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How long does CBD stay in the system?

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CBD typically stays in your system for 2-5 days. But this can vary greatly depending on how you use it and several other factors. Factors like dosage, frequency, weight, and even what you eat before and after can affect how long CBD stays in your body. While orally taken CBD stays longer, its absorption increases with a fatty meal.

The more you use it, the more it builds up in your system. If you take higher doses more frequently, CBD will stay in your body longer.

Let’s find out more!

How long does CBD stay in the Body?

How long does CBD stay in the system

CBD (cannabidiol) can stay in the body for about two to five days. CBD’s half-life within the body can fluctuate between approximately 1 hour to as long as 5 days. Half-life signifies the time it takes for the body to eliminate half of a substance. In most cases, the body effectively clears a drug within four to five half-life cycles.

Your liver is responsible for breaking down CBD, removing about 70-75% of an orally absorbed dose. When you take CBD with a high-fat meal, it becomes more effective. How long CBD stays in your system depends on how you take it. If you take it intravenously, it will have a half-life of 24 ± 6 hours, but if you take it orally, the elimination half-life will be between 2 to 5 days.

Factors that determine how long CBD will stay in your system?

Factors that determine how long CBD will stay in your system?

How long CBD stays in your system depends on 8 main factors. They are

  1. Frequency of use
  2. Dosage
  3. Method of consumption
  4. Half-life
  5. Physiology & Personal Factors
  6. Potency
  7. Diet

Let’s discuss each one.

1. Frequency of use

The duration CBD remains in your system is influenced by your usage frequency. Regular use leads to CBD buildup in your body, extending its presence. On the other hand, occasional use results in faster clearance. In essence, the more consistently you use CBD, the longer its effects persist, while sporadic use leads to quicker elimination.

2. Dosage

The duration CBD remains in your system is directly influenced by the dosage you consume. Similar to usage frequency, a higher dose of CBD tends to prolong its presence in your body. Whether it’s the potency or the quantity, both aspects of your CBD intake play a role in determining how long it will stay in your system.


Additionally, making CBD oil at home can be beneficial for those who prefer a DIY approach. This process involves selecting quality cannabis, extracting CBD, and properly diluting it with a carrier oil.

A study (effects of CBD after oral application)showed that when people took a small amount of CBD (1.35 milligrams), it could only be found in their blood for about six hours after they ate it. But if they took more CBD, it could be found in their blood for a longer time. So, the amount of CBD you take can affect how long it stays in your body.

3. Method of consumption

Method of consumption

The method of consuming CBD plays a pivotal role in determining its duration of stay in your system. CBD comes in various forms, including CBD oils, tinctures, pills, capsules, edibles, vaping, and creams. Each of these methods has its unique impact on the onset and duration of CBD effects.

For instance, when you opt for vaping CBD oil, it swiftly enters your body, taking effect rapidly and exiting quickly as well. On the other hand, oils and tinctures administered under the tongue are absorbed into the bloodstream faster, resulting in a more extended presence in your system.

When it comes to CBD edibles or water-soluble CBD, your digestive system is responsible for metabolizing these forms, which can lead to a longer processing time. While this means a slower onset of effects, it also translates to a more prolonged stay in your system.

Method of ConsumptionDuration of stay in bodyDetectable in a drug testVape6 hoursApproximately 7 daysOils and tinctures4-6 hoursApproximately 7-9 daysEdibles2-6 hoursApproximately 7 daysCreams and lotions (Topical)1.5 to 5 hoursDoes not show upPatches or gels/creams (Transdermal)2 to 6 hoursApproximately 7 days

To summarize, When you breathe in CBD by vaping, it works fast but goes away fast too. When you put CBD oil drops under your tongue, it gets into your blood quickly and sticks around for a while. If you eat CBD in things like gummies, it takes longer to work because your stomach has to change it. Using creams on your skin with CBD also takes a while to get in and out of your body.

4. Half-life

The half-life of CBD can vary significantly, ranging from approximately 1 hour to up to 5 days. Half-life refers to the time it takes for the body to eliminate half of a substance. In most cases, a drug is eliminated from the body within four to five half-lives.

