Cannabis as a substitute for alcohol
Cannabis Dec 31
By Chad Frey 0 Comments

Worried about alcohol consumption? Consider making the switch to cannabis

The holidays are an indulgent time, and most people come into the New Year looking to lessen some of the damage done over the festive season. Many people do dry January as a kind of detox to the drinking of the holidays. If you are looking for an easy way to transition to dry January, consider switching from alcohol to cannabis!

Cannabis vs Alcohol

Humans have been smoking, eating, and otherwise enjoying cannabis for centuries. Cannabis usage for both recreational purposes and medical purposes is as old as the plant itself. But with the wave of legalization, Americans are slowly starting to make the switch from alcohol consumption to cannabis. A Harris Poll released in 2021 showed that out of 2000 adults 21 and up, 45% have decided to replace their alcohol consumption with cannabis to some degree. Almost a third of those polled claimed to prefer cannabis to alcohol.

The Effects of Alcohol

People are replacing their alcohol with cannabis, and not just because of cannabis legalization. Studies show that alcohol has some pretty serious drawbacks for both the body and the brain.

Anyone who has had a wild night out is familiar with the effects of alcohol. The famous hangover symptoms – nausea, headache, and irritability. But the long-term effects are damaging too: ethanol, the active ingredient in alcoholic beverages, can disrupt brain function by hampering neurotransmitters.

Everyone knows alcohol’s impact on the liver. But alcohol also has negative impacts on other organs. Alcohol contains lots of sugar, which can impede the body’s ability to regulate insulin. In addition to the liver, long-term alcohol abuse is associated with stroke, hypertension, and other cardiovascular problems.

Nobody is perfect! 

While it is true that alcohol is generally considered unhealthy, there is nothing wrong with enjoyment in moderation. There are numerous studies that link moderate red wine intake and heart health. Cannabis, while wonderful, can also have negative effects on the lungs if smoked, though studies have not yet revealed to what extent. Either way, neither cannabis nor alcohol should be used while driving or operating machinery.

Looking to go cold turkey for dry January? Cannabis may be a better answer

Now that we know the drawbacks of alcohol, what are the benefits of cannabis? Besides the obvious mood improvement and euphoria, cannabis can actually work with your body to make this January the best one yet! Read on to learn the benefits of replacing cannabis with alcohol.

Goodbye Hangovers! 

Hangovers are no fun. This is because the body reacts to alcohol as a toxin, and therefore makes you feel as though you have been poisoned because, well, you have.  If you are tired of spending a whole day in bed after a night out, consider switching out alcohol for cannabis!

Consuming cannabis activates the part of your brain called the endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in pain moderation and mood regulation, among other things. This means no hangovers, so you can enjoy as much as you want and still feel good the next day!

Stress and Anxiety Management

Whereas alcohol makes stress and anxiety worse, cannabis might actually improve stress and anxiety. Cannabis helps your brain release dopamine, which supports calmness and feelings of contentment. However, some studies show that high levels of THC, the psychoactive element of cannabis, can actually make anxiety worse for a short period of time, so be sure to start with smaller doses.

No Risk of Overdose

Overdosing on alcohol is very possible, and can lead to vomiting, seizure, and even death. According to the CDC, alcohol kills 140,000 Americans a year, as opposed to cannabis. To this day there have been no reports of an adult death caused solely by cannabis consumption, making cannabis the clear winner when it comes to safety.

No Extra Calories

Even straight liquor has calories because alcohol itself contains sugar. When you consider beers, sugary cocktails, and high-calorie wine it’s easy to see how alcohol consumption can contribute to weight gain.

But, what about the famous munchies? It’s true that cannabis makes users hungry– in fact, medical marijuana is often used to quell nausea and give patients an appetite. This would lead one to think that cannabis users tend to be overweight, but that is not the case!

