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Best Cannabinoids to Take With Your Morning Coffee

Alien
Area 52
October 22, 2021 | Blog

Taking cannabinoids with your coffee can be the perfect way to coax a bit more creativity and energy out of your morning dose of caffeine.

The trick to successfully pairing coffee with cannabis is choosing cannabinoids that give you the desired effect — like complementing and enhancing the energizing capabilities of caffeine or eliminating unwanted side effects.

This article aims to help you choose the best cannabinoids to take with coffee.

Below you’ll find sections covering general principles, specific types and strains, dosing tips, and some recommendations for combining coffee and cannabinoids safely.

What Cannabinoids Work Best With Coffee?

The answer to this question depends somewhat on your needs, but there are general guidelines to follow.

In general, most people prefer to pair coffee with energizing strains like a Sativa or hybrid strain.

If you’re pairing a cannabinoid with coffee, you’re probably taking it in the morning and don’t want to feel tired throughout the day. Opting for a more stimulating strain is the best way to avoid unwanted sleepiness creeping up on you first thing in the morning.

Below is a brief explanation of some specific cannabinoids that work well with coffee.

1. Delta 8 THC

One of the most prevalent cannabinoids to pair with coffee is delta 8 THC sativa or hybrid strain.

Delta 8 is a naturally occurring cannabinoid with slightly different effects than its big brother, delta 9 THC. Many delta 8 THC users report that taking it with coffee can help take the edge off and reduce anxiety while still benefiting from the caffeine energy boost.

One of the most appealing aspects of delta 8 THC is its lower psychoactivity, making it feasible for most users to take throughout the day without drastically altering their headspace. Since delta 8 THC has a psychoactive component, it’s perfect for pairing with coffee when you have creative work to do. Writing, art, and other creative endeavors can all benefit from the creative boost provided by delta 8 THC.

If you have dull or monotonous tasks that you just need to buckle down and finish, delta 8 THC might not be the best choice. Taking delta 8 THC can sometimes make it harder to focus since you’ll be primed for lateral thinking and may more rapidly lose interest in repetitive tasks.

Conversely, some users find that it improves focus and concentration, so you’ll have to try to see if it works for you.

2. Delta 9 THC (Some Strains)

Managing your dose size is essential for successfully pairing delta 9 THC with coffee, assuming you want to avoid becoming heavily intoxicated. Most people find it challenging to work when high, so moderation is key if you’re hoping to be productive.

Delta 9 THC is famous for helping people think outside the box and make connections they otherwise wouldn’t see. Carl Sagan — a renowned astronomer and marijuana advocate — reportedly would use marijuana to help him think creatively about scientific problems.

Combining delta 9 THC with coffee is a great way to boost creativity and is an excellent choice for artists or creative problem solvers. Sativa strains with relatively low THC concentrations are probably best for most people. Most users report uplifting and energizing experiences from Sativa strains, so they’re the least likely to cause sleepiness and sedation.

Indica strains are generally not the best for consuming in the morning. Indica is more often associated with relaxation and sedation. While the coffee might wake you up enough to overcome the tiredness from using an Indica strain, Sativa will still likely serve you better.

Finding the right THC concentration and strain that suits your metabolism and desired level of intoxication is a matter of trial and error and experience.

3. CBD (Cannabidiol)

If you’re looking for a cannabinoid to offset the side effects of caffeine, CBD is a great choice. CBD users often report that it helps them manage anxiety and feel calmer, both critical for mitigating caffeine’s stimulatory effects.

Some people also use CBD for upset stomachs, which may help with any digestive issues you experience from drinking coffee.

4. CBG (Cannabigerol)

CBG is highly touted as “the productivity cannabinoid” by its proponents, who describe it as a powerful focus aid. Since caffeine also enhances concentration, combining caffeine with CBG is a great way to up the ante when you need to take your attention and focus to the next level.

If you want to make things easy on yourself, Area 52 is releasing a new product called Mars Energy Gummies that combines CBG and caffeine from Green Tea extract. Taking CBG and caffeine in a single gummy is an easy way to manage your dose and get the right amount of each without weighing the ingredients yourself.

