How Long Does CBD Stay In Your System?

CBD in your system

The question “How long does CBD stay in my body?” is difficult to directly answer. The reason why is because there is just a multitude of different factors which affects how your body processes the CBD, how fast it is digested and how soon it leaves your body.

What is conclusive however is that CBD most definitely leaves your system after 1 week.

A study was conducted where patients were administered an extremely high dosage of CBD, about 700mg/day for 6 consecutive weeks.

As the study was finalized and administration was ceased, it was found that the CBD was virtually undetectable 1 week after discontinuing administration [1] .

Data is still ongoing as research is being conducted so it is difficult to pinpoint a precise duration for how long CBD will stay in your system as it changes on a person by person basis.

For example, should 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 chemicals half-life or rather, how long would it take for your kidneys & liver to break down & filter half of the amount of the chemical.

Given so, the half-life of CBD when taken orally is found to be about 1-2 days [2]. This means after 1-2 day, ½ of the CBD has already completely left your body, after 2-4 days somewhere 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 considering all the factors we have mentioned prior.

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 began to feel the effects.

Say you ingested CBD sublingually or even inhaled it, these methods are the fastest acting but also the shortest when it comes to the duration of these effects.

If you are looking for a prolonged effect which generally lasts 3-5 hours, it would be advised to consume edibles or apply CBD topically.

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 actually a pretty good reason for this, as the time it takes for CBD to work varies and for us to understand how long CBD stays in our system it is essential for us to factor in how it is consumed because that does have a major impact on how your body processes the CBD and how soon it leaves your system.

Let us take a look and break down the more popular methods of administration-

SUBLINGUAL OIL ADMINISTRATION

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, sometime 2-5 minutes after consumption.

Should you have a sublingual product, the proper way to consume and maximize the effect is to place the recommended dosage of drops under your tongue and hold the liquid there for approximate 30-90 seconds to which then you would proceed to swallow.

The way that this method works is that the liquid gets absorbed faster because it bypasses your digestive system and rather gets absorbed through your salivary gland in which then it proceeds directly to your bloodstream. This is when you begin to feel the initial effects.

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

EDIBLES  

Edibles are growing with popularity among the CBD market, these days you can find CBD among many of your daily grocery products in specialty shops.

CBD can be found in edibles such as “Butter, Cookies, Gummy bears, and even CBD dog treats!” Coffee shops all over the world are now creating blends ingraining CBD into their recipes.

Although this method introduces creative ways to include CBD in your dietary regime it’s important to note that this changes the method of consumption and thus alters the absorption rate of cannabidiols in your system.

With this mode of consumption, For CBD to take effect, it needs to enter your bloodstream.

If CBD is orally ingested then it will have to go through your digestive system, pass your gut and 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 exponentiate this process, it would be advised for you to take CBD on an empty stomach.

TOPICALLY

CBD is also introduced to lines of products which can be applied topically ranging from beauty products to pain relief balms.  As we may already know, CBD has been found to be an effective method of pain management. Research has found that the Endocannabinoid system is active 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 but rather 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 if you are experiencing chronic localized pain and are seeking ways to directly relieve it rather than have an all body effect produced from other methods of absorption. 

VAPE

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

This method of consumption would be similar to the sublingual method and you would begin to feel the effects almost immediately. In terms of bio-availability and speed of the effect, vaporizing would be the most effective method as vaporized CBD has the highest bio-availability between methods of ingestion.

It has been found that 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].

How Does Method of Consumption 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 leave your system. Remember that if you begin to feel the effects faster, that means your method of administration is processed by your body faster and in turn would leave your body sooner.

To conclude this would mean that edibles would leave your body much later as opposed to vaporizing or sublingual administration.

 Can You Be Drug Tested for CBD?

Cannabis, as we may know, contains both THC and CBD compounds.

THC, unlike CBD, produces a psychoactive effect which is commonly used for recreational purposes however CBD is more so used for the medicinal qualities which it offers and is not psychoactive like THC.

Companies which require their employees to submit mandated drug screenings are generally checking for specific recreational drugs, specifically for THC and given this, you would not show up as positive on a drug test from CBD alone.

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

This is why product labels are important 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 but rather opt for CBD isolate which contains over 99% pure CBD and no other Cannabinoids. This is why we make a clear distinction between the two in our CBD product listings.

Cannabidiol can be derived from both hemp and marijuana plants and although they come from the same family, the chemical makeup of these plants are 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.

Everybody Is Different

To conclude, you should now have a general understanding of CBD and its interaction with the body. To close, everybody is different and that plays a huge factor in answering the initial question of “How long does CBD stay in the system?”

Our usage habits differ, our metabolic systems differ and the products that we use also differ, but it is definitely out of the system after 7 days. This article serves to educate you to 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 who are guaranteed to have accurate labels their products, with no harmful ingredients so that you know exactly what it is 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.