Standard drug tests look for THC rather than CBD. But CBD users are still at risk of failing drug screenings. Find out how long CBD stays in your body. Consuming CBD may have many potential health benefits, which explains its popularity. We break down the factors that impact how long CBD stays in your system. How long CBD lasts in the human body, and how long the effects persist, depends on a variety of factors, including how it’s consumed.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System?
Cannabidiol (CBD), and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are two of the most well-known compounds in cannabis plants. The latter has psychoactive effects and causes the high marijuana is famous for. THC use impairs judgment and coordination.
As a result, THC and its byproducts are what’s tested for in standard 5-panel and 10-panel drug tests. Pure CBD will not show up on these tests. Tests that can detect CBD are available but they’re more expensive and are not widely used.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your Urine?
In some cases of heavy use, CBD can stay in the system for up to a week, and windows of detection extend to more than a month. In the case of single exposures, THC and its metabolites are detectable in urine for about 3 days after the last time taken.
Most urine tests come back positive if you consume more than 2,000 mg of legal CBD products per day. This might seem like a large number but frequent use of CBD products could trigger a false-positive test result. This is a possible outcome when you consider that CBD and THC accumulate in the body.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your Blood?
Blood tests focus on recent use. THC is only detectable in blood for approximately 5 hours, but its metabolites can remain in the system for up to 7 days.
Taking CBD products with unknown amounts of THC would only yield a valid result if a lab test was done on a blood sample within this short period of time.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your Saliva?
THC can be found in saliva for about 72 hours but chronic use of CBD products tainted with THC could extend this window of detection. Analyzing saliva to detect CBD is rare.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your Hair?
In general, substances such as CBD can be detected in hair up to about 3 months after they were last taken. Trace amounts of THC will likely not show up in a hair test.
How Long Do the Effects of CBD Last?
The duration of CBD’s effects depend largely on the method of consumption, but in general, CBD lasts between 2 and 6 hours.
Smoking or vaping causes the substance to enter the body rapidly via the lungs. Two teaspoons of a concentrated CBD tincture taken sublingually can also take effect within an hour. These fast-acting modes of administration tend to wear off sooner too.
Chewables have to go through the GI tract before entering the bloodstream, so effects take a little longer to kick in with peak blood levels being reached at around three hours after ingestion. This method of consumption has a more prolonged effect lasting up to eight hours. People often over-consume edibles because the results aren’t instant.
Topical applications like creams also last longer. Because CBD is not psychoactive, it’s more difficult to determine when it’s actually taking effect.
How Does CBD Affect the Brain?
Research on THC in the 1990s led to the discovery of the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Scientists found that our bodies naturally make molecules that are similar to cannabinoids from cannabis plants.
These molecules support our immune systems and are broken down when they’ve completed their function. There are receptors for endocannabinoids all over the body including the central nervous system (CNS). And as it turns out, THC binds to them and CBD does so weakly or not at all. CBD may in fact reduce the effects of THC by blocking it.
CBD influences the release of neurotransmitters in the brain which impact pain, anxiety, sleep, and other functions.
Factors That Influence Detoxing from CBD
Regardless of gender, CBD is generally believed to have an elimination half-life of one to two days. This means that half of the dose leaves the body at this time. But how long it lasts is not the same for everyone. Unique factors that determine how quickly CBD is expelled include:
- Weight – CBD is fat-soluble and is stored in fatty tissue
- Frequency of use – CBD can accumulate in your system
- Mode of ingestion
Most drug tests look for THC rather than CBD. If you are concerned about an upcoming drug test, avoid the use of CBD products that could contain unknown amounts of THC. THC can typically be detected within these windows:
- Urine – 3 to 30 days
- Blood – 5 hours up to a week
- Saliva – 72 hours or more with heavy use
- Hair – about 3 months
Treatment for CBD Dependence
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), pure CBD has no abuse potential. But CBD products can cause psychological dependence. And THC can cause marijuana use disorders and withdrawal symptoms which negatively impact users’ health and productivity.
If you or someone you know is struggling with a dependency on CBD, help is available. Treatment programs include tailored therapy sessions to address the underlying issues leading to substance misuse. Humans can form bad habits, but bad habits can be unlearned. Take the first step towards a brighter future today.
