With Delta-8-THC emerging as a legal alternative to recreational Delta-9-THC, people are finding new and creative ways to incorporate it into parties and social events. The question is, is this really a good idea? Can you drink with Delta-8? And if so, what can you expect from the combined effects?
Many people report being able to combine Delta-8 with alcohol without experiencing any adverse effects. There's no research backed contraindications between Delta-8-THC and alcohol. Still, there are some potential drawbacks of combining the two. Here's what you should know:
Combining alcohol and THC, a method frequently referred to as “crossfading,” is nothing new. THC has been a popular party substance for decades, potentially even centuries. Generally, the effects of THC when combined with alcohol meet somewhere in the middle of the mellow and stimulating effects of each respective substance.
In reality, however, the way that a combination of alcohol and THC affects you depends on a range of factors, including how much you intake, the order in which you use the two substances, your personal tolerance to each substance, and other unique biological factors. Although many people have combined the two without issue, there are some adverse interactions to look out for. Here’s why:
Although the method has been enjoyed by partygoers for years, it still may not be the best idea to combine Delta-8-THC with alcohol. This is especially true if you're a heavy drinker who regularly experiences vomiting after drinking alcohol.
Delta-8-THC's antiemetic properties are one of its most well-known benefits, meaning it can help calm nausea and prevent vomiting. In fact, Delta-8-THC was found to be 100% effective at stopping vomiting in one pediatric study.
While this might sound like a good thing for anybody who has a case of the alcohol-induced spins, it can actually be dangerous. Vomiting after consuming alcohol is one of the body's purging methods for getting rid of alcohol after over-consumption. In other words, this is one case where vomiting might just be necessary.
Sometimes, vomiting is just the body's way of reducing some of the body's toxic load, but other times it could be a critical step in preventing alcohol poisoning. If you vastly over-consume alcohol (which is never recommended) but also consume Delta-8-THC that prevents the body from purging said alcohol, you may be putting yourself at risk of alcohol poisoning. As you can probably imagine, that's definitely not a good thing.
Of course this danger mostly applies to heavy drinkers. So, as it may seem, the combination of Delta-8-THC and alcohol is potentially less dangerous for light drinkers, but there are still other side effects to consider.
Alcohol is frequently used as a nightcap because of the way that it can induce sleep. After a night of heavy drinking, alcohol induced sleep can be heavy and unfulfilling, leaving you feeling unrested and groggy the next day. Many people find that it's much more difficult to wake up the morning after a drinking binge even if they get to bed at a decent time.
One study found that Delta-8 may potentiate these effects. Research found that a pre-treatment of Delta-8 potentiated alcohol induced sleep in mice, and that effect was still apparent up to 72 hours after the last dose. The study did conclude that the potentiated effects lessened with frequent use, but we don't recommend chronic use of any recreational substance. It's unclear how this animal study translates to human use, but definitely be aware that combining Delta-8 with alcohol may cause you to sleep too heavily and could reduce sleep quality.
There may also be some specific concerns to keep in mind depending on the order in which you use alcohol and Delta-8. For instance, one small 2015 study found that even small doses of alcohol can increase the absorption rate of Delta-9-THC. In other words, drinking alcohol before THC consumption may lead to stronger effects. Although this research focused on Delta-9, it may very well translate to Delta-8 since the two compounds are absorbed in a similar way.
There may be risk when using the two substances in the reverse order as well. A 1992 study found that consuming THC before drinking alcohol may slow the rise in blood alcohol levels, which means it may delay the feeling of drunkenness.
This is a problem that may result in over-consumption of alcohol, or it could be a recipe for an even more dangerous situation. For instance, it may make you feel like you're actually sober enough to drive when the drunkenness is actually just delayed.
More research is needed to fully understand how Delta-8 and alcohol may interact, but it's safe to say that you should proceed with extreme caution when mixing the two substances.
Both alcohol and Delta-8 affect everyone differently, so it's hard to pinpoint the effects you may experience when combining the two. Plus, the actual effects are heavily impacted by how much of each substance you consume, and in what order you consume them.