5. CBN (Cannabinol)

CBN is a good option if productivity isn’t your primary focus and you’re more concerned with balancing caffeine’s energizing effects. Comparing CBG to CBN, the latter is a calming cannabinoid that many people use to help them relax. One of the most popular uses for CBN is as a sleep aid, making it perfect for people who experience caffeine-induced insomnia from drinking coffee.

Area 52 has a new product called Neptune Sleep Gummies that combines CBN, L-theanine, CBD, and melatonin to make the ultimate sleep aid. All of these compounds work together to promote deep sleep.

6. THCV (Tetrahydrocannabivarin)

For people who aren’t sensitive to caffeine, taking a stimulating cannabinoid-like THCV is one way to get an intense energy boost. THCV and coffee have an agonistic relationship since both provide energy, but they do so through different channels. Most THCV users describe its energy boost as a cleaner and smoother than caffeine, so taking it with coffee won’t feel the same as simply drinking more coffee.

Most people recommend treading lightly with combining THCV and coffee. THCV is very uplifting and can cause issues with falling and staying asleep. As such, it’s advisable that anyone who has trouble sleeping or is even slightly sensitive to caffeine choose a different cannabinoid.

What Cannabinoids Shouldn’t Be Taken With Coffee?

Cup of Coffee with Hemp Leaf Design Topping

There are two main classes of cannabinoids you should avoid taking with coffee: those with strong, stimulating effects and those that are extremely intoxicating.

Stacking a stimulating cannabinoid on top of the coffee can make you feel anxious and uncomfortable. In contrast, a very intoxicating cannabinoid can render you incapable of working effectively, negating the effects of the coffee.

Below is an explanation of some specific cannabinoids you shouldn’t take with coffee.

1. Delta 9 THC (Some Strains)

A previous section mentioned that some strains of delta 9 THC work well with coffee, specifically Sativa. On the flip side, some Indica strains are too sedative and intoxicating to combine with coffee feasibly.

Since many Indica strains provide intense relaxation and tend to make users feel tired, it can be challenging to balance those effects with caffeine to reach a productive middle ground.

Most people recommend Sativa strains over Indica for pairing with coffee, but experienced delta 9 THC users may be able to manage Indica’s sedative effects in the morning.

Feel free to experiment with Indica strains, but start slowly. A good starting point is any strain with less than 20% THC since it will be easier to balance the relaxation of a less potent strain with the stimulating effects of caffeine.

2. Delta 10 THC

Delta 10 THC is a potent stimulating cannabinoid that might be too energizing when combined with caffeine. Even if you aren’t sensitive to caffeine or prone to insomnia, combining delta 10 THC with coffee is a recipe for jitters and anxiety.

If you want a stimulating cannabinoid to pair with your morning coffee, stick with CBN or THCV.

3. THC-O

THC-O is a high-strength hemp-derived cannabinoid that gives users a substantial burst of energy.

Research on THC-O is lacking, but many people who have tried THC-O say that it isn’t suited for combining with coffee due to its powerful stimulating effects.

Steer clear unless you’re an experienced THC-O user and know that taking this cannabinoid won’t prevent you from falling or staying asleep.

4. THCP

THCP is another very stimulating cannabinoid that doesn’t play nicely with coffee. It has about 30 times more binding affinity than regular THC, making it significantly more biologically available.

Taking THCP with coffee could lead to unwanted anxiety and restlessness, so it isn’t advised.

Additionally, THCP’s side effects aren’t well understood, and some users report a higher chance of experiencing unpleasant side effects like nausea and dizziness from taking THCP, especially in conjunction with caffeine.

Why Take Cannabinoids With Coffee?

Woman Dropping Cannabinoids on her Coffee

Caffeine is the most widely consumed drug in the world, with most people getting their daily dose from coffee. The benefits of drinking coffee are well-documented, ranging from improving focus and alertness to promoting brain health.

Unfortunately, some people are very sensitive to caffeine and experience unwanted side effects from drinking coffee, making it difficult for them to reap the benefits.

That’s where cannabinoids come in. Some cannabinoids can soften the harsher effects of caffeine, making it easier to drink more coffee without experiencing unpleasant side effects. Other cannabinoids combine synergistically with coffee to provide even more energizing effects than either can offer alone.

Combining cannabinoids with coffee is all about finding balance. Below is an explanation of the three most popular reasons people combine cannabinoids with coffee.

