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Can I Mix Alcohol and CBD?

Can I Mix Alcohol and CBD?

CBD is sold in water, chocolate and even croissants. It was only a matter of time before we could enjoy it in beers and cocktails.

It works as a fantastic companion and ingredient in many foods and drinks, it makes sense that it would pair well with alcohol. However, should alcohol and CBD mixed? We are often told not to mix other substances with alcohol so does that apply to CBD?

Cannabidiol is known as an effective supplement and is often used to boost your general well-being. It can be bought in oils, sprays, e-liquids, gummies and many other forms. There seems to be no end its versatility and appeal, but is pairing CBD with alcohol a step too far?

To find out let’s take a close look at the interaction, if any, between CBD and alcohol. We will take you through the findings of key studies and introduce you to some of our favourite drinks’ recipes.

The short answer:

We believe that health starts with good lifestyle choices, that can include moderate consumption (or abstention from) of alcohol. However, we get this question a lot and thought it would be interesting to look deeper into the topic.

The World Health Organisation has stated that CBD is safe and shows no potential for dependency. It’s not psychoactive and won’t get you high, instead, users often reported a grounded feeling and a sense of relaxation.

When mixed with alcohol its intoxicating effect stays the same, but the CBD’s relaxing effect may be felt more intensely. It remains entirely safe but take all the precautions that you usually would when drinking and use both the CBD and alcohol in moderation.

James Giordano, professor of neurology and biochemistry at Georgetown University Medical Centre says, “On CBD, you’re very chill, very light-hearted, mellow. The alcohol will make that more intense.”

Before you enjoy CBD and alcohol together make sure that you are aware of how each affects you individually. Also, be aware that even taking alcohol and CBD within four hours of each other can cause them to interact (Giordano cited by Weiss, 2018).

CBD oil and alcohol interactions

A historical study published in the Psychopharmacology journal found that subjects who took CBD capsules alongside alcohol had lower blood alcohol levels than those who just took alcohol (Consroe, 1979). However, the intoxication effect that both groups felt was the same.

There have been further studies that show no reduction in the intoxication, but some additional effects that may protect against the negative impact of alcohol on your body health (Prud’homme, 2015).

Studies with rodents have shown links between CBD and a reduction in the brain cell degeneration caused by alcohol (Liput, 2013). They also found that taking CBD 30 minutes before alcohol reduces the potential for oxidative damage to the liver (Yang 2014).

While these findings point towards some positive effects there is still relatively little research on this interaction. This could point to a role for CBD in the future, but for now there is still a lot left to learn.

Can CBD help me drink less?

As a supplement, CBD may provide a helping hand if you decide to reduce your alcohol intake. Studies have reported that some of the positive effects on your body created by CBD may also interact with systems that help to reduce addiction (Prud’homme et al, 2015).

Research indicates that prolonged use of high levels of alcohol can deplete your body of the natural endocannabinoids and receptors that make up your Endocannabinoid System (ECS). This system promotes your general well being by interacting your homeostatic mechanism to create balance within your body. (Prud’homme et al, 2015).

With low levels of endocannabinoids, your body struggles to combat issues such as stress and anxiety. The presence of a cannabinoid like CBD may, therefore, have the potential for reducing the intake of alcohol (Prud’homme et al, 2015).

Healthy CBD drinks & mocktail recipes

To celebrate the possibilities of CBD and alcohol we would like to share with you some of our favourite CBD based drinks. Some of them provide a good pairing with alcohol and others provide a CBD alternative for when you don’t want to drink alcohol, but you’d like something tasty to help you unwind.

This is a wonderfully fruity way to enjoy your CBD. It also includes red wine which when drunk in moderation may slow damage to your blood vessels and support the health of your heart.

You will need:
2 apples, cut into chunks
1 orange, with the peel removed and diced into chunks
The juice of 1 lemon
1 bottle red Spanish wine
1/2 cup orange juice
CBD oil (measured to your preference)
Soda water, to serve

Put all the ingredients, except the soda water, in a large jug and stir it together. Refrigerate the sangria for at least 4 hours before serving. When serving, give it one last stir to make sure the oil remains combined, and pour over a glass of ice. Top with soda water if desired. Enjoy!

CBD and Pomegranate Mocktail

This is a fruity mocktail recipe with a CBD twist. Perfect for garden parties and celebrations with friends. The intensity of the apple, pomegranate and ginger mellows the CBD flavour giving a well-rounded taste of summer.

