such as liver damage, heart disease, and addiction.

As far as we know, taking a high dose of CBD before drinking may assist with thinking and focus, along with reducing any type of discomfort. Scientists still aren't sure if taking CBD in large enough quantities can counteract some of the side effects of Alcohol listed above.

Studies suggest that CBD has promise in protecting the body from alcohol-induced damage. But these studies have been done in mice and more research is needed to determine whether CBD can have the same effects on humans.


CBD for Addiction + Alcoholism — Does It Work?

Individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD), also known as alcoholism, suffer from a persistent illness that impairs their ability to regulate alcohol intake despite experiencing harmful effects.

Recent studies have shown that CBD, a non-psychoactive and non-addictive component of cannabis, may have potential therapeutic benefits for those with alcohol intake issues.

Additionally, another study reviewing the effects of a combination of CBD and a prescription medication used for people with alcohol issues has shown some promise in decreasing the motivation to drink in mice.

While the results of these studies are encouraging, it’s important to remember two things: 1) medications for alcohol issues, in general, are still relatively ineffective and have high cases of relapse, and 2) further research is needed to determine the effectiveness of CBD for humans with alcohol problems.

As a safety precaution, it is crucial to seek professional help for alcohol addiction and not rely solely on CBD products — especially when doing so can be dangerous.


Should You Take Alcohol and CBD together?

When it comes to mixing alcohol and CBD, experts caution against it.

Although there is limited research suggesting that combining the two can intensify sedative effects, the full extent of their interaction remains unclear.

does CBD and alcohol mix?

Moreover, it is important to note that alcohol can have harmful effects on the body, and it is imperative to consume it responsibly. Remember to prioritize your safety and well-being when choosing to consume any substances.


Last Thoughts: The Real Score on Alcohol vs CBD

CBD has definitely come a long way from its complicated past. And yet the question remains: has it truly reached its peak for health and wellness applications? To settle the alcohol vs CBD debate, the short answer is no. But plenty of research is still underway and can possibly turn the tides in CBD’s favor one day.

There is still much to learn about the connection between alcohol and CBD. Many aspects of this connection are not yet fully understood. CBD may help with some negative effects of alcohol, but it cannot cure alcoholism or any addiction.

If you or someone you know has alcohol problems, it's best to get professional help before trying CBD treatment. It is not advised to mix alcohol and CBD because it can make the sedative effects stronger.

After all, if prioritizing your well-being is your main goal, then making informed decisions with the guidance of a healthcare professional is crucial for maintaining your health and wellness.

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This blog post is for educational purposes only.

*FDA DISCLAIMER -These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.

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