How Long Does CBD Stay In Your System?
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Table of Contents
- 5 Factors That Affect How Long CBD Stays in Your System
- How Long Do the Effects of CBD Oil Last?
Research shows consuming cannabidiol (CBD) may have a host of potential health benefits, such as reducing anxiety, relieving pain, and promoting sleep—explaining the latest surge in CBD’s popularity. But people who use CBD—either regularly or just once in a while—might wonder how long it stays in your system.
No matter how you take CBD, it’s likely that the clinical impact can last for several days after use, says Kelly Johnson-Arbor, M.D., a triple-board certified medical toxicologist and co-medical director of National Capital Poison Center. In fact, a 2020 study in the Journal of Analytical Toxicology found people who consumed a single dose of a standardized CBD formulation had detectable levels of CBD in their urine for four to five days after ingestion  Spindle T, Cone E, Kuntz D, Mitchell J, Bigelow G, Flegl R, Vandrey R. Urinary Pharmacokinetic Profile of Cannabinoids Following Administration of Vaporized and Oral Cannabidiol and Vaporized CBD-Dominant Cannabis. Journal of Analytical Toxicology. 2020;44(2):109-125. .
Continue reading to discover the myriad factors that may impact how long CBD stays in your system.
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5 Factors That Affect How Long CBD Stays in Your System
According to Dr. Johnson-Arbor, how long CBD stays in your system can depend on various factors.
How and What You Eat
How much you eat, as well as what you eat, can impact how your body processes CBD, says Dr. Johnson-Arbor. After consuming a high-fat meal, higher levels of CBD are typically present in the bloodstream, making its half-life (the time it takes for half the amount of a substance to be eliminated from the body) longer than in individuals who consume CBD while fasting, she explains. In other words, if you consume CBD on an empty stomach and don’t eat immediately, CBD is more likely to leave your system sooner. Meanwhile, eating high-fat foods, such as avocados, cheese and nuts, can have the opposite effect. One 2019 study also found CBD exposure and absorption increases significantly when paired with high-fat foods  Birnbaum A, Karanam A, Marino S, Barkley C, Remmel R, Roslawski M, Gramling-Aden M, Leppik I. Food Effect on Pharmacokinetics of Cannabidiol Oral Capsules in Adult Patients with Refractory Epilepsy. Epilepsia. 2019;60(8):1586-1592. .
Medications Processed in the Liver and Liver Disease
Certain medical conditions may impact how long CBD stays in your system. “Since CBD is metabolized by the liver, people with liver disease or who take other medications that are metabolized by the liver may have altered metabolism of CBD,” says Dr. Johnson-Arbor. She explains that the human liver contains enzymes that help the body break down medications and other compounds, and some medications can increase or decrease the activity of these enzymes. “When this happens, medications can be metabolized either faster or slower than normal, and this can lead to unwanted adverse reactions,” she says. Since CBD is metabolized by liver enzymes, there can be a potential drug interaction with many other medications.
Frequency of Use
If you use CBD frequently, it can build up over time and stay in your system longer, largely because CBD is highly soluble in fat. “This means that it can build up in our fatty tissues for a long period of time after heavy use and can therefore remain in the system for prolonged periods of time (e.g. weeks) in heavy users,” says Dr. Johnson-Arbor.
How Much You Use
Unsurprisingly, the more CBD you take at once, the longer it stays in your system. A 2005 study in the journal Therapeutic Drug Monitoring found taking 1.35 milligrams of CBD was only detectable in the blood for about six hours after ingestion, but higher doses were detectable for longer periods of time  Nadulski T, Pragst F, Weinberg G, Roser P, Schnelle M, Fronk E, Stadelmann A. Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study about the effects of cannabidiol (CBD) on the pharmacokinetics of Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) after oral application of THC versus standardized cannabis extract. Therapeutic Drug Monitoring. 2005;27(6):799-810. .
