Guide to CBD Drinks

We’ve put together this ultimate guide to CBD drinks to help you understand the benefits of CBD and how to select the best CBD drinks based on your personal needs.

CBD Drinks: The Ultimate Guide

Over the last few years, the CBD market has exploded with hundreds of new brands offering an incredibly wide range of products. From CBD oils and CBD capsules to CBD gummies, CBD vapes and even CBD bath salts or CBD suppositories (yes that’s a thing), there’s something for everyone.

But whilst CBD all products have similar properties as they are extracted from the hemp plant and contain Cannabidiol, CBD-infused drinks is a popular way to get your daily dose of CBD, especially since most supermarkets, vending machines and corner shops now offer CBD drinks.

In this ultimate guide to CBD drinks, we tell you more about all the great benefits of CBD products and we share our top 5 CBD drinks of the moment.

And if you are still unsure about what products to choose after reading this, simply take our CBD Quiz which has been designed specifically to identify the product and strength that is best suited to your personal needs.

CBD drinks are a convenient ‘on-the-go’ way of getting your daily dose of CBD. Each bottle contains a precise amount of CBD and can be found in most high-street food shops.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol — also known as CBD — is one of the multiple chemical compounds found in hemp (cannabis sativa) or marijuana plants. It is also known as medical cannabis, which is a broad term used to encompass any product, treatment, or medicine that includes cannabis-derived ingredients.

It is not however, the same as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) found in marijuana and contains none of the psychoactive properties associated with it, which means CBD won’t get you “high”.

So what’s the difference?

Different parts of the cannabis plant are either defined as hemp or as cannabis and marijuana.

  • Hemp: hemp is the stalks, stems and sterilized seeds of cannabis sativa (“Cannabis Sativa” is the scientific Latin term that defines hemp, cannabis or marijuana plant species).
  • Cannabis and Marijuana: the leaves, flowers and viable seeds of cannabis sativa.

The varieties of cannabis that are regulated, legal and available in the UK are those that produce less than 0.2 percent THC. And given the fact that most THC is in the flowers, CBD products are primarily made from hemp (stalks, stems and sterilized seeds of cannabis sativa) which contain very little THC and are safe to consume.

This is why CBD products are legal in the UK if they contain less than 0.2% THC.

CBD has therapeutic properties

There has been a lot of interest in CBD from both the research and medical community over the last few years, due to its range of health applications – including but not limited to pain relief, fighting the side effects of cancer medications, alleviating insomnia, lowering stress levels, improving acne outbreaks, counteracting heart disease, or reducing seizures in patients with epilepsy

Products containing CBD come in many different forms, with the most common including CBD oils, CBD gummies, CBD capsules, CBD drinks, CBD vapes and a range of CBD edibles. Some forms are more fast-acting than others, some have different flavours, some contain differing proportions of CBD extract, and so on, so the type you choose depends entirely upon your personal preferences and the condition you wish to treat.

What are CBD Drinks?

As the UK population has become more and more health conscious, they have ditched sugary drinks such as sodas in favour of healthier options. And whilst CBD tinctures remain the most common way to consume CBD, CBD drinks have become the perfect alternative to sodas, especially since CBD is known to have several health and anti-inflammatory properties.

It’s important however, to make the difference between homemade CBD drinks and beverages that have been specifically developed by CBD manufacturers.

Homemade vs Commercial CBD Drinks

A homemade CBD drink is qualified as a drink such as water, tea, lemonade or coffee in which you have added a few drops of your favourite CBD oil.

CBD-Infused drinks on the other hands are beverages such as water, coffee, non-alcoholic wine or kombucha which have been specifically developed by CBD manufacturers to address the issue of solubility of CBD in water and to increase its bioavailability.

Whilst the process of making a CBD infused drink depends entirely upon the product itself, the manufacturing process is essentially the same as a non-CBD infused product.

