It may not be the most scientific of questions, but the reality is that millions of people take and love both coffee and cannabis.
So what happens when the two are consumed together? A question many people probably never even thought of, when they fired up their vaporizer, and poured themselves a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee. The answer is: You guessed it; “it depends”…
According to Dr. Scott Krakower, the assistant unit chief of psychiatry at Zucker Hillside Hospital in New Hyde Park, NY, combining any two stimulants together could be a bad thing. He claims that taking caffeine with cannabis “would mix, neurochemically,” meaning they both have a different effect than if they were consumed separately.
A study on rats was carried out back in 2012 by Panlilio Et al, which saw them administered with both caffeine and THC simultaneously. The conclusion of that study was that “Caffeine did not counteract memory deficits induced by THC but actually exacerbated them. These results are consistent with recent findings that adenosine A1 receptors modulate cannabinoid signalling in the hippocampus.”
On another level, it very much depends on the person, as to what the effects will be. Some people do report feeling ‘wired‘ and sleepy at the same time when consuming both cannabis and coffee, while others say they only feel one and not the other.
One research paper suggests that caffeine could even enhance the effects of THC, as per a study on squirrel monkeys. Their conclusion, albeit not steadfast, was that caffeine enhanced the effects of the cannabis, meaning that less THC was needed to achieve the same effect.
Dr. Sergi Ferre, a senior investigator at the National Institute on Drug Abuse told reporters that the reason why many people may enjoy coffee with their cannabis is because they both stimulate dopamine in the brain, leading to a ‘happy’ feeling.
Naturally, any addictive behavior is not recommended, and in that case coffee is the clear loser here, as caffeine is known to be a highly addictive substance, on par with nicotine. So as long as you are watching any potential addictive tendencies, you probably have no issue enjoying a coffee with your cannabis. But, always proceed with caution.
[Image credit- Wikimedia.Commons]