Is cannabis safer than coffee

Cannabis and coffee - this is how you save money!

Cannabis and coffee form an infernal duo. Why else are the Dutch cannabis bars called “coffee shops”? Exactly because you go in, sip a cappuccino and smoke a joint.

But why did cannabis and coffee come together to form the ultimate couple? Why don't we just drink iced tea or beer with the joint? Why not fresh milk or cucumber water?

It's simple: caffeine and cannabis form a neurochemical mix. Okay, I guess it's not that easy. I'll try to classify the whole thing a bit.

coffee

Let's just start with a collection of facts about coffee, the Germans' favorite drink. Goethe already pondered the "very own dreary mood" of the black hot drink. "The coffee paralyzed my bowels and seemed to completely neutralize their functions, so that I felt great anxiety, however, without being able to make up my mind to a more sensible way of life."

Did the good man mistake coffee for cannabis ?! Because coffee actually has a stimulating, concentration-promoting and encouraging effect. On the other hand, I understand exactly what Goethe means. After two or three coffees at the latest, I'm at 180 and can no longer concentrate on one thing. Then I am so driven by an inner activism that I can no longer sit still. Then I need some action! Do you know that? Or am I the only one there?

Back to the neurochemical mix. Or rather: the first ingredient.
Caffeine prevents the body's own reaction that relaxes us by occupying certain receptors in the brain. (Warning: Becomes scientific. If you are not interested in the details, you are welcome to skip this and the next chapter.)

A little biology catch-up lesson: The receptors are an important part of a nerve cell, to which special molecules, so-called neurotransmitters, can “dock”. Many nerve cells, also called neurons, make up our nervous system (e.g. the brain). A certain reaction follows depending on which molecule occupies the receptors of a nerve cell. Such a subsequent reaction is in turn the release of another (different) neurotransmitter from the nerve cell.

In the normal state, among other things, adenosine neurotransmitters occupy the receptors.

This inhibits the release of all invigorating and activating neurotransmitters, e.g. dopamine or adrenaline. In the end, this ensures that you have the usual basic calm. When drinking coffee, however, caffeine occupies a certain number of receptors, depending on the increased amount. Unfortunately, one cannot think in black and white when it comes to the subject - because adenosine still occupies a large number of receptors. However, the small portion of the receptors occupied by caffeine is already sufficient for more activating neurotransmitters to be released. The effects are further increased because the caffeine also increases the "clock frequency" of the neuron impulses. It's like when the i5 CPU in your notebook switches to Turbo Boost.

Take a deep breath, maybe read about it again: These are the reasons why drinking coffee wakes you up and sharpens your senses.
Nice to know: Since dopamine is (more easily) released when drinking coffee, there is a certain risk of addiction.

cannabis

For processing the active ingredients of cannabis, humans have their own nervous system in the nervous system, the so-called endocannabinoid system. Incidentally, its receptors differ from those of the "normal" nervous system, as described above. Although they are basically identical in construction and function, the endocannabinoid system receptors can only absorb the body's own anandamide, the THC contained in cannabis and a handful of other neurotransmitters.
When THC or other cannabinoids dock onto the respective receptors, many secondary reactions are triggered that have an impact on the entire body. In contrast to caffeine, THC reduces the "clock rate" of the release of neurotransmitters in certain areas of the brain, primarily inhibiting some processes and making you tired in the long run.

Cannabis and coffee

It gets exciting when you consume cannabis and coffee together. An animal experiment was carried out to get to the bottom of the correlation between cannabis and caffeine. I don't know who will allow animal testing in this context, but that's not the point now. The experimental setup was as follows: Two groups of squirrel monkeys had access to a THC dispenser. With the help of a lever, the monkeys could call up a dose. The second group was given caffeine before the experiment.

The result: The group of monkeys, which were under the influence of caffeine, used the THC lever significantly less at the beginning. But now comes an interesting point: After a long period of abstinence from the two substances, the group was again divided into two groups - but this time there was no caffeine injection from the start. Rather, one group of monkeys had access to a mixture of THC and caffeine and the other only to THC. The group of monkeys with the "mix" accessed more often in the attempt than the group that only had THC available.

Evaluation: With a previous increase in caffeine the desire for THC decreases, with simultaneous intake of THC and caffeine the desire for both substances increases. This leads me to the conclusion that you are more frugal with a joint AFTER coffee than with the mixed consumption of caffeine and THC.

And where do I save now?

If you have a coffee and wait a little before you smoke, a smaller amount of cannabis will be enough for your usual high. However, if you smoke and drink coffee at the same time, you can expect that you will feel like more cannabis as well as more coffee in the following hours. This is probably why the cannabis bars in Holland are also called coffee shops. This is of course a win-win situation for the operator if the clientele sips cappuccino and smokes a nice joint at the same time. Because it will probably not just be a joint and a cappuccino.

After the whole mess of neurons, I really have no choice but to wish you a good appetite with your next coffee and joint! Because one thing is a fact: cannabis and coffee are very hot candidates for the couple of the year.

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Edit: A new study has provided new input on cannabis and coffee. You can read all of the findings in our second article on cannabis and coffee. Warning: It is becoming biologically complex again.