  • Water is filtered and treated as necessary
  • Coffee is harvested, dried, milled and roasted
  • Non-alcoholic wine sees alcohol and other volatiles removed via vacuum distillation before being

Each drink is then infused with CBD extracts derived from the hemp plant, however, it isn’t as simple as injecting CBD extracts into gummy bears to turn them into CBD gummies as cannabinoids (the 112 compounds found in the Cannabis plant of which CBD is one of them) are hydrophobic meaning that they are insoluble in water.

Bioavailability of CBD-Infused Drinks

If you are adding your own CBD to a drink like water or even to your food, the vast majority of the CBD is going to get metabolised in your gut resulting in your intestines and your liver enzymes breaking down most of the CBD you ingested. In other words, your body is only going to absorb a tiny fraction of the CBD you originally added to your drink or food. This makes homemade CBD drinks a poor way of getting your CBD intake as there is a lot of wastage through the digestive system resulting in less than 5% of the CBD being absorbed by the body.

To bypass this problem, companies making CBD infused drinks have had to put another agent with CBD to help it dissolve with the main drink, be it water, wine or coffee.

CBD-infused drinks developed by manufacturers on the other hands, have benefited from years of research to figure out the best way to infuse the drinks with CBD to maximise its absorption. To do so, they have copied emulsion techniques that have been used in the culinary and pharmaceutical industries and use drug-delivery systems such as nano-lipid spheres or emulsifiers to increase the bioavailability of CBD drinks.

These binding agents hold onto tiny droplets of water and CBD oil molecules, which then disperse throughout the liquid in a way that appears completely dissolved. Without this process of ‘nanoemulsion’ the water and CBD oil molecules would separate.

This nanoemulsion process isn’t too dissimilar to the one used for shampoos or your body lotions, which use an emulsifier as a binding agent so that it holds to both the water and the oil molecules present in the shampoo or lotion. Without this binding agent, the water and oil molecules simply would not mix and the water which is the lighter liquid would sit at the top of your shampoo bottle whilst the heavier oil molecules would sit at the bottom.

However, it is really important to ensure that the manufacturer has used a high quality emulsifier to bind the water to the CBD oil, as the quality of the emulsifier has a direct impact on the overall bioavailability of the drink. In other words, the better the emulsifier used, the more CBD you will get into your system.

Although some CBD drinks use extracts from marijuana plants (leaves, flowers and viable seeds of cannabis sativa), most brands use hemp extracts to keep the THC level below 0.2 percent and make their products legal for the UK market.

To extract the CBD from cannabis sativa, a complex process involving CO2 extraction or solvent distillation (natural solvents like ethanol and olive oils or hydrocarbon solvents like butane or propane) is used, resulting in clean CBD extracts.

CBD drinks contain on average 15-30mg of CBD per serving size, but new products have recently come onto the market offering 10mg of CBD per serving size whilst other have targeted the upper end of that scale with 40+ mg of CBD per drink.

Different Types of CBD

Before buying CBD drinks, it is important to understand the different types of CBD available in the market. These fall under three main categories:

  • Full-Spectrum CBD: CBD products labelled as “full-spectrum” contain all the phytochemicals that occur naturally in the cannabis plant, including other cannabinoids, terpenes, and oils. It also contains some trace amounts of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), the psychoactive compound in marijuana that produces the “high” effect. However, the total amount of THC for the UK market is limited to 0.2% so full-spectrum CBD gummies will provide all the benefits of CBD without the “high”.
  • Broad-Spectrum CBD: CBD products labelled as “broad-spectrum” contain all the phytochemicals that are in the cannabis plant but does not contain any THC.
  • CBD Isolate: CBD products labelled as “isolate” is the pure form of CBD and contain no other cannabis plant compounds such as other cannabinoids, terpenes, and oils. CBD isolate is a good option for those who want to take CBD gummies, but who do not want to benefit from the “entourage effect” of other plant compounds or ingest any tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which are present in full and broad spectrum products.

What Type of CBD is Best?

There’s not really a best type of CBD. It all depends on your personal circumstances. Below are some of the pros and cons of using isolate vs full-spectrum CBD drinks.

