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How Similar Are Coffee and Cannabis?

  • by Alfonso Colasuonno


Even though we’re only two years into the 2020s, this decade appears poised to bring high-quality cannabis into the mainstream of American life.

Only a few decades ago, back in the 1990s, a different substance was exploding in newfound popularity. The 1990s were coffee’s decade to reintroduce itself to Americans and rewrite its story.

Both cannabis and coffee had long been a part of American life prior to their respective boom periods. However, before their “rebirths,” most didn’t really know—or care—about what they were consuming, be it piping hot brew or densely packed blunt.

Fortunately, it’s a whole new world now. And even better, there’s more in common between the two than first meets the eye.

The Health Benefits of Coffee and Cannabis

One of the foremost commonalities between coffee and cannabis is the fact that both offer therapeutic benefits for certain medical conditions.

According to a team of researchers, coffee consumption provides a decreased risk of developing various types of cancer, cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s disease, and type 2 diabetes.

These encouraging findings were backed up by a study of Japanese adults between the ages of 40 and 69, all of whom had no history of cancer, cerebrovascular disease, or ischemic heart disease at the beginning of the study. After following the subjects for an average of 18.7 years, researchers found that those who habitually drank coffee had a lower risk of mortality not only from cancer, cerebrovascular disease, and respiratory disease, but from all causes.

Similarly, cannabis has been shown to have therapeutic effects when treating an assortment of medical challenges, including chronic pain, cancer, nausea, anorexia, epilepsy, glaucoma, and PTSD, just to name a few.

Coffee, Cannabis, and “The Happy Hormone”

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in a person’s ability to feel pleasure. Additionally, dopamine positively affects many different aspects of behavior and physical functioning, including learning, motivation, sleep, mood, attention, and pain processing.

According to a study published in Annals of Neurosciences, both cannabis and coffee (like many other psychoactive substances, such as alcohol) lead to increased production of dopamine.

In short, there’s an emerging body of scientific evidence backing up the long-held truism that responsible consumption of these substances elevates people’s mood.

The Diversity of Coffee and Cannabis Cultivars

One of the simplest ways people classify cannabis cultivars is to label them as either Indicas, Sativas, or hybrids.

Similarly, coffee cultivars are typically understood as either Arabicas, Robustas, or Libericas.

In both cases, these are vast oversimplifications.

Depending on the region, grow conditions, processing, and a host of other factors, two different Arabicas or Indicas, for example, will provide vastly divergent experiences. This level of diversity offers connoisseurs innumerable choices, with options sure to please even those with the most discriminating taste.

Pairing Coffee and Cannabis

The blend of alertness and relaxation that comes from the mixing of cannabis and coffee has long been known. As far back as 1857, Dr. John Bell noted that the effects of cannabis were enhanced by coffee.

Colloquially described as a “hippie speedball,” the pairing of coffee and cannabis is now poised to break into the mass market. Cannabis-infused coffees are becoming increasingly popular, as are other infused beverages, including beers, wines, and whiskeys.

In these exciting times, we are pleased to announce the forthcoming introduction of our Coffee Journal. This notebook will adopt the renowned approach of our line of cannabis-adjacent journals. It will feature impeccable aesthetics, essential information backed by bleeding-edge research, and easy-to-use entry pages so that you can discover your perfect brew.

Make sure to follow Goldleaf on Instagram to keep aware of all the latest news about our coffee releases. You can also check out The Coffee Journal and our coffee science infographics.

Tagged with: Cannabis Coffee Education

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