Can CBD & Whiskey Get Along?

There is some debate as to whether you can, or should, mix CBD and alcohol. The rise of the CBD-infused cocktail suggests that people are consuming the two substances together, whether it is a good idea or not.

In theory, one would expect CBD drinks containing alcohol to be perfectly fine. After all, cannabidiol is a non-intoxicating compound found in hemp and cannabis. A huge number of people buy CBD online as this much-hyped cannabinoid continues to reach new heights.

However, there is a suggestion that mixing CBD and alcohol can prove problematic. This is mainly because they can both induce relaxation. Combining them could result in an amplification of their potential sedative effects.

Let’s see whether it is okay to consume CBD drinks with added alcohol, and check out a cocktail recipe.

Legal Issues to Consider

The vast majority of states don’t cause problems for those who use CBD products containing a maximum of 0.3% THC. The cannabinoid isn’t federally legal in the United States. However, apart from a handful of locations, it is widely tolerated.

One possible problem relates to CBD-infused products. The FDA says that it is illegal to infuse foods or beverages with cannabidiol. In theory, then, it means that CBD coffee, tea, and alcoholic drinks are not allowed. There are also state laws that say effectively the same thing.

Yet we haven’t heard stories involving law enforcement beating down doors to arrest someone for making a CBD cocktail at home! A huge number of cafés blatantly sell CBD drinks without any fear of repercussions. As a result, few adults have any concerns when buying or consuming CBD cocktails. The more relevant issue is whether combining CBD and alcohol is safe.

CBD & Alcohol – What Does the Research Say?

Unfortunately, research into CBD and alcohol is extremely limited. There was a small study published in Psychopharmacology in Germany in 1979. It involved just ten volunteers. They received 200mg of CBD along with 1 gram of alcohol for every 2.2 pounds of bodyweight.

The researchers found that those who consumed both substances had major impairments in motor performance. These volunteers also experienced significant alterations in time perception. Such effects were not apparent when the subjects used CBD by itself. However, it is a severely outdated study.

With no other relevant studies, we are forced to make suppositions based on what we know about both substances. Likely, adding CBD to alcohol doesn’t decrease the level of intoxication one feels when consuming alcoholic beverages. What isn’t clear is whether the cannabinoid enhances this effect.

Individuals who combine CBD and alcohol suggest that they feel a greater ‘buzz’ than when using either substance alone.

Some animal studies suggest CBD might offer protection against brain cell damage caused by excessive alcohol consumption. This was the conclusion drawn by a study published in October 2013. The researchers applied CBD gel to the skin of rats with brain-cell damage caused by alcohol consumption. Rats that received the CBD showed an almost 50% decrease in brain cell damage.

Is Whiskey the Best Way to Mix CBD & Alcohol?

It all depends on your preferences. If you hate whiskey, adding CBD to it won’t change how it tastes. However, whiskey enthusiasts may enjoy the combination. The powerful flavor a high-quality whiskey has could mix well with a high concentration of CBD.

If you’re wary of buying a CBD cocktail in a bar, try to make one at home. Typically, you should use between 5mg and 15mg of CBD per drink. Here are a couple of ideas for great CBD drinks mixed with alcohol.

CBD Mint Julep

  • 2.5 ounces of bourbon
  • 0.5 ounces of syrup
  • 5-15mg of CBD oil
  • Mint leaves; some people mix cannabis leaves and mint leaves

Mix the syrup and leaves in a specially chilled julep cup. Add the bourbon and ice to the glass. Drop in the CBD oil, stir, and garnish with mint or cannabis leaves.

CBD Gin & Tonic

  • 1.5 ounces of gin
  • 0.25 ounces of lemon juice
  • 3.5 ounces of tonic water
  • 5-15mg of CBD oil
  • Aromatics such as cannabis leaves, lime, herbs, or grapefruit

Use a wide-brimmed glass, although a wine glass is fit for purpose. Add the lemon juice, gin, and tonic water with ice. Add the aromatics and get creative to impress guests. Finish by dropping in the CBD oil.

You can find other recipes on sites such as Goop.

Ultimately, there is little research to inform us whether mixing CBD and alcohol is helpful or harmful. Those who have tried it suggest they feel more intoxicated. Until scientists gather more data, it is best to use both with caution. Bear in mind that you may feel sleepier or more relaxed than usual, so don’t have alcoholic CBD drinks if you plan on any energetic activity.