A 2011 study actually found that cannabis users were less likely to be obese than non-users, and some studies suggest that cannabis actually hampers weight gain. While more research will be done to get to the truth, the fact is that consuming cannabis alone has much fewer calories than drinking, which can be useful for those looking to shrink their waistline in the coming new year!

A Great Night’s Sleep

Lots of people have trouble sleeping after a night of drinking. This is because those pesky sugars in alcohol can interfere with the body’s insulin regulation, which prevents the brain from reaching healing levels of sleep. On the other hand, cannabis has been used to help people get a good night’s sleep for centuries. This is because cannabinoids (THC and CBD) work with the human brain to promote relaxation and sleep. If you are looking for a non-intoxicating sleep aid, consider CBD edibles to help you get a good night’s sleep without the buzz. Read more about cannabis and sleep here.

Less chance of getting addicted 

Anything, including food and exercise, has the propensity to become addictive. However, no one can deny that alcoholism is a real and very damaging disease. According to the Washington Post, nearly 13% of American adults qualify as an alcoholic. This is in stark contrast with cannabis, which is not technically addictive. However, cannabis is habit forming, and can develop into cannabis use disorder, but it is overall less addictive and damaging than alcohol.

Cannabis Consumption Methods

Cannabis has only recently become legal in certain parts of the country, and therefore there is not a lot of research on how damaging cannabis smoke is to the lungs. Some scientists believe it to be just as damaging as cigarettes, while others believe it to not be nearly as bad. The reality is, we simply do not know yet.

However, if you suffer from lung disorders or simply aren’t a fan of smoke, there are other options available! Read on to learn the best methods of cannabis consumption to replace alcohol.

A THC Mocktail

The perfect thing for easing into dry January – a THC mocktail! With the power of modern science, cannabis extracts can be made into drinks and tinctures. Many dispensaries offer everything from CBD seltzers to THC-infused juices perfect for a mocktail! Just be sure to follow the serving size directions, and remember that THC sometimes has a slower activation time than alcohol. Be sure to wait for the THC to take effect before taking more.

Cannabis Vapes

Vaping is the wave of the future. These discrete, rechargeable vape pens have interchangeable wells of cannabis oil. There is no smoke with a vape (short for vaporizer). Instead, the distillate (or flower) is heated to just below combustion, causing the cannabinoids and terpenes to be “boiled off” into an inhalable mist. Vapes are loved for their convenience, as well as their subtlety, as vapes produce less smell and are easy to slip into a purse or pocket.


The world of cannabis edibles has come a long way from the sketchy pot brownie you would buy off your friend’s brother. Today’s edibles in legal states are highly regulated and tested, which is great news for consumers. Homemade edibles can have wildly varying effects and portion distribution, while dispensary edibles are carefully portioned for an enjoyable, customizable experience. Gummies, baked goods, popcorn, and even condiments– whatever you could want, it comes infused with cannabis.

But a word to the wise– edibles have a stronger impact than smoking or vaping cannabis. This is because the stomach lining processes 100% of the THC present, so while edibles take longer to “kick in” they have stronger and longer-lasting effects than smoking. To get the best experience, start with smaller doses, and wait at least an hour before taking more.

Cannabis and Driving

While we have listed a lot of differences between alcohol and cannabis, they are still both considered intoxicants. Therefore, cannabis should not be used while driving, just as alcohol should not be used while driving. Driving while high is considered a DUI, even in legal states. So stay safe, and call a cab if you plan to be imbibing either cannabis or alcohol.

The Benefits of Switching Cannabis for Alcohol

While both alcohol and cannabis are intoxicants, there is no doubt that cannabis provides more health benefits than alcohol does. Both alcohol and cannabis can have health drawbacks when not consumed in moderation. But cannabis is less dangerous, less addictive, and just as enjoyable as alcohol. making it a great alternative to alcohol for those who are looking to cut back. You might find that you don’t want to make the switch back to alcohol after January!

If you’re looking for the right product that fits YOUR needs, read our Starting Guide here.

Shop now to find your calm.

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