Type of CBD Administration
The way in which you consume CBD can impact how long it stays in your system. According to a 2018 review, smoking or inhaling CBD not only causes CBD to enter the bloodstream faster but also leave the body quicker. Meanwhile, the same review found CBD oil can stay in your system longer—up to two to five days. Dr. Johnson-Arbor explains that the reason smoking or inhaling drugs leads to faster clinical effects than consuming a drug orally is because orally administered drugs have to be absorbed through the gastrointestinal tract, and that takes more time. However, whenever you’re talking about how long CBD can stay in your system, it’s important to remember that it really depends on the frequency of use. “CBD (and other cannabinoids) are fat soluble, which means that they can accumulate in fat tissue after chronic use and then be released back slowly into the blood for elimination from the body,” she says. “This means that chronic users may have longer detection times than acute or one-time users (the latter is what’s generally represented in clinical studies and may not be applicable to the general population). The same is true for smoking and inhaling CBD. I don’t want people to get the wrong impression and believe that no matter how much or how frequently they use, CBD will only be detectable in their system for two to five days.”
How Long Do the Effects of CBD Oil Last?
How long the effects of CBD last varies greatly depending on the factors discussed above. “In a study involving healthy individuals who consumed a highly purified CBD formulation, the elimination half-life in the bloodstream was 14 to 17 hours. Since it takes approximately five half-lives to completely eliminate a drug from the human body, it’s likely that CBD stays in the system for about 85 hours, or about 3.5 days” says Dr. Johnson-Arbor.
So, based on the half-life of the drug, it’s likely that detectable levels may be present for several days after use.
How Long Does CBD Stay in Your System?
How long CBD effects last depends on several factors, including the user’s metabolism and if they use CBD regularly. A single dose of CBD may keep working for several hours, and the cannabinoid may persist in the body for days or weeks. The non-intoxicating compound CBD is known to have a variety of beneficial effects, including reduction of pain and inflammation, and anxiety relief. But it does not get you high.
How long does CBD last in your system?
CBD (or cannabidiol) is stored in fat cells in your body, and theoretically can remain detectable for days or even weeks in a blood test. However, research on how long CBD oil stays in the system is spotty, because there’s no real demand for testing. Few employers care if employees consume a non-intoxicating drug that is used mainly to treat pain and anxiety—and commercial testing protocols don’t measure CBD anyway.
How long does CBD keep working?
The first thing to know is that you need to absorb enough CBD for it to have any effect at all. Depending on how you administer CBD, much of its benefit can be lost. Swallowing it forces the drug to first pass through the liver, and as much as 95 percent never gets into the bloodstream. The highest bioavailability (how much is absorbed and gets into the bloodstream) comes from CBD that’s vaped or smoked, with CBD oil tinctures applied sublingually (under the tongue) finishing second.
Because inhaled CBD reaches the brain rapidly, users may feel a much more immediate and pronounced effect than they would from tinctures or edibles. But the therapeutic effects—reduced inflammation, pain and anxiety—are eventually noticeable from all forms of consumption, assuming you use enough. Proper CBD dosing can require some experimentation.
Generally, the effects of CBD wear off within just a few hours, but that depends on the amount of CBD taken, the method used, and the user’s size, metabolism, and history of use. If you begin to feel the pain or anxiety begin to return, you can simply take more CBD. There is no practical way to overdose on CBD.
How long is CBD detectable in your body?
CBD disappears from the body relatively quickly. In a study following 14 patients who were each given about 700 mg of CBD a day orally for six weeks, the average plasma level fell to just 1.5 ng/mL a week after the final dose, and was undetectable after that. The authors estimated the CBD half-life to be about 2-5 days.
It generally takes 5.5 half-lives for a drug to be fully eliminated from the system. So CBD taken orally would completely leave the body in about 11-28 days, but it may be impossible to detect on a blood test well before that. The half-life for vaped or smoked CBD in blood plasma is much shorter than for ingested CBD—just a few hours. A regular user may take longer to fully clear CBD from their system than an occasional or new user.
Research showing how long CBD is detectable in urine is rare, but one study showed a single test subject maintained detectable CBD in his urine for only 24 hours. In any case, CBD is almost never included in standard drug tests (like those given by employers).
If you’re concerned about CBD causing a failed drug test at work, it’s best to restrict your use to the CBD products that contain no THC or almost no THC: CBD isolate and broad-spectrum CBD.