Full-spectrum CBD drinks are ideal for those who want to:

  • Benefit from all of the naturally occurring cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids found in hemp
  • Benefit from the entourage effect
  • Ingest THC – albeit in small doses

CBD isolate drinks are ideal for those who need to:

  • Take larger doses of CBD as they will not increase their THC consumption
  • Take regular drug tests and who may worry about THC showing up on their results. This is especially the case for people working in the armed forces, athletes or people working in banking / trading.

Advantages of CBD Drinks

CBD drinks have many advantages over other CBD products such as CBD oil, CBD gummies or CBD capsules.

Easy to use and discreet – CBD drinks, whether it’s CBD infused water or CBD juices and sodas are incredibly easy to use and discreet. Rather than grabbing a can of coke or fanta, simply grab a CBD infused drink and consume it in exactly the same way. Most people wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between a standard soda or energy drink and a CBD infused drink.

Great tasting – Whilst traditional CBD oil will usually have an earthy or grassy taste, CBD drinks contain other ingredients and flavouring agents such as raspberry, lemon, strawberry, peach or blackcurrant maing it a great tasting alternative to oils which tend to leave an unpleasant aftertaste in your mouth.

No addictive or withdrawal issues – Finally, CBD drinks are a natural remedy that can be taken by almost anyone and possesses none of the addictive or withdrawal issues that other pain management or anxiety medications may present.

Disadvantages of CBD Drinks

Whilst there are quite a few advantages to getting your daily dose of CBD using CBD drinks, there are unfortunately several drawbacks which are worth considering.

Lack of research – as highlighted in a previous section, most research papers have focused on the efficacy of traditional CBD tinctures to help with pain, arthritis, sleep, stress or anxiety. However, there is little evidence that from the research and medical community that establishing the health benefits of drinks which have been infused with CBD.

Less bioavailable – the term bioavailability stands for the proportion of a drug or substance which reaches the systemic circulation. By definition, when a substance is administered intravenously, its bioavailability is 100%. However, when the same substance is administered via other routes (e.g. mouth), its bioavailability is generally lower than that of intravenous due to the fact that it needs to go through the intestines and digestion process. For that reason, CBD oil is more bioavailable than CBD drinks as it comes into contact with the sublingual gland (under the tongue) which speeds up the process of absorption and quickly enters the bloodstream.

Not fast acting – another problem with CBD drinks is that they are not as fast acting as CBD oil seeing as it will take some time to be processed and broken down by your digestive system. So seeing as the faster the CBD is absorbed, the sooner it can get to work, CBD drinks will usually take between 30-60 minutes to act when CBD oil takes less than 20 minutes.

More sugar – whilst CBD oil or vapes usually contain a limited number of ingredients (CBD extracts from hemp, MCT or olive oil and sometimes flavouring), CBD drinks will usually contain other ingredients such as flavouring agents as well as sugar or sweetener. For those reasons, a single CBD drink can contain 10g-20g of sugar which could lead to the average person’s daily sugar intake increasing as a result of it. This can be a problem for people suffering from diabetes and who need to carefully manage the food that they eat.

Interaction with other medications – It’s also worth noting that CBD may make it harder for your body to process certain medications, so if you are taking any other medications, be sure to check with your GP before taking CBD products.

Minor side effects – Finally, CBD can cause side effects in some people including drowsiness, changes in mood, nausea, and changes in appetite. Every individual will be affected differently, and in most cases, there are no side effects to worry about.

Therapeutic Properties of CBD Drinks

CBD drinks – along with other CBD products – possess a number of therapeutic properties that are backed by various scientific research papers and double-blind studies. Some of the most discussed health benefits amongst the public and the medical community include:

Pain Relief (Analgesic Properties)

CBD appears to have Analgesic properties, meaning that it helps relieve pain. But how?

The human body contains a specialized system called the ECS (the endocannabinoid system), which aim is to regulate a variety of functions such as sleep, appetite, pain and immune system response. The body also produces endocannabinoids, which are simply neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in your nervous system.

CBD is believed to interact with specific receptors, specifically the CB1R and CB2R.

