What Happens When You Mix Cannabis & Caffeine?

As the number of states to legalize marijuana increases, researchers continue to uncover its many side effects and interactions. Manufacturers have created many common products mixed with CBD and THC as people search for convenient ways to consume cannabis. While the effects of combining cannabis and caffeine are largely unknown, some interesting evidence has been unveiled [1]. Read on to discover more about the potential benefits and side effects of consuming caffeine with cannabis.

For general information about whether a Florida medical marijuana recommendation is right for you, schedule an exam with one of our Florida Medical Marijuana Doctors. You may complete our eligibility survey in just 5 minutes to find out if you pre-qualify for a recommendation.

Does Caffeine Counteract the Effects of Cannabis?

Caffeinated drinks such as coffee act as a stimulant and cannabis may act as a stimulant or a depressant. Caffeine generally gives people energy, while most use cannabis because of its ability to provide relaxation. Given that fact, it may seem that using caffeine would cancel the effects of cannabis, such that marijuana may calm the coffee jitters. To date, research offers no more than anecdotal evidence to support this claim [1].

What Happens When Caffeine and Cannabis are Combined?

With eighty percent of the U.S. population regularly using caffeine to boost their daily energy levels, it is no surprise that marijuana manufacturers have begun to add it to their products. One Reddit user stated, “After years of smoking, I’ve found that caffeine and weed are a perfect mix. If I get nicely stoned then drink a strong cup of coffee, the effects mix so perfectly” [2]. Caffeine is a psychoactive drug that provides a feeling of euphoria. This is because caffeine blocks receptors for the neurotransmitter “adenosine,” which “blocks other neurotransmitters that excite the neurons; its activity thus leads to feelings of fatigue” [2]. Therefore, caffeine provides a feeling of alertness by blocking adenosine. 

Marijuana provides a similar, euphoric feeling by releasing dopamine in the brain. Many enjoy combining caffeine and marijuana because they feel it intensifies the euphoria felt when high. Dr. Sergi Ferre, senior investigator at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) told Live Science, “Caffeine increases tremendously the effects of a psychostimulant, including THC and cocaine, so any substance that releases dopamine, including THC, its effects are increased by caffeine” [2]. 

One interesting study suggests low doses of caffeine leads to the use of low doses of marijuana, while high doses of caffeine leads to the use of higher doses of marijuana. In 2014, scientists in a study on monkeys started by giving them a low dose of caffeine followed by unrestricted access to marijuana. At other times, the monkeys were given higher doses of caffeine. The study found that when given a low dose of caffeine, the monkeys were less likely to consume marijuana, yet they used more marijuana when dosed with higher amounts of caffeine. The scientists concluded that cravings for marijuana are linked to the use of caffeine [3].

What Are the Risks of Combining Caffeine with Cannabis?

Published in the British Journal of Pharmacology in 2012, another study on the interaction between caffeine and cannabis was conducted on rats to determine how the combination affects memory and cognitive function. The study found that “THC induced memory deficits when administered alone, and that these deficits were increased by combining THC with caffeine. It is thought that these surprising results are due to the way that caffeine interacts with adenosine receptors in the brain” [4].

In addition, it is thought that combining caffeine and cannabis may have a negative effect on blood pressure since both substances have an influence on the cardiovascular system. The findings of a study conducted in 2011 show that when marijuana users stop use of the drug, their blood pressure increased. Since caffeine is also known to increase blood pressure, it is possible that combining them magnifies this negative effect. If stopping the use of cannabis, users should consider reducing the amount of caffeine they consume, or stop using caffeine for awhile [4].

Is Medical Marijuana Right for Me?

Whether medical marijuana will help your condition depends on many factors best evaluated by a medical doctor. If you feel you may benefit from medical marijuana, the first step is to take our eligibility survey. In just 5 minutes, you could pre-qualify for a Florida medical marijuana recommendation. A Florida Marijuana Marijuana Doctor can then determine if you qualify during an in-person exam. For more information, visit https://docmj.com.

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/caffeine-and-marijuana
  2. https://www.livescience.com/59913-health-effects-of-mixing-caffeine-and-marijuana.html
  3. https://www.bustle.com/articles/142763-4-things-that-happen-when-you-mix-marijuana-caffeine-because-it-definitely-affects-your-high
  4. https://www.marijuanabreak.com/caffeine-and-cannabis-is-it-a-good-mix