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Everything You Need to Know About CBD-Infused Coffee

Weed leaf in a coffee cup

The world practically runs on coffee. For many of us, the day doesn’t quite feel like it’s started until that first cup. Aside from its rich taste and warm aroma, a rush of caffeine through a waking body gets the gears turning and primes the brain for the day ahead. Until you crash and need another cup, of course.

It’s curious, then, that many consumers seem to have found a use for coffee infused with cannabidiol (CBD). While CBD is brimming with medical potential in its own right, it’s hardly recognized for inspiring the kind of alertness that follows a cup of joe. In fact, CBD has more of a profile for fostering relaxation and promoting sleep than the type of wide-eyed productivity that coffee-lovers look for in their mug.

Let’s pull back the lid on CBD-infused coffee and see if there’s anything to it.

What are the Benefits of CBD-Infused Coffee?

At first glance, caffeine and CBD appear to be pulling in opposite directions: caffeine is energizing, CBD is relaxing. Proponents of CBD coffee say the key reason to mix cannabidiol with coffee is to reap the benefits of both, while softening their respective drawbacks.

Consumers have said that the sense of anxiousness they get from consuming caffeine are lessened by CBD’s sedating properties. That is to say that the shaky, nervous feeling many coffee drinkers experience seems to be curtailed by CBD’s interaction with endocannabinoid receptors in the body, allegedly resulting in a more “smoothed out” caffeine experience.

Anecdotal reports have suggested that combining coffee with CBD may also diminish the sense of drowsiness that some consumers experience after ingesting the compound, replacing it with a burst of bean-based energy that may help keep your productivity (rather than hindering it with the growing urge for a nap).

Given CBD’s pain-relieving properties, it follows that adding cannabidiol to your coffee may also stave off headaches associated with caffeine consumption.

What are the Drawbacks of CBD-Infused Coffee?

At the same time, others have suggested the polar opposite is possible: the negative effects of both caffeine and CBD can be amplified when mixing them, leaving coffee drinkers either more anxious or drowsy than if they’d separated their coffee and CBD rituals.

CBD can act as a stimulant in lower doses, potentially magnifying the jitters that most of us would prefer to avoid.

In another study looking at how cannabidiol behaves in liquids, scientists found that temperature can affect the presence and effectiveness of CBD, which may complicate things when trying to get an effective and consistent dose: Depending on how CBD coffee is prepared and when it’s consumed, cannabidiol’s effect may change based on how soon you drink it after preparing it and what temperature it’s heated to. The study poses that higher temperatures can degrade CBD more than lower ones.

Contrary to the advantages suggested earlier, some consumers say that mixing coffee with cannabidiol may strip cannabis compounds of some of their health benefits (relaxation, reduction of inflammation). At the time of writing, there’s no scientific consensus either way.

Perhaps more prominent with CBD-infused coffee than with other CBD products, there is also the possibility that any effects experience could be subject to placebo, wherein expecting an effect at all can produce a positive outcome regardless of what’s in your coffee.

How Does Caffeine Affect CBD?

Until science catches up, there’s no concrete way to tell how combining CBD with caffeine will affect you – largely due to a lack of evidence-based testing on CBD.

What we can say about how CBD interacts with caffeine in humans is therefore theoretical, but may look something like the following: caffeine’s uplifting effects come from its ability to block our adenosine receptors, which control tiredness and blood vessel restriction. Cannabinoid receptors occupy the same center of the brain as these receptors, so when caffeine activates this center, there’s a potential for the brain’s ability to interact with CBD to be reduced.

There’s no reason yet to think that CBD and caffeine negate one another, but we’ll need more studies to determine if or how caffeine can affect cannabidiol.

CBD, Caffeine and the Brain

According to a recent study, cannabis was found to activate the same centers of the brain as caffeinated drinks. A press release from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine suggested an “inverse” relationship, with researchers explaining that neurotransmitters in the endocannabinoid system may decrease after drinking four to eight cups of coffee in a day: “That’s the opposite of what occurs after someone uses cannabis.” Researchers discovered something similar when testing neurotransmission in rodents.

The Best CBD Coffee Products on the Market

1. CBD Coffee by Strava

 

Strava offers organic, broad spectrum CBD Coffee Blends in varying roasts and strengths: 4mg medium roast, 4mg decaf, 10mg medium roast, 10mg dark roast, 20mg medium roast, and 20mg dark roast. These blends are offered both as a whole bean and K-cups. Strava claims that their CBD infused coffee awakens the mind, body, and soul.

2. CBD Coffee by Green Roads

 

Green Roads uses estate-grown Columbian coffee infused with American hemp, hand-crafted in small batches. All of Green Roads’ products are formulated by a licensed pharmacist and third-party lab tested – so you know you’re in good hands.

3. Hemp Infused Coffee Beans by Buddha Beans Coffee Co.

 

Buddha Beans Coffee Co. comes in four varieties: Ethiopian, Mexican, Columbian, and Burundi. The beans are fair trade and include 50mg of hemp. Buddha Beans Coffee is micro-roasted and ethically sourced, infused with hemp from a USDA certified organic farm. Made in-house, the final product is third party lab tested.

4. CBD Infused Cold Brew by Mary Joe

Mary Joe’s CBD Cold Brew blends organic coffee beans with filtered water and natural hemp extract. Each serving includes 15mg of CBD. According to Mary Joe’s Instagram Page, they discovered pairing “non-psychoactive CBD with Coffee proved to be an ideal blend for a productive, feel good kind of day.” 

5. Hemp Infused Ground Coffee by Kickback

 

Kickback offers two blends of hemp-infused ground coffee: Cali Rise (90mg of nano hemp) and Cali Daze (120mg of nano hemp), claiming that 1mg of their hemp derived Nano hemp extract has the same potency of 5mg to 10mg of regular hemp extract or isolate. 

6. Whole Bean CBD Infused Coffee by Willie’s Remedy

 

Willie’s Remedy (the CBD brand owned by Willie Nelson) produces coffee using carefully selected beans that are  roasted, and then infused with certified organic, full-spectrum hemp oil grown in Colorado. According to the company’s website, the result is a “balancing effect to coffee’s natural lift, a perfect harmony of focus from the caffeine plus calm from the cannabis.” Willie’s offers a dark and medium blend, as well as a decaf blend. 

7. Hemp Infused Coffee by Hempworx

 

 

Hempworx offers keto-friendly, non-GMO, hemp-infused coffee with 5mg of CBD per cup. the coffee is formulated using organic Arabica beans and organic chaga mushrooms.

8. CBD Dark Roast Coffee by Jane West

This CBD coffee from Jane West uses “all-natural processes to infuse responsibly sourced, freshly roasted coffee beans with full-spectrum CBD derived from Colorado-grown certified organic hemp.” According to the brand’s website, the CBD is introduced to the beans shortly after roasting, which “allows the fat-soluble cannabinoids to find naturally with the lipids in the beans while they are most chemically active.”

The Final Word on CBD-Infused Coffee

Though clinical trials on CBD-infused coffee are slim to non-existent, there are very few reported dangers for drinking coffee with cannabidiol. Harvard Medical School instructor and board member with Doctors for Cannabis Regulation Dr. Peter Grinspoon noted in an interview that in relation to coffee, CBD is still “a relatively safe medication” to mix with your roast of choice. So, go ahead and brew a cup.

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