  • CB1 receptors, which are located in various regions of the body, with a large concentration in the central nervous system and brain, co-ordinate mood, emotion, appetite, and other functions.
  • CB2 receptors are more commonly found in the immune system and are responsible for controlling inflammation and pain. CBD stimulates these receptors and induces the body to release serotonin.
    Serotonin, or 5-HT, is a neurotransmitter that carries signals from one neuron to the other. CBD increases the level of serotonin, which, in return, helps reduce pain, reduce inflammation in the body and possibly reduces the cramping experienced during period pain.

According to Researchgate, a study published in November 2019 shows improvement of physical discomforts such as headaches and various signs of physical pain. According to Teitelbaum J, there have been multiple studies showing patients found relief of menstrual pain, back pain, spinal pain, joint pain (e.g. arthritis) or fibromyalgia pain.

Reduce Anxiety & Depression

Anxiety will manifest itself differently for different people, but symptoms of anxiety tend to include changes in thoughts, behaviour and can also often involve physical feelings such as restlessness, feeling of dread or being on-edge, churning feeling in your stomach, feeling light-headed or dizzy, having pins and needles, experiencing headaches, backache or other aches and pains as well as faster breathing, nausea or hot flushes.

Not only are the symptoms of anxiety varied, but so are the ways in which anxiety can be experienced. Some of the more commonly diagnosed anxiety disorders that CBD can help with include:

• Generalised anxiety disorder – also known as GAD
• Obsessive-compulsive disorder – also known as OCD
• Social anxiety disorder – also known as social phobia or SAD
• Panic disorder.
• Phobias
• Post-traumatic stress disorder – Also known as PTSD
• Health anxiety – people experiencing obsessions and compulsions relating to illness
• Body dysmorphic disorder – Also known as BDD
• Perinatal anxiety – Also known as perinatal OCD

Most people who suffer from anxiety will experience a hyper-active amygdala, a collection of cells near the base of the brain.

CBD helps to ease the symptoms of anxiety by regulating the functions of the amygdala and the hippocampus and therefore their effects on how our brain processes potentially anxiety ridden situations. But how?

CBD has been proven to increase cerebral blood flow to areas of the brain associated with memory processing, specifically the hippocampus. The findings identify a potential mechanism for the use of CBD to treat disorders associated with altered memory processing, including Alzheimer’s disease, PTSD, and schizophrenia.

Put it simply, a single dose of cannabidiol (CBD) helped increase blood flow to the hippocampus, an important area of the brain associated with memory and emotion, which means that CBD has been proven by several scientists and medical professionals to help smooth the cognitive processes of this part of the brain.

According to Dr Michael Bloomfield from UCL: “Cannabidiol is one of the main constituents of cannabis and is gaining interest for its therapeutic potential. There is evidence that CBD may help reduce symptoms of psychosis and anxiety as well as improve memory function. Additionally, CBD changes how the brain processes emotional memories, which could help to explain its reputed therapeutic effects in PTSD and other psychiatric disorders.”

These finding have been backed by double blind studies where on different occasions, separated by at least a week, each participant was given a 600mg of oral CBD or a placebo. The doses came in identical capsules, so participants did not know which one they were taking on which occasion (

Researchers measured blood flow to the hippocampus using ‘arterial spin labelling’ – an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) brain scanning technique which measures changes in the blood oxygen levels.

In another double-blind study in Brazil, 57 participants received either CBD oil or a placebo 90 minutes before they underwent a simulated public speaking event. The researchers found that a 300-mg dose of CBD was the most effective at significantly reducing anxiety during the event.

Reduce Side Effects of Cancer Treatments

CBD has been proven to have not only analgesic properties (to relieve pain) but also antiemetic properties, meaning it helps prevent vomiting.

This discovery has been particularly useful for cancer patients for whom CBD has been proven to not only help them reduce the symptoms and side effects of cancer and cancer medication, such as pain, nausea and vomiting.

In one study focusing on CBD extract and THC extract given to patients with intractable cancer-related pain, it was found that of the 177 people with cancer-related pain who did not experience the adequate relief from traditional pain medication, those treated with an extract containing both the CBD and THC compounds experienced a significant reduction in pain compared to those who received only THC extract. This would therefore suggest that CBD had a net positive effect when it comes to reducing pain in cancer patients.

