The CBD industry is growing at an incredibly fast pace. Just in 2020, it was worth around $2.8 billion, and it is estimated that it will keep growing by 21.2% each year until 2028. Considering that more and more US states decide to finally legalize the use of cannabis, either for medical or recreational purposes, it’s no wonder that an increasing number of people are interested in the substance and products derived from it. And it is CBD (cannabidiol) that draws their attention, as it offers a variety of benefits without making a person high.
Apart from the basic, most obvious questions people ask at the beginning of their cannabis journey, one of the often-repeated ones is: how long does CBD stay in your system? Will it show up on a drug test? How different is using CBD oil from vaping? And that’s what we’re focusing on in the article below. Read on to learn all there is to know for a beginner about the effects of CBD products on your body.
Basics Of CBD
Cannabidiol (CBD) is the second of the most common naturally occurring compounds, cannabinoids, found in cannabis plants. This chemical compound has gained a lot of fame because it can be highly beneficial to your health and general well-being, but it doesn’t make you high – unlike THC.
In addition to being non-psychoactive, CBD offers a whole range of benefits. First of all, it calms down the nervous system. In fact, it can help relieve symptoms of conditions such as anxiety, depression, PTSD, epilepsy, nausea, and others. CBD is also efficient when it comes to pain relief, muscle relaxation, and inflammation reduction. It can be used for treating insomnia and boosting your immune system. Last but not least, CBD has anti-aging properties and can positively influence your overall health.
How Long Does CBD Stay In Your System? It Depends On…
Quite logically, the more CBD you take, the longer it will stay in your system, and it doesn’t matter if you’re vaping CBD or use CBD topicals. However, you should always adjust the dosage to your individual needs and capabilities, nothing else. One study proved that only a medium dosage is effective when it comes to treating anxiety with CBD, so it’s best to consult with a specialist if you use CBD for specific purposes.
How Much You Eat
If you have had a big meal right before taking CBD, your digestive system will work slower, so CBD will stay in your organism longer and have time to work better. Taking CBD on an empty stomach is not a great idea, as you won’t be able to properly benefit from its advantageous properties.
It’s not possible to predict how you will react to CBD, or how long it will stay in your system – at least you can’t be 100% accurate in these predications. There are too many intricacies to consider here, including your body mass index, body composition, metabolism, water and nutrients level, other medications you take, or different health issues you suffer from.
It’s important to know that CBD is fat-soluble, which means that it is stored in your body’s fat cells. As such, the higher your body mass, the longer it will take your organism to get rid of CBD. However, body composition also needs to be considered, as people of the same body mass might significantly differ when it comes to the amounts of adipose tissue or fat.
Regularity of Use
If you use CBD on a regular basis, it will build up in your organism with time. As such, it will stay in your system for longer. It is also how you can see how it actually affects you if you’re a first-timer. However, with time, your body will get used to the substances and the effects might become less intense.
How You Use It
CBD can be taken in a variety of ways, and it will also affect the strength of its effects and their longevity.
- Edibles (e.g., capsules, swallowed extracts, CBD-infused drinks, or foods) need to be digested just like regular foods before they get into your system. There’s no estimated time after which you will feel the effects, as it depends on your metabolism and diet, but it usually takes quite a long before it kicks in. How long will CBD stay in your organism when consumed? Typically, around 2-3 hours, but it also depends on your body.
- Sublingual CBD (e.g., CBD oil or tincture) is used by placing a drop or two under your tongue. It starts working after around 15 minutes, and its highly varying half-life falls somewhere between 1 and 10 hours.
- If you’re using topical CBD (e.g., creams, lotions, salves), all you have to do is rub it into your skin and let it absorb into your blood vessels and nervous system. This method works well and it’s convenient, but the effects only last for a few hours. However, to benefit from the properties of topicals, you need to apply them regularly.
- Inhalation is the most efficient and effective way to use CBD. It is also the fastest. When compared to other intake methods, smoking and vaping take around 10 minutes to kick in and up to an hour to fully work. The half-life of inhaled CBD is usually around a couple of hours.
The higher the concentration of CBD in a product, the longer it takes your organism to fully clear it out.
Can CBD Show Up on a Drug Test?
Since it’s hard to determine how long CBD will stay in your organism, you might be wondering whether it can show up on a drug screening.
Is CBD detectable by drug tests? The short answer is: no because most drug tests are designed to detect THC.
However, a lot of CBD products contain some THC, the cannabis’s main active ingredient responsible for making you high. Even traces of THC might show up on a drug test – it all depends on the product you use. Usually, even if the effects wear off, the substance remains detectable on drug tests for 18 to 32 hours. However, it’s not unheard of for it to stay in your organism for even longer.
CBD products of higher quality and better composition should be free of detectable THC amounts, so it’s always better to look for more reliable providers. On top of that, it will ensure that the effects are actually noticeable.
It’s also useful to get familiar with the types of CBD products, meaning full-spectrum CBD, broad-spectrum CBD, and CBD isolate:
- full-spectrum CBD contains all the natural ingredients of the cannabis plant, including THC;
- broad-spectrum CBD has gone through the THC elimination process but might contain traces of it;
- CBD isolates will only contain CBD.
Therefore, if you want to pass a drug test in the nearest future, you should stick to CBD isolate products. You might also want to turn to hemp-derived CBD. In this case, it’s also a full-spectrum CBD product but it is legally required for hemp-derived CBD to contain less than 0.3% of THC.
The results might also depend on the used drug test method:
- Urine tests are probably the most common, especially among employers. Again, it is difficult to determine how long CBD can be present in your body. Typically, it takes up to 15 days for your organism to get rid of the substance, but it can vary significantly depending on the individual variables mentioned above.
- Blood tests are not as popular as urine drug tests, because THC is known to disappear from the bloodstream quite quickly – even as fast as within 5 hours after taking it. However, metabolites can be detectable for a bit longer (up to a week).
- Hair tests are sometimes chosen because they can detect drugs for a more extended period than other methods of drug screening. However, they are not very common for THC and CBD tests.
- Saliva tests, similarly to hair tests, are incredibly rare for CBD and THC screenings. It might be useful because the substances can be detected within minutes after taking, but they will only be detectable for around 36 hours. It can only vary if you are a frequent user.
The Bottom Line
CBD products are becoming more and more popular across the globe, as they help treat a variety of health conditions, from anxiety and depression to pain, seizures, and insomnia. However, CBD can only help you with these if you take it in the proper way and in the right doses. As such, more and more people want to try this natural remedy for themselves, but they wonder how long it will stay in their organism.
So, how long does CBD stay in your system? The answer depends on many factors. While it should be easy to find out, it is important to know that you can’t always know how your organism will react to certain substances, and this also applies to CBD.
To prevent any unpleasant surprises, be careful with the dosage, choose only high-quality products, and always consult with your healthcare provider.