Most people enjoy a drink or two at night or on the weekends. It’s a great way to socialize with friends or relax after a long day at work. At the same time, cannabidiol (CBD) is rapidly becoming an incredibly widespread medicinal supplement for a wide variety of conditions and symptoms. CBD boasts an extensive list of ailments it treats, along with huge health benefits! With the popularity of CBD & alcohol, you may wonder if they have interactions when taken together.
Drug Interactions: CBD and Alcohol
CBD is still being researched. Not all of its effects are fully understood and there is still substantial headway being made in terms of understanding its benefits. It is also important to remember that it affects different people in different ways.
Research suggests, however, that there are some slight interactions between CBD and alcohol. This is especially true if you take them within four to eight hours of each other. In general, they tend to increase the effects of each other. This is also known as potentiating. This is just a fancy way of saying that alcohol increases the effects of the CBD (and vice versa). The interactions between CBD and alcohol are nowhere near as strong as the interactions between alcohol and THC.
Both alcohol and CBD will generally relax the person and lower their inhibitions. Mixing the two substances may also make the effects last longer. Furthermore, there is some research that suggests that there may be benefits to taking CBD while drinking alcohol. For one, CBD acts as a neuroprotectant. This means that it protects the cells of the nervous system (known as neurons) from damage. This is why CBD is so useful at treating various disorders of the nervous system, like dementia or multiple sclerosis.
There is also recent research to suggest that CBD might actually lower blood alcohol concentration (BAC). This is the standard way of measuring a person’s level of intoxication by measuring the concentration of alcohol in their blood. In people who drink alcoholic beverages and then take a large dose of CBD (200 milligrams in a recent study), then their BAC lowered significantly. Hypothetically, this means that they were less drunk. Additional research needs to be done to fully understand these interactions.
Safety Precautions: CBD & Alcohol
It is important to understand how CBD affects you before you start mixing it with anything. Again, everyone’s metabolism is slightly different. In general, CBD is incredibly safe. It is easily tolerated by most people and has very minimal side effects. In very rare cases, people may sometimes develop side effects when mixing the two.
Rare Side Effects Of CBD:
- Changes in appetite
- Changes in mood
- Dry mouth
It should be noted that this is incredibly rare and even when they do happen, they are usually very mild. Most often it is just our bodies getting used to metabolizing the CBD.
Let’s contrast these minimal side effects with what alcohol does to our bodies (starting with lower BAC’s to higher BAC’s):
Side Effects Of Alcohol:
- Flushing of the face
- Shorter attention span
- Lack of motor coordination
- Poor judgment
- Memory loss and lack of comprehension
- Delayed reflexes and motor responses
- Inability to stay balanced
- Violent tendencies
- Blurred vision
- Loss of consciousness
- Impaired breathing
- Potential death
As you can see, alcohol is no joke! This is a serious drug with serious side effects. In fact, violent crime always increases in places where alcohol abuse is rampant and driving while impaired is incredibly dangerous. It is one of the leading causes of preventable death in the United States each year.
Research suggests that it is safe to mix alcohol and CBD.
Remember to use your common sense. Do not mix them to excess until you fully understand how your body reacts to one or both chemical compounds. It is important to always be careful!
CBD & Its Benefits:
- Reduces our risk of developing obesity and diabetes by stabilizing our appetite and blood sugar levels as well as maintaining healthy hormone levels.
- Promotes overall heart (cardiovascular) health by maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and reducing “bad” fat levels as well as raising “good” fat levels.
- Lowers the risk of various kinds of cancer as well as helping our immune system fight off tumors if cancer has developed.
- Acts as a neuroprotectant to keep our brains healthy and functioning well. CBD lowers the risk of developing dementia as well as treating seizure disorders and/or muscle tremors.
- Acts as an antioxidant. This means that CBD protects the cells of our bodies from the natural byproducts of metabolism. These byproducts cause our cells to degenerate and age.
- Protects our bodies against bone disease by triggering cannabinoid receptors that promote bone growth. CBD strengthens the tissue connecting bones to help us heal faster.