If you plan to use Delta-8-THC and alcohol at the same time, keep these precautions in mind:
Because consuming alcohol may potentiate THC’s effects and consuming THC may slow the onset of alcohol's effects, you should probably consume less of each substance than you typically would when using them individually. In other words, always calculate that you've had one more drink then you feel like you've had, and plan to drink one or two drinks less than you usually would. The same is true for Delta-8 dosing, so you may want to take it low and slow instead of consuming hard-hitting, heavy doses.
Before you mix Delta-8 and alcohol, make sure that you're very familiar with your limits for each individual substance. If you're inexperienced with either alcohol or Delta-8, it's a much better idea to use them on their own until you have a better idea of how much you should consume to find your sweet spot.
As always, use recreational substances responsibly. Just like when drinking, you need to make sure that you're going to be in a safe and responsible setting before you mix THC and alcohol. This may mean consuming at your own home or having a sober, designated driver when you're out on the town (or a designated sober person even if there's no driving to be done). Either way, make sure that you are aware of how much you're consuming and in a situation where you can easily tap out if you need to.
On the other end of the spectrum, many people claim that Delta-8 and alcohol have a unique symbiotic relationship in that Delta-8-THC may help ease post-alcohol discomforts. We really can't argue with this point. Although there hasn't been any research to date to evaluate Delta-8's effectiveness at treating a hangover, the symptoms and benefits do line up. Delta-8-THC may help fight nausea and vomiting, soothe headaches, reduce fatigue, and stimulate appetite, all of which can be useful when you're battling a nasty hangover. Read “Delta-8-THC Health Benefits” to learn more.
If you want to use Delta-8-THC to soothe your post-party blues, we recommend trying one of these products:
Flower is one of the most effective and fast-acting ways to consume Delta-8. Inhaled THC doses take effect almost instantly, and Delta-8-THC flower generally brings a reasonable dose of CBD to the table, too.
With a variety of different Delta-8 strains available, you're likely to find something that meets your needs whether you plan to spend the day sleeping off the previous night or you need to shake it off so you can go about your day. To choose the best strain, read "Which Strain of Delta-8 Flower is Best?"
Delta Edibles are a convenient, pre-measured dosing method, and it's pretty easy to keep edibles on hand for when you need them. Some reports suggest that the effects of edible doses are more potent because of the way that THC is metabolized in the gut, so you may even be able to use smaller doses while reaping the same benefits. Of course, edibles may not be the best option if you're having trouble keeping food down.
Although Delta-8 tinctures are technically a form of edibles, the small liquid doses may be a little easier to stomach when you're feeling nauseous. Plus, tinctures are taken sublingually, which means you drop the dose under your tongue and hold it for about a minute before swallowing. When dosed this way, Delta-8 takes effect pretty quickly, usually in about 30 minutes. This method is popular because it allows you to precisely control your Delta-8 dose, and Delta-8 tinctures are generally the most cost-effective dosing option.
If you need to soothe a hangover but aren't keen on experiencing psychoactive effects as you navigate your day, CBD is a good option to consider. It has some similar benefits, like the potential to soothe nausea, pain, and fatigue, and it may also help promote focus and sustained energy.
It's not psychoactive, so you don't need to forgo hemp-derived relief even if you'll be spending your day at the office or running errands. A full spectrum CBD lollipop or tincture dose is a great option for getting your day back on track after a long night out.
Read “Can CBD Stop a Hangover?” to learn more.
There are no research-basked adverse effects related to mixing Delta-8-THc and alcohol, but there still may be risks involved. In particular, Delta-8 and alcohol may affect each other’s absorption, so you may need to consume much less than you typically would. You should also avoid Delta-8 if you’re a heavy drinker as it may increase the risk of alcohol poisoning. It may be better for most people to consume one or the other and not both (TIP: Delta-8 doesn’t cause a hangover!)
If you do decide to combine Delta-8 with alcohol, make sure that you consume responsibly, pay attention to your intake, and only use high-quality Delta-8-THC products to reduce the risk of adverse reactions. Having a designated-sober-person or consuming at home is probably a good idea, especially if you aren’t sure how the combination will affect you.
You can buy Delta-8 in stores and online in states where Delta-8-THC is legal, but shopping online gives you access to a wider variety of product types, flavors, and potencies. Our Elev8 Collection is 100% Farm Bill Compliant and made according to the industry’s highest standards. Our unique sublingual-style edibles are the perfect party companions.
Comments will be approved before showing up.