CBD Might Be Able to Cure Your Hangover—And Everything That Comes With It
Is there anything CBD can’t do?
In This Article
Life offers many things worth indulging in. But when it comes to alcohol, having one too many drinks doesn’t necessarily feel all that nice once the party is over. Your head is pounding, your stomach is tied in knots, and your ability to get up and go is gone—all of which best describes the dreaded hangover.
The term can basically be defined as veisalgia, a cluster of symptoms that occur after drinking too much alcohol, but they don’t happen immediately after. Instead, they show themselves the next day, typically when your blood alcohol concentration levels drop near zero. Why do they suck so much? Because you don’t feel symptoms right away, this delayed response might cause you to drink more (which can cause your body even more issues).
Thankfully, nature offers a pretty awesome solution for helping with a hangover’s mentally and physically draining symptoms. No, it’s not burned toast or shrimp, remedies that have been rumored as hangover cure-alls in the past. It’s CBD, aka cannabidiol. Not that we need reminding, but the key signs of a hangover often include low blood sugar, nausea, dehydration, anxiety, fatigue, a lowered immunity, and many others. If you overdid it last night and are looking for a natural alternative, CBD may be able to help you rebound quickly. Up and at ’em, right?
The Morning-After Science of Hangovers
Ah yes, the hangover, a phenomenon experts still surprisingly know very little about. Some have theorized alcohol disrupts the flow of our biological functioning, while others believe alcohol withdrawal is to blame. Whatever the cause, one thing’s for certain, it’s a shitshow. And it starts with the liver. Once metabolized, alcohol’s ethanol converts into a hangover-inducing toxin called acetaldehyde, which causes liver detoxification. In a nutshell, this ethanol metabolic process is split into two main phases.
In phase one, alcohol travels through a series of (rather complex) enzymatic pathways, and will eventually get detoxified (or made less toxic) by cytochrome P450, an enigmatic enzyme largely present in the liver. During this process, free radicals are typically formed and quarried by antioxidants in a normally functioning body. However, the overindulgence of alcohol causes increased toxicity, which causes the liver to work a little harder. During phase two, chemicals like acetaldehyde produced in the first phase are mixed in with metabolites by liver cells and rendered into water-soluble or “low-weight” compounds. That way, they can be excreted safely from the body to prevent increased toxicity.
These symptoms oftentimes depend on the person. Some people are blessed with a life of little to no hangover symptoms, while others suffer without mercy. Water, sugary drinks, electrolytic drinks, medications, waiting it out, sweating it out, sleeping it off, eating healthy (or unhealthy) foods, and even having another alcoholic beverage are a few commonly used homespun remedies for curing a hangover. However, sometimes they aren’t efficient enough to get the job done (and can even do more harm than help for replenishing all that was lost overnight). Though we are in the beginning stages of research, many studies already confirm what the researchers suspected for a long time: Cannabis possesses great healing power. The plant offers the kind of natural relief that can reverse these metabolic consequences of ethanol and minimize your suffering without adding any negative side effects into the mix.
The Relief Without the High
Cannabis is a very complex plant, with a vast amount of bioactive chemicals that act in synergy. One of 113 cannabinoids abundantly found in cannabis is CBD (short for cannabidiol), which is mainly found in hemp plants. Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), it’s non-psychoactive, meaning it won’t cause the mind-altering effects normally associated with marijuana. Instead of being consumed recreationally like THC, CBD is mainly used for medicinal purposes, all credit due to its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-anxiolytic, and antiepileptic properties.
The effectiveness of cannabis for hangovers is best explained by the existence of the endocannabinoid system (ECS), endo meaning “within.” Discovered back in the early ’90s, this extraordinary biological system exists in all living vertebrates and mainly consists of cannabinoid (CB) receptors known as CB1 and CB2. Researchers suggest they help regulate vital health functions in the body, such as sleep, appetite, pain, or the immune response. But the overconsumption of alcohol can greatly affect the functionality of these CB receptors (and several others), which puts your ECS off-balance. When you really think about it, most health problems are the result of an imbalance. But cannabis’ CBD has been shown to get ECS back on track by restoring homeostasis, or balance, through its indirect interaction with CB1 and CB2 receptors—the root of its many health benefits.
#1 Brain Fog
A 2013 study found that large amounts of alcohol causes extreme neurodegeneration, however, the transdermal application of CBD was able to decrease neurodegeneration by nearly 50%.
#2 Dehydration and Related Symptoms
Your monster migraine comes from dehydration and an imbalanced endocannabinoid system (or Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency (CED), as theorized by researcher Ethan Russo M.D of the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute). Alcohol is a diuretic that causes your body to have an inflammatory response in your immune system. Like Tylenol, CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties have a positive effect on aches and pains after a night of partying. Even better is the fact that CBD doesn’t produce any negative effects when consumed with alcohol like some other medications.