For CBD sprays and drops, the half-life typically falls within the range of 1.4 to 10.9 hours. However, when CBD is consumed orally over an extended period, its half-life can extend to 2 to 5 days. Smoking CBD, on the other hand, results in a shorter half-life of approximately 31 hours.


When considering reasons to use cannabis, it’s notable that people often turn to it for its therapeutic benefits, such as pain relief, anxiety reduction, and sleep aid. Furthermore, since affordability and accessibility are major factors in customer choice, the relationship between cheap weed and health is a topic of growing interest.

5. Physiology & Personal Factors

Physiology & Personal Factors

The duration CBD stays in your system varies from person to person, influenced by individual factors like body mass index (BMI), water content, and metabolism. These unique physiological characteristics play a crucial role in determining how long CBD remains detectable in your body.

Your metabolism, influenced by personal factors such as age, gender, activity level, and genetics, plays a significant role in how long CBD remains in your system. Metabolic rates differ from person to person, and the speed of your metabolism will largely determine the duration of CBD’s presence in your body. A faster metabolism tends to process CBD more swiftly than a slower one.

6. Potency

The potency of CBD products can impact how long they stay in your system. Stronger products, with higher concentrations of CBD oil, are likely to linger in your body for an extended period.

7. Diet

The duration CBD stays in your system can be influenced by your dietary choices. Eating habits, including the amount and type of food you consume, can impact the processing of CBD in your body.

According to a research (Food effect on pharmacokinetics of cannabidiol oral capsules) CBD tends to linger longer in the bloodstream after a high-fat meal, extending its half-life. Conversely, taking CBD on an empty stomach with a delayed meal may lead to quicker elimination. Foods rich in fats, such as avocados, cheese, and nuts, can also prolong the presence of CBD.

Moreover, research suggests that combining CBD with high-fat foods can enhance its absorption and exposure in the body, further affecting its duration in your system.

How long does CBD shows up in a drug test?

CBD by itself won’t make you fail a drug test. But some CBD products might have a little bit of THC, which could show up on a test. This happens because sometimes THC gets mixed with CBD when they make the products.

The CBD oils you use for different things like creams or supplements usually won’t show up on a drug test because they don’t get into your blood. But for things you eat or drink with CBD, it’s trickier. They might have some THC, especially if they aren’t checked by the FDA. So, it’s not super clear if CBD in things you eat or drink can make you fail a drug test.

How do drug tests check for CBD or THC?

How do drug tests check for CBD or THC?

Drug tests check for THC, a substance found in cannabis. These tests have certain levels that determine whether you pass or not. Passing doesn’t mean you have zero THC; it means you have less than a specific amount. The amounts vary depending on the type of test.

  1. Urine Test: This is common in workplaces. You pass if you have less than 50 nanograms of a THC metabolite (THC-COOH) per milliliter of urine. Detection times range from 3 to 15 days, but heavy users might be detected for over 30 days. There isn’t much research on how long CBD can be found in urine, but one study found that it was present in one person’s urine for just one day. However, it’s important to note that CBD is usually not tested for in regular drug tests.
  1. Blood Test: Less common for drug screening, it’s mainly used for checking current impairment. THC is detectable in the bloodstream for up to 5 hours, while THC metabolites can be found for up to 7 days.
  2. Saliva Test: Not widespread, and the cut-off limits aren’t well-established. Some recommendations suggest a cut-off value of 4 ng/mL. THC can be detected in saliva for about 72 hours, possibly longer with heavy use.
  3. Hair Test: Uncommon, with no set cut-off limits for THC metabolites in hair. Some private industries use a cut-off of 1 picogram per milligram (pg/mg) of THC-COOH. THC metabolites can be detected in hair for up to 90 days.

How Long It Takes to Feel the Effects of CBD?

How Long It Takes to Feel the Effects of CBD?

