Can you drink and take CBD at the same time?

July 12, 2023

No one wants to have to miss out on their favourite tipple or a chance to let off some steam at the end of a long day purely because of the supplements they’re on. While many types of supplement and medication mean that alcohol consumption should be off the menu, CBD isn’t one of them. 

You might think that because we’ve already answered the question posed by this article we may as well end it there, but there’s plenty more to say about mixing alcohol and CBD. We’re real people just like you, so we know how fun it can be to enjoy a glass of wine and a movie, or to catch up with a couple of close friends over a beer on a Friday night. Provided you’re not trying to reach the same standards of performance as an Olympic athlete, there’s really nothing wrong with the occasional social drink here and there. 

But are we really talking about that when we think of drinking and taking CBD at the same time? In our experience, what we’re really being asked is whether or not CBD will still work well if we’re drinking every night at home or if we’re binge drinking out with our friends on the weekend. Now, there’s no research to suggest that alcohol in any way actively counteracts the effects of CBD, it’s common sense to think if it’s really the best way to approach your overall health and wellness. 

Is alcohol counteracting the CBD?

While everyone who has ever thought about taking CBD will have googled things like how long does cannabis stay in your blood and how long does cannabis stay in your system for, they likely never think the same way about alcohol. Why? Because it’s such a deeply embedded part of our culture that most of us think nothing of sleeping off a hangover on the weekend, or feeling a little worse for it if we overdo things during the week. Don’t get us wrong here folks, there’s no judgments, but we are thinking about the different ways in which these two substances are treated, viewed and approached. 

If you want to get a real handle on things, think for a moment about how you would view things if you replaced alcohol with a different type of substance. Perhaps rather than alcohol we think of a large fatty meal with plenty of processed ingredients, and we focus purely on the idea of using CBD to improve athletic recovery (a common use after all). 

The idea that you can out train a bad diet is something that only applies to the idea of not getting fat or becoming overweight and has been widely debunked when it comes to everything else. Yes, you can burn off the excess calories you’ve taken in as a result of your junk food diet, but if you’re not giving the body the right building blocks in the first place, you just won’t be able to nourish it in the correct way. Why does this matter? Because it shows clearly and concisely that you simply cannot reach your athletic peak if you’re not putting the foods and nutrients into your body. 

Even though you may be supplementing with CBD to improve your recovery time and reduce the impact of delayed onset muscle soreness after weight training, you’re not fuelling yourself correctly. Check out NHS general guidance on a healthy diet. This means that although you may recover quicker due to the CBD, the speed of the recovery, not to mention the quality, would undoubtedly be better if you combined your CBD supplementation with a healthy, balanced diet right throughout the week. 

Let’s think about another example: we’ll keep CBD supplementation and put excess alcohol consumption back into the mix. Let’s define this as someone who drinks to get drunk once on the weekend and goes to the pub 2-3 times during the week. It might not be a level that many of us regard as excessive, but that’s purely down to the way our culture is structured, not based on what our body actually needs, wants and desires us to put into it. 

Perhaps you’re taking CBD to reduce and manage your stress. The problem here is that alcohol, while freeing you of your inhibitions for a short period of time, is actually a depressant. Putting something into your body that increases your chances of having a low mood is a sure fire way to send yourself on exactly the type of emotional rollercoaster that will inevitably spike your stress levels when you can least cope with it. 

We also need to think about the monetary impact of drinking to excess, especially given the current climate where sudden price jumps and artificially high prices seem to be touching every area of our lives. While we’re in no way setting out to judge your personal choices or finances, alcohol is expensive for many of us, and spending on it will leave less money for something else. This will leave you with less in reserve if you have a spot of bad luck like your boiler packing up or your car breaking down. Once again, you’re unintentionally increasing your chances of experiencing a spike in stress that your CBD supplementation won’t fully be able to counteract. 

Then we need to think about the physiological impact you experience the morning after the night before. You’ll be dehydrated, aching, unable to workout, and generally feeling sorry for yourself. On top of that you’ll massively reduce the likelihood of eating a healthy, balanced diet or getting out into the natural light for your daily dose of fresh air. All of these things add up and counteract the positive impact CBD supplementation is having on your life. 

When you put it like that, although you can in principle drink while taking CBD, it’s really a question of whether or not you can exercise the level of self control needed to drink in moderation. If you can do it, by all means go out there and enjoy yourself. As the bosses at Londonderry’s trusted CBD brand, we know that needing to blow off a little steam every once in a while is a common feeling. 

So, rather than overthinking about things like how long does cannabis stay in your urine, think instead if it really makes sense to drink to excess when taking CBD. You’re supplementing to try and improve your overall health and wellness, so why drink to the point where it can negatively impact these two core things? You won’t ever be able to take enough CBD to fully cancel out the negative impact of regularly getting drunk or hungover, so give some careful thought about what you want to do. 

Do what works for you

And like we said a little earlier on folks, there’s no judgments here. The last thing we want to do is criticise your life choices or try and force you to do one thing when you just don’t want to. All we want to do is start a discussion that allows you to reflect and give some careful thought as to which way you want to take things. Arrive at the right answer and the results will speak for themselves before you know it. 

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