A separate study also showed that cancer patients who suffered from the various side effects of chemotherapy – including nausea and vomiting – experienced little relief from traditional anti-emetic treatments. Patients suffering from chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) were administered a one-to-one combination of CBD and THC via mouth spray. The results showed that chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting symptoms were reduced in comparison to standard treatment alone.

Help with Arthritis

As we’ve already seen, CBD has analgesic properties (relieves pain) but it also appears to have antiarthritic properties, meaning that it helps relieve or prevent arthritic symptoms.

The two most common types of arthritis are:

  • Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune condition wherein a person’s immune system attacks their joints, causing inflammation. It commonly affects the hands and feet and leads to painful, swollen, and stiff joints.
  • Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that affects joint cartilage and bones, causing pain and stiffness. It often affects the hip, knee, and thumb joints.

According to a poll conducted by the Arthritis Foundation, 29% of 2,600 patients with either osteoarthritis (52%) or rheumatoid arthritis (45%) for 10 or more years, stated using CBD in liquid or topical form to manage their arthritis symptoms, especially pain.

Of those using CBD, most reported improvement in physical function, sleep, and well-being:

  • 67% reported improvement in their physical function
  • Over 30% said it provided relief from morning stiffness and helped them to get moving
  • 71% reported improvements in their ability to sleep
  • Over 30% said it helped relieve symptoms of fatigue

But CBD also helped those suffering from arthritis improve their overall well-being, with people who used CBD reporting emotional and mental health benefits, in addition to relief of physical pain.

  • 41% reported a better overall sense of well-being
  • 77% reported a lower level of anxiety
  • 67% reported effectiveness in improving depressed mood

From a research standpoint, while there are various studies suggesting CBD might be a promising approach, and animal studies showing anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effects, well-designed studies demonstrating compelling evidence that CBD is effective for chronic arthritis pain in humans do not yet exist.

Fight Neurological Disorders

CBD appears to have neuroprotective properties, meaning that it helps protect nerve cells against damage, degeneration, or impairment of function.

This is particularly interesting for patients suffering from neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis, epilepsy or children with Dravet syndrome.

Researchers believe that CBD can act on the ECS (the endocannabinoid system) as well as other brain signaling systems to provide benefits to those patients and early studies show promising results.

When it comes to MS (multiple sclerosis), an oral spray called Sativex and consisting of CBD and THC has been proven to be an effective way to reduce muscle spasticity (muscle spasms) in patients. The study found that Sativex reduced spasms in 75% of patients with MS who were experiencing muscle spasticity and for which traditional medications were not working.

When it comes to Epilepsy and according to the Epilepsy Society, medical cannabis has been proven to reduce the number of seizures in patients suffering from epilepsy.

Three separate double-blind randomised controlled trials of pure CBD (CBD isolate) in children and young people with epilepsy have shown a reduction in the number of monthly seizures experienced by patients compared to those that received placebos. Additional studies have shown that it may also have an anti-epileptic effect in the epilepsies in general, not just in children and young adults.

As for patients suffering from Dravet syndrome, a complex epilepsy disorder experienced by children, it was found that children with severe epilepsy who were given between 0.9–2.3 grams of CBD oil per pound of body weight, saw a median reduction of their seizures of 36.5%.

Help With Epileptic Fits

CBD appears to have anticonvulsant properties, meaning that it helps prevent or reduce the severity of epileptic fits or other convulsions. What is the research behind this?

According to the Epilepsy Society, medical cannabis – a medicine that contains cannabis, cannabis resin, cannabinol or a cannabinol derivative and that is produced for medicinal use in humans – has been proven to reduce the number of seizures in patients suffering from epilepsy.

Three separate double-blind randomised controlled trials of pure CBD (CBD isolate) in children and young people with epilepsy have shown a reduction in the number of monthly seizures experienced by patients compared to those that received placebos. Additional studies have shown that it may also have an anti-epileptic effect in the epilepsies in general, not just in children and young adults.