How quickly you feel the effects of CBD depends on the form you use:

  1. Topical CBD Products: These, like balms and lotions, should provide relief almost immediately. You’ll likely feel the effects within about 15 minutes.
  2. Ingestible Forms: Tinctures, capsules, and CBD oil and gummies can have varying onset times. Tinctures, when held under the tongue, are usually absorbed within 30 seconds, with effects felt in about 15 minutes. When ingesting CBD edibles (swallowing it or consuming CBD-infused food), you can expect to feel the effects within approximately 45 minutes to two hours.

FAQs

How long is CBD effective in system?

CBD might stay in your system for approximately one to five days, but the duration of its effects is often shorter. Various factors, including the type of CBD you use, influence these timeframes. Here are the expected timeframes for the effectiveness of your daily CBD dose.

How long will CBD stay in your urine?

In individuals who use CBD occasionally, around 2-3 times per week, THC can be detected in urine for up to 3 days following use. For moderate users who consume CBD more frequently, about 4-5 times per week, THC can remain detectable for 5-7 days. In frequent users who use CBD daily, THC may be detectable in urine for a longer period, typically 10-15 days after use.

How do you clean CBD out of your system?

To effectively remove CBD from your system, it’s advisable to drink water as much as you can, leading to increased urination. If you need to pass a urine test, consider increasing your daily water intake to about two to three liters in the days leading up to the test. Additionally, drink an extra one to two liters a few hours before taking the test to help flush out CBD from your system.

Which CBD products do not show up in a THC drug test?

If you’re worried about CBD causing a positive drug test result at work, stick to CBD products that are THC-free or have minimal THC. These include CBD isolate and broad spectrum CBD products.

Will CBD Cause Me to Fail a Drug Test?

Will CBD Cause Me to Fail a Drug Test?

Yes, CBD products have the potential to result in a positive drug test. To minimize the risk, you can try to find products with the lowest THC content (such as CBD isolate, broad spectrum CBD) but it’s important to note that CBD product labeling may not always be accurate due to the lack of regulation in the industry.

To avoid any chance of testing positive for THC in a drug test, it’s best to use CBD isolate products, which contain only CBD and no other cannabis compounds. This is a safer option compared to full or broad-spectrum CBD products, as trace amounts of THC may still be detectable in drug tests when using those.

Final thoughts

How long CBD stays in your body depends on several things. If you use it often, it can stay longer, but if you use it now and then, it leaves faster. The amount you take matters too; more CBD takes longer to leave. How you use it matters too.

Vaping it in makes it fast but short-lived, while eating it takes longer but stays longer. Also, your body’s own way of working matters. People are different, and that changes how long CBD stays. Stronger CBD products stick around longer. How you store marijuana for maximum freshness also matters. To maintain quality, store it away from light, air, and extreme temperatures.

Lastly, your personal factors like age, gender, and metabolism play a part. So, there’s no one answer for everyone.

Sources:

  • Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study about the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on the pharmacokinetics of Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) after oral application of THC verses standardized cannabis extract (2005 Dec 27) by Thomas Nadulski, Fritz Pragst, Gordon Weinberg, Patrik Roser, Martin Schnelle, Eva-Maria Fronk, Andreas Michael Stadelmann
  • Food effect on pharmacokinetics of cannabidiol oral capsules in adult patients with refractory epilepsy (2019 Jun 27) Angela K Birnbaum, Ashwin Karanam, Susan E Marino, Christopher M Barkley, Rory P Remmel, Michaela Roslawski, Mary Gramling-Aden, Ilo E Leppik
  • A urinary test procedure for identification of cannabidiol in patients undergoing medical therapy with marijuana (2016 Feb 12) Paul T Wertlake and Michael D Henson

I’m Zoey Roy, a Cannabis Compliance Specialist and Cannabis Activist. I am experienced in guiding individuals and businesses through complex cannabis regulations. With a Bachelor’s degree in Research from McGill University, I’ve worked at Neptune Wellness for 4 years as a senior researcher. Now I serve as a Cannabis Industry Analyst at Tilray Brands, Inc. I provide essential support in ensuring compliance, educating clients, and facilitating legal requirements. My expertise extends to marketing and laboratory skills, making me a well-rounded professional in the field.