#3 Nausea and Vomiting
Feeling nauseous after too many tequila shots? We’ve all been there. Alcohol is an irritant in your system and can increase acid in the stomach as well as an inflamed stomach lining, but studies show that CBD can help quell the queasy storm.
#4 Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression following a night of drinking can be due at least in part to increased cortisol levels in your brain and other alcohol-induced symptoms. The anxiolytic effect of CBD is similar in efficacy to anti-anxiety medications or antidepressants through its interaction with serotonin 5HT1-A receptors (they regulate anxiety and fear, specifically). The CBD helps you get past worrying about all the wrong things, by easing your brain’s response to stress and maintaining your cortisol levels.
#5 Alcohol Toxicity
When we are hungover, our bodies are in serious need of a boost. As mentioned, CBD is a powerful antioxidant—some suggest even more powerful than vitamin C and E—that when consumed after drinking could put vitamins back into your body and help reduce free radical damage by flushing out toxins (such as acetaldehyde).
Dosing with CBD
Let’s just face it, hangovers are kind of the worst and can make you vow to never to drink alcohol again. While there isn’t enough evidence to say with absolute certainty that CBD is a cure for a hangover, science seems to show that the cannabinoid can help the body in more ways than one—hangover or not. To find out if it’s worth adding to your self-care arsenal, between your snoozing and rehydrating, it may be worth the experimentation to help you stay on top of your cleansing and detoxification needs after a long night of drinking.
The cannabinoid can be vaporized, added to foods and beverages as a tincture, or used topically in creams, balms, and salves. Though it’s important to note that everyone metabolizes CBD differently, thus, it will affect everyone differently. CBD is a personal experience, which can make dosing a bit tricky to gauge, however, the standard is around 5 mg. A good rule of thumb: start low and slowly increase until you find your sweet spot.
CBD might be the hangover cure you've been searching for. Here, we're sharing how CBD can help with the physical and mental symptoms of a hangover.
All About CBD for Hangovers
Posted on September 4th, 2020
Drinking all night might feel fun in the moment, but you may regret your drinking if you wake up with a hangover the next day. Hangover symptoms can include nausea, headaches, sensitivity to light, and fatigue. These symptoms can be debilitating, but could CBD help you to get fast relief? Read on to learn more about CBD for hangovers.
What Causes Hangovers?
When you drink alcohol, you are introducing a toxic compound to your body. In order to adapt to this, your body will try to eliminate the compound as quickly as possible. This can cause many adverse health symptoms. To make matters worse, alcohol is a diuretic. Drinking can trigger symptoms of dehydration, which can make a hangover more severe.
As long as you stop drinking, hangover symptoms will naturally go away on their own. With that said, it can take up to 24 hours for your body to recover completely. If you need faster results than that, taking CBD may be an ideal solution for you.
How Can CBD Help Hangovers?
CBD offers numerous potential benefits, many of which might make it ideal for managing the symptoms of a hangover. CBD also has antioxidant properties . Drinking alcohol can cause oxidative stress, causing your body to produce more free radicals. Antioxidants can neutralize free radicals, allowing you to recover from those symptoms more quickly.
Relief for Headaches
While CBD may help with hangovers in numerous ways, one of the most effective things it can do is treat severe headaches. CBD is a natural anti-inflammatory that may be able to reduce inflammation throughout the body . The pain from headaches is caused by inflammation, which is why CBD has the potential to provide fast relief.
One of the reasons that hangover headaches are so intense is that heavy drinking can lead to dehydration. While drinking water is the best way to treat dehydration, CBD may be able to assist. Although CBD is not dehydrating, it can cause dry mouth, which can spur you to drink more water. The combination of this and the potential anti-inflammatory properties of CBD might give you quick relief.
Relief for Nausea and Vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are two more health symptoms that are commonly linked with hangovers. When you drink alcohol, your stomach produces more hydrochloric acid, which can irritate your stomach lining. Your body may also induce vomiting as a protective measure. Vomiting can be a natural protective measure against toxins.
Although these symptoms typically subside within 24 hours, you may be looking for a way to get through those first few hours. When taking CBD, it may interact with your body’s serotonin receptors. Your serotonin receptors may be able to ease nausea and can help you to keep food down. Furthermore, CBD interacts with your endocannabinoid system, which has been seen to regulate nausea and vomiting . CBD has the potential to suppress both nausea and vomiting and relieve feelings of indigestion.