You will need:
200mls of a fresh pressed apple juice
(For best results use the fresh juice from a heritage variety such as Cox’s Orange Pippin.)
200mls of pomegranate juice
Juice of 2 large lemons
60ml agave syrup
12 cucumber slices
4 handfuls of ice
120ml ginger beer
CBD oil (measured to your preference)
Mint leaves and pomegranate seeds to garnish

Muddle the cucumber, CBD oil, and syrup in a cocktail shaker.

Fill four tall glasses with ice. Add Pimm’s, pomegranate juice and lemon juice to the shaker, then shake with some of the ice and pour into each of the glasses.

Top up with 30ml ginger beer, and garnish with mint leaves and pomegranate seeds.
Sit outside and enjoy.

CBD Spiced Mojito Mocktail

This is a refreshingly spicy hit that is perfect after a long day. It’s as rejuvenating as it is relaxing and will perfectly set the mood for a relaxing evening of conversation with friends and family.

You will need:
4 Limes
A handful of fresh mint leaves
4 handfuls of ice
Soda Water
A thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger
1 Lemongrass stalk
CBD oil (measured to your preference)
5 tbsp sugar
5 tbsp water

Peel and grate the ginger into a small saucepan. Finely chop the white part of the lemongrass and add to the pan. Squeeze the juice from one of the limes. Add the sugar and water and mix together.

Put the pan on medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Leave to cool and then strain through a sieve or muslin.

Slice up the remaining limes and share between 4 tall glasses. Divide the mint leaves between the glasses, saving a few sprigs for decoration.

Use a muddler, the end of a rolling pin or wooden spoon to squash the limes and mint together. Add a few drops of CBD to each glass and continue to muddle. The amount of CBD added should follow the directions on the bottle and suit the person who will be drinking it.

Add a handful of ice to each glass and pour a double measure of syrup over it. Stir everything vigorously and finish with a splash of soda water and a sprig of mint.

Strawberry, CBD and Basil Mocktail

A summery hit that surprisingly works well in any season. Why not make your own syrups in the summer and store them for when you just have to make these in the spring?
The CBD and basil provide a herby hit that beautifully sets of the sharp and fruity notes of the strawberry. Flowery and fruity but down to earth, everyone’s favourite.

You will need:
200ml hibiscus syrup
120ml strawberry syrup or sweetened strawberry puree
Soda water
12 of ice cubes
A handful of fresh basil leaves
CBD oil

Tear several basil leaves into each of four tall glasses. Pour a few drops of CBD oil into each glass. Add the ice cubes and mix vigorously with the handle of a wooden spoon.

Super Green Cannabidiol Mocktail

This is not one for the faint hearted it is a green juice mocktail that will smash into your taste buds and brings with it a host big green benefits to go with your CBD. Because of the flavour power in this beast, it works well for those of you who prefer your CBD extra strong.

You will need:
2 Large eating apples
1 cucumber, peeled
2 cups of arugula
3 stalks of celery
1 cup of spinach
1 large handful of flat leaf parsley
1 large tomato
1 tsp of lime juice
A pinch of cayenne pepper
2-3 drops Worcestershire sauce
CBD (measured to your taste) for this recipe we recommend Biopurus
Ice cubes

This recipe requires a juicer.

Cut the apples, cucumber, celery and tomato into chunks. Add the chopped pieces, the arugula, spinach, and parsley to the juicer. Add the lime juice, CBD oil and the cayenne to the juice mixture and give it a final blast with the juicer.

Add ice to tall glasses and pour in the juice. Serve over ice, add 2-3 drops of Worcestershire sauce and fresh cracked pepper. Garnish with celery stalks and lemon slices.

Combine the remaining ingredients except for the soda water, in a cocktail shaker or jug. Pour into each glass over the ice mixture. Garnish with half a strawberry and a couple of basil leaves.

The verdict on CBD oil & alcohol

While there is much more to discover about the potential benefits of CBD paired with alcohol, we do know that in moderation it is safe and relaxing (WHO, 2018). When used like this alcohol fits well into a healthy lifestyle and is even thought to bring a few benefits of its own (Brazier, 2017).

It is always better to mix substances like this in a mindful manner. CBD adds a refreshing healthy benefit to many of our favourite tasty drinks. Studies indicate that this is another great way to take CBD but it is optimal in small amounts such as one or two hemp beers or CBD cocktail (Prud’homme, 2015).

Remember that CBD affects each person differently so talk it over with everyone who is sharing in the fruits of your mixology.

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