- Activates cannabinoid receptors in our skin to heal and protect skin cells as well as govern healthy cell division and development to lower the risk of skin cancer.
- Interacts with the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) to lessen pain responses in the body as well as decrease inflammation in order to protect our various organs from auto-immune disorders like arthritis.
- Helps the ECS maintain healthy levels of various neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and anandamide to treat anxiety and/or depression.
- Helps the ECS maintain healthy levels of various hormones to effectively treat sleep disorders like insomnia as well as respiratory conditions like sleep apnea.
CBD Could Help With Damaging Effects Of Alcohol
As you can see, CBD can help us live healthy lives in so many different ways. Furthermore, because of its neuroprotective and anti-oxidant properties, it may help protect our brain cells from damage due to overconsumption of alcohol. Remember that any time spent consuming an excess of alcohol is technically a form of brain damage. CBD may be highly effective in protecting our brains from our tendency to over-indulge in alcohol.
CBD is known as a multi-target therapy because it treats so many different sets of symptoms and so many different conditions. Some of the conditions that CBD has been proven to help include but are not limited to the following:
Ailments CBD Could Help:
- Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders
- Crohn’s Disease
- Chronic Pain
As you can see, CBD can help us fight off a broad variety of medical conditions. Using CBD is a natural, safe, and effective way to promote health and wellness in our bodies.
CBD vs. THC
The most important thing to note about CBD is that it is not psychoactive. This is very unlike its more famous cannabis cousin: tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). When people combine alcohol and THC, they may become incredibly intoxicated. This is also known as being cross-faded. This does not happen with CBD. Both CBD and THC are what are known as cannabinoids.
THC is what most people think of when they think of cannabis products and cannabinoids. It is the primary chemical compound in marijuana and it is the part of the cannabis plant that makes you intoxicated.
Because many people want the medicinal benefits of cannabis without the intoxicating effects, CBD is becoming the go-to supplement for people who wish to stay sober while still getting all the benefits. For this reason, CBD is rapidly becoming one of the most popular and widely used cannabis products. Because it is not technically a drug, like THC, it is legal to use for its medicinal benefits.
How Much CBD Oil Should I Take?
CBD dosage amounts are based on body weight. People who have a higher body mass will need greater doses of CBD. It is always best, to begin with, a regular dose and slowly work your way up. The general formula is 0.25 milligrams for every 1 pound of body weight. Another popular formula is 1 to 6 milligrams for every 10 pounds of body weight.
That means that 30 to 50 milligrams would be the perfect starting dose for someone at 200 pounds, while 25 to 40 milligrams would be perfect for someone who is 150 pounds. If you do not have a scale to weigh yourself with, then the usual starting dose is 25 milligrams two times a day. This means that you should take one dose of 25 milligrams in the morning and then one dose of 25 milligrams at night.
You can always up your dosage if your symptoms are not going away. Remember that CBD is remarkably safe and stable in the human body. It is best to increase the amount in 25-milligram increments, but make sure you give your body enough time to adjust to the higher amount.
It is always best to consult with your doctor and develop a dosage regimen that works best for you.
CBD Also Helps Hangovers
The standard dose of 25 milligrams twice a day is a good starting dose for various conditions, including nausea, vomiting, and overall pain associated with hangovers.
That’s right! CBD can help a person fight off a hangover. In general, a hangover is when a person’s body is in a damaged state following excessive drinking. The causes of a hangover are various, but it is mostly dehydration. The most common symptoms of a hangover are the pains (usually a headache) as well as nausea and/or vomiting.
Luckily for you, these are the most powerful medicinal effects that CBD has. It is a powerful and effective painkiller that is also safe, natural, and gentle on the body. It also helps treat nausea and/or vomiting. This will calm your stomach and help you keep down vital liquids that you need to rehydrate yourself.
If your stomach is so upset from the hangover that you cannot keep anything down, then it is best to get a CBD tincture so you may directly drop the CBD under your tongue. This means that the medicine will start working quickly (usually within 15 minutes of being absorbed by the mucous membranes).