Improve Heart Health

CBD appears to have anti-inflammatory properties, meaning that it helps reduce inflammation (redness, swelling, and pain) in the body.

But what is inflammation? Inflammation is a natural process occurring in your body whereby your white blood cells and what they produce, protect you from infection from bacteria and viruses.

However, in some people, their own body’s defense system (i.e. their immune system) is deregulated and triggers inflammation when there are no infection from bacteria or viruses to fight off. Called autoimmune diseases, they attack healthy tissues as if they were infected, causing damage to these tissues in the process.

Inflammation can either be acute (i.e. short-lived) and go away within a few hours or days, or chronic (i.e. long-lasting) and last for months or years.

Inflammation is known to lead to many heart related diseases, including coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke. Inflammation of the heart (myocarditis) may cause shortness of breath or fluid buildup, inflammation of the small tubes that take air to your lungs may cause shortness of breath and inflammation of the kidneys (nephritis) may cause high blood pressure or kidney failure.

There is some evidence that CBD has anti-inflammatory properties and that it may be beneficial to the cardiovascular system, with CBD having direct actions on isolated arteries, causing both acute and time-dependent vasorelaxation (reduction of vascular tension).

According to existing studies, CBD protects against the vascular damage caused by a high glucose consumption (sugar), inflammation or the induction of type 2 diabetes in animals. It has also been proven to reduce the vascular hyperpermeability associated with such environments. Vascular hyperpermeability is the excessive leakage of fluid and proteins from blood vessels to the interstitial space which often leads to multiple organ failure resulting in patient death.

A common theme throughout these studies is the anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effect of CBD. In the heart, in vivo CBD treatment protects against cardiomyopathy associated with diabetes.

Other studies have shown that CBD can have a protective effect on the heart. This was the case with one study showing the benefits of CBD in rats after a heart attack and in mice with heart damage associated with diabetes.

Studies also indicate that CBD may be beneficial for patients with high blood pressure.

One study of nine healthy men, who were given one dose of 600 mg of CBD oil, found that it reduced resting blood pressure, compared to patients who had received a placebo. The same study got the patients to go through a stress test to assess the impact of the test on their blood pressure. It found that patients who had received a single dose of 600 mg of CBD experienced a smaller blood pressure increase in comparison to those who had received the placebo.

This would suggest that CBD reduces the stress and anxiety of patients, ultimately leading to a lower blood pressure, even when put under a stressful situation.

Improve Your Sleep

Whilst the Mayo Clinic emphasies that most adults need seven to eight hours a night, nearly 23 per cent of people living in the UK only sleep between five and six hours at night. That’s an estimated 34.5 minutes less than the rest of the world.

Various conditions prevent people from getting a good night’s rest.

  • Insomnia – Studies in the UK show 31 per cent of adults have insomnia. Many consumers take CBD to reduce anxiety and high-stress levels. Anxious and racing thoughts are the leading cause of insomnia. Dr Herve Damas, an endocannabinoid expert, explains to Prevention Magazine, “CBD has been shown to have anxiety-relieving effects, and anxiety disorders can be a cause of insomnia.”
  • Circadian rhythm disorders – Fewer citizens in the UK have circadian rhythm disorders. Research is available about the potential benefits of CBD for CRD. As mentioned, the ECS helps regulate sleep cycles. The few participants in studies saw improved sleep with cannabidiol.
  • Restless legs syndrome – The few reports available show CBD may help consumers losing sleep to movement disorders. Medical researchers don’t know much about the cause of the condition. Many patients need narcotics to reduce the movements, which aren’t safe for long-term use.
  • Idiopathic hypersomnia – The uncommon disorder is dangerous because it leaves suffers groggy and sleepy nearly all the time. One study proposes that in the right doses, CBD can act as a wake-promoting agent.
  • Parasomnias – Another rare condition that causes people to complete tasks in their sleep, taking away from their rest, and putting them in potentially dangerous situations. Experts have been studying CBD and NREM sleep disorders for a few years. A 2014 report reviewed the connections between NREM sleep disorders, nocturnal seizures, and CBD. Researchers already know the value of CBD as a treatment for seizure disorders.

