How Long Does CBD Stay In Your System?

If you’re a new CBD user, or even if you’ve been using CBD for a while, you might wonder how long CBD stays in your body. This question can be challenging to answer because there are many factors at play that affect how your body processes CBD. This will determine how fast CBD is digested and how quickly it will leave your body.

One thing we know for sure though is that CBD will not last in your system for more than one week.

A study was conducted where patients were administered an about 700mg of CBD per day (an extremely high dosage) for six consecutive weeks. As the study was finalized and administration was ceased, it was found that the CBD was virtually undetectable one week after discontinuing administration [1].

There is still ongoing as research being conducted to pinpoint a precise duration for how long CBD will stay in your system. However it is well established that this changes on a person by person basis. It also varies based on your consumption method.

For example, if you vaporize CBD, the percentage you absorb may be correlated to how long you hold the vapor as you inhale.

The amount of time it takes for the chemical to leave your body is based on the chemical’s half-life. It is based on how long it would take your kidneys and liver to break down and filter half of the amount of the compound.

So if the half-life of CBD, when taken orally, is found to be about 1-2 days [2 then after 1-2 days, ½ of the CBD has already completely left your body. After 2-4 days around a quarter of it would remain and after 3-6 days you can consider the chemically completely cleared from your system.

A good rule of thumb is that CBD leaves your system within 2-3 days for light users and 3-7 days for heavy users.

How Long Do The Effects of CBD Last?

Even though the CBD will stay in your system for days after taking it, the effects will only be present for the first few hours. How long the effects of CBD last is subjective to your mode of consumption as well as your body weight and prior usage history.

One good way to discern how long will the effects last is by looking at how soon you begin feeling the effects.

Say you ingested CBD sublingually or even inhaled it, these methods are the fastest acting but also last the least amount of time. So you’ll feel the effects quicker, but they won’t last as long.

If you are looking for a prolonged effect lasting 3-5 hours, it would be advised to consume edibles or apply CBD topically. Although when applied topically, it only impacts the area it is applied to and not the rest of your body.

How Long Does it Take for CBD to Work?

Throughout your research of CBD, maybe you found that some people claim they feel the effect instantly, while others may take up to an hour or more to feel these effects.

 

There’s a good reason for this. The time it takes for CBD to work varies. For us to understand how long CBD stays in your system it is essential for us to factor in how it is consumed. Different consumption methods have a significant impact on how your body processes the CBD and how soon it leaves your system.

Let us take a look at the different methods of CBD administration and how they all differ.

Sublingual Oil

Sublingual drops or also known as CBD oil tinctures are among the fastest methods of consumption available to the public market today. These products act remarkably fast, and the effects are generally felt immediately, sometimes 2-5 minutes after use.

With a sublingual product, the best way to consume and maximize the effect is to place the recommended dosage under your tongue. Then hold the liquid there for approximately 30-90 seconds before swallowing.

With this method, the liquid gets absorbed faster because it bypasses your digestive system and gets absorbed through your salivary gland. Then it proceeds directly to your bloodstream. Then you begin to feel the initial effects.

This method is ideal if you are seeking to feel the effects of CBD in your endocannabinoid system faster.

Edibles  

Edibles are extremely popular within the CBD market. They are an easy and discreet way to get your CBD dose. Edibles come in many forms including gummies, cookies, butter and more.

 

For CBD edibles to take effect, they need to enter your bloodstream. If you ingest CBD orally, then it will have to go through your digestive system and pass your gut. Then it will be metabolized by the liver to when it eventually sends the active CBD compound to your bloodstream.

This method is among the slower acting and will take approximately 20 minutes to an hour to reach your bloodstream and take effect. To achieve quicker results in this process, you should take CBD on an empty stomach.

Topicals

Also on the market are CBD infused beauty products such as balms and creams that can be applied topically.CBD is an effective method of pain management, and research found that the Endocannabinoid system is activated in response to pain and produces an analgesic effect [3].

This method of administration is unique as the CBD compound never actually enters your bloodstream. Instead, it interacts directly with the problem area and is absorbed by the skin where it interacts with nearby cannabinoid receptors.

Given the chemicals ability to combat pain, topical administration can be an excellent choice. Topicals are great if you are experiencing chronic localized pain and want to directly relieve it rather than have an all body effect.