Dealing With Fatigue
Drinking takes a toll on the body, which means you may feel weak and sluggish when you wake up the next day. If you’re feeling sluggish, and you’re looking for a way to get a quick boost of energy, you may consider CBD. CBD may be able to strengthen cells in the body, which might help you to feel more awake and alert.
Cannabidiol interacts with your body on a cellular level, and after a night of drinking, it may help your body to recover more quickly. Much of its effectiveness can be contributed to how it interacts with your body to bring it back in balance.
If you’ve made the mistake of drinking when you have to work or take a test the next day, then you may be able to find assistance from CBD. Hangovers can make it difficult to focus, but thankfully, CBD has shown the potential to improve concentration. It may be able to enhance reflexes and response times, and could potentially improve brain function as well.
Studies suggest that CBD can interact with your brain’s dopamine receptors . Dopamine is a chemical neurotransmitter that has a direct impact on memory and focus. Not only does CBD have the potential to help you to concentrate when you’re recovering from a hangover, but it may leave you feeling more motivated and energized than usual.
Potential Anxiety Relief
The physical symptoms of a hangover could wind up leaving you feeling mentally anxious as well. This is a common condition and is often referred to as “hangxiety”. Anxiety can worsen many hangover symptoms, especially nausea, which can make it more difficult for your body to recover.
Cannabidiol has the potential to help alleviate the symptoms of anxiety, which is why it may also be an excellent way to manage the symptoms of a hangover. CBD may impact both paralimbic and limbic areas of the brain, which is how it could affect many different types of anxiety. Cannabidiol may also keep your body from secreting cortisol , a steroid hormone linked to stress.
The Best CBD for Hangovers
There are many CBD products on the market, which can make it difficult to choose the best products to take for a hangover. When buying CBD products, there are a number of things you’ll want to look at, such as:
- The ingredients list
- Whether you’re buying CBD isolate, broad-spectrum, or full-spectrum CBD
- The amount of CBD per serving
- The net weight of the product
- The THC levels
- The suggested use of the product
At Tanasi, we offer a range of high-quality CBD products, including full-spectrum CBD tinctures, water-soluble hemp extract beverages, and CBD capsules. All of our products are non-psychoactive and contain less than 0.3% THC. Our products are third-party tested and made from premium industrial hemp to ensure you’re receiving a high-quality product.
Finding the Right Dosage
In order to get the relief and results you’re looking for, you’ll have to take the appropriate dosage of CBD. If you don’t take enough, it might not do enough to help your hangover systems. If your dosage is too high, however, it could lead to lethargy, irritability, and lightheadedness.
Thankfully, calculating the right dosage is easy. In most cases, when you take CBD, you’ll be able to find information about dosing on the label. Dosage should be adjusted according to your weight. For example, a low dosage for someone that weighs 100 pounds may be 10 mg, while a low dose for someone that weighs 250 pounds might be 25 mg.
For a hangover, it’s best to take a low or medium strength dose. If you’re using CBD products with a higher potency, a lower dose is usually better. However, we always recommend you start out with a lower dose. If that dosage doesn’t provide sufficient relief, you can increase your dosage.
Tips for Taking CBD
If you’re new to taking CBD, you’ll want to avoid re-dosing too quickly. Because hangovers can cause severe symptoms, you may be tempted to increase your dosage if you don’t feel immediate relief. It’s important to remember that it can take between 15 and 20 minutes before your body starts feeling the effects of CBD.
After taking CBD, you can typically expect the effects to last for somewhere between 2 to 6 hours. If you’re still recovering from your hangover after this time has passed, you may consider a re-dose to find continued relief.
Although CBD may help you find hangover relief, it won’t completely eliminate the symptoms of a hangover. You’ll get better results from CBD if you take other precautionary measures to reduce the severity of your hangover. Hangovers cause multiple symptoms, which is why it’s best to take a multifaceted approach when treating them.
As mentioned above, dehydration can exacerbate or even cause many hangover symptoms, which is why you should make a point of staying hydrated when you’re drinking. As a rule of thumb, you should try to drink one glass of water for every alcoholic beverage.
Lastly, you’ll want to nourish your body by eating a good meal. Nausea symptoms can make it difficult to eat with a hangover, but CBD may help to remedy that. It’s best to eat meals that are high in protein and complex carbohydrates. Whole grains and starchy vegetables are a wonderful way to help your body to recover.
CBD won’t cure a hangover, but it may be an effective way to get hangover relief. If you’ve heard great things about CBD for hangovers, why not give it a try for yourself? Remember to look for high-quality CBD products, like those from Tanasi, and make sure you have CBD on hand the next time you have a hangover.
Hangover symptoms can include nausea, headaches, sensitivity to light, and fatigue. These symptoms can be debilitating, but could CBD help your hangover?