Most sleep disturbances occur because of stress and anxiety. Calming down the mind is the best way to help people who can’t fall asleep fast or stay asleep get the relief they need.

There is extensive research on the effectiveness of CBD oil when used to treat insomnia and improve sleep.

CBD works with the human body to increase calm, decrease stress, and lower anxiety levels. These responses indirectly improve your sleep. In the 1990s, researchers confirmed the body has an endocannabinoid system or ECS. Researchers have only found a link between the cannabinoids found in hemp with the ECS, making it an unusual reaction.

The ECS is a complex cell-signalling system consisting of endocannabinoids, cannabinoid receptors, and enzymes. Scientists believe it plays many roles, including maintaining balance in the body. When it comes to sleep, the ECS helps regulate sleep and sleep cycles. Also, relating to sleep, a potential function is boosting anandamide to reduce depression and anxiety.

The cannabinoid receptors interact with endocannabinoids and cannabinoids. The CB1 is located in the nervous system and brain. Additionally, the CB2 is found mostly in the immune system and most organs.

A recent surge in scientific publications has found preclinical and clinical evidence documenting value for CBD in some neuropsychiatric disorders, including epilepsy, anxiety, and schizophrenia. Evidence points toward a calming effect for CBD in the central nervous system.

In 2019, a large case series was published in the Permanente Journal about CBD’s calming effects on the central nervous system. The studies showed patients taking CBD saw lower anxiety levels, experienced less stress, and slept better at night. Additionally, most participants experienced no or few side effects.

How To Use CBD Drinks?

CBD infused drinks can be enjoyed in the same way as traditional water, sodas or energy drinks.

Similar to CBD tinctures, CBD drinks contain a precise amount of CBD per bottle (or serving) – usually between 10mg and 30mg of CBD per 330ml to 500ml bottle – and as such can be much stronger than other CBD products.

However, unlike CBD oil which goes straight into the bloodstream, CBD drinks need to go through the digestive system and as such may take longer to act. Be sure to check the exact amount of CBD in your drink and your ideal dosage before drinking it.

How Much CBD Should I Consume?

When using CBD drinks for the first time, we would always recommend starting with a small dose and working your way up. Most people will start with a 10mg to 15mg of CBD per day to see how your body reacts to it.

If you are not seeing any major benefits with this amount of CBD, increase your intake by an additional 5mg every 3-5 days until finding the right balance to treat your personal symptoms.

As a rule of thumb, a person weighting between 10.5 and 17 stones (approximately 150 and 240 lbs) may need between 18mg and 27mg of CBD per day depending on the severity of their symptoms.


How Much CBD is in CBD Drinks?

Whilst using CBD oil may be confusing as you need to work out how many drops you need to ingest on a daily basis based on your weight, the condition you are treating and its severity, this won’t be a problem with CBD drinks.

Most ready to drink CBD infused beverages contain between 330ml and 500ml of product and come in strengths ranging from 2mg of CBD – which is usually the case for CBD infused water – to 50mg of CBD.

But how does this translate when it comes to my daily intake?

It really depends on how much CBD you need to consume but assuming you want to ingest 40mg of CBD daily, you would need to drink:

CBD Drink CBD / Bottle # Bottles
500ml Water 2mg 20 bottles
330ml Seltzer 10mg 4 cans
500ml Soda 20mg 2 cans
500ml Pre-Workout 40mg 1 can

Only using CBD drinks to get your daily intake of CBD may not be the best option from a practicality, absorption and cost perspective as CBD oil will usually be more practical (only a few drops daily), offer better absorption (sub-lingual) and be cheaper over the long run.

As with everything, start with a small amount of CBD daily to make sure there’s no reaction, then increase slowly by 5mg 3-5 days until finding the right balance.

If you want to find out more check out our CBD Dosage article.

How To Choose Quality CBD?

As with anything you ingest, the source and quality of your CBD products are important. We would always recommend looking at five main aspects before choosing your CBD drinks.