Vape

Vaporization is one of the most popular methods among CBD users. Besides its popularity, it has its own set of benefits unique to this method of absorption. When vaped, CBD oil is generally packed into a vaporizor which may be an electronically heated vape pen or cartridge. When you inhale CBD through vaping, the CBD compound goes into your lungs and then directly to your bloodstream.

Vaping is similar to the sublingual method, and you begin to feel the effects almost immediately. In terms of bioavailability and speed of the effect, vaporizing would be the most effective method. Vaporized CBD has the highest bioavailability between among methods of ingestion.

Between 30-50% of CBD is absorbed by the body when it is vaped. In contrast, if you administer CBD sublingually your body would absorb approximately 25% of CBD and only around 5-15% if it is orally consumed [4].

Does the Consumption Method Determine the Time it Takes for CBD to Leave the System?

It’s important to remember that your method of administration directly correlates to how soon the cannabidiol leaves your system. If you feel the effects faster, it means your way of administration is processed by your body quicker and will leave your body sooner.

This means that edibles leave your body much later as opposed to vaporizing or sublingual administration.

Will CBD Show Up on a Drug Test?

Cannabis contains both THC and CBD compounds. But unlike CBD, THC produces a psychoactive effect which is commonly used for recreational purposes. However, CBD is more so used for the medicinal qualities it offers and is not psychoactive effects like THC.

Companies that require their employees to submit mandated drug screenings are generally checking for specific recreational drugs. These tests usually specifically test for THC. You would fail a drug test from CBD alone.

Even though CBD does not trigger a positive result on your drug test, it is possible that certain products contain trace amounts of THC. THC could build up in your system enough to trigger a positive on a drug test.

This is why product labels are essential to understanding what it is that you are putting in your body.

To ensure you do not trigger a drug test, we would recommend that you avoid full spectrum CBD products and instead opt for CBD isolate. CBD isolate contains over 99% pure CBD and no other Cannabinoids. Most CBD isolates also advertise that they contain zero THC. This is why it’s crucial to buy from companies who are transparent on their labels and their websites.

Cannabidiol can be derived from both hemp and marijuana plants. Although they come from the same family, the chemical makeup of these plants is vastly different.

 

For example, the average marijuana strain contains anywhere from 5-20% THC and very low CBD levels. However, if you look at the hemp plant, the percentage ratio is turned upside down containing high levels of CBD between 20-27% and trace amounts of THC [5]. That is why full spectrum CBD even when it’s made from hemp may contain trace amounts of THC.

Final Thoughts

To know how long CBD will last in your body, you need to understand that everybody is different. There are guidelines backed by research, but the way CBD interacts with your body will play a huge factor in knowing how long it stays in your system.

Our usage habits and our metabolic systems differ. The products we use also vary; however, there is a minimal likelihood that CBD will stay in your system for longer than seven days.

We hope this article helps to educate you and help you make an informed decision based on your own individual preference.

To help you make an educated decision on where to get your CBD products online, we pride ourselves on providing you with vetted and verified sources. The products we review are guaranteed to have accurate labels, with no harmful ingredients so that you know exactly what you are consuming.

 

References:

  • Paul Consroe, Kurt Kennedy, Karl Schram, “Assay of plasma cannabidiol by capillary gas chromatography/ion trap mass spectroscopy following high-dose repeated daily oral administration in humans” Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior, Volume 40, Issue
  • Timothy E. Welty, Adrienne Luebke, Barry E. Gidal, “Cannabidiol: Promise and Pitfalls” Epilepsy Curr. 2014 Sep-Oct; 14(5): 250–252. doi: 10.5698/1535-7597-14.5.250
  • Abrams, D.I., Jay, C.A., Shade, S.B., Vizoso, R.N., Reda, H., Press, S., Kelly, M.E., Rowbotham, M.C., Petersen, K.L. “Cannabis in painful HIV‐associated sensory neuropathy.” A randomised placebo‐controlled trial. Neurology 68, 515–521.
  • Huestis, Marilyn A. “Human Cannabinoid Pharmacokinetics.” Chemistry & biodiversity 4.8: 1770–1804. PMC. Web. 25 Sept. 2018.
  • ElSohly, Mahmoud A et al. “Changes in Cannabis Potency Over the Last 2 Decades (1995-2014): Analysis of Current Data in the United States” Biological psychiatry vol. 79,7, 613-9.

 

Leave a Comment