1. Negate the Side Effects of Coffee

The most common side effects associated with drinking coffee are anxiety, insomnia, and digestive problems. Luckily, many cannabinoids have precisely the opposite effects.

Some cannabinoids help users relax and sleep better at night, making them the perfect choice for mitigating caffeine jitters. People who experience edginess from drinking coffee can often drink more coffee when they pair it with a cannabinoid, allowing them to supercharge their caffeine intake without feeling like they’re about to jump out of their skin.

Likewise, people that feel sick after drinking a few cups of coffee can ease their upset stomach by taking certain cannabinoids alongside their coffee.

Several cannabinoids — most notably delta 9 THC — are used to treat nausea and help offset any stomach issues people may get from drinking too much coffee.

2. Improving Focus & Concentration

Even people who don’t experience any unwanted effects from drinking coffee may pair cannabinoids with their morning beverages to further improve their concentration and focus. Some cannabinoids have similar benefits to caffeine but provide them through a separate biological mechanism, making the effects slightly different.

Pairing two substances with similar effects are called an agonistic interaction and is a great way to supercharge the benefits beyond what each substance provides individually. Taking an energizing cannabinoid alongside coffee is often a case where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

3. Negating the Unwanted Side Effects of Cannabinoids

On the flip side, just like some people offset unwanted effects from coffee with cannabinoids, other people may choose to combat unwanted side effects of cannabinoids by drinking coffee.

The prime example is people who take certain cannabinoids to manage chronic pain but don’t want the sleepy feeling that often comes with taking sedative strains. Drinking coffee can help them stay awake and feel alert without sacrificing the analgesic effects of the cannabinoid.

How to Take Cannabinoids With Coffee or Caffeine?

Taking cannabinoids with coffee doesn’t have to be complicated. Most traditional media work well with coffee, and some companies are even starting to release products that combine certain cannabinoids with caffeine to make it easier for customers.

Here are some of the best ways to take cannabinoids with coffee or caffeine.

1. Use a Tincture

Tinctures are probably the easiest way to take cannabinoids with coffee since you can add them directly to your mug. Tinctures come in liquid form and can are easy to dose with the included dropper.

Another benefit of using tinctures is how easy it is to adjust your dose. Whether you’re an inexperienced user or experienced and want to experiment with different caffeine to cannabinoid ratios, tinctures might be the way to go.

2. Take Capsules or Gummies

Capsules and gummies are also popular, but they don’t have the same flexibility as tinctures. The primary benefit of capsules and gummies is that you don’t have to fiddle around with dosing; just take one, and you’re done.

If you like to tinker and want to adjust your dose size, capsules and gummies are easy to divide; just break them into smaller pieces if you need less or more.

3. Use Supplements That Combine Both

Some options take the guesswork out of it and combine the two for you. Area 52’s new Mars Energy Gummies combine caffeine with CBG in one convenient package. These are perfect for people who don’t want to calculate doses and ratios and just want something they can take without thinking.

Just like regular gummies, these products aren’t the most convenient for varying the dose size. Still, since they’re already tailored to provide the proper dosing and ratio, you probably won’t feel the need to tinker anyway.

4. Use Vapes

Unless you enjoy vaping, vapes aren’t the most convenient way to take cannabinoids with coffee. If you drink your coffee during your commute or enjoy a cup at work, taking cannabinoids via vaping is basically off the table.

If you drink coffee in the comfort of your own home, then vaping is an option, although some people find the combination of flavors undesirable.

Dosing Guide for Cannabinoids With Coffee

Cup of Coffee with Cannabinoids

The most important thing you need to remember when pairing cannabinoids with coffee is to start slowly, especially if you opt for a psychoactive cannabinoid-like delta 8 THC or delta 9 THC. Most people who combine cannabinoids with coffee are looking for extra energy or concentration to help them be more productive at work, so limiting intoxication is essential.

When in doubt, take less than you think you need. If you underestimate the proper dose size, the worst-case scenario is you drank a regular cup of coffee. Overestimating the dose can make it difficult to do your work effectively and comes with the unpleasant prospect of being high at work.

Here are some specific dosing recommendations for the most popular cannabinoids to pair with coffee. Keep in mind that one average-sized cup of coffee contains about 100 mg of caffeine. However, how much caffeine a specific cup of coffee has depends on the blend, roast level, and other factors.