CBD Drinks from Organic Hemp

Hemp can be grown in just the same way as any other plant – mass-produced and using pesticides and GMOs for the greatest profit, or grown organically with care and attention to provide a fantastic end product.

The best CBD is produced from organic hemp that has benefited from plenty of rain during the growing process. While hemp can physically be grown in many countries, it grows best when the temperature is in the low twenties Celsius. Therefore, the location of the hemp farm is important to ensure the optimum environmental factors are accommodated.

And seeing as cannabis plants can be stressed out by the weather, resulting in a higher THC content (above 0.2%), it’s important to ensure that your CBD gummies come from organic hemp which has been grown in the right part of the world.

Less Than 0.2% THC

Cannabis flowers and extracts usually contain two cannabinoids known as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). Yet the exact percentage of each can vary greatly, depending on the plant variety and the growing technique used.

THC is the main psychoactive compound in cannabis that produces the high sensation, while CBD has been associated with health benefits.

The EU common agricultural policy states that cannabis plant can be grown for industrial uses, provided their THC content does not exceed 0.2 %. That’s in the plant, not in the CBD product you buy.

So when buying CBD drinks from a shop or online retailer, be sure to check that their products contain less than 0.2% THC.

Clean Extraction Method

Once the hemp is grown and harvested, the CBD needs to be extracted from the plant. There are several methods for doing this, including the use of carbon dioxide (CO2). This produces the cleanest and purest CBD extract but can be expensive to do as the machinery required is not cheap.

Alternative methods include using solvents such as ethanol or plant oils (eg olive oil) to extract the CBD.

This can lead to less-pure CBD extract, as small amounts of solvent or oil can remain, although most companies using this type of extraction method will usually test their CBD extracts to ensure they are solvent free and safe to consume.

Tested by Independent Labs

Another thing we would recommend checking is whether or not your CBD drinks have contaminants. That’s because cannabis plants readily absorb heavy metals, pesticides, and other potentially harmful chemicals that may be in the soil or water.

To ensure your CBD drinks are free of those harmful chemicals, it should be tested frequently while the hemp is growing, and finished products should also be tested, using validated methods.

The extract should be tested and certified by a third-party laboratory to confirm the quality of the CBD. Organic CBD should be GMO-free, pesticide-free, and as pure as possible. In the UK and EU, CBD must register THC content of 0.2% or lower.

Most reputable companies selling CBD drinks in the UK publish their lab results on their website. Below are a few examples of some of the CBD companies we have reviewed that play the transparency card with their customers and share their lab results for each batch of CBD they produce:

Strength to Match your Needs

Finally, the CBD level within any product should be of a suitable strength to match your needs. Every person is different and their body will respond in a slightly different way, so the level may partially be down to personal preference.

However, higher concentrations might be more suitable for treating different ailments to lower concentrations, and it is wise to check the level of CBD in every product you use.

As a rule of thumb, people looking to use CBD for sleep, anxiety, digestion, relaxation or stress might take between 10mg and 25mg of CBD daily, whilst those using CBD as a pain relief for conditions such as severe arthritis, back pain or migraines may want to use 30mg to 50mg of CBD per day.

Be aware that CBD drinks come in different concentration so be sure to track our daily consumption as 2 cans of a CBD drink containing 40mg of CBD will amount to 80mg daily, which is above the maximum daily amount recommended of 70mg.

Best CBD Drinks

With over 150 CBD brands on the market, it can be difficult to choose the right CBD drink. This is why the CBD Unboxed team has tried and tested most CBD oils and brands available in the UK market and assessed them across 6 key areas:

  • Efficacy
  • Taste
  • Value for Money
  • Third Party Certification
  • Packaging
  • Shipping & Delivery

Seeing as we have mainly focused on the core CBD oils, capsules and gummies, the team has not yet tested many CBD drinks, but below are some of the CBD drinks, CBD teas and CBD coffees we would recommend.

Take the CBD Quiz

If after reading this article you are still unsure about what CBD drink or CBD product is best for you, simply take our CBD Quiz which has been designed specifically to identify the product and strength that is best suited to your personal needs.


Take the CBD Quiz

To see what CBD product is best for you.