Coffee drinkers can now add their drink to the growing list of available products infused with marijuana. However, the effects of using the combination of the two compounds are not firmly safe.
Several food and beverage companies have begun selling cannabis-laced coffee, with claims about giving users an added “buzz” to their cups of coffee. But the effects of using the combination of marijuana and caffeine have not been heavily researched, said Dr. Scott Krakower, the assistant unit chief of psychiatry at Zucker Hillside Hospital in New York. This combination can always potentially be a problem, he stated.
There is some evidence from laboratories and studies on animals suggest that when combined together, marijuana and caffeine would mix neuro-chemically, said Krakower. It means that they would have different effects when used together compared to the effects that each compound has when used alone.
For instance, it appears that the combination of caffeine and THC (a compound contained in marijuana that takes responsibility for psychoactive effects) may attenuate a human’s working memory, Krakower said. This is counterintuitive, since other research suggests that cognitive-enhancing properties may be contained in caffeine, he said. There seems to be some kinds of effects when the two chemicals are mixed together that can damage our health.
There is also the problem of taking 2 substances: a depressant (in marijuana) and a stimulant (in caffeine) spontaneously, he added. The combination of the two will possibly make the user feel tired and wired at the same time, he said. But using caffeine with marijuana at the same time could not eliminate the high caused by the drug, he noticed. And that would be a mistake if someone thought that they could get high and then sober up by using the caffeine, Krakower said.
The potentially harmful cognitive effects of the combination are taking attention and the subject needs further research, Krakower added. In some states, due to the legalization of marijuana, growing edible products is widely expanded. Some experts are now worrying that these foods may make customers consume more THC than they intend to. As the drug’s effects arise more slowly when it is ingested opposed to smoked, therefore, users may consume more to feel the effects.
Plus, consumers should also be aware of labels on products containing THC that may not be precise. A 2015 study published in JAMA indicated that only 13 in edible marijuana products had their labels accurately listed the product’s levels of THC.