Recommended Cannabinoid to Caffeine Ratios

Cannabinoid Optimal Ratio (Caffeine: Cannabinoids) Dose per 100 mg Caffeine (1 Cup of Coffee)
CBD 1:5 20 mg
CBG 1:5 20 mg
CBN 1:3 35 mg
Delta 8 THC 1:4 25 mg
Delta 9 THC 1:5 20 mg

Is It Safe to Take Cannabinoids With Coffee?

Taking cannabinoids with coffee is safe as long as you follow some guidelines. For starters, experts recommend limiting your daily caffeine intake to less than 400 mg. Even if you combine your caffeine with cannabinoids to mitigate some of the effects of caffeine, you should still keep your caffeine intake under 400 mg.

Cannabinoids also come with dose recommendations, but specific limits vary between cannabinoids. The dosing table provided above is a good place to start if you’re unsure what constitutes a reasonable dose for a particular cannabinoid.

Experienced cannabinoid users may tailor their dose based on personal experience, but inexperienced users and people new to combining caffeine with cannabinoids should start slow and err on the side of caution.

When to Avoid Using Caffeine or Cannabinoids

Some people should avoid caffeine altogether, even if they plan to combine it with cannabinoids. People with heart conditions, high blood pressure, insomnia, anxiety, or a digestive disease like ulcerative colitis of Chron’s should avoid caffeine and, therefore, should not drink coffee.

Similarly, some medications may have potentially harmful interactions with either caffeine and cannabinoids or both. As such, it is safest to avoid using caffeine or cannabinoids if you take prescription medications. It is always best to consult your prescribing doctor and ask about dietary restrictions.

Potential Side Effects of Coffee

Coffee’s side effects come almost exclusively from its caffeine content.

The most common side effects of coffee include:

  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia

These are most common in people who drink more than about four average-size cups of coffee per day.

Less common side effects of drinking coffee include:

  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

These effects are largely independent of how much coffee you drink, so consider avoiding coffee entirely if you experience any of these digestive side effects.

Potential Side Effects of Cannabinoids

Cannabinoid side effects depend on what cannabinoid you take specifically. Delta 9 THC, for example, can cause anxiety and paranoia in large doses and cause sleepiness and lethargy in moderate amounts.

Stimulating cannabinoids like CBG, THCP, and delta 10 THC can worsen existing anxiety and cause insomnia, even in small amounts.

Some cannabinoids, most notably CBD, have virtually no significant side effects, making them great for new users.

How likely an individual is to experience these side effects depends on their metabolism and tolerance. Most people recommend that inexperienced users start by taking small amounts until they find the right amount that suits their personal needs best.

Key Takeaways: Should I Use Cannabinoids With Coffee?

Pairing cannabinoids with coffee is a great option for many people. Coffee drinkers that don’t love the caffeine buzz that comes with their morning cup can use cannabinoids like CBD or delta 8 THC to soften the effects. Similarly, cannabinoid users that take delta 9 THC aid to manage pain can combine it with coffee to be more alert and productive during the day.

Creative workers may benefit from combining a small dose of psychoactive cannabinoids — like delta 8 or delta 9 THC — to broaden their minds and enhance their lateral thinking. Artists, writers, and scientists, in particular, may enjoy the expanded view offered by certain cannabinoids and avoid the unwanted effects by combining taking them with the coffee.

There are as many uses for cannabinoids as people who take them, so whether combining them with coffee is a good idea depends on the person. Many people who have experimented with combining cannabinoids with coffee report enjoying the effects more than the experience of taking either alone. As long as you control your doses and start slowly, chances are you’ll have a pleasurable experience.

References Used

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  2. Abrahamov, A., Abrahamov, A., & Mechoulam, R. (1995). An efficient new cannabinoid antiemetic in pediatric oncology. Life sciences, 56(23-24), 2097-2102.
  3. Antoniou, T., Bodkin, J., & Ho, J. M. W. (2020). Drug interactions with cannabinoids. CMAJ, 192(9), E206-E206.
  4. Temple, J. L., Bernard, C., Lipshultz, S. E., Czachor, J. D., Westphal, J. A., & Mestre, M. A. (2017). The safety of ingested caffeine: a comprehensive review. Frontiers in psychiatry, 8, 80. [4]

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