By Rebecca Olmos | Correspondent

One of the most common ways suggested to increase a weed high is to drink beverages containing caffeine, like tea or coffee. The mixture of cannabis and caffeine is a typical infusion, sometimes referred to as the “Seattle Speedball.” Cannabis-and-coffee enthusiasts probably coined this term because of the more energizing, enjoyable, productive emotions they report experiencing when fusing the substances.

Why might we feel like cannabis and coffee feel so great together?

The theory that merging the two will promote productivity and other joyful feelings comes from the science that caffeine is a stimulant. While it doesn’t give you energy directly, it works to block the neurotransmitters that make you feel sleepy. The caffeine high felt from drinking coffee comes from adrenaline and cortisol running through your body, which provides you with stamina and euphoria.

On the other hand, cannabis is a substance that can be a stimulant or a depressant. Which strain or product you use will determine the effect you may feel. Often, cultivars or products that fall into the category of sativa might help induce liveliness and happiness. More specifically, the medley of cannabinoids and terpenes of the strain can affect how you feel.

What does the research say?

There is currently limited research on the effects of cannabis and caffeine. Despite being known to make a great pair, studies suggest the opposite.

The three studies often cited are:

  • A 2018 study that indicated coffee might make it more difficult for you to relax on weed.
  • A 2014 study that showed monkeys who consumed more caffeine consumed more THC, which one doctor suggested implied that it meant that large doses of caffeine might negatively affect one’s high.
  • A 2012 study that found that rats had a better memory with weed or caffeine separately, and it was worse when the rats consumed cannabis and caffeine together. This outcome suggests that combining the two might prove counterproductive to enhancing our brain functioning abilities.

Despite this research, cannabis users still claim the blend of weed and coffee brings an added level of productivity, euphoria, and bliss.

When you combine cannabis and caffeine, the high you feel depends on a few things.

  • Your tolerance. How much caffeine and cannabis to infuse together depends on where you’re already comfortable with the two. Remember the golden cannabis rule: Start low and go slow, especially if it’s your first time integrating caffeine and cannabis.
  • The strain or product. Different strains and products contain different ratios of terpenes, cannabinoids, and dosages. Sativa-esque options are known to enhance the feelings of energy, but that may not be the vibe you want, especially if you are prone to anxiety when consuming either cannabis or caffeine. Maybe a hybrid or indica might help to mellow out the jittery effects?

When starting to infuse the two, keep notes on what different mixes feel like.

  • Other outside factors. Different things that might play a role in the experience are your physical environment, your current mood, or the other activities you’re participating in.

So is it a myth or fact that coffee can enhance your high?

The answer: It depends.

One of the best most practical suggestions to heighten your experience with cannabis is to be mindful and intentional. Try to set a goal or purpose for adding cannabis with your coffee or tea ritual, take notes on the strain and the drink, and be open to trying different combos until you find one that best suits your desired results.