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How Long Does It Take to Feel CBD?

How Long Does It Take to Feel CBD?

It’s not uncommon to wonder how long it takes to feel CBD, but unfortunately, there isn’t a “one size fits all” answer. One of the most incredible things about human beings and human nature is our individuality and uniqueness. It’s this same quality that creates a range of answers when it comes to CBD. We know this can get a little confusing, but stick with us through this blog while we iron out all the details. 

Why Bioavailability Matters

Okay, we know “bioavailability” is a clunky, complicated-sounding word, but it’s not as bad as it seems. When you see this word, it’s referring to how long it takes CBD to absorb into your bloodstream: i.e., how long it takes to kick in. 

Bioavailability has a direct impact on how your body responds and interacts with CBD. The compounds enter your system, but they have to fully absorb into the bloodstream to produce the effects you’re looking for. Much of this process depends on how your body metabolizes the cannabinoids.

This process differs per the individual, but it all goes back to how your body absorbs the compounds. Bioavailability and absorption may seem like two sides of the same coin, but they have distinct differences. 

Bioavailability refers to the rate at which your body absorbs a compound, but absorption is the actual movement of the compound as it circulates through your body and related systems. 

The endocannabinoid system also plays a vital role in absorption and bioavailability. The endocannabinoid system, or ECS, is a cell-signaling system that communicates with receptors throughout your body to keep the body in a necessitated state of homeostasis. When you take your CBD, it attaches to receptors located throughout the body, at the cellular surface level as part of the process. 

Let’s take a closer look at some of the personal factors that can affect your onset time. 

Personal Factors 

Personal factors, like age, weight, metabolism, tolerance, and the concentration of your product, are something else to keep in mind. As you can see, all of these factors, combined, directly affect how your body absorbs certain compounds. 

What works for you may have a completely different effect on someone else, because they weigh more or less, or metabolize compounds much slower. However, the concentration of the product has a lot to do with it, as well. 

As mentioned above, different product categories have various onset times, since they absorb and metabolize differently. 

CBD Tincture Oils 

CBD Tincture OilsCBD tincture oils are one of the longest-standing products in the CBD industry. When you take CBD tincture oil, it’s recommended you hold the oil under your tongue for 60 seconds before swallowing. 

In doing this, you allow cannabinoids and other compounds to absorb in the capillaries under the tongue, where they enter the bloodstream. CBD tincture oils have a bioavailability rate between 13% and 19% — although, at times, they can reach as high as 35%. 

When you take CBD tincture oil, such as our CBD Oil Sleep Tincture, it can take anywhere from 20–60 minutes to feel the effects.

CBD Edibles

CBD EdiblesMost of you are familiar with CBD edibles, since they’re what a majority of people are most comfortable trying for the first time. People love the ease of use provided by the vast array of edible products on the market — CBD gummies, cookies, drinks, and capsules are just a few of the most popular. The downside is that CBD edibles have the lowest bioavailability rate, since they lose some of their concentration taking a trip through the digestive system. 

The bioavailability of edible products is between 10% and 20%, although it can go as low as 6% in some cases. And you have to wait for the CBD to pass through your system before feeling any effects. When taking CBD edibles, you can expect to feel results between 30 and 120 minutes. 

CBD Topicals 

CBD TopicalsIf you’re looking for targeted relief in one specific area of the body, then CBD topicals are an excellent option to explore. CBD topicals work differently than other CBD products, since they never actually enter the bloodstream. 

We know, you’re wondering, how do they work if they never enter the bloodstream?

When you apply a CBD topical — creams, lotions, balms, sprays, or anything else you apply topically — it travels through multiple layers of skin before reaching the problem area and delivering the relief you’re looking for. Since they don’t enter the bloodstream, the compounds engage and interact with the receptors located in the peripheral nervous system. 

CBD topical effects generally peak between 60 and 90 minutes after application. 

Still Not Feeling Anything? Try This. 

With all the varying factors and components that go into how you feel your CBD, there’s still one we haven’t touched on — endocannabinoids. 

Your body produces its own cannabinoids, called endocannabinoids. When you have lower levels of naturally occurring endocannabinoids, it’s harder for the cannabinoids to engage with the endocannabinoid system. This is why many companies tell you to take your CBD daily, so you allow it to build up in your system to achieve the results you want. 

However, there are a few more things you can do to increase the effectiveness of your product. We can start with CBD as a fat-soluble compound. 

If we flash back to 6th-grade science, we all learned that oil and water don’t mix (your body being the water-based component). Most companies understand this aspect and formulate with some fatty components, like MCT oil or olive oil, but you can also pair your CBD supplement with a high-fat meal to enhance absorption

Additionally, you want to make sure you have a quality product on your hands. Lower-quality CBD products aren’t as effective for various reasons. When you continuously take these types of supplements, you build unnecessary tolerance. 

Last but not least, if you still don’t feel the effects you’re looking for, you may need to experiment with a different product category. As stated earlier, CBD gummies don’t work in the body like a CBD topical, especially when we factor in some of the personal elements mentioned above. 


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