Many people want to know more about CBD and ask the question: “How long does CBD stay in your system?” Answering this question requires addressing each form of CBD and to what extent that form enters your system. Today, we’ll cover some of that information and help to shed light on the mystery of CBD absorption and metabolizing.
Key Focus Areas
- About CBD benefits and uses
- How long does CBD oil stay in your system?
- How CBD form affects absorption
- Different forms of CBD
About CBD Benefits and Uses
To understand how long CBD stays in your system, we first need to establish why people take CBD oil products. The intent and how these products are used are a big factor in how long and well they stay effective in our bodies or skin.
Why Does it Matter How Long CBD Stays in Your System?
Well, it must matter a whole lot. Do a quick Google search, and you’re going to see answers, discussions, and entire threads dedicated to this and similar questions:
- How long does CBD stay in your system?
- Does CBD show up on a test?
- Does CBD oil stay in your system for a long time?
- When is CBD out of your system to take more?
This is only scraping the surface. It seems there is a whole lot of confusion over what CBD is, how long it stays in your body, and how that affects you. Some folks are afraid to even take CBD for fear of it showing up on a test and causing problems in their lives, especially with their job.
But, for starters, CBD is not the same thing as intoxicating THC, which is also from the same plant but is selectively eliminated down to trace levels for most CBD products. However, people are curious and skeptical and want to be sure that they will be “OK” when returning to work if they try it. Even though it’s a non-issue for most CBD products, ours contain Superior Broad Spectrum CBD, the kind that is THC-free.*
People also need to know how long CBD lasts, so they know when to take follow-up servings. They can also get an idea of how the products move through their systems and how they can best supplement the CBD oil if need be. Monitoring usage is greatly helped by an understanding of CBD absorption and processing by the body.
A large part of the conversation also involves processes by which our bodies absorb and process CBD. Whether or not you use any marijuana products, any derivative of the hemp plant, or any CBD product, your body still has a built-in biological system for processing these hemp components and products.
The Endocannabinoid System
It’s virtually impossible to discuss CBD absorption without having a conversation about the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a natural biological system in your body.
The ECS is comprised of:
- Endocannabinoids, which are produced by your body. Much of this is still the focus of medical and scientific study but two key endocannabinoids have been identified so far and are considered the “main” ones: anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). These endogenous cannabinoids are similar to CBD, but our bodies make these. They help to keep our systems running smoothly and are produced by the body on an as-needed basis.
- Endocannabinoid receptors, which directly interact with CBD and other cannabinoids to produce particular outcomes. There are CB1 (in the central nervous system) and CB2 receptors (in the peripheral nervous system and other systems). Endocannabinoids bind to these receptors and target different functions based on where they bind and what receptor type.
- Enzymes, which break down the endocannabinoids once they’ve performed their functions. Enzymes fatty acid amide hydrolase break down AEA, and monoacylglycerol acid lipase breaks down 2-AG. These enzyme functions are also a focus of study, and we hope to learn even more about the role they play in maintaining our body’s homeostasis.
Now, take a deep breath – I know that was a brain-full of info. The ECS system and how it works is the most complex part of the CBD conversation. And even if you don’t quite get how all that works – it’s OK; scientists are still figuring it out too! Remember this: your body has a natural biological system to process CBD.
This system processes endocannabinoids to make your body’s other systems run a little smoother. Even though we already make our own endocannabinoids, we take CBD products to support this system and our bodies to work their best.
If you want to know more about the endocannabinoid system and how it works, here is an article from our blog that explains it in more detail: What is the Endocannabinoid System? An Introduction to the ECS.
Why Do People Take CBD?
People take CBD oil products for a wide range of reasons, even ones for which there’s really no medical or scientific research to prove efficacy. Often, research is done based on how “loud” the conversation gets over a product or element and how it works. Public interest helps propel funds from one area of study to another or secures funding not yet allocated. So, the more we keep talking about CBD and how it interacts with our bodies; hopefully, the more research studies we can get to show how marvelous this stuff is.
People take CBD to help maintain a healthy sleep cycle, manage daily stresses or minor aches associated with exercise, and support general wellness. Many people discover that CBD helps them in a lot of ways, even if the research hasn’t quite caught up yet to people’s experiences and what they’ve seen CBD do for them. Read through some comments and reviews left on our product pages (like these great reviews on our gummies) to see what people are saying!
