To some, alcohol and CBD (cannabidiol) might seem like products that are worlds away. CBD is generally associated with its therapeutic and wellness benefits and it will be found in health stores. Alcohol, on the other hand, is not championed for its health properties, but rather it’s feel good effects. However, it might surprise you to find out that CBD and alcohol have similar effects on the human body as they both promote feelings of relaxation which can reduce inhibitions and calm your nerves. But is it a good idea to combine alcohol and CBD?
As both substances act in a similar way on the body, it could be expected that they would amplify each other’s effects. But it could also be predicted that by mixing alcohol and CBD could increase side effects such as sleepiness and sedation, as would happen if you had too much of either substance.
Studies on the relationship between alcohol and CBD are currently very limited. A small clinical study of 10 participants looked into the interaction of CBD in humans, it was found that when participants took both substances they experienced significant impairments in motor performance and drowsiness. These effects were not noted when participants took only CBD. However, this study was using a much higher dosage (200mg) than the recommended amount (15/20mg).1
From previously studied areas of CBD’s effects, researchers have inferred and predicted how the compound could protect against some of alcohol’s long-term effects. It is known that excessive alcohol consumption can lead to damaged cells, which increases the risk of certain chronic diseases. Animal studies have shown that CBD could protect against harm from alcohol consumption. For example, a study using rats found that applying CBD gel to skin significantly decreased brain-cell damage which had been caused by excessive alcohol.2
Additionally, researchers have cause to believe that CBD could be used to alleviate symptoms of addiction and withdrawal, which includes alcohol addiction. A study, which again used alcohol-addicted rats as participants, found that CBD helped reduce alcohol intake and prevented the relapse to consuming alcohol.3
There is currently not enough research on humans and the effects of mixing CBD and alcohol to come to a sure conclusion. More research is needed. Additionally, alcohol affects people in different manners, so to generalise the outcome might not be appropriate. Until more is known, it is advisable not to actively mix the two together, especially not to excess.