How Long Does CBD Oil Stay in Your System?
To determine how long CBD stays in your system, we must consider many factors. Here are some of the determinants that affect the staying power of CBD in our bodies. We also think it wise to talk with your doctor, of course, before beginning any CBD regimen. They know your body and your needs and can help to advise you.
Method of Use (How Quickly the CBD “Kicks In”)
There are many ways to get CBD into your system, and which form you use or combination affects how long the CBD stays in your system. Some take time to build up in your system, while others absorb more quickly and have a shorter time in your system.
How Often You Take it
Because CBD is somewhat cumulative, how often you take it and how much you take with each serving is also a factor in how long CBD stays in your system.
Other factors that affect how long CBD stays in your system are:
- How frequently and how much you take
- What types of CBD you use in combination
- How you ingest or use the CBD products
- Your body weight and metabolism
- Whether or not you eat something when you take your CBD
- Whether or not the CBD form you are taking gets to the bloodstream
Different Forms of CBD
The different forms of CBD and various types of consumption of CBD products are the biggest factors for how long CBD stays in your system. Here’s a brief rundown of the different types and an approximate time frame for how quickly and how long they stay in your system. Generally speaking, most CBD products last a few hours, so when you take CBD oil tinctures regularly, it is the best way to keep it in your system more evenly.
You take the serving of CBD oil and place it under the tongue using the dropper. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds under your tongue before swallowing the CBD oil. This method allows CBD to penetrate your system through the tongue's ventral surface and floor of the mouth (via the reticulated vein) without all of it having to go through the digestive system. This delivery allows the CBD to enter the system more quickly.
Oral absorption is a fast way to get CBD into your system, and it stays in your system until your body completely processes all of it. It can take about 15 to 30 minutes to begin interacting with your body and stay in your system strongly for the first day and then linger in lesser amounts for days after that. For some people, it can hang around for weeks. Some sources estimate two to five days, but it really all depends on how quickly your body processes CBD.
Vaping CBD is the fastest way to get CBD into your system via the lungs. Though vaping is still a highly controversial method, some people prefer it. It goes into the system almost immediately, and it doesn’t linger in the body, making it a popular method for many people.
It is important to mention that you really need to speak to your doctor before considering vaping as an option. It may be that the risks of vaping outweigh the benefits you may get from the CBD.
Edible CBD means things like CBD gummies, CBD sour gummies, or CBD Vitamin C Gummies (or, in the case of your pets, the CBD dog chews or CBD cat chews). It also involves a capsule form and any CBD oil that is simply swallowed.
Edible CBD products reach ECS receptors through the mouth, chewed or swallowed, and then processed through the digestive system. This process breaks down the CBD slower; therefore, it enters your bloodstream more gradually.
Depending on how much you’ve eaten, and other factors like metabolism and weight, CBD gummies and other edible options of CBD can take up to 90 minutes to interact with your body and stay in your system as long as it takes your body to process them. The staying power is similar to the CBD tinctures, but the edibles may have lower concentrations of CBD. Check the packaging for your products for serving sizes and amounts of CBD in each.
Topical CBD oil products are:
- CBD moisturizers.
- CBD creams with active pain-fighting ingredients like lidocaine.
- CBD body and bath products.
They do not generally enter the bloodstream so, while they may last for hours, the CBD only interacts with the ECS receptors of your skin.
For more information on how CBD works in your system and for how long, see this article: How Long Does It Take for CBD Oil to Work? It will help to answer the question, “how long does CBD stay in your system?”
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System? Final Thoughts
Use the timeframes we’ve given in this article as a guideline so that you know how often you’ll need to supplement your CBD tinctures with other products. Remember that taking CBD oil tinctures works best when you take a regular amount, twice a day, at the exact times.
It may seem like a cop-out to the question, but if you really want to know “how long does CBD stay in your system,” it’s really a matter of taking the products for yourself. Begin with the CBD oil tinctures and incorporate the CBD gummies and the CBD topical products to maintain consistent levels of CBD in your body. Make sure to choose a THC-free CBD option if you do not want the effects of THC.
For more helpful CBD topics and information, follow our blog.